View Full Version : "Are You Crazy Enough To Try This???"
Yes, it is me in Quincy, Ill at the World Free Fall Convention in 1998 in/out of a 2 seat Pitts.........www.freefall.com
I dont free fall, i kinda get sucked out the aircraft, with 100lbs worth of junk straped to my legs, lol and jump at 1200-800' with a static line. Its good to be airborne.
One of the things I haven't done is jump.
Last winter I got the idea I wanted to get to it.
RedDawn was Airborne with about 2,000 jumps in the 60's and we talked about it.
I'm not sure my 66 year old back and legs are up to it anymore.;Q
BTW, A_Swede_17_1911 RedDawn was sucked out of a C130 when someone accidently popped his chute.
I have made many jumps with a guy who is 68. The landings under modern "sqaure" canopies is very soft. My favorite parachutes are from Peformance designs...... http://www.performancedesigns.com/pd.asp
I currently jump a PD spectre 150........
Ain't no fun unless its loaded 3:1. Wing loading that is.
No fun would be hastily exiting a busted burning ship at 700' AGL.
Multijeweled badges/wings for those familiar with USPA cr@p.
"Are You Crazy Enough To Try This???"
No. Hell no.
Crazy no, adventurous enough yes! Didn't have the grab bar to hang from though.
Jumped a Stearman that did sort of a barrel roll while an always right side up Dehavilland Chipmunk flew formation. (Two airshow pilots) This was at a "hangar party" were everybody brought their toys... helicopters, homebuilts, a balloon, skydivers, factory builts, continuous free flights, live band and a barbecue. Everyone was sharing their interests and respecting others.
Back to the skydive... After arriving via flag jump with our demo team, we were invited to jump the stearman. Using a 2,000 ft base altitude for "ground effect", presentation to the ground bound, the roll maneuver was begun with me standing in the front seat. At approximately 110 degrees of roll, I launched by gently pulling/pressing off the top wing's hand holds. Gravity and a very skilled pilot did the rest.
As I righted myself in freefall, I found myself about 50 ft dead astern of the Stearman as it completed it's roll. The backside of barrel roll is a descending maneuver. I remained here for the completion of it's roll... a truly awesome sight while in freefall. My words will never do justice to this experience.
Cherish these moments of stepping out there. It's managed risk at it's best, not a stunt. Skill, education, planning/choreography, a plan B (or two) available often add up to unique experiences.
Skydiving is no longer a physical sport, unless like most forms of aviation you screw up. Materials technology and overall engineering have made the equipment safer than your drive to the airport/drop zone.
If your back can take the impact such as experienced from jogging, you can probably enjoy a skydive. Opening shock is not as violent as depicted in the movies. The camera guy continues at the same rate as the subject decels. Sort of like formation flying when the other guy bobbles while the rest of the formation is steady. Looks violent up close, but from afar, most wouldn't notice.
If you have definite back trouble, consult a physician. No experience is worth aggravating a bad back.
One of our favorite stories is about a local guy who took up aviation sports upon retiring from a successful career in education. He tells of buying his first set of skydiving gear from an "old timer" who was getting out of the sport. The "old timer" was 62 and he was 65. That was ten years ago and he's still at it. I was there when he was awarded his USPA Gold Wings for 1,000 jumps. He became a pretty good airplane pilot too.
I know a little (very little) about the square chutes.
I'm flying this PPC and the brakes are used on landing (I think) like you use your chute brakes on landing.
My back and legs aren't all that bad. Just "go out" once in a while.
If they are going to hurt anyhow they may as well hurt from something that's fun.;f
I'd forgotten your were flying that! Except for the deployment system, you probably know all you need to about flying a skydiving square.
Back when I was looking at getting a light plane, I'd considered a PPC among other things such as two place ultralights. My part of the country gets regular moderate winds that would make short cross countrys in a PPC difficult, though others do it.
Looks like a fun ride.
Yes, the wind is a big thing with a PPC (at least it is with me).
It's a real uncomfortable ride with moderate thermals and even a 10 knot wind.
So the days it can be flown (and enjoyed) are limited.
When I first started flying them I landed after a pretty wild ride. I told my buddy it was rough as hell and I looked up at the chute. I'm not looking up again.
Scared the hell out of me the way that thing was dancing and bouncing around.;f
What weather conditions are considered borderline for jumping?
About what's the cost to try jumping, maybe a few times, to see if it's something you want to continue?
Check out http://www.uspa.org/ for your closest drop zone and pricing. It's been a long time since I've been involved with training.
Ram air inflated wings, square parachutes, can look spooky in turbulence. Turbulence is absorbed by individual cell movement, suspension line stretch, and all appearing to move independently. Ever looked at an airliner wing in turbulence? It can move vertically quite a bit. Sometimes it twists. Parachutes like all other wings are designed to handle a large amount of this. Don't worry about too much about canopy "mambo" it's normal.
The PPC has the added load of a thrust vector on a long pendulum that can "enhance" turbulence anxiety. Does changing thrust momentarily change angle of attack until the forces balance? If so, this could be interesting in gusts. I'm sure the PPC was designed with all this in mind.
Your PPC appears to have a low performance/very forgiving airfoil. That's exactly what I'd want in that application. Let the engine do all the work, while you retain a very reliable wing design.
Did you know that a skydiver can stall his canopy to the point of collapse and if held some designs fly on the bottom skin alone... backward. Sink rate gets interesting though. Releasing the brakes collapses the canopy into it's normal deployment state and then re-inflates. I mention this in case you ever get into a partially collapsed state due to turbulence. It can recover usually unassisted.
Usually only an end cell or two on one or both sides collapse. These can be restored by pumping the brakes which restores normal flight. I once watched complacent low timer experience this and not realize it. Most of the canopy was flying normally and the jumper didn't notice the higher sink rate. As he applied brakes in the landing flare, the end cells popped open for a gentle landing.
Weather limits for skydivers are relatively similar to the other av sports/hobbies. Your experience and equipment determine your personal limits. Students in all av sports are closely monitored.
Fly your PPC into the nearest drop zone and I guarantee you someone will take you under their wing and provide you all the info you'll ever need. Don't be surprised if he or she asked to jump out of your bird. The visit will be entertaining whether or not you decide to try it.
Now if he could get his son to jump with him at the same time...........
Check out my name. That's what I used to fly, too. Had to sell it when I left Texas. I hated flying in 100 degree heat with the thermals so bad that I felt I was on the worst rollercoaster ride of my life. The outsides of my legs were black and blue for weeks because I braced them against the down tubes. We also had some terrific winds at times. I remember flying at 1000 feet and never moved from my takeoff point. My groundspeed was 0 mph.
I remember flying north of Alliance field when I heard this really loud thrumming noise behind me. I looked around thinking my muffler ( I had a Rotax 503 and IVO Props ) must be coming loose. Just as I turned around, about 1000 feet away and maybe 100 feet higher was a B-29 SuperFortress with it's nose wheel down. I gawked at the huge monster for quite a while before I remembered they were having an air show at Alliance the next weekend and the B-29 must have been practising. I hurried down as fast as I could to get my camera and take a picture of it as it was flying circular patterns. The next day I went back out to the airfield but it was a bit too windy and I decided to wait around to see if the wind would die down. From the direction of Alliance field, I saw another large aircraft coming my way. It was a B-24 Liberator that did a perfect bomb run right over my hanger. I got a picture of the belly of the beautiful plane.
I'm trying to get back in the air but this time I want an ultralight Trike. A little easier to fly in windy conditions.
Interesting site Glockdude1, they even make wings for PPC.
150 sf doesn't sound very big.
I guess the 250 sf is for tandem jumps?
I was wondering if Pres. Bush was making a solo jump. Good for him.
G36pilot, thanks for the info.
"canopy mambo", now I know what to call it.;f
RedDawn was in on some of the equipment and chute design that's used today. He's been telling me a bit about stalling the canopy and the end cells not inflated.
With the PPC I've lifted off with an end not inflated. The engine is so powerful if I don't reduce power after initial inflation, I'm off the ground before I can check the wing.
I'm working on a longer ground run to give me about 3 seconds to check full inflation of the wing.
Yes the pendulum action from the power changes the angle of attack of the wing. That means a delay in the desired results when you make a power change.
I get a 500+ FPM rate of climb.
I checked out the USPA web site.
There's a drop zone at an airport just South of me about 25 miles.:)
I'm going to visit first chance I get. They do S/L and Tandem.
BuckeyePPC, I'd have been worried about the turbulance from that B29.
I was once caught in a Bell 206 between a high and low B52 several hundred feet away.
I just knew I was going to be knocked out of the air.
I'd rather have an ultralight myself but the PPC is the only flying machine that will operate out of my small field.
I had visions of getting wrapped up in the engine or wing and taking down one of the few remaining B-29s in the world. It was probably farther away than 1000 feet but it looked closer.
I know a couple of the PPC pilots would take off into a head wind, chute pop up and they were off in a lot less than 10 feet. I know they didn't look at the chute and relied on their mirror instead. My take off run was about 30 feet. Long enough to eyeball the whole wing and pump the end of the chute if I had to.
I have been hearing that canopies as small as 69sq ft are being jumped. Tha smallest I jumped was a sabre 107. 180lbs under a 107?? Now that was a WILD PARACHUTE RIDE. I am glad to say after a nice 40yd "turf surf" I did stand it up nicely..........
Now this is a brave (stupid?) soul:
I can't imagine the rush of that little stunt.
Actually on edit check this out:
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