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Posts Tagged ‘skydiving’

GoPro: Realization of a Snag Hazard

When it comes to skydivers wanting to slap a small format camera (GoPro) onto their body there are two statements that I hear far too often, either of which could have resulted in this incident being an injury or fatality.

But it will just break off
I’ll just forget it’s there

Do you jump a GoPro? Have you ever said one of these lines? I invite you to pause for a moment and watch this video.

This is an excellent learning aid on many fronts. I want to highlight and reinforce what this video can teach us about two very important realities of small format cameras in skydiving. (these are not the only lessons to learn from this video, just two that I want to point out)

1) The GoPro mount did not break.

Let that sink in for a minute.

Gear Check: Slider Grommet Damage

If you have an Aerodyne canopy I urge you to be on the look out for this possible slider grommet damage.

This was discovered on my slider by inspection after I noticed a new small hole had developed in my slider after a jump. Looking closely at how the hole lined up nicely with a grommet at first I shook it off as material just getting stuck during deployment. Upon asking my rigger to take a closer look for good measure he looked at the plastic ring under the grommet and found it was not only cracked but easily pulled away from the grommet leaving a nice channel for a line or lines to get caught.

Needless to say I took my canopy out of service until getting the slider replaced.

Grommet Damage 01
Grommet Damage 02
Grommet Damage 03
New Slider

The first picture shows what the cracks look like. With no pressure at all I was able to lift the plastic away from the grommet. The third picture with the line placed in the space shows how much room there is for potential bad juju. This did not happen, but easily could. The final image is the new slider and how that plastic ring should look, no gaps all the way around.

Please inspect your slider grommets for damage regularly, if you notice this damage consider it not airworthy and get it replaced!

Spotter Now Generally Available

I have now made available the spotter application under the GNU GPLv2 license, head over the spot calculator page for some background story and a link to download the latest version.

There have been a few requests to deploy the spotter, and I enjoy giving back to the skydiving community! Would love to hear from you if you have tried, installed, or made modifications!

update 3/7/13: Thanks goes out to Tyson and his gang at Skydive Snohomish for finding and reporting an error in drift calculations when north was reported at 360 instead of 0 degrees. The download link has been updated with the fixed version 1.2.2

Canopy Courses, Sign up!

It’s on everybody’s mind, or it should be…. canopy canopy canopy. With all the talk that has been happening around canopy collisions now is the perfect time to seek out a canopy course at your local dropzone and sign up!

Equip yourself with as much knowledge as you can to make your entire skydive and everyone else’s skydive a successful, safe, fun skydive. Dropzones are offering Canopy Courses and I highly recommend attending them. They aren’t just for new jumpers fresh off AFF. You can learn a lot about that wing over your head. You might be able to overcome some of your fears about canopy flight. You may be able to finally dial in your accuracy and land exactly where you want to (invaluable for off field landings).

Here is a list of some canopy courses in the northeast, I encourage everyone to take advantage of these great resources!