Lazair #323 Test flights success

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Postby jb88ci » Thu May 26, 2005 4:11 pm

i have a sky diving rig from my younger days. I was considering having the reserve repacked, taking the main out and using it. Then you have to get away from the airplane....deploys fully in <500ft.
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Postby Shannon » Thu May 26, 2005 5:27 pm

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Postby Chappy » Sat May 28, 2005 11:01 pm


Sorry I haven't been able to post for awhile, but I wanted to say that tape failures along the leading edge are very dangerous, and can happen even with the proper tapes and applications IF the Tedlar is grossly over shrunk and the tape is over heated/not rubbed down properly on installation. And it may take awhile before the migration of the material lets it fail. I've seen this several times, and know of a couple Lazairs that were damaged during attempted landings when panels popped open at the leading edge. Interestingly, losing an entire panel out of the top (this can happen with rotten Mylar) is generally barely noticeable in flight when it happens.

Be careful, and make sure you have identified the true reason the tape joint failed on your bird!

BTW, according to people I knew that use/sell hand thrown/hand deployed chutes, they claim they are rarely successful at inflating totally and saving your ass at altitudes much under 800-1000 feet. Something to be aware of if you decide to go that route...

The BRS is heavy for a Lazair, and expensive. Spring deployed chutes made by other companies were neat, but the spring could fail inside the canister and you would not know about it until the next time it was serviced. I'm not sure anyone is making these anymore. The compressed air type were cool because you had a pressure Gage and could monitor it, even top it up using a scuba tank. Again, I'm not aware if these are still in production. I know systems other than BRS are made outside the US/Canada, and they might be better suited for the Lazair, but getting them serviced might be a real problem.

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Postby ozzie » Mon May 30, 2005 5:52 am

about backup chutes ... my friend fitted a Bullet pyro type mounted slightly to one side on the top of the wing even laying back at about 60 deg., it had so much drag it gave the lazair a built in turn and affected the rate of climb heaps(pioneers). Hand deployed types usually don't have a pilot chute and rely on pockets sewn into the deployment bag offering very little drag and are fitted to a very long bridle and take forever to open. myself and another jumper test jumped some of these that were made for hanggliders we had our normal rigs on and had these mounted on the chest with a modified release. departing from a trike did a good 3 second delay and started the deployment we videod the opening with a helmet mount so had a very accuate time for the opening sequence they averaged 8.5 seconds, in normal freefall it takes 10 seconds to complete your first 1000 ft so chappy is right in what he said about deployment altitudes. it took about 7 secs to get to line stretch snivelled for half to one second then exploded open. my friend broke a line on one jump and it whipped across his cheek. so if you use one don't wait, toss it. be patient, something is happening just sit there and worry about your attachment point. what will i be using? after 2000 skydives over 25 yrs jumping all sorts of rigs and canopies i will be using an old Relative Workshop "Racer" with a sewn in ( no metal connector links digging into your back) Featherlight canopy. the set up has the top of the pilotchute outside the container, the opening pins are protected by being on the back side. a diper to hold the canopy mouth closed till line stretch.(safer controlled and softer opening) and most importantly is fast, real fast under 3 secs at subterminal speeds, 1.5 at terminal (120mph). very light. the reserve container is tapered and small one benefit is that you can 'point ' the pilotchute into clear space. containers with enclosed pilotchutes can deploy at an angle as they clear the container flaps. racers were made in West Coast US and were the rig for the long time. there is a good chance you will find someone who can find one for you down your local DZ. i am going to recess the top of the seat cushion so it will be comfy. remove some of the hardware and main container material it will weigh in about 6 pounds or less.
it is impossible to predictict the situation that would require the need to deploy. so no method is foolproof but i learnt years ago that these rigs work when it gets real bad. i'd be happy to get out at over 400' or pointing and shooting at low heights if i had to. for whatever reason. it would also be easy to modify another to fit under the seat. if you had the time. with very little weight penalty.. back up sytems have saved lives and it is sensible to carry one, and using it at any height gives you somthing to do before impact and the report won't read 'deceased went in with a packed working parachute'. i've made my choice on method of escape based on several "live fires" on mine that i bought new in 82 and jumped over half my jumps on it. conventional ballistic/hand types are expensive, draggy, heavy and slow to open, the racer is the fastest of deployment backpacks. no one uses round reserves any more so easy to find these cheap. featherlight is on condition use and not time limited like others. some were custom made with leather containers. i think that nothing would be worse if the o crap happened and you just
had to sit there thinking i wish, for several thousand ft.

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