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Wondering if anyone does any calculations on landing distances required with AD for getting into RLFs that are new(er) to the pilot. I have a good idea of my landing requirements for finals for clearing ~ 60' obstacles in calm conditions at just over sea level (flat landings) and at 2300 ft msl while landing on a steep hill (which really doesn't help compare with flat landings).
It would be nice to be able to roughly calculate the required distance to land in varying conditions at different altitudes and AD's. There is a narrow RLF that I'd like to fly into, and looking at it on Google Earth, it could be a tight squeeze on a hot / humid day. And of course, it's flanked by tall trees. Kinda typical of the small LZ's around here in NC and Va. I do enjoy the very, very fast approach that 99.9% of the time works in my favor (except for my last landing in which I found massive sink and got backwinded by rotor. Poor positioning for the conditions :roll: )
I'm still flying the still-crispy F3 195 at 235 lbs hook in.
Any HG chart similar to GA takeoff/landing distance calc charts?

I recommend practicing for RLFs by spot-landing accurately in a large, friendly LZ, at a comparable altitude first. You have to be spot-on long before you make the last turns, for any RLF. Have you done any work with drogue 'chutes? Those things can really help, with good experience from a large LZ. Drag increases at the square of velocity, so a rapid approach will make a drogue 'chute more effective, as compared to a slow approach.

There is a free absolute altimeter on my web page, linked below. 8)
Might help, there.
How good are you at estimating your altitudes in flight?
I'M not sure of just How close I have touched down to the intended sot to land i was able to accomplish while I have been landing at Mount Diablo' very own Juniper Ridge L-Z. But what I o know is hat that Juniper Ridge in Oh about 15 plus years of usage has yet to experience a wack .

There are really only Two reasons for having a Driver at Mount Diablo. One is Said Said Pilot blows it,and inks out. Said Pilot would have to Choose one of Mount Diablo's lower L-Z's. The only other Time that Said Pilot might choose to land at a L-Z other than Juniper is. SAID-PILOT on that day chooses to Fly an X-C Flight. en

I for One simpl Just Love that Juniper Ridge L-Z. Think about it. The Juniper Ridge L-Z is now Oh
JUT love THAT mountain-top, Down-Wind, Up-Hill L-Z.
Red brought up the drogue chute idea that I've been tossing around my mind for a good while now, but haven't been able to pin down the best drogue that doesn't spin (much). I don't know if it's super-overkill on a Falcon, but it would be good to have an extra tool and gain experience with it before eventually adding a higher performance glider to the quiver.
Any suggestions on where I can purchase the latest proper example? Also need a proper swivel. Anyone experiment with a Linknife or other release to amputate an offending chute? Would there be a way of pulling in the apex (to furl or modulate drag) without the apex line and tether becoming wrapped?
Do you do the Oz Report? Jonathan Dietch (sic) aka NMErider has done extensive work on drogues. Designed, built, tested, bought and flown with- he's da man on drogues. He has stuff you can make on your own or maybe you can talk him into building you one. Good luck...

DMarley wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 1:27 pm
Any suggestions on where I can purchase the latest proper example?
Wills Wing, or your local/favorite Wills Wing dealer, will have or can get the Free Flight Enterprises Drogue. It is a miniaturized representation of their LARA design... which is, hands down, the best reserve parachutes in the sport. Smallest pack yet most efficient decent (or drag, in the case of a drogue/drag chute).

Per WW's site, about the LARA reserves:
Wills Wing offers the LARA (Low Aspect Ratio Annular) Emergency reserve parachute for hang glider and paraglider pilots. The LARA is a higher performance alternative to conventional Conical and PDA (Pulled Down Apex) configurations. The LARA’s aerodynamically efficient shape produces a higher drag coefficient and corresponding lower descent rate during an emergency deployment. It also offers the best value (price/performance) available today.

The LARA was designed by Vertigo Inc., and is fabricated 100% in America by Free-Flight Inc. The combination of Wills Wing, Free-Flight and Vertigo assure the highest standard of quality available.

The LARA 250 was drop tested eight times by the United States military. Data was gathered at the rate of five samples per second utilizing a SOMAT data logger with on-board altimeter instrumentation. The average descent rate (corrected to sea level) with a 200 pound payload was only 17.5 feet per second! The US military uses 24 feet per second as a maximum allowable descent rate for emergency reserve parachutes. This low descent rate is comparable to the 24 gore PDA being manufactured by Free Flight Enterprises for tandem use.

Free Flight has drop tested all LARA models, with payloads 25% above nominal weight, at 90 knots. No canopies were damaged. These tests also verified the exceptional descent rate performance. (Note: Descent rates shown in the specifications below are based on average descent rates obtained in drop tests from airplanes conducted by Free Flight Enterprises. There is characteristically a significant amount of scatter in parachute drop test data).

There are no structural differences between the HG and PG canopies. The PG canopy can be converted for hang gliding applications by adding a bridle extension, however we strongly recommend a Paraswivel which is integral on the HG configuration. Without a Paraswivel, a spinning broken hang glider can close the canopy by twisting the bridle and shroud lines.

The LARA is available in three sizes (175, 250, 400) and four configurations.
I'm not sure why, but very few people seem to know Free Flight Enterprises makes a drogue chute, and Wills Wing distributes it, and it is a Low Aspect Ratio Annular ("LARA"). A lot of science in what appears to be a simple thing... but getting a smaller amount of material to perform like or better than a larger bunch of material... back in the day people called stuff like that MAGIC :wink: :lol:

I'm obviously a big fan, and wouldn't say so if I hadn't used it extensively. Never a problem or a hickup, although I do recommend never COUNTING on something like a drogue chute, as there are many stories of them failing to open or perform as expected (or doing more harm than good if not used carefully!). But with a mini LARA design, I like that not only does it pack smaller in the harness... it is also easier to pull out, less intrusive to hold on my thumb until I let it go, OR SHOULD I CHOOSE NOT TO, and a smaller drogue is much less likely to catch on stuff!

I know Jono likes the design he found/re-discovered, and he either uses or has used very large iterations of that drogue. I have found the FFE/WW drogue to be super effective, reliable, and it is WAY smaller than what I see him using in his videos. I have never, NEVER, wished that it was any more effective than it already is... and I love the LARA design! (thanks Roy Haggard!) :thumbsup:
:offtopic: Just in case you want more about parachutes... :surrender:

Here is more great information on one of the best chutes out there today, the High Energy Sports Quantum Series, designed specifically for the hang glider/paraglider sport -working directly with hang and para pilots.

http://www.highenergysports.com/product ... parachutes
http://www.highenergysports.com/product ... _parachute

Rumor from a (very) reliable source says the LARGER Quantum reserve is, stitch-for-stitch, the same cut and size as the SMALLER LARA :shock:

I was happy to keep that to myself and support High Energy when they were a hang gliding company, and because Betty is good people... but she's retired now, and they've stopped making hang gliding harnesses. I see no longer see reason to remain hush about inferior gear. The LARA will- without a doubt and proven empirically- provide slower decent rates. Free Flight Enterprises is actually who performed H.E.'s drop testing... so there is no doubt, they were tested by exactly the same means, under the same conditions, using the same data collection equipment.

Which is not to say the Quantums are BAD... they are still a quality, reliable product that will more than get the job done. But they cost more than the LARA, and they do less of the only thing they are used for (slowing decent). And again, to be clear, this is NOT opinion....

OK I'll pile on BUT only to STOP the false information. H.E.S. is still supporting hang glider pilots and producing harnesses. I have spoken to the new owner on the phone (in the last 6 months - I'm a Dealer) and H.E.S. will indeed repair and produce the same great harnesses that they always have! As well as provide you with great parachutes.

Don't be fooled by assuming that any emergency event is EVER going to be the same as a plane drop. The rumors about faster opening and slower drop rate will always be applicable to ones OWN situation and is NEVER controlled.
I see no longer see reason to remain hush about inferior gear.
For crying out loud Ryan then don't unless you are talking about inferior gear, which the Quantum Series
of parachutes IS NOT!

I wish Jonathan would chime in here and set some of these misconceptions straight.
From a very short correspondence with Jon and doing some homework, WW does not carry the FFE drogues (unless WW cares not to update their site in the past two years or so). WW carries their own very simplistic drogue design that has been reported as having problems, especially when approaching the deck.

Dustin through Rotor carries the FFE 60" drogues, and these are exact copies of the design that Jon has rediscovered through a German pilot that got this 'chute from yet another pilot who did not remember where he got it from. Aka, the Mystery 'chute I think it's referred as.

As for HES and inferior gear? WT* Ryan?! Without any supportive explanation or proof?! How old are you?
Re: WW carrying the FFE drogues... I have two of them, one in each of my harnesses, both purchased directly from WW. One was within the last year.

Per their web site:
75B-4010 DROGUE PARACHUTE EA 95.25 Parachute

Re: "without proof or supporting evidence, how old are you?" Well, I just turned 33... but I'm not sure of the relevance of that in learning something important about comparing two products? I share this information as someone I know (know WELL, and someone that knows what the hell they are doing and what/how to compare and inspect) *literally* purchased a brand new Quantum and a LARA 175, and found the differences to be so insignificant it's scary.

As for bringing age into this... I might only be 33... but who knows how High Energy got it's start? 'Cause I do... and it aligns with this new discovery.

Again, I'm not saying the Quantum is unsafe... if someone wants to pay more for a reserve that descends faster, they'll still live to tell us how they feel about that choice afterward should they ever need to use it. But since not many people have the bucks to buy both and lay them out on top of each other... I'm sharing from someone who did it. And no, I'm not sharing their name- sorry- but if they wanted to be known as the person who pointed this out they would have said something by now. And no, I don't have any pictures or whatever... not that they would show much... what does one parachute look like when it's laying on top of another one? Umm... it looks like a parachute.

I was equally shocked when I first heard this... so I do understand there will be some initial rejection of the notion that this could be true. But I trust it is... and while I am many unpleasant things, one nice thing I am is someone that cares about the sport of hang gliding, and the safety and enjoyment of those in it. As seen above, I get given crap by someone every time I share something... and yet here I am. I am NOT a dealer of anything anymore (I was a dealer for both WW and HE, and sold and supported both)... I don't gain from sharing this. Not that I really need to defend myself, since I think I have shown my dedication to sharing the knowledge or experience I have been so fortunate to accumulate... and anyone in disagreement can make snide comments towards me, or they can check it out and be surprised that it's true! :surrender:
WW site shows a picture of the 75B-4010 drogue that has no resemblance to a pda or a lara. It shows it as merely a flat circle with suspensions lines attached to it, just as every other report of the drogue has described it as. You'd think that WW would update their site if they've been selling the FFE 60" drogue for a while.
Do you have any photos of the WW drogue?

As per the 'age' question, my parents would ask me what my age was when I did or said things that were irresponsible and unacceptable.
Good news,
I landed in the RLF yesterday without problems. It's one of those LZ's where every predominant tree has a name, and there's a lot of those trees. The field is basically a mildly transversely-sloped strip flanked by 100+ ft tall forests, and a gravel road; tall, knobby, steep hills on either side, and of course your creek and barbed-wire fences, and tall trees on each end.
I did get a little too low over the trees on my downwind due to my inexperience of the site and a lot of sink, but carved through the cut to a good-energy final and landed perfectly with a two-stepper on the mildly transversely-sloped LZ with tons of room to spare - actually too much room. Next time I need to approach much higher as my final was probably much too low over the barbed-wire and trees and not as steep as I was hoping for. Though the glide in GE seemed like it was longer than usual for the DA. (~1300 ft msl, 68 deg F and humid, ~4 mph breeze)
We'll see how it goes today. It's forecasted to be much better for soaring!
What a cool, friendly, helpful bunch of highly-experienced pilots at the site, too. Most of them flew Grandfather Mtn in the day. I feel very privileged to be flying with them.
Thanks, and glad you had a good one. That description sounds like a pretty sketchy situation to me, but maybe I'm reading it wrong.

Re: Wills Wing's drogue chute. On their site, did you look at the PDF manual? There's a heading SPECIFIC FEATURES OF THE WILLS WING DROGUE CHUTE, and #1 says: The canopy is a 60” diameter pulled down apex parachute.

Under the heading ATTACHING THE DROGUE CHUTE TO THE HARNESS, #1 talks about laying it out to check the lines are straight, and pulling it to make sure it inflates properly. Then it says "Note that the center (apex) of the canopy will
be pulled down below the top of the canopy. This is by design and normal and results in a higher
drag coefficient for the canopy."

What's really fun is #3 says "Decide which side you want the drogue mounted on. Right handed people will generally want to
mount it on the right side of the harness." A certain right-handed self-proclaimed drogue "expert" flipped out when his harness was made with the custom-integrated drogue pocket on the right side. He did his typical temper-tantrum thing, just as he's done here on this forum many times. I bring this up only because you need to be careful who you get your information from... just because someone flies a lot and publicizes it a lot does not necessarily equate to a knowledgeable source of info. Of course I might fit that description just the same... but I don't expect anyone to follow my words as gospel either. I welcome people researching deeper and verifying what they are hearing (like I did above talking about the Quantum and LARA reserves)...
From what I've been able to find, it would appear that FFE manufactures two different styles of drogues. The established, older model is sold by Wills. The pattern Jonathan has found to be effective throughout his thorough testings and refinements, as well as frequent use is also made by FFE and is offered through Rotor/Dustin Martin.
To each his own choice.
^ Yes, I believe that to be correct. The "older" FFE/WW drogue is the mini-LARA, which like I said creates a lot of drag with a surprisingly small planform. Per FFE's web site:
Our parachutes are available in two different designs – the P.D.A. (pulled down apex) and L.A.R.A. (low aspect annular ratio). The P.D.A. design was the first improvement in hang glider reserves over the older conical parachutes. The P.D.A. has a line connected to the parachute apex that pulls down the apex, flattens the parachute, and increases inflated diameter. This increases drag and reduces the sink rate, which gives performance with a lighter, less expensive chute and a smaller pack volume.

The L.A.R.A. technology takes the concept one-step further, using specially shaped gores (the triangular segments in the parachute canopy) to better control the inflated shape and further enhances the aerodynamic performance of the parachute. A properly designed annular parachute gives the lightest parachute weight and smallest pack volume for a given rate of descent.
The one Jonathan re-discovered and advocates he says to be more stable at speed. If there is a noticeable difference in stability at speed, he's probably used both enough to be aware of that. I have not had any issues or complaints with the WW mini-LARA version... and one more time I will say that I doubt the other design makes more drag than the mini-LARA, and therefore is as effective. But maybe increased stability is worth a little loss in drogue performance? It does work REALLY well... so it's not like losing 5% of performance (or something, I'm guessing) would be an issue... Like you said, to each his own. I think we can all agree, it's good to have options!
POC probably makes the best children's helmets from what I've seen. They cost about twice as much as other brands. I saw so many kids with exposed foreheads at the ski hill last winter..

Also in Ryan's video flying with his daughter Scarlett, it would probably be good to use round tubing on the control frame and larger diameter harness suspension lines just to be safe..

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