Sunday, April 11, 2010

Last flight on the Spyder, harness slider issues

10 days ago I received my new glider. A brand new Aeros Combat 09L 14,2. But, since the weather hadn't been kind to us lately, I even hadn't had the chance to try my new harness.
Last sunday we finally had flyable conditions and we could go for some dune soaring. I was very keen to try out the new glider, but I thought it was appropriate to try the new harness on the Spyder, instead of flying a new harness and a new glider at the same time.
That turned out to be a very wise decision. I took off from the dune and the harness immediately forced me into a very upright position. I could barely get into a prone position and the slightest turn or turbulence brought my feet right down again. It simply wasn't fun to fly like that and I even messed up my landing due to it. No harm, soft sand...
The reason for this was two-fold. First, the harness was not setup properly for my body weight distribution. The angle of dangle system had to much freedom of motion towards the front of the harness. The result was that it required all the force I had to get me to a prone position. Secondly, there was too much friction in the slider. It didn't move. So I never got into a stable prone position and always had to force myself down again.

That evening, I moved the slider a few times with my bare hands (couldn't do it at first!). I tested it and noticed that it still required a lot of force to get prone, but the slider moved and I hung very stable in the prone position. After restricting the slider's motion to the front by a notch, I could get myself easily into a stable prone position.
Should have tested that first! It ruined my last flight on my beloved Spyder ;-)

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