Weight limits for parachute jumping?

#1
Just a quick one guys, and yes before you all start I could be said by some people to be a fat knacker.
I have been checking with civvy companies re the max upper weight limit for civvy free fall training and everywhere seems to claim approx 18st, sadly I missed a chance when I was in to get into jumping in the job but I cannot believe that you guys are restricted to 18st or slimmer I mean if you can chuck a landy out on a chute or 3 surely a chunky monkey such as myself could have a go?
Does anyone know what the limit is for service jumping and are the civvies just bleating about rated equipment issues etc and could someone of a larger disposition purchase there own kit rated to a higher load and just attend a course having signed the relevent waivers etc?
 
#3
Civvy limits are totally different to military limits. Military are restricted by the anchor point for the static line cable secured in the aircraft - 350Ibs. The parachute itself is designed to take a lot more weight than that as it can bring 2 men (in an entanglement situation) plus their eqpt safely.
 
#4
Matt593 said:
are the civvies just bleating about rated equipment issues etc
[wah shield] The equipment is rated for a reason. They won't let you jump if your weight is too much for the chutes they have because you'll descend way too quickly and might get seriously injured when landing. Then you'll sue the para center for letting you jump even though they knew the issued kit wasn't designed for a "fat knacker". They may be civvies, but they're not fucking stupid.

Why not do yourself a favour and lose a bit of weight? You'll be able to jump and feel a lot fitter.

[/wah shield]
 
#5
Matt593 said:
Just a quick one guys, and yes before you all start I could be said by some people to be a fat knacker.
I have been checking with civvy companies re the max upper weight limit for civvy free fall training and everywhere seems to claim approx 18st, sadly I missed a chance when I was in to get into jumping in the job but I cannot believe that you guys are restricted to 18st or slimmer I mean if you can chuck a landy out on a chute or 3 surely a chunky monkey such as myself could have a go?
Does anyone know what the limit is for service jumping and are the civvies just bleating about rated equipment issues etc and could someone of a larger disposition purchase there own kit rated to a higher load and just attend a course having signed the relevent waivers etc?
I've seen overloaded sports canopies split in 2 bang down the middle on opening.

Get yourself outside and start running.
 
#6
Cheers folks, obviously all size, weight, fitness points duly noted and taken on the chin, as for the actual logistics and facts about jumping with excess weight thank you for a serious answer so 350lbs is looking like the max for general purposes, which means there are manufacturers who have the capabilty to make, sell and certify such canopies does anyone know would such a company sell to individuals?
 
#7
I have never jumped from a plane and would never jump from a plane (unless it was about to crassh)

I don't have the link but there was something on the news here (US) about a new model chute used by US military that increased the weight limits due to the weight of equipment carried by US airborne on jumps. Someone on here must have a reference to that. Sorry for no references, just a clip on the evening news sandwiched between the British Petroleum spill and the baseball scores.
 
#8
Matt593 said:
Cheers folks, obviously all size, weight, fitness points duly noted and taken on the chin, as for the actual logistics and facts about jumping with excess weight thank you for a serious answer so 350lbs is looking like the max for general purposes, which means there are manufacturers who have the capabilty to make, sell and certify such canopies does anyone know would such a company sell to individuals?
Try Thomas Sports Equipment in Bridlington. Tell them how much you weigh.

Failing that, look to the US market Here's a start:
http://www.paragear.com/default.asp.

If you can't/won't shift the weight, you're probably looking at buying a military spec. canopy.

Just don't expect anyone on a commercial DZ in the UK to ignore the CAA approved rules under which they are licenced, and let you jump it.

Some US DZs might be more flexible. Then again, p'raps not.

If they were prepared to ignore safety rules, I wouldn't jump there.
 
#9
Stonker said:
Matt593 said:
Cheers folks, obviously all size, weight, fitness points duly noted and taken on the chin, as for the actual logistics and facts about jumping with excess weight thank you for a serious answer so 350lbs is looking like the max for general purposes, which means there are manufacturers who have the capabilty to make, sell and certify such canopies does anyone know would such a company sell to individuals?
Try Thomas Sports Equipment in Bridlington. Tell them how much you weigh.

Failing that, look to the US market Here's a start:
http://www.paragear.com/default.asp.

If you can't/won't shift the weight, you're probably looking at buying a military spec. canopy.

Just don't expect anyone on a commercial DZ in the UK to ignore the CAA approved rules under which they are licenced, and let you jump it.

Some US DZs might be more flexible. Then again, p'raps not.

If they were prepared to ignore safety rules, I wouldn't jump there.
Another important factor here is the reserve parachute,if you have to chop the main away, at yout weight you'll go in like a dart.



But if you put a slot in your helmet and cross your legs they can un-screw you out of the ground :)
 
#10
Gungythree said:
Another important factor here is the reserve parachute,if you have to chop the main away, at yout weight you'll go in like a dart.



But if you put a slot in your helmet and cross your legs they can un-screw you out of the ground :)
[align=center] :clap: :joker: :clap: :jocolor: :clap: :joker: :clap: :jocolor:[/align]
 
#11
Most of the technical reasons are covered above. Think laterally....................... try paragliding. The runs down the slope (and the tabs back up again) will do wonders for your fitness. With skill, you'll get some serious under the canopy time. Win win all the way 'round.
 
#12
Cheers chaps the technical points do indeed appear to have been covered however I'm still of the chain of thought that if you can get a main chute rated to a higher level then surely the reserve would have to be "updated" as well thus reducing the risk of catastrophic screw syndrome.
I appreciate all your input folks and just for the record whilst quite obviously I never have been nor will be the fine example of racing snakes that 90% of the people on here claim to be however in my time in the job and then in civvy street I have never once had a problem with completing any of my fitness test, nor have I ever been remedial, picture 19 stone second row with Polish blood and you are there, however I do stress that I am not above the idea of trimming that last bit of weight after all show me the perfect person and I'll show you the perfect liar.
 
#13
It's not really about being a racing snake, but more about how you're build. Being "fit" in the widest sense of the meaning. The weight requirements in civvyland aren't cast in stone. It depends on your height as well meaning people who weight less than 18 stone get turned away as well if they're too heavy for their length. Some blokes are heavier than 100K and are still allowed to jump because they're tall, muscular and fit enough to take a hard landing.

In short why not go to a para center in person and ask them? They'll be happy to advice you and can make a proper assessment whether you're fit to jump. The 100K or 18 stone (depending on the para center) is a guideline.
 
#14
I did my AFF in Spain last year and when I got there they asked about my weight. I was about 18 stone at the time (shields up !!) and they gave me the biggest canopy they had which was a 220.

This didnt refer to weight limit but the actual square footage - as has been said, ask at your local centre, they should be able to help.
 
#15
Cool I was kind of hoping a degree of discretion might be involved, I mean I'm 6ft 7, and last time I had the old fat pinch test done it was commented on that really I wasn't carrying a great deal of excess baggage. Mind you every time I take that bloody height to weight chart test I'm told I'm one sandwhich away from death, but then in the quiet moments with the med staff they all seem to agree that it is totally unair for people who are either extremely tall or short.
Hell I'm happy with who I am and how well my body is working, just got to decide which I want more, to jump out of a plane or keep both of my arms.
 
#16
ExScaleyBleep said:
I did my AFF in Spain last year and when I got there they asked about my weight. I was about 18 stone at the time (shields up !!) and they gave me the biggest canopy they had which was a 220.

This didnt refer to weight limit but the actual square footage - as has been said, ask at your local centre, they should be able to help.
They may well have referred to this, but that it far from being 'technically correct'. There's a world of difference between 'breaking strain' and 'snatch loading'

You can take a piece of cord, holding the ends, slowly draw them apart. It takes quite an effort to break the cord. However, varying the technique, by snapping (snatching) the ends rapidly apart, it breaks.

A rope has a breaking strain of say 350lbs but will have a snatch loading in double digits. In the parachuting world in particular, the de-cellerating factor is the consideration, not the 'fitness' factor whatever that variable means. Transiting from 120mph to feet/sec in a matter of 5 seconds is the issue,and has little to do with how fast you could cover a 100 meters in a straight run.

Ultimately as was mentioned by G3, it's factored on the reserve parachute.

Bigbird is due to do her descent next week. Perhaps we could revise our theories following that :D :D

Edited to add : Bigbird's charity descent bump.
 
#17
Alec_Lomas said:
ExScaleyBleep said:
I did my AFF in Spain last year and when I got there they asked about my weight. I was about 18 stone at the time (shields up !!) and they gave me the biggest canopy they had which was a 220.

This didnt refer to weight limit but the actual square footage - as has been said, ask at your local centre, they should be able to help.
They may well have referred to this, but that it far from being 'technically correct'. There's a world of difference between 'breaking strain' and 'snatch loading . . .

Ultimately as was mentioned by G3, it's factored on the reserve parachute.
Like I said, I have seen overloaded main canopies split, bang down the middle on opening.

Admittedly, I have never known that happen to a reserve.

Yet.
 
#18
Gents, perhaps I should have rephrased that comment then... I was told by the experts at the school that I would be using thier largest parachute due to my height/weight and that happened to be a 220 ...

However I do not proclaim to be any sort of 'chuting expert and I merely believed what they said... I havent delved into the mechanics or the wherewithalls of parachuting since then so I will take your info on board and quietly return to my corner...
 
#19
think you would'nt get to jump in the army anyway being 6 foot 7.
paras tend to be short and malevolent :evil:
don't think its a short many syndrome more a para syndrome :D
mate who was into skydiving was persuaded to have a crack at a military jump even without kit reckoned it was the scaryist thing he'd ever done :D
 
#20
Matt593 said:
Cool I was kind of hoping a degree of discretion might be involved, I mean I'm 6ft 7, and last time I had the old fat pinch test done it was commented on that really I wasn't carrying a great deal of excess baggage. Mind you every time I take that bloody height to weight chart test I'm told I'm one sandwhich away from death, but then in the quiet moments with the med staff they all seem to agree that it is totally unair for people who are either extremely tall or short.
Hell I'm happy with who I am and how well my body is working, just got to decide which I want more, to jump out of a plane or keep both of my arms.
According to those charts and the BMI used by the NHS all of the six nations rugby squads are grossly obese, iam 5'9'' and 158 ilbs and considered borderline obese on the chart!!!!!
 

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