Brake Line Twist
This month’s rigger tip is something that I’m sure we’ve all had to deal with at some time or another. Since all of our canopies have brake lines, we’ve probably had to deal with twisted brake lines.
When we land our canopies, many of us stow one toggle before the other, out of habit. Sometimes we let go of the other while we stow the brakes and then pick it back up and complete the job. During this time, the toggle has the opportunity to twist and cause the line to twist.
Once or twice isn’t so much of a big deal. Now imagine that you jump 15 times over a weekend. That’s 15 pack jobs. 15 times that you let one of your toggles go while you stow the other. The result can be brake lines that are twisted enough that they actually shorten and effect the brake line length, which in turns effects the flare of the canopy. In extreme cases the twisted lines can cause tension knots possibly causing the jumper to have a malfunction and cutaway.
after only a few jumps
An easy fix it to untwist your brake lines after every few jumps. Here’s an easy way to accomplish this. Follow the brake line up to the attachment points at the canopy. Untwist the upper control lines down to the cascade. Pinch the brake line below the cascade between your thumb and pointer finger. Continue flattening the line all the way down to the cat eye and toggle. The stow your brakes as you normally would.
A bit of preventative maintenance each jump day can prolong the life of your lines and help prevent a potential malfunction.
Thank you Shauna for providing some good advice.