Ask Allen

An archive of my columns published in Sport Aerobatics magazine.

 

 

2017

Who's responsible for checking my ripcord pins
Why do I always have to keep shoving my ripcord pins back in to keep my parachute container from popping open?
Ask Allen July 2017.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [184.3 KB]
The Normalization of Deviance
Just because it's worked in the past doesn't mean it's correct. Learn from the mistakes of others. My question to you is: How can we stop this "Its always worked before attitude"?
Allen Silver May 2017.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [394.9 KB]
Just pull the ripcord
This column discusses the importance of never taking your eyes off the ripcord once you've bailed out. Your harness may have shifted. Getting stable like a skydiver is probably not an option. Envision Wile E. Coyote and you'll get the picture or impression.
Feb 2017.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [352.9 KB]

2016

What to do if you have to bailout over water
This column discusses what to do and not do if you ever have to bailout over water.
Dec 2016.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [92.1 KB]
October 2016 Occasionally have the factory check your parachute and TSO test standards
This article discusses the value of having the factory or their representative check your parachute and how to find out what the TSO label on your parachute really means.
Ask Allen Oct 2016.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [233.9 KB]
Aug 2016 How Fast Does Your Parachute Fall?
This article briefly describes how parachutes are tested and what you should be looking for when choosing one that best fits your needs.
Ask Allen_August2016.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [103.8 KB]
May 2016
Tacking your risers in place so you don't fall out of your harness. Getting in and out of your aircraft can damage your parachute. Particularly the ripcord protector flap. My semi-retirement letter
AskAllen_May 2016.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [119.9 KB]

2015

Dec 2015
Not having your harness adjusted properly can have disastrous results. Help is out there just ask. Reminder on how to properly package and ship your parachute. Bailout seminars are an email or phone call away.
AskAllen_Dec2015.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [161.4 KB]
October 2015
"Don't let the Grim Reaper ruin your day". Several reasons your parachute may be condemned out. All could be avoided with a little TLC.
AskAllen-Oct2015.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [66.3 KB]
August 2015
I can't tell you how to adjust, store or where to take your parachute to be packed. You need to be proactive with your parachute care and maintenance and if you see something that looks wrong with someone elses please speak up.
Ask Allen Aug.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [439.2 KB]
June 2015
How non-destructive pull tests are done on your parachute and why we recommend a 20 year service life on your entire parachute assembly.
AskAllen_June2015.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [220.8 KB]
March 2015
“Accidents do not just happen to THEM; they happen to YOU.” Creating a culture of safety thru discipline. Speak up You might save a life.
AskAllen_Mar2015.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [58.4 KB]

 

 

2014

December 2014
The pitfalls flying with cold weather equipment on. In particular gloves. Can you quickly get out of your aircraft and find, reach and be able to pull your ripcord. How to store your parachute for the winter. The rubber bands require special attention.
Ask Allen Dec 2014.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.8 MB]
SEPTEMBER 2014
Your part of the equation in keeping your parachute properly maintained and serviced. Being proactive and scheduling a bailout seminar could save your life. Don't wait until tomorrow.
AskAllenSept2014.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.8 MB]
JULY 2014
Write an honest assessment of your flying so you can better understand and identify potential hazards. Practicing your egress procedures as well as other procedures helps build up excess workload capacity allowing you to work better under pressure and stress.
AskAllen_July2014.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [3.2 MB]
May 2014
Pictures & Article showing how to assemble and pack a parachute
AskAllen_May.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.7 MB]
March 2014
Dusting off the Cobwebs
AskAllen_Mar2014.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.5 MB]

            1. Are you sure your parachute is adjusted properly?

            2. Is your rigger doing a good job? How about sending

                your parachute back to the factory or their representative

                every few years.

            3. You should attend a bailout seminar.

January 2014
1.Ram Air canopy verses Round Canopy
2.Static Line Deployed Parachutes. Pros and Cons
Ram-air Or Round.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.4 MB]

 2013

 

September 2013
Is your harness adjusted properly? Please pad your a/c seat bottom and back if necessary. Also the hook (scratchy part) of Velcro can damage your parachute, if you've removed your cushions.
AskAllen Sept2013.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.4 MB]
July 2013
A review of safety tips. Paying attention to the smallest of details could be the one factor in the equation that saves your life. Having a positive mind-set is the focus of this months column.
AskAllen_July2013.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.3 MB]
May 2013 - Yearly Safety Issue
How to care for your Nomex Flightsuit. If you email or call I also have information on the Gallet Helmet shown in photo #6.
Nomex.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.3 MB]
April 2013
-- How to open up and become a better pilot. You have resources that can help you become the best pilot you can be, and all you have to do is ask.
-- "Safety is a byproduct of professionalism
AskAllen_April2013.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.4 MB]
February 2013
-- The many meanings of "Bailing Out". Making timely and rational decisions.
-- Invitation to fly into the Columbia CA Airport (022) and visit my shop.
Ask Allen Feb2013.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.6 MB]

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

2012

 

October 2012 -
-- Parachute Landing Falls (PLF's). Hopefully all you'll need to know.
AskAllen_Oct2012.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.0 MB]
August 2012
-- As a parachute rigger, I try and make the equipment I maintain more user friendly. Maybe you should ask yourself "What can I do to protect my equipment and make it more user friendly?
AskAllen_Aug2012.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [1.9 MB]
June 2012 - Yearly Safety Issue
-- Survival is not an Accident
-- What should I carry on me that will help rescuers find me quickly? Check out my SMAK Pak.
Survival_June2012.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.1 MB]
June 2012
-- What if the CG changed dramatically while attempting to bail out? What should I be prepared to do?
-- Some lines on my chute are stuck together due to a resin coating on them. What can my rigger do?
AskAllen_June2012.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [2.0 MB]
April 2012 - page one
-- Will my headset cable interfere with my bailing out?
-- Me and my equipment weigh more than what my chute is rated at. What should I do?
-- Should I make a practice jump on my chute?
SAERO_28.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [325.0 KB]
April 2012 - page two
What should I look for when purchasing a parachute for my passengers?
SAERO_29.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [1.7 MB]
February 2012
-- The year in review.
-- The oldest pilots know when not to fly.
-- Only 10% of our decision making is based on fact the other 90% is based on emotion? Think before you fly.
Feb 2012 Ask Allen.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [338.7 KB]

--------------------------------------------------------------------

2011

 

December 2011
-- Are old habits hard to break?
Take control of who packs your parachute.
December 2011.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [282.0 KB]
October 2011
-- Don't do it yourself! Repairing your parachute yourself may save money, but what about your life?
askal_oct2011.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [199.2 KB]
August 2011
-- How to properly adjust an aerobatic harness
-- What is the best parachute for a warbird?
askalAUG2011.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [417.3 KB]
June 2011
-- An account of the tornado at Sun 'n Fun
26-27_askalJUNEfinal.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [308.5 KB]
April 2011
-- Practicing safety Down Under
askal_April-2011.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [314.1 KB]
January 2011
-- What is a parachute diaper?
askal_jan2011.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [274.3 KB]

------------------------------------------------------------

2010

 

November 2010
-- Who packs your parachute?
askal_Nov2010.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [167.4 KB]
August 2010
-- What do I do with the spring-loaded pilot chute when shipping your parachute for a repack?
askal_Aug2010.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [152.6 KB]
June 2010
-- How fast do I decelerate when bailing out?
GO TO MY HOME PAGE TO DOWNLOAD A COPY OF THE
DECELERATION CHART SHOWN BELOW
-- When does the 180-day repack actually expire?
askal_Jun_2010.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [123.7 KB]
April 2010
-- Why are the risers tacked in place?
Apr_10.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [121.5 KB]
February 2010
-- Pocket change and bailouts
-- How to stow leg and chest straps
Feb_10.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [378.0 KB]

 

-------------------------------------------2009

 

December 2009
-- Tour of Silver Parachute Sales
-- Protecting your parachute
Dec_09.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [150.5 KB]
October 2009
---How fast do I decelerate when I bail out?
( GO TO MY HOME PAGE TO DOWNLOAD A
COPY OF THE DECELERATION CHART)
---What do plastice ties ,tape and Velcro have in
Common?
Oct 2009.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [85.5 KB]
August 2009
-- How to attach a PLB or survival kit to your parachute
2009-08_askal.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [121.8 KB]
June 2009
-- Packing logs and maintenance records
-- How to use dot snaps
2009-06.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [109.7 KB]
April 2009
-- Effect of 180-day repacks
-- How to use a static line
April_09.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [103.4 KB]
February 2009
-- What side of the aircraft should I jump from?
-- Arrival of 180-day repacks!
Feb09.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [84.9 KB]

----------------------------------------

2008

 

October 2008
-- How do I practice egress?
-- 180-day repack cycle update
Oct08.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [212.8 KB]
December 2008
-- How do I store a parachute?
-- Is my parachute steerable?
Dec08.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [273.7 KB]
August 2008
-- How to attach a PLB to a parachute
-- How to protect your parachute when removing seat cushions
ask_al_August_2008.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [231.3 KB]
June 2008
-- 180-day repack update
-- What's the best way to ship a parachute?
June_2008.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [153.5 KB]
April 2008
-- What does the word “hope” have to do with flying?
-- Why am I having trouble finding someone to pack my 20-something-year-old parachute?
2008-04.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [78.3 KB]
February 2008
-- How do I select a parachute that fits me and my aircraft?
-- How do I choose the correct size parachute for me?
2008-02.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [144.2 KB]

-------------------------------------------

2007

 

 

December 2007
It looks like the flying season is done where -- How do I properly store my parachute?
-- Why did the quick ejector snap that holds my leg straps on break?
2007-12.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [202.9 KB]
October 2007
-- What do I do with excess leg and chest strap webbing?
-- Which FARs does the place I have my chute packed have to follow?
2007-10.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [208.5 KB]
August 2007
-- My parachute is showing signs of wear and abrasion near the ripcord protector flap. What can I do to prevent this and avoid a costly repair?
-- I’ve heard that I should check the rip cord pins when I preflight my parachute. How do I do this?
2007-08.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [180.5 KB]
June 2007
-- The elastic keepers on my parachute’s chest and leg straps are missing. Are they important?
-- Do I need a large military style parachute like a 28-foot C-9 canopy if I fly a fast aircraft?
2007-06.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [167.5 KB]
April 2007
-- If I practice pulling the ripcord on my parachute before shipping, what do I do with the spring pilot chute?
-- To help prevent theft, can I mark the parachute container with a marker pen?
2007-04.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [129.3 KB]
February 2007
-- How should I ship my parachute when it’s due for a repack?
-- How often should I replace my seat belts in my aircraft?
2007-02.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [417.9 KB]

-------------------------------------------2006

 

 

December 2006
-- I’m thinking of purchasing a new parachute, and I want to upgrade. Should I consider a rectangular (ramair) parachute like skydivers use?
-- I plan on flying in the winter, and I wear extra clothing. Can that cause problems?
2006-12.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [319.8 KB]
June 2006
-- I’m interested in purchasing a used parachute. What should I look for?
-- Can a jump center (drop zone rigger) pack my parachute?
2006-06.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [107.1 KB]