Jim at Paraphernalia was able to come up with a NICE parachute rig that fits very comfortably into the small front seat area. I HIGHLY recommend this rig for comfort.
The backpack rigs that I tried were way too big and put my face much too far forward. The seat packs that I tried had my head smashed against the canopy.
Jim built a custom rig for me that has the chute mostly under my thighs. However, the chute also wraps up around my butt and into the lumbar area. It's perfect for Rocket or RV-4 cockpits, IMHO.
The photos below show the rig in the cockpit. These photos were taken during the fitting process.
Someday I'll get a photo of me actually wearing the rig.
Here's some pictures I took today. I'll try to explain what I'm trying to show below each shot. You can click on the picture to get a full-sized image.
My plane, a Harmon Rocket, is very similar in cockpit layout to an RV-4. Probably the only difference is that the seat back is slightly wider. I think the RV-4 is only 12" wide.
This shot shows the empty seat with dimensions of the seat area. The height of the spar is 2 3/4". The crotch strap is in front of the spar, which is 2" wide.
This shows the chute in its normal position. You can see that there isn't much extra room, but there is possibly some width and length that could be added to the container. See the next photo.
This shows the container moved to the left until it just touches the flap handle. As you can see, there is about 2" on the right side (at the top of the picture) that the container could expand into. It could also gain some length if needed... the crotch strap could simply wrap around it a little bit, or the rear of the container could simply wrap up behind my butt slightly.
This shot shows that the container will actually fit completely behind the spar... but it raises me up much too high when I do this. I can't close the canopy.
Here you can see that there is some wasted space where the container rides up over the spar. Forward is to the left.
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Last updated on: 09/01/2006
CAUTION: This web site is not a publication of, nor approved by, Harmon LLC, Team Rocket, Van's Aircraft or any other person or entity listed herein, except me. Be advised that I am a blithering idiot with neither brains nor money and my advice is not to be trusted. So there. You have been warned! Vince