Rant & Rave Blog

Reviews, News & Expert Advice

  • Survey: Love Your Main Canopy?

    A huge thank you to the 187 of you who responded to the main canopy survey the first two weeks of May at ChutingStar.com!

    This one was a bit more long-winded than our past surveys, but we felt that was the only way to truly get feedback on main canopies that are so varied by manufacturer, type and size as well as everyone's different experience level. We truly appreciate all of you that took the time to complete this survey.

    After sorting and reading through all the results, comments and feedback, we've found that we can't sum this up in one article. So we're going to be doing a series of articles over the next several weeks in our blog

    What we can tell you so far is that the 187 of you who took this survey have a combined 280,876 jumps! The average number of jumps for those responding was 1502 and the average mains you've tried is 9. So the responses were in-depth and rich with information.

    PD's Sabre/Sabre2 topped every category as the most popular first canopy, your favorite main canopy and the canopy most recommended to others as their first main canopy. It also tops the list as to which canopy you're currently jumping.

    Continue reading

  • Save On These Skydiving Gear Sales!

    Discounts usually are a rare thing in skydiving, but several manufacturers have sale offers currently available. Take advantage of these while they last if you're in the market for a helmet, container, canopy or full rig!



    Here's the rundown on current deals:

    • UPT Stock Container Sale
    • PD Demo, Clearance and Resale Canopy Sale
    • 40% off the base price of any In-Stock Wings Container.
    • Firebird EVO Container + RUSH Reserve for $3900.
    • KISS Full Face Helmet now $225!

    Continue reading

  • PD Canopy Sale!

    Performance Designs USA and Performance Designs Europe have reduced pricing on clearance, resale and demo canopies. PD Europe is replacing its demo canopy fleet with new canopies, and they're selling the older demo canopies at low prices! Meanwhile, PD USA has just reduced pricing on many of the canopies on its clearance and resale lists. 

    See the images below with all the currently available canopies, as of May 12, 2020. For the demo canopies with prices in Euros, these prices don't include shipping or any import taxes as these will ship to us from Europe. For the clearance and resale canopies listed in USD, these canopies are in DeLand, so the only other charge will be shipping.

    If there is a canopy that you want to purchase, contact ChutingStar at this link, and we can confirm availability, get the final details and final price for you. Continue reading

  • Rental CYPRES AAD Units Available!

    Need an AAD during the time your unit is in for maintenance? Or just one to get you by until you can save for a new AAD, or find a great deal on a used one?

    ChutingStar has several CYPRES 2 Expert & Speed units available for rental at just over $2 a day!

    Here's the scoop on how the rental CYPRES unit program works: Continue reading

  • UPT Stock Container Sale!

    UPT has several stock Vector sport rigs available, some at very deep discounts. These will not last long, so here are the details.

    The chart below has the basic details on what is available as of May 16, 2020. Click to enlarge.

    The images below (click each to enlarge) have more details on each container. The pricing noted on the detail sheets below have the retail pricing, but with the sale, these prices are discounted anywhere from 25-50% off the base price, depending on the container. Contact ChutingStar to confirm availability, get final discounted pricing and/or to place an order. Continue reading

  • Face Masks & Alternatives Available

    As the COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) disease continues to spread, health officials are recommending face masks or coverings. See this link from the CDC on Cloth Face Coverings.

    Those with a sewing machine and the materials have been able to make reusable cloth face masks. ChutingStar has face masks as well as face mask alternatives available. One of our fellow skydivers and parachute riggers, Nikki Kingen, demonstrated on a recent trip to Walmart for supplies for her family how a neck gaiter can work as a face mask too!

    Neck Gaiters or Headsocks have been a staple at ChutingStar for years. These multi-use fabric tubes can definitely be used as a face mask alternative. Furthermore, these can be washed and then after the need for mask subsides, these can later be used on your skydives or in the wind tunnel.

    Our ChutingStar Face Mask design is manufactured by LiquidSky Sports, and are washable and reusable as well. Continue reading

  • Boogie with ChutingStar in 2020!

    It's time to boogie, boogie, boogie, boogie, boogie! And the ChutingStar Crew will be out there with you at drop zones all over the US, providing all the support and goods you could ask for.

    The one and only Laura Bales is packing up the van with demos from Larsen & Brusgaard (altimeters), Cookie (G4 helmets), Alti-2 (altimeter mounts), Square1 (KISS helmets), and many more. Laura is available for container, canopy and jumpsuit orders as she'll be able to measure you up and walk you through the ordering process for any of your custom gear needs, including the helmet sizing kit for the Tonfly TFX Full Face Helmet. Continue reading

  • Audible Altimeter Survey Results

    While you can always see our comparison of current audible altimeters at this link, we wanted to hear from you on what you love, hate and/or desire in an audible altimeter!

    And did you ever let us know what you think! More than 200 of you took our survey that was open April 1-15!

    For the swag pack winners, we decided to award four of you, instead of one, and chose those who identified in the COVID-19 question as a person in the medical or first-response fields. Thank you for your support during this time! See our related blog article on those stories at this link.

    The short and sweet from the survey is that the majority of you use and love anything made by Larsen & Brusgaard, and L&B's Protrack II is the audible that is being most considered as your next purchase. Still, the Alti-2 N3/Atlas also received high marks as well the AON2 Brilliant Pebbles. And most importantly, we think the written feedback and comments from all of you is an invaluable resource for other skydivers and the manufacturers.

    So lets dive into your responses on these and all the others... Continue reading

  • Military Discounts on Skydiving Gear

    ChutingStar, along with several skydiving gear manufacturers, offer discounts to our military members for canopies and harness/containers in appreciation for their service.

    Below is the list of those manufacturers and the applicable discounts. Please note the info next to each manufacturer on what is needed to qualify for the discount. U.S. as well as foreign military service is accepted from all on this list. If it states "active service" you must be currently serving in the military. If it states "any military service" then the discount is available to anyone who previously served in the military as well. It is not applicable to civilian contractors working for the military. Proof of service for most discounts offered can come through enlistment or discharge papers as well as a military ID. Continue reading

  • COVID-19 Stories of Pain & Hope

    Like most everyone else during this pandemic, ChutingStar and our crew members have been negatively affected during this COVID-19 pandemic. This worldwide shutdown will indeed change the world forever, and has resulted in the loss of loved ones.

    At the same time, we're encouraged by the love and strength of the human resolve to not only survive, but make the best of the situation. Stories of families becoming closer, communities supporting each other and businesses switching gears to keep staff employed show us hope for tomorrow.

    In our April Survey on Audibles, we put in one question at the end asking "Good, Bad or Indifferent, how has the Coronavirus and worldwide shutdown affected you?"

    These are the raw responses below. I think the biggest takeaway I get out of these is that we're not alone in our struggles and fear. Empathize with your fellow human during this time. They may put on an "everything's fine" front, but deep down we all have many of the same issues during this time. Encourage, support and help others as you're able. Continue reading

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