Get Current

Get Current 2015: Will worn lines break during opening, in flight or on landing?

Strength Loss: HMA line
Written by Kolla

The first installment in the 2015 Get Current series is brought to us by Performance Designs, Inc. PD’s maintenance department fields a lot of questions about line condition and when it is time to send your beloved in for a reline.

True or false? If a line is going to break, it could happen during opening, in flight or on landing.

This is true. It is unwise to think that if your lines are worn and they’re likely to break at some point, it will only happen during opening. There have been several situations where lines have snapped during the landing sequence. In every case, the lines were in really bad shape and should have already been replaced.

Below are some illustrations of loss of strength on lines with varying degrees of wear. Find your type of line and use for visual comparison next time you check out your main.

Strength Loss: Microline

Strength Loss: Microline

Strength Loss: Vectran line

Strength Loss: Vectran line

Strength Loss: HMA line

Strength Loss: HMA line

Strength Loss: Dacron

Strength Loss: Dacron

When debating if/when you should get a reline, consider not just the cost of the actual reline, but the potential costs of losing a canopy due to a malfunction or potential injury if it happens on landing.
When you should get a reline depends on several factors, including how well you take care of your gear and the environment you jump in. There really is no ‘magic number’ for the lifespan of a line set. The variance can be quite dramatic. It’s best to be proactive and replace lines if you’re seeing signs of wear, such as broken carriers, very ‘fuzzy’ lines, etc.
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