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How To Make a Carry-With-You Static Line

This page is a chapter in 'BASE Wiki Jumping Techniques'

How To Make a Carry-With-You Static Line

By: ~Tom Lundergan

Three most important items required to make a CWY-S/L are: Dacron line, break cord, and a finger trap tool. If you do not have the third item you can make one from 18 inches of thin wire, four inches of a wooden dowel rod, some black electrical tape, and a flat head screw driver.

Making a finger trapping tool

Finge r Trapping Tool

The wooden dowel rod will serves as a handle so make the length equal to your hand. Drill a small hole through the middle of the wood. Take about 18” of wire and fold in half making it 9” long. Insert that wire through the hole in the dowel rod such that the part that folds back on itself is 6” long. This should leave the rest on the other side. Spread the short remaining 2” or so inches of wire so the ends are flat against the wood leaving the wire in the shape of a T. Wrap the black electrical tape around your wooden hand along with the ends of the wire. Now use the flat head screw driver to spread the wire apart just enough to accept a bite of Dacron line.

Making loops of Dacron

Finger Trapping

Finger trapping line is very common in parachuting and works just like the child’s novelty known as ‘Chinese Finger Cuffs”. When one pulls fast and hard the line, or fingers, will be locked in but pulling very slow and easy allows the line, or fingers, to be easily removed.

To make your first loop use both hands to squeeze the Dacron line together long ways, which will cause the braid to open. Figure out a way to hold the line with one hand and the braid open (or get a friend to help) and with the other hand insert the tool into the center of the line. Now slide the tool further in the line and remember to do this slow and smooth so the braid remains upon and to avoid unnecessarily damaging the line.

Note: the rule of thumb regarding finger trapping (per Dan Poynter's Manual) is that the length of line trapped must be greater than 10 times the diameter of the line. Dacron line not really round but approximately 5/32 in size, hence one and half inches is sufficient, however, I personally always go a little longer since an inch of dacron is so cheap.

Snake the wire out of the line between the braids once you have traveled more than 1.5 inches (err on the side of longer). Feed the end of the Dacron line into the end of the wire and now gently pull back down the line while squeezing the line length wise to give you room. Now remove the wire and pull on the line tight.

Static Line Rigged

You should now have a loop of Dacron. Next step is to lock the finger trapped line inside with some stitches. If you have a sewing machine handy then you can bar tack the line, however the author has found that a dozen hand stitches works just fine.

Now you have a length of Dacron line with one loop. Next step is to feed the line through itself making a loop for attaching to your bridle or pilot chute attachment such that it is close to your first loop. Then repeat the finger trap process so you have another loop at the other end of the line. In the end you should have a Y with three small loops at end of each.

It is suggested that you make your CWY-S/L such that one branch of the Y is much longer than the other. The reason for this is so the long side can be wrapped around a strong anchor point on your object. The reason why is so that your break cord is protected from abrasion, which could cause the static line to break prematurely.

Finishing the project

Static Line Completed

Now take a length of break cord and make two loops at each end using an over-hand knot. Larks head one of the loops to the long end of your Y. Now use a quick link (small Rapide link) to connect the other loop of the break cord with the loop on the short end of the Y.

Items depicted in the photo

Static Line Tools

The following tools where used to create this static line setup:
  • Finger trapping tool
  • Dacron line
  • Scissors
  • Needle
  • Thread
  • Needle-threading tool
  • Flat head screwdriver


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