Monday, September 20, 2010

New "must-have" wingsuit gadget: FlySight GPS



A clever Canadian, Michael Cooper, has come out of nowhere with this very cool toy/tool many of us have been waiting for: a GPS unit that gives you instant feedback on your flying perfomance by generating a tone that varies with your glide ratio. He's made operation extremely simple with just a few controls and place to plug your earphones in. The device is not only a variometer (the official name for this tool, what gliders, hang gliders and paragliders use) but also a 5 Hz logger, with space for up to a million trackpoints.

At the recent Wings over Gransee performance competition (which I will post about later), Klaus Rheinwhald (author of Paralog), amongst others, tested it and was enthusiastic about it. I can't wait to try it out. If you ask me, this wil revolutionize training jumps for wingsuit pilots wanting to get the most out of their wingsuit, just like wind tunnels have been revolutionary for formation skydiving and freefly.

The device is currently selling for $249 Canadian/US $200.

Check out the website here!

In Europe the FlySight is sold via flysight.de for 249,- Euro.


Update: I've received info that the price will be going to Canadian $250. And not only does it report glide ratio, but can also vertical speed or horizontal speed (one at a time of course). And: Mirko and Klaus will be at the ProBase Wingsuit Race with some demo units for people to try (and buy!).

7 comments:

  1. Awesome! That such a gadget hasn't been released before is a complete mystery to me, but at least it's here now. :)

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  2. PDA-based solutions and prototypes have been around for years. It only took someone to go through the efforts and investments required to make such a device ready for use by the avareage skydiver and all this in a niche-market with unknown returns.

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  3. I'm busy with an iPhone experiment.
    Creating an app with the same funtions, only for 10% of the price (or less ;-) )

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  4. Good luck!

    That has been tried with Windows Mobile, Palm, Android and I guess any other mobile OS out there, both with internal and external GPS. The results were not very convincing.

    Keep us posted onyour progress.

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  5. The internal Iphone GPS doesnt function when it doesnt have normal reception (the 'GPS' is based on triangulation between cellphone towers).
    So use with an external bluetooth GPS would be manditory Yorick. But would be cool if you could create an app that connects with a BlueTooth GPS, and gives realtime feedback on the screen (visually) with numbers for Glide, Fallrate and Forward speed (a simple chest-mounted see-through pocket would be enough to read)

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  6. Actually the GPS in an iPhone is a true GPS, and should not need cell reception to be able to determine where it is. It's true that it uses a cell tower database to improve accuracy. The problem that I've read with the iphone gps is that it has a very small antenna and the chipset is not very powerful. So accuracy is an issue... In any case, it would be cool if Yorick gets his app to work.

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  7. Ive tried getting a GPS signal in the plane, and above 1500 or so (allong with cellphone reception) the GPS range/reception completely dies.
    None/zero signal to speak of..

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