Next Generation Soft Links: Introducing the Slinks
The PD Slink is the first soft link ever approved by the FAA for use with reserve parachutes.
Soft links can reduce damage to the slider grommets and extend the life span of suspension lines. They allow the jumper to easily pull the slider over the risers and toggles and they do not require the use of slider "bumpers". Previously no designs met all of our criteria. Some of the problems encountered with other designs included: low breaking strength, inconsistent manufacturing techniques, installation requiring tools and/or rigging facilities, removal required destroying the links, riser modification required for use, etc. Some soft link designs even incorporate metal parts.
There were many issues to be addressed in the project: Soft link strength and reliability. Soft link construction methods, not to include any metal parts (a true soft link). Compatibility with various riser/suspension line combinations (without modification). Ease of installation. Must be reusable.
In the tests, the Performance Design's Slink survived at loadings beyond the suspension lines and/or riser. In the testing, the failure point of the system was repeatedly the suspension lines or the webbing attaching the three rings to the riser. In comparison tests, the PD reserve soft link survived tests that caused failures and/or severe damage to #4 and #5 stainless steel links.
The PD Soft links not only survived these tests, but showed no signs of damage.
Based upon the results of these extensive tests, Performance Designs is the first manufacturer ever to receive FAA 'TSO' approval for a soft link for use on reserve parachutes.
The Performance Designs' Slink is available in two configurations:
One for main canopies (PDSM-1). Only approved for Performance Designs Canopies.
One for Performance Designs reserves PR-113 through PR-253. (PDSR-1)
The PD Slink is now available as an option on all new Performance Designs' canopies at no additional charge.
Same as No. PDSR-1 except that this Slink is to be used to attach the Performance Design Main canopies.
Each pack contains a set of 4 Slinks (with installation instructions).