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The Apco Chairbag Harness

The Apco Chairbag harness was the subject of Apco's newsletter back in August 2007. A major point of the newsletter was to announce the DHV certification of this paragliding harness.

Maybe you've already had a browse of my page on paragliding harnesses. This one's been added as an update basically. Read this to see where harnesses were in late 2007! Judging by the buzz in forums and so on, the Apco Chairbag in particular is a great lightweight harness.

They just keep getting lighter! Very light harnesses used to be uncomfortable for long periods of flying, but the Chairbag is part of a new generation. Now, harnesses can be very light and very comfortable. The Chairbag weighs just 2.5 kilograms (5.5 pounds) and that includes the seat plate. Apparently it's one of the lightest full-feature convertible harnesses available. Until next year...

Another feature of the latest harnesses is the ability to turn them inside out, forming a full-size carry bag. Big enough for wing, helmet, flight suit and a few other small odds and ends. It's a properly-designed backpack too, with an 'integrated carrying system' like the gear experienced hikers use.

The Apco Chairbag only comes in one size, but this fits most pilots. The height range is quoted at 160 to 185 cm (5' 3" to 6'1").

Colors? Just 2 schemes are available, those being black/red or black/blue.

The Apco Chairbag paraglider harness.



Safety

Paraglider harness.

A Cygnus airbag system is integrated into the harness. With two chambers and two valves, it's designed for more controlled air release in the case of an impact. In short, it's meant to be safer than a simpler system.

Interestingly, there's some airbag protection for your neck area too.

Quick lock buckles are fitted all through, so you can get out quick.

Aviation grade 7075 T6 Aluminum is used for fittings.

Finally, there is a reflective strip on the outside of the backpack for better visibility at night.



Comfort

The Apco ChairBag uses a full-size seat plate for comfort. That's also beneficial for weight shift control.

Despite the extreme low weight, this harness is meant to be used on long cross country flights.

How does the Chairbag perform as a backpack? Gel-padded shoulder straps help keep the comfort level high during hiking with a full load.



Direct From Apco - Feature List

Basically lifted from Apco's newsletter announcing the DHV certification of the Apco Airbag harness. I've covered some of these points already, but here's a more complete picture in point form...

  • Additional removable sack in back pocket for storage
  • Airbag protection for neck area too
  • All buckles are lightweight quick-lock type for ease of use
  • Among the lightest full-feature convertible harness on the market
  • Buckles functional with winter gloves on
  • Built in Velcro bridle guides
  • Double air chamber system for controlled air release on impact
  • Ergonomic backpack design with gel-padded shoulder straps
  • Fits most external reserves on the market
  • For ease of use and weight saving, use APCO’s Wonder Bar
  • Lightweight “X” frame for stable inflation with replaceable battens
  • Loop and slide adjusters for one-handed in-flight adjustment
  • No need to carry a separate backpack (sack)
  • Perfect choice for flying holidays, hiking or vol-bivouac flying
  • Reflective strip for better visibility at night
  • Reinforced fool-proof reserve hook up points
  • Suitable for front and side-mounted reserve containers
  • The ChairBag is Speedbar-ready
  • Two models AND two colors to choose from
  • Two side pockets for easy in-flight access
  • Two vents for better seal on impact
  • 2.5 Kg (seat plate incl.)
  • 7075 T6 Aluminum – Aviation grade hardware



Pilot Feedback

I had a quick check around, and the buzz is pretty positive about the Apco Chairbag. People like the comfort levels and capacity of this harness, in particular. People who have been flying for years on a much heavier harness get a pleasant surprise too!


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