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With the addition of stiffened ribs, most folding techniques today use an accordion fold to stack the mylar or plastic stiffeners at the leading edge.   There are now special bags called sausage, concertina/compress or accordion bags that help to keep the ribs together at the leading edge end of the bag.  With good technique, the time it takes to pack is not too different for packing a wing into the standard liner bag.  This article is intended for those using just a standard inner bag and glider tie strap. The technique differs enough so that a separate article will be created for accordion bags.

The first step is to lay the wing out flat on its back and coil the lines on each side of the wing.   With the wing laid out flat, on its back, you will need to gather the line sets independently.   If you try to gather both sets at the same time, the wing will bunch together as you get close to it, so this will not work.  Instead, do the lines one side at a time.  Coil each side’s lines (like how you coil a hose) and then toss onto the center of each side of the wing.  As you do this, keep the risers in one hand and make sure that they do not pass through the lines. After the lines have been tossed onto the wing, place the risers about 1 foot out from the center of the trailing edge (see picture below).


Wing laid out on back, lines clear and clean to risers.



Toss lines on top of wing.



Place Risers in center, just off of wing.


This article will be updated shortly.   I have updated the technique for the accordion folding.   For now, just below this paragraph, there is a video from Skywalk that shows the technique I now use.  I will make my own shortly, to show how to do this in wind.   The difference is that in wind, you need to turn the glider sideways to the wind and use your harness or something to weight the upwind wing.   In wind, you should use the under surface, not the upper, to stack the downwind half of the wing.  Do the downwind side first and use your helmet or some other weight to keep the stack together.   On the upwind wing, use the bottom surface as shown in the video just below this.  The old technique below this still works fine, but the new technique is more efficient and easier to learn.

With the wing is in this position, you can now zigzag (aka accordion) the trailing edge of the canopy.   Some pilots do this 1 panel/rib at a time.   Some do it 2 panels at a time.   With each pleat of the zigzag the trailing edge toward the leading edge.   In the next step, you will be stacking the ribs together on each side and if the pleats are all at the trailing edge, the fabric will be pulled toward the leading edge and make a mess of your original stack.  So, make sure the zigzags work their way forward (away from trailing edge, toward the leading edge) as you stack the sail up.  ( see picture below)  NOTE – In wind, use the harness, helmet, or other heavy object to hold the stacked sail in position.


Single panel-wide Z fold.



2 panel-wide Z fold.


Once the zigzags have been done to the trailing edge, you can then go to the leading edge and match up the ribs on each side.   You will align the ribs with the front edge facing towards the center.   Leave the two middle ribs out of each side.   When you finish stacking, you will need to flip each stack 180 degrees and this can be done on top of the two center ribs.


Flip stack of Ribs onto one of two center ribs (left there to make flip possible…)



Flip one side onto the other.

Once you have flipped the rib onto the center rib, you can then follow this pleat back a few feet.   While doing this, use your knee to hold the stack of ribs in place.  Once you have worked back a few feet,you can place a helmet, harness or anything with some weight onto this area to hold in place.

NOTE – If you have a second person during the two previous steps, you can do them simultaneously!  This also makes it easier to flip each side towards the center and tuck in the pleated sail cloth.

If you did not have a second person, you will have just flipped the ribs and tucked in about 3 feet of sail back from the leading edge.  You will now go back to the trailing edge and create a pleat on each side that should match the one you created at the leading edge.   If you did the pleats one panel at a time, you simply take the stack and flip it over as a stack toward the center.  If you did a 2 or 4 panel stack, you will create a pleat about 1′ – 1.5 ‘ wide that faces the center of the wing.  In classes, I describe this as a taco shell laid sideways facing the center of the wing.   You can then move the meat (all of the sail volume) into this taco/pleat as you squeeze the air out (working from the trailing edge forward to the leading edge).

Once all of the air has been squeezed out of both sides, you then just need to flip one side on top of the other.   When you do this, try to keep the stacks of ribs on each side as organized as possible.


Flip one side onto the other.



After flipping, squeeze the air out from trailing edge to leading edge.


You can now fold the wing into a 4 or 5 section fold.  Start at the trailing edge.  Flip about 2.5 feet of sail up toward the leading edge.   Place the risers perpendicular in the sail crease and flip and the sail again.  Squeeze the air out of the wing with each flip.  When there are two sections left to the leading edge, grab the stack of ribs together and fold it back toward the 2 or 3 sections.  Then flip the trailing edge stack on top of this.


Flip sail up about 20 inches, two times to get to here …

Below is a Video showing how to pack a paraglider straight from a rosette into a  sausage bag.


Then, simply tuck in the stack of ribs. Keep them stacked as well as possible.


The last step is to just put the glider tie around the folded wing, around the skinny (front to rear) stack.   Then, just put the glider into the inner bag.

An alternative to this folding technique is what is called a sausage bag. The sausage bag replaces the liner bag and allows the glider to be folded into a simlar size pkg. Picture a bag long enough for the whole glider with keepers that line up the ribs of the glider in a single stack. The ribs are easily stacked with such a system and the rest of the sail just needs to be streamlined enough to allow the zipper to close.

Put tie strap around the skinny side of fold.



Place into liner bag.

Rosette to Accordion from Jeff Greenbaum on Vimeo.

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