What is Parachute Repacking, and How to Do it?

Skydivers and parachutists use emergency parachutes for decent in emergencies. They need proper maintenance and inspection so that they can open timely in emergency cases. Repacking is also a part of the routine examination of parachutes. In this article, we provide you with information regarding parachute repacking and a brief methodology.

What is Parachute Repacking?

Parachute repacking is a process that provides an opportunity to closely examine the entire parachute system and inspection for general viability and wear and tear.

Why Does the Parachute Need to be Repacked?

It is essential to repack your parachute to make sure it works properly. FAA prescribes that a reserve parachute must be inspected and repacked every 180 days to ensure it fulfills all the safety guidelines.

Repacking a parachute also allows faster, smoother, and more time to open when needed. Parachute repacking is essential because small particles of sand/stone collect in the parachute, causing damage through abrasion, moisture, and wet grass. It can enter into a parachute and cause mildew and hamper opening time.

Also, fiber can be compressed, which impedes the parachute’s opening and prolongs the opening time. So the plastic loses its average quality, loops can tangle, and pins can also be damaged.

All materials undergo degradation as time passes, even when not in use. We highly recommend you visit repack stations for inspecting and repacking parachutes. Several organizations, such as Ifly Indoor Skydiving, Innovative parachute technologies, Skydive Phoenix Inc, etc., are available in Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona, that provide you the opportunity for inspection and repacking of a parachute.

How to Repack a Parachute? STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE

Before repacking, you must carefully check each line from the canopy to the riser. Keep the parachute in the air for at least 12 hours. Check the fabric for any damage. Inspect the pod and parachute pocket. Inspect the elastic loop. Following is the procedure for parachute repacking,

  • Keep the parachute aligned with the lines running from the harness to the canopy
  • Provide tension to all the lines from the riser
  • Push the string with the buckle
  • Control both upper and lower lines
  • Overlap all the red panels to the right
  • Also, overlap the whiteboards to the left
  • Make sure to have an equal panel count on each side
  • Lift the upper line to keep folds tidied up along the length of the panel
  • Fold the fabric in S-shape
  • Place the pod at the top
  • Flip it upside down along the s-shaped packed parachute
  • Close three flaps of the container
  • Fold the lines
  • Close the fourth flap
  • Fold the coil

Do Skydivers Pack Parachutes on their own?

Yes, skydivers can pack parachutes on their own. Repacking the parachute is not much difficult, but it requires a systematic and precise folding procedure. If you are not feeling it easy to repack a parachute, many organizations in Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona, provide parachute repacking services. If you notice something unusual during parachute repacking, send it to a professional inspection and repack center.

Final Verdict

Parachute repacking is a part of a routine examination. It is not a very difficult process, you can do it independently, but it requires the proper method above.

Ways of Emergency Parachutes Repair | Inspection Checklist

When a parachute is new, it is expected to function as designed. As time passes and it is used, again and again, it begins to undergo wear and tear, which results in malfunction. So it is necessary to maintain the parachute according to guidelines provided by the manufacturer. The rigger must identify any condition that might result in the parachute being dangerous.

What is an Emergency Parachute?

An emergency parachute is a second parachute that a parachutist or skydiver carries for the descent. It is also known as a reserve parachute. It is designed to be used by a person in case of a main parachute malfunction. It must be approved under an FAA “Technical standard order,” which prescribes specific basic design, manufacturing, and testing standards. The emergency parachutes must be in exercise and packed by FAA certified parachute rigger.

How Do You Inspect an Emergency Parachute?

As recommended by FAR 91.307 and 105.43,

  • The emergency parachute mustp08obe inspected and repacked every 180 days.
  • Rigging of emergency parachutes must be performed per a manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Always carry out the repair and maintenance by a parachute manufacturer or organization authorized by the manufacturer.

Checklist for inspection of the parachute

  • Canopy check (inspection of fabric for cuts and tears)
  • Pilot chute (review of pilot chute for burns or scrapes and also checking of springs for damage)
  • Harness (Checking of harness for cuts, abrasions, or excessive wear)
  • Container (Inspection for the holes in the container)
  • Slider
  • Rapid links
  • Suspension lines
  • Line attachments
  • Ripcord housing
  • Ripcord assembly

Ways of Emergency Parachutes Repair

According to FAA, emergency parachute repair is of two types; major and minor repair!

Major repair

If not done correctly, it leads to cause disturbance in weight, strength, balance, and flight characteristics. It is not done according to accepted practices.

Minor repair

It is about the repair other than a major repair. It is allowed by the FAA.

Contamination conditions can be critical to repair. There are two types of contamination conditions which include acid contamination & saltwater contamination. There are some methods to remove contamination. These methods are the removal of water, removal of mildew, removal of oily substances, removal of stains, drying of the parachute, and cleaning of the parachute.

In Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona, many organizations like Western Parachute Services focus on every type of repair and make every effort to ensure your emergency parachute works properly.

Final Words

Emergency parachutes are suitable to ensure the safety of skydivers, so they must be adequately maintained. In case of any damage, they need repair, which is to be done by authorized bodies. Many cracks can appear in an emergency parachute, affecting its performance. Many organizations in Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona, provide you with the facility of emergency parachute repair, like Western Parachutes Repair!