Parachute Rigger candidates often ask how do I get started. Here is some information


  How to Apply for Senior Parachute Rigger - Getting Started

Contact the nearest Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), and/or your local DPRE (Designated Parachute Rigger Examiner) for
an appointment to have your experience evaluated.

An FAA inspector must determine if you are eligible to take the tests. This evaluation is necessary when applying for an original certificate, or when adding a rating. FAA district office (FSDO) addresses.

When appearing for evaluation, bring your records and any other evidence you have to substantiate your experience. Letters from present or former employers, military service records, business records, log books, etc., are acceptable as long as the inspector who reviews it is able to determine that the type and amount of experience meets the regulatory requirements.
The evidence of packing experience must contain the following information:

  1.   Name of the person who did the packing.

  2.   Type and number of parachutes packed.

  3.   Packing dates.

  4.   A statement that the parachutes were packed under the supervision of
       a certificated and appropriately rated parachute rigger or a person
       holding an appropriate military rating, including the name,
       certificate number, and ratings of the person who supervised the

  When the FAA inspector determines that you meet the general and experience
  requirements, you will be required to complete two FAA Form 8610-2, Airman
  Certificate and/or Rating Application, in duplicate. The FAA inspector will
  endorse the form and return both copies to you. The FAA inspector will issue
  FAA Form 8060-7, Airman's Authorization for Written Test, for presentation
  to an appropriately rated written test examiner. If there is sufficient
  time, you may be permitted to take the written test that same day, or you
  may take the written test at a later date.


  Taking the Written Test

  The written test may be taken at (FSDO)'s, GADO's, and IFO's or from
  appropriately rated written test examiners. ACDO's have no provision for
  administering parachute rigger written, tests. (FSDO)'s may administer
  written tests at other locations by prior arrangement. It is recommended
  that an appointment be made before the intended date of testing so that
  the appropriate personel will be on hand to give the tests and to assure
  that space is available.

  You must begin the test early enough to complete it within the time
  allotted and before office closing time. One hour is allowed for taking
  the Senior Parachute Rigger--Military Competence written test. The Senior
  Parachute Rigger--Military Competence written test must be administered
  by an FAA airworthiness inspector. Two hours each are allowed for the
  Senior Parachute Rigger and Master Parachute Rigger written tests. If you
  have not had your experience evaluated at an earlier date, arrive at the
  office early enough to allow additional time for the determination to be

  When eligibility to take the test is confirmed, an application form, a
  test booklet, and all the materials necessary to take the test will be
  issued. You are not required to furnish any test or reference material,
  nor permitted to use or take notes during the tests.

  Before you begin the written test, you will be asked to show personal
  identification and to provide certain information on the application
  form. This information is necessary to match your answer sheet with your
  application form so your scores can be accurately reported. Prior to
  filling in any part of the application form, read the instructions
  carefully, then fill in the form. Everything should be printed except
  your signature, which should be written just as you would sign a business

  Make certain you completely understand the instructions for taking the
  test and how to mark the special answer sheet, as it will be machine
  scored. If more than one answer to a question is marked, or no answer is
  marked, the question will be scored as incorrect. Stray marks on the
  sheet may also cause the questions to be scored as incorrect.

  When taking the test, always keep the following facts in mind:

  (1)  There are no "trick" questions. Each statement means exactly what it
       says. Do not look for hidden meanings. The statement does not
       concern exceptions to the rule; it refers to the general rule.

  (2)  Be sure you read the entire question carefully before looking at the
       answers; avoid hasty assumptions. This can lead to a completely
       erroneous approach to the problem or failure to consider vital
       words. Then look through the list of alternative answers and find
       the one that best answers the question.

  (3)  Only one of the answers is completely correct. The others may be
       answers that result from using the incorrect procedures, from wrong
       interpretations of the question, or from misconceptions about the
       subject matter. Understand the question and then select the
       alternative you consider to be the best answer.

  (4)  If you find that you have considerable difficulty with a question,
       do not spend too much time on it, but go on to the next question.
       When you have completed the test, go back to the questions which you
       have passed over. This procedure will enable you to use the time
       available to the best advantage in demonstrating your knowledge and
       understanding of the subject. Be sure you mark an answer for each

  Scoring the Test

  If you qualify under the special certification rule for military
  parachute riggers or former military parachute riggers, the test
  administered to you is graded in the FAA district office where the test
  is taken. If you pass the test, you will be issued FAA Form 8060-4,
  Temporary Airman Certificate, since no oral or practical test is
  required. If a passing grade of 70 percent is not obtained.

  All other parachute rigger written tests are mailed to the FAA in
  Oklahoma City, Oklahoma where they are scored by electronic test-scoring
  machines. Strict procedures are followed to insure the accuracy of

  Reporting Scores

  Test results will be mailed to you as quickly as possible. The test grade
  is reported on AC Form 8080-2, Airman Written Test Report. AC Form 8080-2
  is acceptable evidence of having passed the written test and must be
  presented when applying for a certificate. It must also be presented when
  applying for retesting in the event of failure.

  In addition to grade information, the written test report provides a
  listing by question number of the questions which were answered
  incorrectly. The subject area codes correspond to the subject headings
  shown on the "Written Test Subject Outline," which is mailed along with
  AC Form 8080-2, and to the written test subject headings used in this

  If your AC Form 8080-2 is lost or destroyed, a duplicate copy may be
  obtained by sending your name, social security number, the title of the
  test, the location where the test was taken, the approximate date of the
  test, and $1.00 (money order or check payable to FAA) to:

                  Airman Certification Branch, AAC-260
                  P.O. Box 25082
                  Oklahoma City, OK  73125

  Applying for a Retest

  If you fail a parachute rigger test, you must wait 30 days to retake the
  test; or, if you desire to take the test sooner, you must present a
  statement from a certificated and appropriately rated parachute rigger or
  a person holding an appropriate military rating, certifying that he/she
  has given you additional instruction in each of the subjects failed and
  now considers you ready for retesting.

  Written Test Subjects

  The subjects covered by the parachute rigger written tests are outlined
  below. The special test administered to military or former military
  riggers deals only with the first two categories, Certification and
  Privileges, Limitations, and Operating Rules. All other applicants for a
  senior parachute rigger written test should be prepared to answer
  questions in all subject areas listed except the last category, Parachute
  Alteration. Master parachute rigger applicants will be asked questions in
  all subject areas.


       AO1--Experience requirements.
       AO2--Skill requirements.
       AO3--Type ratings.
       AO4--Test requirements.
       AO5--Adding type ratings.


       BO1--Certificate privileges.
       BO2--Facilities and equipment.
       BO3--Performance standards.
       BO5--Pack sealing.
       BO6--Parachute repair.
       BO7--Parachute alteration.
       BO8--Intentional parachute jumping.


       CO4--Folding and stowing.
       CO5--Closing, finishing, and sealing.


       DO1--Function of parts and assemblies.
       DO2--Handling and storage.
       DO3--Airing and drying.
       DO4--Safety practices.
       DO5--Forces acting on a parachute.


       EO1--Pilot parachute.
       EO2--Main canopy.
       EO4--Release devices.
       EO5--Suspension lines.
       EO7--Parachute hardware.
       EO8--Parachute specifications.


       FO1--Repair standards.
       FO2--Canopy repair.
       FO3--Harness repair.
       FO4--Miscellaneous repairs.
       FO5--Sewing and stitching.
       FO6--Sewing machines.
       FO7--Hardware repair.
       FO8--Cleaning parachutes.
       FO9--Container repair.


       GO1--Alteration standards.
       GO2--Canopy alteration.
       GO3--Harness alteration.
       GO4--Hardware alteration.
       GO5--Container alteration.

Practice Test

  The practice test which follows is provided to familiarize you with the
  type of test questions contained in the FAA parachute rigger written
  tests. It is important to remember that the practice test does not cover
  all of the subjects on which you will be tested. For this reason, you
  should acquire knowledge in all the written test subjects, not just the
  answers to these few sample test questions.

  Each question is followed by four suggested answers. In each case, select
  the one that best answers the question and then blacken the corresponding
  space on the "Practice Test Answer Sheet," which follows the practice
  test. Answers to the practice test also follow the practice test.

  1.   After packing a parachute intended for emergency use in a civil
       aircraft, a certificated parachute rigger shall enter which of the
       following on the packing record attached to the parachute?

      1-      The parachute retirement date, packing date, and his/her

      2-      His/her signature, date, and place of packing.

      3-      His/her certificate number, signature, the date and place of
              packing, and a notation of any defects found.

      4-      The date, his/her certificate number, seal symbol, and

  2.   When packing a parachute, what determines the width of the canopy

      1-      The width of the pack.

      2-      The diameter of the canopy.

      3-      The number of suspension line channels.

      4-      The width of the suspension line retainers.

  3.   What is the minimum period of time that an applicant for a senior
       parachute rigger certificate shall have served as a parachute

      1-      Two years.

      2-      Three years.

      3-      For at least 90 days within the preceding 12 months.

      4-      There is no minimum time specified.

  4.   When laying out a seat- or back-type parachute for packing, how
       should the harness be placed with reference to body position of the

      1-      Face down with the head away from the canopy.

      2-      Face up with the head away from the canopy.

      3-      Face down with the head toward the canopy.

      4-      Face up with the head toward the canopy.

  5.   How long should a parachute be aired prior to packing?

      1-      Allow 1 hour of airing for each day the parachute was packed.

      2-      Four hours, provided the parachute is not wet.

      3-      It should be aired at least 8 hours.

      4-      Until the parachute has been thoroughly dried.

  6.   Which of the following statements are true? (1) Filler yarns in the
       weave of parachute canopies extend lengthwise through the material.
       (2) When applying a patch, the patch material filler yarns must be
       matched with those of the canopy.

      1-      Only statement (1) is true.

      2-      Only statement (2) is true.

      3-      Neither statement (1) nor (2) is true.

      4-      Both statements (1) and (2) are true.

  7.   Which component of the sewing machine used for parachute repair work
       prevents the thread from becoming tangled around the needle as it
       travels through the material?

      1-      The needle bar.

      2-      The thread take-up level.

      3-      The thread controller spring.

      4-      The action of the sewing hook.

  8.   How long must a certificated parachute rigger retain a record of the
       packing, maintenance, or alterations performed or supervised by

      1-      At least 2 years after the date the work is completed.

      2-      At least 1 year after the date the work is performed.

      3-      At least 2 years after the date the parachute is disposed.

      4-      Until notified by the FAA that he/she may dispose of them.

  9.   After packing a parachute, how does a certificated parachute rigger
       seal each pack?

      1-      The safety tie is sealed with the parachute rigger's
              individual seal in accordance with the manufacturer's

      2-      The safety tie is sealed with the parachute loft seal in
              accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations.

      3-      The safety tie is sealed by securing the pack elastics in
              their respective positions.

      4-      The safety tie is sealed with the seal symbol issued by the
              parachute manufacturer.

  10.  In addition to meeting the experience requirements, what other
       requirements must be met by a member of the United States military
       who applies for a senior parachute rigger certificate?

      1-      Pass an oral and practical test.

      2-      Pass a written test with respect to parachutes in common use.

      3-      Present evidence to the FAA that he/she holds the equivalent
              military rating.

      4-      Pass a written test on the FAR's.

  11.  According to FAR Part 65, when exercising certificate privileges, a
       parachute rigger must have available suitable housing that is
       adequately heated, lighted, ventilated,

      1-      and is high enough to allow a parachute to be hung vertically
              for drying and airing.

      2-      and has provisions for adjusting and controlling the

      3-      for drying and airing parachutes.

      4-      and meets all the requirements specified in 1, 2, and 3

  12.  No certificated parachute rigger may exercise the privileges of
       his/her certificate and type rating unless he/she understands the
       current manufacturer's instructions, and has

      1-      performed duties under his/her certificate for at least 90
              days within the preceding 12 months.

      2-      packed at least 20 parachutes within the preceding 12 months.

      3-      performed duties under his/her certificate within the
              preceding 90 days.

      4-      packed at least 10 parachutes of each of two types in common
              use within the preceding 12 months.

  13.  FAR's require a certificated parachute rigger to keep a record of
       the packing, maintenance, or alteration of parachutes performed or
       supervised by him/her. Identify the following items required to be

       A-- Retirement date of parachute.

       B-- Date parachute was manufactured.

       C-- Name and address of parachute owner.

       D-- Type and make of parachute and its serial number.

       E-- Date and place where the particular operation was performed.

      1-      A,B,C.

      2-      B,C,D.

      3-      C,D,E.

      4-      D,E,A.

  14.  When requested, a certificated parachute rigger is required to
       present his/her certificate to

      1-      the owner of a parachute the rigger has packed.

      2-      any state or local law enforcement officer.

      3-      a person holding a master parachute rigger certificate.

      4-      certificated pilot or flight instructor.

  15.  FAR's provide for the issuance of which type ratings for master
       parachute rigger?

      1-      Seat, special purpose, back, and lap.

      2-      Chest, back, seat, and chair.

      3-      Lap, chest, chair, and cargo.

      4-      Back, lap, seat, and chest.

  16.  When repairing a broken stitch in a canopy seam, what action should
       be taken?

      1-      Anchor the ends of the broken thread using fabric cement.

      2-      Sew back and forth across the ends of the broken stitch.

      3-      Reinforce the seam by applying a patch.

      4-      Backstitch for at least 1 inch.

  17.  What is the minimum period of time an applicant for a master
       parachute rigger certificate shall have served as a parachute

      1-      Two years.

      2-      Three years.

      3-      Four years.

      4-      Five years.

  18.  What determines the service life of a Canopy?

      1-      The total number of repairs.

      2-      The number of times it has been packed.

      3-      The total number of times it has been used for jumping.

      4-      The tensile strength and porosity of the material.

  19.  What is the purpose of a parachute seal symbol?

      1-      To identify a certificated parachute rigger.

      2-      To identify the parachute manufacturer.

      3-      To indicate FAA approval of a parachute assembly.

      4-      To identify parachute canopy material.

20.  A certificated parachute rigger who applies for an additional type
     rating must pass which of the following tests?

      1-      A written test for the type rating sought.

      2-      A practical test for the type rating sought.

      3-      An oral and practical test for the type rating sought.

      4-      A written and practical test for the type rating sought.

                                ANSWERS TO
                          PRACTICE TEST QUESTIONS

                       NUMBER              ANSWER



  Taking the Oral and Practical Tests

  Completion of the oral and practical tests is usually the final step in
  becoming certificated or in adding a rating to a parachute rigger
  certificate. An oral and a practical test must be taken for each type
  rating issued during original certification-(except in the case of
  military applicants for senior parachute rigger certificates). When
  ratings are added to a senior or master parachute rigger certificate, a
  practical test is required for each rating in addition to the experience

  Oral and practical tests are administered by FAA inspectors or by
  FAA-designated parachute rigger examiners (DPRE's). The scope of the
  tests is the same, whether given by an inspector or by a DPRE.
  Arrangements for taking the oral and practical tests should be made in
  advance of the date on which you desire to take the test.

  If an FAA inspector gives the oral and practical tests, the necessary
  facilities and equipment must be furnished or arranged for by the
  applicant. The applicant will be expected to furnish: (1) a smooth-top
  table, at least 3 feet wide by 40 feet long, (2) provisions for drying
  and airing parachutes, (3) manufacturer's instructions, and the tools and
  equipment used to pack and maintain the types of parachutes for which a
  rating is sought, and (4) adequate housing facilities to perform the
  duties of a parachute rigger and to protect the tools and equipment. At
  least one approved parachute of each type for which a rating is sought
  must be available for the oral and practical tests.

  If a DPRE gives the oral and practical test, he/she will assure that
  suitable facilities and equipment are available to conduct the test.
  Since designated examiners are not paid by the FAA for their services or
  the use of their facilities and equipment, they are authorized to charge
  a fee for administering oral and practical tests.

  The names and addresses of the FAA DPRE's in each district can be
  obtained from the FAA district office that serves the area.

  You will be given an application form and instructions for filling it in
  by the person who administers the tests. He/she will explain the tasks
  that will be assigned during the test and will observe all aspects of
  your performance and grade you accordingly.

  The oral test may be administered along with the practical test, or it
  may be given separately, before or after the practical test. The examiner
  will not attempt to trick or mislead you in any way with his/her oral
  questions or project assignments. Any questions or assignments that you
  do not understand should be clarified before answering the question or
  attempting the project.

  Evaluating Your Performance

  Your performance will be evaluated by the examiner on the basis of
  knowledge, accuracy, and proficiency displayed during the test. In
  evaluating performance the principle characteristic that will be
  considered is the quality of the end product. Other characteristics that
  will be considered include:

  1.   Your approach to the project--did you obtain, use, and correctly
       interpret information available to perform the task?

  2.   Your skill in handling tools and use of the proper tool for the
       assigned task.

  3.   The care you take in protecting parachute parts from damage during

  4.   Your proficiency in packing and inspecting parachutes.

  5.   The manner in which you complete the required forms and records.

  6.   Your understanding and application of the FAR's.

  Oral Test Questions

  Oral test questions cover the same subjects as the written tests and are
  intended to show how well you can make use of your knowledge. The oral
  test questions fall generally into three types: (1) questions closely
  related to assigned projects--to further explore your understanding of
  the tasks being performed, (2) questions not related to a specific
  project--to evaluate your ability in areas in which a skill demonstration
  is not practical, and (3) questions to determine whether additional
  projects need to be assigned. The following list of questions may be
  helpful for reviewing the results of your study. Many of them may suggest
  other areas for additional study.


      1.      What general sequence of operations is followed when packing
              a parachute?

      2.      How can the correct procedure for packing a parachute be

      3.      What sequence of operations is normally followed to remove
              twists and tangles from a parachute canopy, suspension lines,
              and harness?

      4.      In what position would an attached harness be when a
              parachute is laid out for packing?

      5.      During the preparation of a parachute for packing, when is
              the skirt hem of a canopy usually straightened?

      6.      What determines the width of the canopy folds when packing a

      7.      How can the order of stowing lines in the line holders be

      8.      How is a parachute pack usually sealed after being packed?

      9.      What is the purpose of temporary locking pins used during
              parachute packing?

      10.     What type of safety tie is used when sealing a packed

      11.     Name some packing practices which could contribute to a delay
              in pilot parachute ejection.

      12.     What information is given on the stamped panel canopy?

      13.     What type of knot is used to secure the pilot parachute to
              the canopy apex?

      14.     What is the reason for disconnecting the apex of the
              parachute from the packing table tension device during

      15.     What are the reasons for using a ripcord housing and having
              it properly attached to the pack and harness?

      16.     How are the suspension lines attached to the riser links?

      17.     What are pack-opening elastics or spring bands?

      18.     What is the purpose of the safety thread and lead seal used
              to seal a packed parachute?

      19.     To which pin of a ripcord is the seal attached?

      20.     What is the maximum permitted ripcord pull force?

      21.     How does a certificate parachute rigger identify his/her work
              or packing?

      22.     Which pin of a ripcord is number one?

      23.     What method is effective to temporarily shorten the
              suspension lines of an unpacked parachute to prevent tangling
              of the lines?

      24.     What are the requirements for drying and airing parachutes
              prior to packing?

      25.     What types of pilot parachutes are in common use?

      26.     What is the purpose of the suspension line loops in a
              parachute pack assembly?

      27.     How are the release pins of a ripcord normally attached to
              the cable?

      28.     What action should be taken if a flaw is discovered in a
              parachute canopy during inspection for packing?

      29.     After stretching a parachute to its full length on the
              packing table, what is the next step that should be taken?

      30.     During the packing operation, why is some canopy material
              allowed to extend beyond the pack edges?

      31.     In completing the packing process, what tool is used to
              insert the protector flaps?

      32.     What may result if the ripcord handle is improperly

      33.     After stowing the suspension lines, where is the skirt of the
              canopy placed?

      34.     What is the function of the canopy vent, and what do you look
              for when inspecting it?

      35.     How can the serviceability of a parachute be determined if
              the strength of the canopy material is in question?

      36.     How can the presence of acid in a parachute stain be

      37.     What is meant by the term "tensile strength" of a material,
              and how can it be determined?

      38.     How can the presence of mold or mildew be detected in
              parachute canopy materials?

      39.     What is the last step in packing a parachute?

      40.     What are some of the reasons for condemning a parachute

      41.     How is the length of a ripcord measured?

      42.     What are the minimum facilities and equipment a parachute
              rigger must have available to exercise his/her privileges?

      43.     What records of parachute packing, maintenance, and
              alteration are required to be kept by a parachute rigger.

      44.     What information is required to be entered on the parachute
              packing record attached to the parachute?

      45.     How long must parachute packing, maintenance, and alteration
              records be kept?

      46.     What kind of knot is usually used to tie-off harness tacking?

      47.     How much free line is left between the skirt hem and the line
              stowage loops or elastics?

      48.     What is the function of a pilot parachute?

      49.     What requirements must a certificated parachute rigger meet
              in order to pack the main parachute of a dual parachute pack
              to be used for intentional jumping?

      50.     How can the correct method of sealing a parachute pack be


      1.      Where is the manufacturer's identification data usually
              located on a parachute canopy, on a harness, and on a pack?

      2.      What is the function of the ripcord housing?

      3.      How is a parachute usually prepared for an extended storage

      4.      What is the meaning of the term "bias construction" as used
              to describe a parachute canopy?

      5.      How are the skirt and vent hems of most parachutes

      6.      What is the usual number of stitches per inch used in making
              the seams of a parachute canopy?

      7.      How is the ripcord handle held, or secured to the harness of
              a back- or seat-type parachute so that it is readily
              accessible to the wearer, yet relatively safe from accidental

      8.      How are most types of snap fasteners and grommets attached to
              parachute material?

      9.      How can the correct procedures for repairing a parachute be

      10.     How are small holes and snags in a parachute canopy usually

      11.     What kind of textile material is used to make a parachute
              canopy repair?

      12.     What identifying features are associated with "yard slippage"
              in parachute canopy materials.

      13.     What are the common stitching patterns to attach load-bearing
              rings and snaps to parachute harnesses?

      14.     How is uniformity of length of nylon suspension lines assured
              during manufacture of a parachute, or the replacement of

      15.     How would a parachute rigger determine the correct number of
              stitches per inch used for a parachute repair?

      16.     How would a parachute rigger determine the correct type of
              seam used for repairing a parachute?

      17.     What are the characteristics of a properly formed seam?

      18.     What type of stitch is normally used during the construction
              and repair of parachutes?

      19.     What kind of stitch is normally used to secure the suspension
              lines to the canopy skirt and vent hems?

      20.     What are the operating principles of the rotary type and
              oscillating type sewing machines?

      21.     What factors should be considered when selecting the correct
              size sewing machine needle to be used for making a repair?

      22.     What are the characteristics of a sewed lockstitch made by a
              correctly adjusted sewing machine?

      23.     What precautions should be observed if load-carrying
              parachute hardware is refinished or replanted?

      24.     What methods and cleaning products are generally used in
              cleaning parachute canopy materials?

      25.     Why is it necessary to stitch the suspension line where it
              attaches to the riser link?

      26.     How can a bent or burred ripcord pin be repaired?

      27.     What is the danger in chrome plating parachute hardware?

      28.     What agents can be used to clean parachute harnesses?

      29.     Explain the difference in the construction of a
              bias-constructed parachute and a straight-constructed one?

      30.     What process is used on the ends of harness webbing to
              prevent fraying?

      31.     What type of knot may be used to secure harness tacking if no
              particular knot is specified?

      32.     What can result if the ripcord handle pocket is improperly

      33.     Why is an acid stain more serious than any other type of
              stain on a parachute?

      34.     What should be done with a parachute canopy that has a large
              acid-stained area?

      35.     How should a parachute be dried after it has been rinsed or
              soaked in water?

      36.     What action is necessary when a parachute has been stained
              with perspiration?

      37.     What chemicals can be used to prevent a parachute from

      38.     Why should the elasticity of a seam be greater than that of
              the material it joins?

      39.     Who is privileged to perform major repairs to a parachute

      40.     What guide for details could be followed in performing a
              minor repair to a parachute?

      41.     What action should be taken first when laying out a parachute
              canopy repair patch?

      42.     How should a tear in a canopy be prepared for patching?

      43.     What is the minimum distance that the raw edges of a canopy
              patch must be turned under?

      44.     What procedures must be followed when repairing a parachute?

      45.     Who may alter the main parachute of a dual parachute pack?

      46.     What is likely to occur while operating a sewing machine if
              the bobbin is threaded incorrectly?

      47.     What sewing machine malfunction can cause staggered stitches?

      48.     What procedure should be followed when repairing broken
              stitches in a canopy seam?

      49.     What determines the service life of a nylon canopy?

      50.     What is the purpose for using zigzag stitching to complete
              the attachment of suspension lines to the riser links?

      51.     How can sunlight damage to white nylon fabric be identified?

      52.     When replacing a damaged ripcord with a serviceable one, what
              requirements must be met?

      53.     When replacing a pack grommet that has torn out of its
              fastening, what should be done to keep the locking pin from
              binding in the cone?

      54.     What is the reason for matching the weave of the patch
              material with that of the canopy being repaired?

      55.     What precautions should be observed when replacing a broken
              or missing eye on a parachute container?

      56.     Describe the appearance of the material defect known as a
              "warp float."

      57.     What effect would a bent grommet have on the operation of the
              pack-opening mechanism?

      58.     What action should be taken if "yarn slippage" is detected in
              a parachute canopy during the inspection?

      59.     What thread size should be used to sew canopy radial seams
              when making a repair?

      60.     How is the needle-thread tension and the bobbin-thread
              tension on a sewing machine usually controlled?

  Practical Test Projects

  The practical test consists of assigned work projects to test your
  mechanical skill and ability to organize work, select and follow correct
  procedures, apply appropriate techniques, and determine an acceptable
  level of workmanship. The person administering the test will select
  projects that utilize, as much as possible, the equipment and procedures
  that are familiar to you.

  If a project must be performed in accordance with a manufacturer's
  instructions or other data, the examiner will expect you to consult the
  instructions or data. Failure to do so may result in your failing the
  practical test.

  A list of the projects you can expect to be assigned during the practical
  test is shown below. You will be required to perform all of the tasks
  involved in packing parachutes, and may be assigned all or only part of
  the projects listed under Maintaining Parachutes. Since master parachute
  riggers are permitted to make major repairs and alterations, and to
  supervise other persons performing these operations, master parachute
  rigger tests will be more extensive than the tests given a senior
  parachute rigger applicant.


      a.      PACK A PARACHUTE.

                  INFORMATION. You must select the correct tools, equipment,
                  and manuals.

          (2)     OPEN THE PACK. You must take precautions to avoid damage
                  to the parachute, check the ripcord pull force.

          (3)     LAY OUT THE PARACHUTE. You must lay out the parachute as
                  prescribed in the packing instructions, check the canopy
                  for being right side out, check suspension lines for
                  continuity, and remove tangles (if any).

          (4)     INSPECT THE PARACHUTE. You must carefully check for
                  conformity to the manufacturer's description, completeness
                  of assembly, operational adequacy, markings, damage,
                  deterioration, and other defects.

          (5)     FOLD AND STOW THE PARACHUTE. You must pleat and fold the
                  canopy gores, sign inside packing record, accordion fold
                  the canopy into the pack, and fold and pack the pilot

          (6)     CLOSE, FINISH, AND SEAL THE PACK. You must close the pack
                  flaps in the correct sequence, insert the pack closing
                  device, finish and smooth the pack, seal the pack, fasten
                  the pack opening bands and protector flaps, and fill the
                  parachute records.


       Senior Parachute Rigger and Master Parachute Rigger Applicants

      a.      RE-STITCH CANOPY SEAMS. You must select the correct sewing
              machine; use straight lockstitch or zigzag stitch, depending
              upon the area being restitch; use proper size, texture, and
              color thread; restitch following original construction,
              overstitch as required; and check suspension line freedom if
              restitching a radial seam.

      b.      DARN A SMALL SNAG OR TEAR. You must select proper size,
              texture, and color thread; use tiny stitches at right-angles
              to the damage and extend the darning beyond the area. Canopy
              material should not be puckered.

      c.      PATCH A CANOPY SECTION. You must select correct machine,
              fabric, and thread; match filler, warp, and ripstop boxes, as
              applicable; use correct stitching, overlap, edge distance,
              and overstitching; trim out damaged area; check suspension
              line freedom, if stitching on a radial seam.

      d.      REPAIR A TORN RADIAL SEAM. You must select correct machine,
              thread fabric, or tape; use correct stitching, overlap, edge
              distance, and overstitching; trim out damaged area; check
              suspension line freedom.

      e.      REPLACE POCKET BANDS OR V-TABS. You must select correct
              machine, thread, webbing; correctly position webbing; use
              correct stitching, stitch spacing, and overstitching.

              correct thread; hand tack the band in place with the required
              number and placement of stitches; tie-off thread properly.

              snaps of the correct type; punch or repair hold as
              applicable; check completed installation for security and

      h.      INSTALL GROMMETS. You must select grommet and washer of the
              correct type and size; punch or repair hold as applicable;
              check grommet for security.

      i.      INSTALL LOCKING CONES ON A PARACHUTE PACK. You must select
              proper size and type of thread and cone of the same size and
              type as used on the pack; properly align, position, and
              stitch cone in place; tie off thread.

      j.      INSTALL A SLIDE FASTENER. You must select proper size and
              type of thread and slide fasteners; use correct stitching;
              check completed installation for operation.

      k.      INSTALL HOOK EYES ON A PARACHUTE PACK. You must select
              correct eye and thread; position eye and sew into place; tie
              off thread.

      l.      OPERATE A STANDARD SEWING MACHINE. You must thread the
              machine and adjust it to produce an acceptable lockstitch.

  Master Parachute Rigger Applicants Only

      m.      REPAIR AN UPPER OR LOWER LATERAL BAND. You must select
              correct size and type tape and thread; use correct stitching,
              underfold, edge distance, spacing, and overstitching; splice
              reinforcing tape, as required.

      n.      REPLACE A CANOPY GORE SECTION OR PANEL. You must select
              correct fabric and thread; match filler, warp, and ripstop
              boxes, as applicable; use correct stitching, overlap, edge
              distance, and overstitching; trim out damaged area; check
              suspension line freedom.

      o.      REPLACE A SUSPENSION LINE. You must select correct thread and
              suspension line of the type used on the canopy; adjust length
              of replacement line to maintain canopy balance; attach line
              to canopy and riser link using correct stitching; check line


  Oral and practical tests are graded as soon as they are completed. The
  tests are graded using a pass/fail concept, rather than a numerical
  score. If any part of the test is failed, the person administering the
  tests will record the results on the reverse side of FAA Form 8610-2
  [ Front, Back ] and return the duplicate to you. He/she will also return
  your AC Form 8080-2 or FAA Form 8060-4, whichever is applicable.

  If you fail a test, you may apply for a retest as prescribed in FAR
  Section 65.19. You have the option of returning to the same FAA district
  office or DPRE, or applying to any other FAA district office or DPRE for
  the retest.

  When all parts of the tests have been passed, the FAA district office or
  DPRE will issue a temporary parachute riggers certificate. The following
  excerpts from FAR Part 65 pertain to temporary certificates. "A
  certificate and ratings effective for a period of not more than 120 days
  may be issued to a qualified applicant, pending review  of his/her
  application and supplementary documents and the issue of the certificate
  and ratings for which he/she applied."


  Permanent certificates are prepared and issued by the Airmen
  Certification Branch of the FAA and are mailed to the address shown on
  the application form. It usually takes about 8 weeks to process the
  application and issue the permanent certificate. In the meantime, you may
  exercise the privilege of a certificated parachute rigger using your
  temporary certificate


  When a certificate is first issued to a parachute rigger, the FAA assigns
  an identifying symbol for the parachute rigger's exclusive use in sealing
  parachute packs. Each parachute rigger must obtain his/her own seal press
  and a seal with his/her assigned symbol. Seals and seal presses are not
  available from the FAA. They can be purchased from the manufacturers or
  suppliers of parachutes and parachute equipment.

  After a parachute is packed, a low-tensile-strength safety thread is
  usually wrapped and knotted about the release device in a manner
  specified by the parachute manufacturer, a lead seal is affixed to the
  thread and secured by impressing the parachute rigger's seal symbol into
  it. Any withdrawal of the release pins (or other release mechanism) will
  break the thread. As long as the safety thread and seal remain intact, it
  is an indication to the user that the pack has not been opened since
  being inspected and packed by a certificated parachute rigger.


Dan Poynter's Manual I & II

Parachute Rigging Course

Parachute Rigger Study Guide   

The following FAR's should be useful to a person studying for the tests.
  A knowledge of the rules is often very helpful and sometimes necessary
  during the performance of parachute rigger duties.

          Part 1    Definitions and Abbreviations.
          Part 21   Certification Procedures for Products and Parts.
          Part 65   Certification: Airmen Other Than Flight Crewmembers.
          Part 91   General Operating and Flight Rules.
          Part 105  Parachute Jumping.
          Part 149  Parachute Lofts.

  FAA Advisory Circulars

  The FAA issues advisory circulars (AC's) to inform the aviation public in
  a systematic way of no regulatory material of interest. AC's are issued
  in a numbered-subject system corresponding to the numbering system used
  for FAR's.

  The AC's of greatest interest to parachute rigger applicants are:

  AC 00-2      Advisory Circular Checklist (and Status of Other FAA
               Publications). Provides a list of current FAA AC's (and
               certain other publications) and how to order them.
  AC 00-44     Status of Federal Aviation Regulations.
  AC 20-36     Index of Articles (Materials, Parts, Processes, and
               Appliances) Certified Under the Technical Standard Order
  AC 105-2     Sport Parachute Jumping.
  AC 183-32    FAA Designated Maintenance Technician Examiner Directory.

  Free AC's may be obtained by writing to:

        U.S. Department of Transportation
        Utilization and Storage Section, M-443.2
        Washington, DC  20590

  Date: Revised 1988


  Certificates and Ratings

  FAR Part 65, Certification: Airmen Other Than Flight Crewmembers,
  provides for the issuance of two parachute rigger certificates: (1)
  senior parachute rigger and (2) master parachute rigger. FAR Part 65 also
  provides for four type ratings: (1) seat, (2) back, (3) chest, and (4)
  lap. Each senior parachute rigger applicant must meet the requirements
  for at least one rating, and each master parachute rigger applicant must
  meet the requirements for at least two ratings to be issued a
  certificate. Parachute riggers may exercise their privileges only on
  parachutes for which they are rated. Parachute rigger certificate
  eligibility requirements vary with the type of certificate sought (senior
  or master) and the applicant's background (military or civil).

  General Requirements

  FAR Section 65.113 states:

  (a)  To be eligible for a parachute rigger certificate, a person must--

      (1)     Be at least 18 years of age;

      (2)     Be able to read, write, speak, and understand the English
              language, or in the case of a citizen of Puerto Rico, or a
              person who is employed outside of the United States by a U.S.
              air carrier, and who does not meet this requirement, be
              issued a certificate that is valid only in Puerto Rico or
              while he/she is employed outside of the United States by that
              air carrier, as the case may be; and

      (3)     Comply with the sections of this subpart that apply to the
              certificate and type rating he/she seeks.

  Experience Requirements

  FAR Section 65.115 provides that applicants for a senior parachute rigger
  certificate must have packed at least 20 parachutes of each type for
  which a rating is sought. The parachute must have been packed in
  accordance with the manufacturer's instructions and under the supervision
  of a certificated parachute rigger who holds a rating for that type or by
  a person holding an appropriate military rating.

  Applicants for a master parachute rigger certificate must have had at
  least 3 years of experience as a parachute rigger and have satisfactorily
  packed at least 100 parachutes of each of two types in common use, in
  accordance with the manufacturer's instructions.

  Knowledge and Skill Requirements

  FAR Section 65.115 provides that senior parachute rigger applicants are
  required to take a written test. They are also required to take an oral
  and practical test after passing the written test. Military parachute
  riggers, former military parachute riggers, and civilian employees of a
  regular armed force who meet the regulatory requirements may take a
  special written test on the regulations of FAR Part 65, Subpart F.
  Evidence to establish their eligibility under this special certification
  rule (FAR Section 65.117) may be submitted in the form of letters,
  official records, or other documents, within 12 months after discharge.

  Master parachute rigger applicants are required to take a written test
  unless they hold a senior parachute rigger certificate. They are also
  required to take an oral and practical test, which may be taken after
  showing they meet the other requirements.

  Certificate Privileges

  A certificated senior parachute rigger may pack or maintain (except for
  major repairs and alterations) any type of parachute for which he/she is
  rated. He/she may also supervise other persons in packing any type of
  parachute for which he/she is rated. A certificated master parachute
  rigger may pack, maintain, or alter any type of parachute for which
  he/she is rated. Additionally, he/she may supervise other persons in
  packing, maintaining, or altering any type of parachute for which he/she
  is rated.

 The End