Parachute Repairs

Main canopies take a terrible beating. It starts with us packing them, the friction, salts and oils from our bodies are hard on the material. Next we deploy them at speeds well over 100 mph, fly them aggressively, hopfully land them competently (though not always), recover them, sometimes in the middle of the desert gathering up all kinds of refuse in some cases based on what I have seen.  And repack it to do it all over again. 

Mains often need through inspection by an appropriate person. See our Main Parachute Airworthiness Inspection page for more details. 

Repairs that are commonly necessary:

  • Replaceing individual suspension and steering lines
    • We are ready and equiped to replace virtually all types of lines iincluding dacron, spectra, vectran and HMA
    • Line replacement is conducted according to manufacturer factory specs using same line type as existing lines
  • replacing entire line sets
  • Patch repairs of rips, tears and general abrasion damage. 
    • note: we NEVER use rip stop tape. We do not consider this to be a proper canopy repair and is actually prohibited by canopy manufacturers. Desert Skies Parachute Rigging is fully equiped and able to conduct extensive canopy patching repairs and we pride ourselves on this. A true french fell seam type canopy repair does take longer than just slapping some tape on a tear, however, is the only true way to repair a torn canopy. Besides, most of the patch repairs we do are far to extensive to be handled by tape anyway. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Canopy Repairs

I've heard I should get my canopy relined by the manufacturer

  • Not true - that is like taking your car to the factory for an oil change. Factory manufacturerd linesets are easy to install and can be done by any competant / appropriately rated parachute rigger. One requirement is having a properly functioning bar tack machine for securing the finger traps which of course, we do. 

How do I know if some existing damage or wear will get worse

  • It's not going to get better, that's for sure. Some wear can just be cosmetic and could take some time before becoming structural. Other minor structural damage can actually be so minor as to not require immediate attention. However, if in doubt get it fixed. There is no worse time to worry about your decision than when you are throwing your pilot chute. 

How long will it take

  • depends on the repair
    • minor patch repairs 1hr
    • major patch repairs - 2-5 hrs, depending
    • complete reline - 1.5-2 hrs
    • line replacement - .5 hr - includes the time necessary to manufacture the individual line

© John H. Lyman LLC