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by Brian Germain

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Brian's Famous Pilot Chute Packing Method

Many years ago, Brian came across an incredible method for packing throw-out pilot chutes.  This technique seriously reduces the risks of a main reserve entanglement due to a horseshoe malfunction.

Why should you change your pilot chute packing method? 

Simple.  Most methods, when presented with a bag-first deployment (a.k.a. horseshoe), will allow the load on the bridle to turn the pilot chute into a large ball inside the pocket, possibly prohibiting you from ever getting the pilot chute out of the pocket at all.  This situation forces the skydiver to pull his reserve with the main still trailing from the pocket, even after he or she has cut away.  Even if you have the strength to pull the pilot chute out of the pocket, you may not be able to reach the handle, as the bottom of the container (and the pouch) are now pressed up against the reserve pack tray.  Remember, the main is already out of the rig.  Unless you are one of those fortunate enough to be able to scratch your shoulder-blade, you may be in serious trouble.

This method significantly increases the chances of the bridle pulling the pilot chute out of the pocket.  That's a very good thing. Here's how it works:

Step One

Lay the pilot chute on it's back, with the handle facing down.

Step Two

Lift the bridle attachment.

Step Three

Place the bridle attachment on the edge of the fabric.

Step Four

Fold the fabric over into a half-moon.

Step Five

Fold the fabric inward, past the handle, level with the straight edge on top.

Step Six

Fold the other side inward, past the handle, level with the straight edge on top.

Step Seven

Fold the pilot chute in half, bringing the handle to meet the pilot chute attachment. 

Long and thin... Won't stay in.
Short and fat is where it's at!

Step Seven

Place the pilot chute on the bottom of the rig, with the handle on the bottom.

Step Eight

Fold the bridle inside the pilot chute so that there is no excess to stuff into the container after inserting into the pouch.

Step Eight

Roll both sides toward the center.  Make sure the roll are tight to make insertion easier.

Step Nine

Insert completely into the pouch, then pull the handle out.

Make sure the bridle is tight and hidden.

Step Ten

Get a "Pin Check" on Jump-run. Prevention is your best offense!

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