Gear Wisdom: What Size Pilot Chute?

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Rezzan Shiel’s third article explaining how to check and maintain our gear

Author Rezzan Aral Shiel, by Dave Head

Today we are going to talk about pilot chutes again

By now you know how to check and determine if your kill line needs a replacement, and you know how to check your pilot chute for wear and tear. Let’s talk a little bit more about these hard working parts of our lovely rigs; pilot chutes.

Where to get your new pilot chute?

Of course the best option will be ordering the one you need from the manufacturer of your rig. This is not always possible because most probably you identified your need to change your pilot chute a little late… and you need one NOW!

You can get your hands on ready-made pilot chutes from Gear Shops at your home drop zone, if they have one or gear shops in your country, they will have ready-made ones for sale. You can get your pilot chutes from Master Riggers, if they don’t have a ready-made one in hand, they can make one for you.


Pilot chute materials can be F111 or ZP (zero porosity), collapsible pilot chutes will come with a standard bridle. An F111 pilot chute diameter is usually 27 to 30 inches. The maximum diameter for F111 pilot chutes is 32 inches. A ZP pilot chute diameter will be 25 to 27 inches.

You can also measure your old pilot chute to find out the diameter for your new order. But note that some manufacturers measure pilot chute diameter by the cut dimension and others by its finished size.

If you check your gear often enough, you can be prepared and pre-order your replacement parts, and thus eliminate any last-minute stress.

Be safe! Check your gear!

Words and photos by Rezzan Aral Shiel

Gear Wisdom Articles


All by Rezzan Aral Shiel, our lovely friendly rigger

Coming Soon

  • 3-Rings – Maintenance
  • Steering Lines
  • New Line Set – is it time?
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Meet: Rezzan Aral Shiel

Rezzan Aral Shiel has been a professional packer and rigger for over 20 years. Her smiling face, impeccable organising skills, infectious laugh and calm personality make her a reassuring presence at major skydiving events worldwide. Rezzy packs brilliantly for all her athletes but is far more than a packer; she is a supportive, interested, empathic ally, who plays an important role in helping them achieve success. Rezzy rocks!

Owner/ President at Rezolutions LLC

Studied at Shaw Academy

Studied Life coaching at AVADO

Studied at Dokuz Eylül Üniversitesi

Studied Technical drawing at 9 EYLUL UNIVERSITY (IZMIR-TURKEY)

Went to Karsiyaka Gazi Lisesi

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In my travels I always get comment from people I meet, saying how helpful this packing article has been for them, how much they like it and some even use it to teach packing to their students.