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Two Softie mini wedge parachutes for sale

pigpenracing

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I have two matching blue Softie mini wedge parachutes. These have never been deployed (emergency parachutes) Bought new from Allen Silver in 1995. These chutes still look like new and have matching carry bags.
$1800 for both. These run around $2200 each new. Figured I would try here a couple of days before they go to ebay.
[email protected] or 979-451-3251
 

rmarshall234

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I don't mean to be the turd in your punch bowl but it seems like the right opportunity to do greater good, and help educate the entire group:

Most parachute manufacturers have now placed a 20 year sevice life limit on their equipment. It's a relatively new thing and each manufacturer is handling it a little differently - as you'll see. Below is a document I created for my parachute loft with statements lifted from the packing manuals or from their websites. Strong Enterprises is the only manufacturer that still leaves this airworthiness decision of age, in the hands of the parachute rigger.

(Again, sorry to be the bearer of bad news...)

Service Life Limits
for
Parachute Equipment
*As stated by the manufacturer




Paraphernalia (Softie): "Established 20 year service life". ($300 discount on a new rig.)
National: "Our opinion is the maximum service life is 20 years"
Butler: "Estimated service life of 20 years"
Rigging Innovations: "15 year service life"
Strong: "At the discretion of the Parachute Rigger"
 

TxSkyBolt

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Is seems to me, a casual observer, that a manufacturers limitation is more about liability than safety. Maybe not, but why not leave it up to the certified rigger to determine airworthiness, must as our A&P/IAs do for our airplanes? Is there some invisible gotcha with chutes that are not visibile to a rigger?
 

pigpenracing

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Yep...
It does suck. These chutes have 3 years left on them. For some reason people on eBay pay top dollar even for softies over 20 years old???? Last ones on eBay were really old and brought over $900 each!!! These are a good deal for someone that wants in. 3 years is alot of flying.... Then you can trade them in and get the $300 each or eBay them :). Or you can pay $2285 each for new now.
 

rmarshall234

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To TxSkyBolt..

Rather than try to discuss the relative merits of the 20 year service life here (I encourage those that are interested to contact the manufacturer of their parachutes or go to dropzone.com and in the forum section do a search for “20 year service life”) I can give you this one rigger’s perspective on two points:

  • When it comes to emergency parachutes they are a life-saving device and they absolutely have to work every single time. If the engine in my airplane quits I’m now flying a glider and I still have options.

  • If I am considering exercising my best option and leave a crippled airplane, I have to have complete confidence in my equipment. I want my rigging customers to have that same level of confidence in their own gear so that they are more likely to make the correct choice if presented with that situation.

And so that I don’t dodge the issue of liability completely I will say this….as soon as the manufacturers made a statement regarding the service life of their equipment they have shifted all the liability directly over to me - the small business owner and parachute rigger. I can still choose to pack that rig or not, but I choose not to.
 

TxSkyBolt

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And so that I don’t dodge the issue of liability completely I will say this….as soon as the manufacturers made a statement regarding the service life of their equipment they have shifted all the liability directly over to me - the small business owner and parachute rigger. I can still choose to pack that rig or not, but I choose not to.
Exactly my point, not necessarily a safety issue but a CYA. Understand completely, but I think that's why I pay my Master Rigger.
 

SSkybolt

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I understand the 20 year life, liability issues and shifting the burden. But, it would seem parachutes that may only be deployed once and parachutes that are deployed weekly each have a different life expectancy. My rigger has no problem with older parachutes as long as they meet his condition standards.
 

rmarshall234

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>My rigger has no problem with older parachutes as long as they meet his condition standards.

That's great. I believe in freedom of choice and I'm all for giving the rigger latitude in his decision making. I just view it differently is all ....

If the people that know the most about parachutes (manufacturers) say it's unairworthy after a certain period of time...and the FAA tells me I need to follow the manufacturers instructions when I pack it...I don't see where that gives me the freedom to make my own call. Doing something contrary to what the manufacturer or the FAA wants me to do, is very definitely entering into a gray zone. When it comes to parachutes I like things to be more black and white. Because that's the life a parachute - either they work or they don't. As a rigger, I'm going to do everything possible to make sure they work as they were designed.

As I mentioned before it's a relatively new subject and therefore controversial, but a good discussion to have.
 

pigpenracing

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The manufacture is money hungry and wants to sell new parachutes. They are not unairworthy after 20 years. Many riggers pack them after 20. The riggers that don't want to sell new chutes.
 

ironman43

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Interesting discussion. I would have to say my own opinion sides with the manufacturers wanting more business and less liability exposure. Fortunately it leaves us with choices. I have National chutes, sold my Strongs (mistake) and still have a Paraphernalia almost expired. I complained to the Paraphernalia folks and they were very smug about their position. That basically sealed the deal for me, regardless of if all manufacturers end up in the place Paraphernalia will never get my business again. I have to agree with the riggers who decide not to repack the expired chutes. That simply puts them in a bad place which could result in loosing their privileges. Not worth it. The best way to speak your voice is by what chute you buy.

MArk
 

rmarshall234

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>The manufacture is money hungry and wants to sell new parachutes.
Possibly.
>They are not unairworthy after 20 years.
As long as a rigger is willing to pack it, that is your decision to make and risk to take.
>Many riggers pack them after 20.
Yes they do.
>The riggers that don't want to sell new chutes.
I have no interest in selling chutes. Nor do I have any interest in taking on all the business that comes through my door. And at the equivalency of $15-25 / hr, I'm certainly not doing it for the money.

I've probably seen 10s of thousands of parachutes open perfectly and have seen maybe a hundred or more that didn't. Five of them up close and personal. All I can say is that it's a beautiful thing when it works properly.
 

rmarshall234

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>The best way to speak your voice is by what chute you buy.

Absolutely.

What will be interesting to watch.....is now with Ted Strong passed away, if there will be a change in their policy regarding this topic.
 
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