Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

Senior Parachute Rigger


Credential: Senior Parachute Rigger  GI Bill resource
Credentialing Agency: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

 

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Senior Parachute Rigger certificate is one of two types of the Parachute Rigger Certificate: Senior and Master. A Senior Parachute Rigger is considered a journeyman technician. A Senior Parachute Rigger may pack, as well as maintain, a parachute by making minor repairs. Applicants must meet the experience eligibility requirements as listed in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Applicants must pass a written and practical exam.

More information can be found on the certifying agency's website.

Senior Parachute Rigger

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS

Attainability:    high

Eligibility Requirements (View Details)

  • Credential Prerequisite
  • Experience: 1 year
  • Education
  • Training
  • Membership
  • Other
  • Fee

Note: This credential may have multiple options for a Service member to meet eligibility requirements. Requirements listed here are based on the minimum degree required. To view other options, see the Eligibility tab.

Exam Requirements (View Details)

  • Exam
  • Written Exam
  • Oral Exam
  • Practical Exam
  • Performance Assessment

Exam Administration (View Details)

  • In-person exam
  • Remote proctored on-line exam
  • Third-party test vendor

AGENCY CONTACT INFORMATION

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

800 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC  20591

Phone: (866) 835-5322

Contact Page

Applicant must present satisfactory evidence to the Administrator that he/she has packed at least 20 parachutes of each type for which a rating is sought in accordance with the manufacturers instructions and under the supervision of a certificated parachute rigger holding a rating for that type or a person holding an appropriate military rating.

In accordance with the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) §65.117 - Military riggers or former military riggers: Special certification rule, an applicant for a senior parachute rigger certificate is entitled to it if he/she passes a written test on the regulations of this subpart and presents satisfactory documentary evidence that he/she:

  •  Is a member or civilian employee of an Armed Force of the United States, is a civilian employee of a regular armed force of a foreign country, or has, within the 12 months before he applies, been honorably discharged or released from any status covered by this paragraph;
  • Is serving, or has served within the 12 months before he applies, as a parachute rigger for such an Armed Force; and
  • Has the experience in packing at least 20 parachutes of each type for which he/she seeks a rating in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions.

The Senior Parachute Rigger credential has the following other requirements:

  • Applicant must be at least 18 years old.
  • Applicant must be able to read, write, speak, and understand the Enligh language.

Written Exam

The written exam requirements for Senior Parachute Riggers cover the three topics listed in the table below. Under the special rules of Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) Part 65.117, qualified military parachute riggers who have packed at least 20 parachutes of each type for which a rating is sought, are tested only on the last topic - FAR Part 65, Subpart F regulations.


  • Parachute construction, packing, and maintenance
  • Parachute manufacturer's instructions
  • Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) 65, Subpart F

Practical Exam

The applicant must pass an oral test showing the ability to pack and maintain at least one type of parachute in common use, appropriate to the type of rating sought.

Note: Military riggers or former military riggers are exempt from taking the practical test as stated under FAR 65- Sec 65:117 if they pass a written test and present satisfactory documentary evidence that they meet the experience requirements.


  • Parachute Construction Details:
    • Seam construction defects
    • Webbing joint construction
    • Parachute construction knots
    • Fabric construction
    • French fell seam construction
    • Technical standard order TSO-C23C
    • Technical standard order TSO-C23B
    • Fastener tapes
    • Finger trap loop construction
    • Radial seam construction
  • Packing Parachute:
    • Packing seat-type parachute
    • Packing back-type parachute, excluding piggyback
    • Packing chest-type parachute
    • Packing lap-type parachute
    • Packing round parachute
    • Packing ram-air parachute
    • Packing piggyback container parachute
  • Parachute Repair:
    • Single patch canopy repair
    • Replacement of lower control line (ram-air canopy)
    • Application of non-destructive test method TS-108
    • Line attachment loop replacement
    • Removal and installation of grommets
    • Sewing machine operation
    • Cascade line replacement
    • Nicopress sleeve installation
    • Replacement of v-tab (butterfly tab)
    • Replacement of continuous suspension line
    • Suspension line replacement in ram-air canopy
    • Container patching
    • Ram-air canopy repair limitations
    • Ram-air canopy patch repair adjacent to a seam
  • Parachute Alteration:
    • Alteration data approval
    • Install an automatic activation device
    • Fabrication binding corners
    • Altering riser connectors
    • Bridle cord alteration
    • Threading friction adapter
    • D- or V-ring installation
    • Conversion of ripcord deployment to hand deployed pilot chute
    • Fabricate a canopy deployment bag
    • Convert throw-out pilot chute from rear of leg position to the bottom of container position
  • Parachute Operation and Care:
    • Parachute storage
    • Parachute drying and airing
    • Parachute assembly inspection
    • Cleaning parachute canopies
    • Parachute harness adjustment
    • Pin-type static line requirements
    • Break cord static line requirements
    • Cleaning parachute harness/container

Exam Preparation Resources

There are a number of resources available to help you prepare for the Senior Parachute Rigger examination:

An additional resource is O'Reilly Learning Safari Books Online, a searchable digital library that provides online access to thousands of books, training videos and conference sessions. See the Educational Resources section on the Related Sites page here on COOL to learn how to get free access.

Testing Information

  • Exam Administration

    Credential exams may be administered in-person at a testing site, proctored on-line remotely, or have options for both. If an exam is administered through a test vendor, the third-party test vendor box will be checked. The following test administration options apply to the Senior Parachute Rigger credential where checked:

    • In-person exam
    • Remote proctored on-line exam
    • Third-party test vendor
  • For more information on the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) testing process, visit the agency website.

Additional considerations for the Senior Parachute Rigger include:

  • The knowledge test for military competence for senior parachute rigger consist of questions relating to the Code of Federal Regulations that pertain to parachuting; Part 39- Airworthiness Directives, Part 65- Certification: Airmen Other Than Flight Crewmembers, Subpart A (General), and Subpart F (Parachute Riggers), and Part 105, Parachute Operations. Details can be obtained from Parachute Rigger Handbook.

    As per CFR Section 65.121 the following type ratings are issued:

    • Seat
    • Back
    • Chest
    • Lap

In Demand

This certification is considered in demand. The U.S. Department of Labor sponsored CareerOneStop's analysis indicates the certification is frequently mentioned in online job postings.

Click for external link to CareerOneStop's Credentials Center.

COOL Bucks

See your installation Education Service Officer for credential exam information and coordinating instructions.

COOL Summary

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COOL Summary

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COOL Summary

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COOL Summary

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Some

Credential is related to some tasks associated with the duties of the military occupation (at least one critical task but less than 80%)

Most

Credential is directly related to most of the major duties associated with the military occupation (at least 80%)

Other

Credential is related to this military occupation, but is more advanced or specialized and therefore will likely require additional education, training, or experience

CA Eligible

This certification is eligible for CA.

Star

Star credentials are MOS enhancing, as designated by the Proponent. MOS enhancing credentials are directly related to an MOS or ASI, are taught either partially or completely as part of a Program of Instruction (POI), and improves the MOS technical proficiency.

Skill Level

The Skill Level reflects the level, based on MOS training and/or experience, the Soldier should be the most prepared to successfully earn the credential. See the Table Legend for details about each level.

Navy Bucks

Credential voucher or reimbursement for credential exam, re-certification, or maintenance fee has been approved for payment through the Navy's Credential Program Office. To get a voucher request form, click Menu at the top of any page, then click "2 Complete Voucher and Apply" under Credentialing Steps.

CG Bucks

Current Coast Guard policy states all credentials listed on CG COOL may be reimbursed assuming the enlisted service member meets the eligibility requirements as outlined in the Coast Guard Voluntary Credentialing Program Policy (COMDTINST 1540.1(series))

Early Career

1-3 years experience; Enlisted E1 through E4

Mid Career

4-10 years experience; Enlisted E5 through E6

Late Career

10+ years experience; Enlisted E7 through E9

Early Career

1-3 years experience; Enlisted “A” School through E5

Mid Career

4-10 years experience; Enlisted E6 through E7

Late Career

10+ years experience; Enlisted E8 through E9

Early Career

1-6 years experience; Officer O1 through O2

Mid Career

6-12 years experience; Officer O3 through O5

Late Career

12+ years experience; Officer O6 and Above

GI Bill®

Reimbursement for exam fees has been approved for payment through the GI Bill.

Note: GI Bill approval data is updated quarterly. For the latest information, visit the WEAMS Licenses/Certifications Search page. Make sure to select "Both" in the LAC Category Type drop-down before searching.

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ANAB (ANSI)

This credential has been accredited by ANAB (ANSI).

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ICAC

This credential has been accredited by ICAC.

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ABSNC

This credential has been accredited by ABSNC.

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NCCA

This credentialing program has been accredited by NCCA.

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IAS

This credential has been accredited by IAS.

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Low

May be difficult to attain: minimum education requirement is a Bachelor's degree, and/or minimum experience is 10 or more years.

Note: In some cases “years of experience” refers to time actively on duty or while holding a certain occupation or prior certification and not always in consecutive calendar years. Additional years required for certain preliminary stages may not be included in this classification. For requirements measured in hours, 1080 hours was considered a year. For days, 365 days was considered a year. Please review all prerequisites and requirements for eligibility, and additional information for details.

Medium

Moderate ease of attainment: minimum education requirement = Associate's and/or prerequisite and/or minimum experience = more than 2 years and less than 10 years of experience.

Note: In some cases “years of experience” refers to time actively on duty or while holding a certain occupation or prior certification and not always in consecutive calendar years. Additional years required for certain preliminary stages may not be included in this classification. For requirements measured in hours, 1080 hours was considered a year. For days, 365 days was considered a year. Please review all prerequisites and requirements for eligibility, and additional information for details.

High

Highly attainable: minimum education requirement = HS or less and/or minimum experience = 2 years or less experience and no additional requirements.

Note: In some cases “years of experience” refers to time actively on duty or while holding a certain occupation or prior certification and not always in consecutive calendar years. Additional years required for certain preliminary stages may not be included in this classification. For requirements measured in hours, 1080 hours was considered a year. For days, 365 days was considered a year. Please review all prerequisites and requirements for eligibility, and additional information for details.

MOS is Military Occupational Specialty
ASI is Additional Skill Identifier
WOMOS is Warrant Officer Military Occupational Specialty
AOC is Area Of Concentration Officer
Functional Area
Branch

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Bright Outlook – new job opportunities are very likely in the future for this job

Registered Apprenticeship

An apprenticeship program is registered with the U.S. Department of Labor. Go to the Apprenticeship Finder and enter career path or location to find apprenticeship opportunities.

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Updated: October 30, 2020
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