Master Rigger

         This course is designed for those individuals who currently hold a FAA Senior Rigger license or foreign equivalent or meet the experience requirements for a FAA Master Rigger license. This course focuses on the practical skills necessary for the Master Rigger license. A qualified candidate will have the necessary packing experience as well as the basic sewing skills required of a Master Rigger. This course is primarily a finishing school designed to ensure that the candidate will meet the skills requirements and successfully pass the exam. In addition, the candidate is exposed to a modern parachute manufacturing environment, with particular emphasis on the servicing and overhaul of modern parachute systems.

         An FAA Senior Rigger certificate is not a pre-requisite to obtain a Master Rigger Certificate provided the candidate meets the experience requirements as stipulated in the Federal Administration Regulations.


         A master rigger candidate will undertake major repairs and maintenance on canopies and harness/Container systems. In addition, they will be required to demonstrate experience in ram air reserve packing. The candidate must have the required number of pack jobs.


         Subjects covered in USAPR lectures include the following:

  • Tool ID and control
  • FAA Regulations
  • Record Keeping
  • Component & Compatibility
  • Hardware & Grommets
  • Parachute Materials
  • Hand tacking and Knots
  • AAD's Assembly and Maintenance
  • 3-Ring Maintenance
  • Parachute Testing
  • Service Bulletins & AD's
  • Sewing Machines & Maintenance
  • Canopy Repair and Line Maintenance
  • Round Parachutes
  • Ram Air Parachutes
  • Maintenance, Alterations & Manufacturing
  • Rigging Ethics & Economics
  • Fitting & Donning Equipment

Study Material

All students are required to have the following books when they arrive for their training.
(Found at Para-Gear Equipment Company or USAPR's Store!)
  • The Parachute Manual Volume I (B1876)
  • The Parachute Manual Volume II (B1891)
  • Parachute Rigging Course by Poynter & Schlatter 2000 Edition (B1875)
  • Parachute Rigger Study Guide by Poynter & Blackmon (B1877)

Included in the course fees is a copy of the FAA Parachute Rigger Handbook (PRH) which will be provided to each student at the start of the course.


         Based on our experience, the FAA written exam stresses the candidate the most. If the candidate does not pass this test they cannot proceed to the Oral and Practical exam. IMPORTANT: Should the candidate FAIL the written exam, the cost to take the exam again is $175.00.

         We cannot stress STRONGLY enough the importance of preparing for this test. The candidate should study the "Parachute Rigger Study Guide". This will prepare the candidate with the knowledge to pass this exam.

         The following website link is another option to assist in your preparation for the written test. This website provides the parachute rigger test questions. However be advised that some of the questions have incorrect answers.


         We also recommend that you visit the FAA website and download a copy of the latest test bank questions for the Parachute Rigger. Test your knowledge before you arrive for your training.


         Candidates are evaluated at each level of training. At the conclusion of the training, each candidate meets with and is evaluated by the instructors.

         Each candidate will meet with the Chief Instructor for preparation for the FAA Written and Practical Exams. This includes a mock written exam based on a sampling of test questions by the FAA. A simulated oral and practical exam will also be completed prior to the scheduled appointment with the FAA DPRE.

         FAA Senior and Master Rigger Certificates are issued by the FAA DPRE after successfully completing an Oral and Practical Exam. The temporary Airman Certificate is valid for 120 days. The permanent Airman Certificate is issued by the FAA in Oklahoma City and mailed directly to the rigger.

         USAPR Graduate riggers also receive a USAPR Graduation certificate, Graduate T-Shirt, USAPR Rigger Wings and USAPR Coffee Cup.