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BPA Tandem Approved Modifications

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Any Tandem system owner can now incorporate GENERAL MODIFICATION APPROVALS into/onto the system, without further approval from the Riggers Committee, subject to the following conditions being met:

A) An appropriately rated rigger, (suitably qualified to approve the specific modification) must inspect and issue paperwork to the equipment owner, stating that the modification has been approved and is safe to use and is compatible with the ‘new’ system.

B) The exact particulars of the original clearance still stand. (e.g. if the original clearance was for a Vector 360 reserve into a Tandem Next container, then anyone with the appropriate paperwork can put a Vector 360 reserve into a Tandem Next container. There is no authority for putting the reserve into any other container unless previously cleared).

Individuals/Centres etc who obtained the original clearance for the modifications from the Riggers Committee, do not require the modification approval paperwork as their particular authority is the relevant Riggers Committee minutes of that meeting. It would assist matters however, if these individuals could comply with the above paperwork in order to move towards one system.

Tandem system owners can not incorporate SPECIFIC MODIFICATION APPROVALS into/onto their system, without further approval from the Riggers Committee.

Future Applications

All future Tandem Modification Applications are to use BPA Form 209 (Student Parachute Equipment Change Proposal Application).

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Tandem Modifications

The BPA Operations Manual must be referred to when making decisions reference Tandem Equipment.

No reference is made to any formal Safety Notice, Safety Information or Update that has been issued by individual manufacturers unless they require the Riggers Committee/Safety and Training Committee to intervene. This is because manufacturer updates etc is not part of a BPA modification program.


Whenever possible, the applicant should try to bring the ‘modified system’ to the particular Riggers Committee meeting concerned. The item will not be formally inspected at the table, (this will already have been done) but it could be helpful with the request, so that the riggers around the table, who are voting to clear the application, fully understand the modification.

If the Riggers Committee require further information or a further inspection/just jump etc, then the formal modification clearance does not come into effect until the requested further info etc is formally reported back to the Riggers Committee.

General Modifications

May 1994 All repairs carried out to any Tandem rig using English equivalent materials to be Accepted, on condition it is rated to the same specification.

May 1994 Protective pads sewn onto the Tandem Strong container at the side of the ‘Student’ attachment points to prevent damage.

June 1994 Material tags added to the ‘Student’ anchor points of a Tandem Vector ‘Student’ harness to ease opening was cleared for use.

July 1997 Clearance to use yellow reserve handle on Tandem Vector containers, but only if jumpsuit/cutaway handles blend in colour.

June 1998 To use double Teflon cable to replace Tandem Vector curved pin.

August 1998 Tandem Vector ‘Student’ harness for use with Tandem Atom.

Oct 1998 Approval of Tandem Atom for use with chest mounted secondary drogue handle.

February 1999 To use a PD360 reserve in a Tandem Atom.

Apr 1999 To use a Tandem Next drogue assembly with a Tandem Vector container system.

Oct 1999 Tandem Vector drogue into a Tandem Next system, and vice versa.

Dec 1999 Any Tandem Main into any Tandem Container provided that it is compatible and deemed to fit by a Parachute Rigger (PR) or higher. The following applies:

A) No modifications are permitted (apart from minor rigging work to match the brake line to the toggle area) without approval from the Riggers Committee.
B) A main canopy is deemed to consist of connector links, lines and canopy material.
C) The rigger concerned must produce written documentation to the owner of the Tandem equipment stating that the new set-up is compatible.
D) This approval becomes the BPA authority for the change and must be produced on demand by the owner of the Tandem equipment.

Dec 2000 To use a Vector 360 Tandem Reserve in a Tandem Next system.

February 2001 To use ‘webbing/tape handles’ to Tandem Vector ‘Student’ harness quick release buckles.

Apr 2001 To use a Parachutes de France drogue system in the Tandem Vector System.

Dec 2001 Acceptance of Tandem Sigma System.

June 2002 To pack a Paratec Twin 402 Tandem reserve into a Tandem Vector container.

June 2002 Acceptance of Point Zero's "Tandem Vector rebuild" Tandem system.
August 2002 Further details of above clearance. (Name is “PZ Option”)

August 2002 To use a Next Harness Container System secondary drogue release handle with a Tandem Vector container.

Oct 2003 Acceptance of HOP Tandem Main Canopy.

Dec 2003 Acceptance of PdF Military Tandem rig System (military version of Tandem Atom).

Specific Modifications

May 1994 Tandem Strong drogue release modification removed the Student deployment option. This was cleared for Scottish Parachute Club (Skydive Strathallan) only.

June 1994 Permissions to continue to use Tandem equipment in its current set-up, which is BT canopies, BT drogues (with changes) and BT bags in Tandem Vector containers, was given to Peterborough Parachute Centre only. It was confirmed that there had only been one change, which was the change from twin pin with hard black coated cable, to a single pin with a thicker clear plastic coated cable.

August 1996 Use a Tandem Strong ‘Student’ harness with a Tandem Galaxy container with changes as presented and cleared for use by Peter Carroll only.

Sep 1997 3 x Clearances specifically for Andy Parkin’s Tandem Vector:
A) The equipment had been converted to have a Paratec handle.
B) A modification to the RSL; instead of a ball on the RSL, a tab had been fitted.
C) Instead of a drogue being attached through the deployment bag direct to the canopy, it now had the deployment bag, which was attached to the canopy and the drogue, which was attached to the deployment bag.

June 1999 Tandem Strong system with the drogue release position as per the Tandem Vector system. (NOT CLEARED for general use).

Oct 1999 Tandem Vector type looped cutaway handle to accept a Tandem Next drogue release cable. Cleared for use on Dave Ballard’s equipment only.

Sep 2000 To fit Paratec handle to Tandem Vector for Dave Ballard’s and APA’s Tandem Vector systems only.

February 2001 To use Tandem Vector systems altered to the Paratec cutaway with secondary handle attached for Andy Guest only.

June 2001 Red Devils only to use yellow reserve handles on their Tandem Next systems.

Form 212 (iii) Issue 4, February 04

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