Which Parachute is Right for You?

Which Parachute is Right for You?
16 November 2020 28 view(s)

Which Parachute is Right for You?


More than 30 years ago, Bob Stroud took his knowledge of parachutes and safety equipment to the racing industry & created Stroud Safety. Since that time, Stroud Safety has been the technology leader in the safety industry, introducing and acquiring patents on many new items. These efforts by Stroud have made racing much safer for the driver, car, track & spectator.

Stroud Safety started with one product-DRAG CHUTES-and now manufacturers more than 150 products. New products are introduced annually from Stroud. Almost every type of racing uses Stroud Safety products, all over the world. Bob Stroud applies his engineering degree from Oklahoma State University in designing chutes and safety systems. These designs are actively used in safety applications from cars to boats to rockets to aircraft and more. He is an active jumper with over 1000 parachute jumps (many testing his own products), spent 7 years in the Army Special Forces and was an examiner for the FAA.



Stroud Drag Chutes - Stroud Safety is the leader in the non-rigid aerodynamic decelerator field (i.e. drag chutes). These chutes were designed from the start to be user friendly. Stroud Safety has nearly 50 years experience in parachute design and manufacture. After much exhaustive testing and refinement, the Stroud system was developed. The Stroud Drag Chute is designed to open very reliably and softly, pull straight, stop sooner and pack very easily by one person in 4 or 5 minutes. The Stroud system does not pull the car off the ground. It pulls low and straight back. With its special deployment system, this chute will open much softer and much more reliably, stopping your car in much less distance than conventional chutes. Stroud Safety has a chute for every need, with over 50 styles available.


Other Parachute Designs vs Stroud Chutes - The cross form canopy chutes were designed by the French in the 1920's. They tried it for a number of things and it didn't meet any of the requirements. The only advantage it has was it was easy to build. The drawbacks are that it is unreliable in opening, it opens very hard, it is hard and time consuming to pack, it hasn't much drag, it collapses at a much higher speed than Stroud and doesn't have a long life. Stroud chutes are much smaller and have greater drag, are much more eaiser to pack and are extremly reliable and live a very long time. Stroud open with about 1/3 of the opening shock and stop you in a much shorter distance. They are very stable and can be sized for the vehicle application. They also come in many colors and Stroud service what they sell.

Stroud Launcher System - Stroud parachute launchers are the most advanced parachute deployment system on the market. Available in either mechanical or pneumatic styles, the chute launcher completely does away with pilot chutes and their inherent problems. Patented by Stroud Safety, the chute launcher was over 8 years in development. The chute launcher can be used from the slowest bracket car to Top Fuel cars. It is especially effective on 1/8 mile courses, as it is not speed dependent like a pilot chute system.


The mechanical system is spring deployed using a regular pull handle. It is ideal for cars that do not have an onboard air system. For those cars that have onboard air, or wish to, then the Stroud pneumatic chute launcher is ideal! It is lighter and easier to use than the spring launcher. Both systems work equally well and the parachute does not know the difference. If weight is a problem, then the new carbon fiber air launcher is for you. It weighs LESS than a standard Stroud chute with a pilot chute! All Stroud chute launchers come complete with all required mounting and operational equipment. The Stroud parachute launchers work ONLY with Stroud chutes. Using other type chutes is VERY dangerous! Call Stroud Safety for your specific needs.




Stroud chutes are specifically designed based on vehicle weight and speed. Stroud recommends that customers consult a qualified technician to confirm the size required for their particular specifications. Use the following charts to help determine what your drag chute needs are going to be. See the sizing chart below:

Super Comp....#400 | Mini Dragster....#401 | Motorcycle Chute....#400MC | Super Gas....#410 | Comp Eliminator....#420
Pro Stock....#430 | Fuel/Alcohol Dragster....#450 | Fuel/Alcohol Funny....#470




1. Remove the pilot chute and deployment bag (or launcher bag if you are using a launcher). You can leave the bridal cord attached to the chute if you are using a pilot chute.

2. Using a front-loading NON-AGITATOR type washing machine, load the chute inside.

3. Add 1/4 cup liquid laundry detergent plus 1/4 cup of Castrol Super Clean (original purple bottle only!) and wash.

4. Hang up out of the sun and air dry the chute. Do not machine dry!


Check out the video below to see how easy it is to pack the chute!



This article is courtesy of Stroud Safety
Copyright © 2020-present Race Car Engineering. All rights reserved.