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Source for Bu-Ord Parachutes for Para-anchor Usage

Posted by on September 1, 2009

The parachute we use on board Taleisin to assist us in storm conditions is actually a surplus one made for the military. We bought ours from a chandlery called Fiorentino’s who supplied them for fishboats in the San Pedro area. For many years it has been difficult to find similar BUORD parachutes. Now we have learned the same company has purchased another 400 of the 8 footers like we use, plus several 12 footers.
You can contact them at: 1-800-777-0732 or 1-949-631-2336 (

We can confidently recommend these Bu-Ord parachutes as para-anchors. They are built super-strong to military specs. (See page 54 of Storm Tactics Handbook, 3rd edition for more on this Bu-Ord parachute)

5 Responses to Source for Bu-Ord Parachutes for Para-anchor Usage

  1. Nils

    Hi Lin and Larry
    Do you have any experience with heaving to using pendantline on a traditional coneformed drift anchor?

    I´ve realy enjoyed your Storm Tactics Handbook and can´t wait for winter to slip its grip, so I can come out and practice the maneuver.



  2. Elmo

    Lin & Larry
    Sorry my bad english; i´d like to know if do you have, and what type is, equipment to protect the boat against ray and lightning.
    Elmo Romão

  3. Bill Attwood

    Hi Lin and Larry.
    I have much enjoyed your books, the latest being Storm Tactics. I am a great believer in heaving-to and am on my second long-keeled, transom-hung rudder, yacht. Your method with a low porosity parachute makes sense, however, the company´s website makes no mention of Bu-Ord parachutes, and the information on their offshore sea anchor states that it is constructed of zero porosity nylon. I also attach a link to a warning from “Safety at Sea” which draws exactly the same conclusion, that a Para Anchor is NOT suitable for use in the way you recommend.
    Any further info you may have on sources for a sea-anchor suitable for use with your system will be gratefully received. There is a type of sea-anchor contsructed of nylon tape, a bit like a net shopping bag, but not sure if this would provide sufficient resistance and slick effect.
    Yours aye,

  4. Zack Smith

    we don’t promote the Buord on our website to avoid confusion surrounding military surplus and manufactured para-anchors. Military surplus are expired parachutes typically used for aerial drops of ordinance or people. Manufactured para-anchors are designed specifically for underwater use. The 1950’s Buord is a proven surplus chute that doesn’t fall apart.

    Unfortunately, there are a number of unscrupulous people who sell lower quality surplus chutes and pass them off as a new sea anchor, storm chute, or drogue chute for boats. We often notice these fraudulent items on sites like eBay, marine flea markets, and now at some boat shows. Not listing the Buord prevents unethical people from claiming that Fiorentino endorses surplus chutes. We only sell them once a customer clearly understands the difference between military surplus and manufactured para-anchor and how to use them.

    In respect to your comments about porosity–as long as a parachute is built out of heavy fabrics and rigged properly, it’s irrelevant if the fabric is zero porosity or porous. In fact, Fiorentino’s research demonstrates that zero porosity fabric permits you to use a smaller para-anchor because the solid fabric grabs more water to generate more drag.

    “The warning” from New Zealand’s safety at sea store about the Pardeys’ experience using a smaller para-anchor and bridle setup is unfounded. The safety at sea sales reps could be pushing the use of larger parachute anchors because they equate to higher profits for their store. In reality, a smaller para-anchor can be effective if it’s rigged properly and built strong.
    Zack Smith

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