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rip cord

a cord on a parachute that, when pulled, opens the parachute for descent.
a cord fastened in the bag of a passenger balloon or dirigible so that a sharp pull upon it will rip or open the bag and let the gas escape, causing the balloon to descend rapidly.
Origin of rip cord
1905-10 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for rip-cord
Historical Examples
  • He fought for self-control, lest he should pull the rip-cord too soon and cause his own death.

    The Flying Reporter Lewis E. (Lewis Edwin) Theiss
  • After falling a hundred feet, he pulled the rip-cord, and left the rest to chance.

    Famous Flyers David Goodger (
  • He counted up to twenty, then tightened his grip on the rip-cord ring and jerked it hard.

  • He fought down an almost overwhelming urge to pull his rip-cord too soon.

    Triplanetary Edward Elmer Smith
  • Then Jimmy saw him reach for the rip-cord, grasp the metal ring, and give it a sharp jerk.

    The Flying Reporter Lewis E. (Lewis Edwin) Theiss
  • He grabbed his rip-cord ring with his freed right hand, yanked hard, grabbed his bottle to him with both hands again, and waited.

    Test Pilot David Goodger (
  • He didnt pull the rip-cord until he had fallen quite a way, because he didnt want the ships to fall on him.

    Famous Flyers David Goodger (
  • The instant it was past, Warren yanked his rip-cord, and it wasnt a moment too soon, either.

    The Flying Reporter Lewis E. (Lewis Edwin) Theiss
  • At any rate he cut off thinking about other things and gave the rip-cord ring a smart jerk.

    Dave Dawson with the R.A.F R. Sidney Bowen

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