Consider making up a 'Fanny Pack" for your preflight.
It could/should contain rubber gloves, rags, window cleaner, sump-cup,
tools. Put it on during preflight because it leaves the hand free.
Take it off while flying.
Keep a supply of "post-its" of different sizes in
your flight kit. Make a frequency list on a longer one for what
you expect to need on a given leg. Use small one to diagram destination
runway and reference points for anticipated arrival or 45 entry.
Don't spend any money for overpriced devices from the local
FBO (Fixed Base Operator or "Sporty's." The following
suggestions work just as well for a lot less money.
A COUPLE of heavy rubber bands with a paper clip will wrap
around your leg and make a good device to hold small note pads.
WEST BEND makes a series of kitchen timers and stop watches
that can be bought at flea markets for as little as $8. These
can be fastened to broom clips that will hold to the yoke. FBO's
sell less capable timers for about $30.
A BROOM clip can be screwed to a spring paper clip with a 1-2
inch screw to hold checklists to yoke. A small plastic rectangle
will hold approach plates or writing pad.
Keep your ground checklist on a piece of cardboard hung by
string around your neck. This should include preflight, pre-start,
start, taxi, run-up, and pre-takeoff in one series. A second series
should be post landing, taxi, shutdown, and tie-down. The backside
of the card should be outlined in red with emergency procedures.
THE ashtray makes a good pen-holder. Fasten a pen or pencil
to your clipboard with a string long enough to make it useful.
Hang a pen or pencil with a couple of rubber bands from the yoke
as an emergency scribble digit. Always carry an extra supply of
TAKE TWO (one) old sectionals and cut out a circle 10-12 inches
in radius centered on your home airport. Take an old record album
cover and cut a circle to maximum size. Center the cardboard and
your home airport. Glue the sectional to the cardboard and trim
to size. Get a piece of fairly stiff wire or a rubber band. Bend
the wire so that it goes through the center of the circle and
the other end so that it folds under the circumference. The rubber
band must thread through the center and the ends held with a paper
clip. Mark the outer edge of the sectional in 10 degree marks
and 30 degree numbers as though it were a VORs. These marks should
be magnetic courses centered on your home field. If your home
field is near the edge of a sectional this card will make it very
easy to plan local flights as well as courses requiring both sides
of the sectional. Just slide the wire to the desired course. Crease
the circle so it will fold for easy storage. The backside makes
a good place for emergency checklists, etc. Backside printout
of radio procedures is part of radio material. Design radio callups,
reporting points, and runway expectations so that when looking
at the chart on one side, you can flip it over and read the appropriate
A BASEBALL type cap is invaluable when the sun is low on the
horizon. It serves well as a barf bag if not ventilated. A bee
in the cockpit is a problem best solved with a cap.
A THIN tube of plastic about 15" long serves well as a
fuel gauge. Be sure the plastic is fuel resistant. Hold your finger
over the end to hold fuel in tube for measuring. Mark the tube
at different levels to get accurate time/fuel/flight conditions
consumption. Take fuel measurements before and after each flight
until you learn to estimate fuel consumption accurately for the
flying you do.
SILICA GEL can be purchased with a plastic basket at Motor
Home Suppliers. This will absorb cockpit moisture and protect
the interior of an aircraft.
LOSING fuel out of the overflow tube can be fixed. Raising
that side of the plane on a 1x12 or 1x12 ramp for the low wheel
will solve the problem.
A long CLIPBOARD can be cut so as to be 2" narrower and
then used sideways. Keep permanent checklist data and flight information
such as clearance sequence, rate of climb per mile, time over
5, 10 mile distances, on one side. Have a supply of extra clips
to hold notes, etc. Wide clip boards interfere with the yoke.
Sunglasses that pass less than 15% light will reduce acuity. Photochromic
lenses may not work well with aircraft windshields. These glasses
may not change rapidly enough for certain mountain conditions.
Polarized sunglasses should not be used through a laminated windshield.
Many glass cockpit aids cannot be read with polarized glasses.
Wearing sunglasses will protect the eyes and reduce visual fatigue.
Get the best 'blue-blockers' you can afford.
Keep a partial roll of duct-tape and electrical tape in your
flight kit. Carry a "Leatherman" knife, tire pressure
gauge, and cellular phone. Wear walking shoes.
Last Modified December 6, ©2022 TAGE.COM