Every profession has an accessory tied to its public image: doctors and stethoscopes, politicians and secret lovers, airline pilots and flight cases.
Close your eyes, and picture the classic steely-eyed, chiseled-jawed, gold-braided airline Captain. As central to the image as the dark uniform is a large, well-worn, black flight case. Even in these days of electronic flight management systems and global positioning satellites, airline pilots around the world have to lug around a heavy kitbag. What is trapped inside those four black walls? And why do normally conservative pilots have stupid stickers all over their "brain bags"?
Unlike most office workers, the airline pilot changes desks at least every day. The cockpit (excuse me, "the flight deck") has most everything we need to fly the plane — throttles, yoke, a bunch of switches and gauges — but like any office worker, the pilot needs his or her own "stuff". To accommodate this stuff, airliners have a space at the side of each seat for a top opening crew bag. What stuff? Well, it's best to keep certain documents and checklists in the personal possession of the pilot, since he or she often has to update or refer to them.
Other items you find in the pilot's bag:
- E6B Flight Computer
- Airport/Facility Directory and Charts
- Aircraft checklist
- Enroute charts
- Approach plates
- Airport facilities directory
- Aircraft owner/operator's manual
- Flight timer
- Pens & highlighters
- 2 LED aviator flashlites
- IFR and VFR kneeboard
- Watch w/Zulu time
Different pilots will always have different items in their bags and this also varies from the airline they fly with and the route they fly and whats involved with the flying.