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Pilots... Your Superstitions  
User currently offlineBrodieBrazil From Canada, joined Nov 2003, 88 posts, RR: 0
Posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 5373 times:

As a pilot there are a few weird superstitions I have each time I fly. For example I like to take the same driving route to the base airport, also i like to call out (usually to myself) v1 and v2 on takeoff roll. What are your unique superstitions about flying?

48 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineRegional757 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 42 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 5325 times:

I never go up flying without saying a quick prayer first in front of the plane I'm taking up. I'm not super religious but I figure every little thing helps.

User currently offlineFlyer737sw From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 135 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 5 days ago) and read 5321 times:

Not really superstitious...Just make sure I go over the checklist and do the proper procedures...

User currently offlineAirbus_A340 From Hong Kong, joined Mar 2000, 1560 posts, RR: 19
Reply 3, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 5250 times:

I don't really have superstitions when flying. I know it's up to the pilot to bring her back safely, however during pre-flight I like to say, under my breath, to the plane to bring me back safely.



People. They make an airline. www.cathaypacific.com
User currently offlineSlamClick From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 10062 posts, RR: 68
Reply 4, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 5250 times:

No superstitions really, but some things that almost amount to a ritual. The last thing I do at the start of the takeoff roll is tap the handle toward CLOSED on the sliding window on my side. I don't even remember the event that made me start doing that.

I've heard of a USAF F-84 pilot who, on a walkaround, would duck under the intake and exhaust. When asked he said: "Never let that engine see you! If it sees you it will kill you!" Of course it was an F-84 he was talking about!

While on active duty I carried a pair of wire cutting pliers in the cigarette pocket of my flight suit. Might have been considered a superstition but - have you ever reached for an emergency handle and found it safetied with a coat hanger?





Happiness is not seeing another trite Ste. Maarten photo all week long.
User currently offlineBuzz From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 697 posts, RR: 21
Reply 5, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 5242 times:

Hi Brodie Brazil, Buzz here. As a bit of humor, when i was learning to fly i'd have "my lucky shop rag" tucked into my flight bag. I needed a shop rag for doing the walk around, carried the same one around all summer. So instead of a "lucky rabbit's foot", i made a joke out of it and decided on a lucky shop rag. I've since washed a bunch of them, and my landings are still good... (grin)

One habit i have so i don't get "unlucky" on high wing airplanes is to reach out and touch the trailing edge when walking from back to front. I know a few guys who have the distinctive diamond shape scar in their head from running their head into the trailing edge of a Cessna flap. I call it a "courtesy tap" - if i tap it with my finger then i won't tap it with my head. (grin)
g'day
Buzz Fuselsausge: Line Mechanic by night, DC-3 Crew Chief by choice, taildragger pilot for fun.


User currently offlineFinnWings From Finland, joined Oct 2003, 640 posts, RR: 2
Reply 6, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 5224 times:

I don't have any superstitions rituals when I'm part of the flight crew, however always when I'm on board as a passenger I'll keep my right thumb up from the beginning of take-off run to the point when we are passing approx FL100... I don't know the reason why I'm doing that but it has been a habit for a long time...

Best Regards,
FinnWings


User currently offlineBMAbound From Sweden, joined Nov 2003, 660 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 5199 times:

I usually give the baggage door on the Cessnas and Pipers I fly a tap, just a way of making sure it's closed and locked. Perhaps I'm over doing it, but hey...

Also, I always put the keys by the windshield so I am confident the ignition is not on while doing the preflight.

johan



Altitude is Insurance - Get Insured
User currently offlineBuckfifty From Canada, joined Oct 2001, 1316 posts, RR: 19
Reply 8, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 5166 times:

I like to keep my jacket and shirt nicely pressed. Not a superstition, it's just so the captain won't write me up in some god forsaken report.

"Son, you ever hear of an iron? It's quite an invention."

Other than that, I always carry a Japanese lucky charm with me, and I won't talk about plane crashes in the cockpit. That's about it.


User currently offlineFlyingbronco05 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3840 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 5148 times:

Before I solo, while doing the walk around, I talk to the plane. Then when I get to the nose, I rub just above the prop and say "take care of me."

Seems to work  Smile/happy/getting dizzy



Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
User currently offline7574EVER From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 478 posts, RR: 4
Reply 10, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 5132 times:

 Wow!

Your all nuts!

Just kidding of course.



Right rudder....Right rudder...Come on, more right rudder....Right rudder......Aw forget it, I quit!!
User currently offlineFSPilot747 From United States of America, joined Oct 1999, 3599 posts, RR: 12
Reply 11, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 5089 times:

I always give the nosewheel a light tap/nudge with my foot after finishing preflight. I don't know if it's much of a superstition, but I don't get in the plane without doing it--mostly a habit.

Maybe I'll develop more along the way  Smile


FSP


User currently offlineDeltaGuy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 5087 times:

Touch the nose....a time honored and easy ritual.

Also, on my nav bag, I have one of my father's nametags velcroed on the outside. It's one of his old flightsuit nametags, gold Naval Aviator wings on it, and his callsign, "Smiley" on it. He gave me that nametag when I was like 3, back when he was flying A-7 Corsairs....now the gold has worn a bit, and it looks a little tired, but I always hung on to it, and it is my little good luck charm thats always with me Big grin "Flyin against a ghost huh"  Big grin

DeltaGuy


User currently offlineNWA From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 1200 posts, RR: 3
Reply 13, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 5061 times:

I follow the checklists, so no superstitions. The checklist seems to work quite well.


23 victor, turn right heading 210, maintain 3000 till established, cleared ILS runwy 24.
User currently offlineVneplus5 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 5049 times:

For me, there are no superstitions/rituals associated with the actual act of flying. It's more to do with the non-flying aspect.

Whenever I go on a trip, I think "What if I don't return ... what will the person think when they come into my room/house to remove everything?"

I always make my bed and completely tidy my desk. Everything is sorted/filed/folded/tidied. Sometimes, if I know it will be a 'higher-risk' trip, I will write an appropriate comment on the day's page in my diary which is always left open on my desk.

That way, if I do return (100% success rate so far), it's always to a clean and tidy house with a bed that I can collapse into if I'm tired.


User currently offlineXFSUgimpLB41X From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 4200 posts, RR: 37
Reply 15, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 5048 times:

No superstitions..just routines.  Smile Keeps an order to the chaos. Get in nice and early...check in..print out my trip... check who im flying with... check my mailbox and look for the piles of jepp updates and alert bullitens.. go out to the airplane about 30 prior. Check in with the gate agent, look over the release and pull out my copy... write my usual notes on it...
Put my overnight bag in the back bin, laptop behind my seat, flight kit in its little place... sit down..adjust seat and rudder pedals...test O2 mask and radio altimeter, pull out jepps and headset...do my walk around. Come back in...intialize the FMS, load the acars, get the PDC and such, load the FMS...wait for el capitan to call for the flight deck inspection check...then off we go....



Chicks dig winglets.
User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 10032 posts, RR: 26
Reply 16, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 4967 times:
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I'm not a pilot or anything, and this isn't exactly superstition. But having been in a commercial plane crash, I look at the safety card every time I board a plane as a passenger, even if I already know where every damn door is. It doesn't really show me anything I didn't already know, but somehow it's important, because lives really are saved.

~Vik



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineLAXinYYZ From Canada, joined Aug 2004, 41 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 4944 times:

I am not a pilot either, but I have a superstition, I count to 30 as soon as we start moving down the runway. A long time ago I was told that most accidents happen within 30 seconds of take off, after that we are OK, right?

I am sure this is not true, but I will still keep counting.

Chris



"Don't trust any statistic that you didn't falsify yourself"
User currently offlineOpsGuy From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 57 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 4939 times:

While I am doing my preflight I always run my hand along the fuselage on the pilots side for good luck. I don't know why I started, but no sense in stopping now. When flying commercially I always tap the fuselage while entering the aircraft. Ironically enough, a Virgin Flight Attendant saw me doing this while I was boarding Mustang Sally and said, "Don't worry the aircraft is brand new!"


Is this the Delta House?
User currently offlineArmitageShanks From UK - England, joined Dec 2003, 3625 posts, RR: 15
Reply 19, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 4917 times:

I always rock the wings with my hands on smaller aircraft like Cessna's or a Cub during the walk around.

User currently offlineWILCO737 From Greenland, joined Jun 2004, 9032 posts, RR: 75
Reply 20, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 4905 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
HEAD MODERATOR

hi everybody,

well, I am a pilot and I dont believe in such things! When you think about that too much then you get afraid of every flight! Just enjoy every flight and try to see it as a gift to cruise at high level with high speed from A to B  Wink/being sarcastic

I just love it and I am thankful vor every minute up there...

WILCO737



It it's not Boeing, I am not going.
User currently offlineBrodieBrazil From Canada, joined Nov 2003, 88 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 4901 times:

opsguy, i do the same thing on commercial flights, just touch the fuselage to my right before entering the doorway.

User currently offline707cmf From France, joined Mar 2002, 4885 posts, RR: 29
Reply 22, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 4895 times:

When I fly solo, I always call up "Quand Annemasse, Ca leve" upon rotation.

That might sound stupid, but the one time I did not do it, I almost broke the plane !!

Cheers,

707


User currently offlineBartiniMan From Australia, joined Jul 2001, 315 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 4675 times:

care to translate it please 707cmf



User currently offlineFlyingbronco05 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3840 posts, RR: 2
Reply 24, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 4646 times:

I always rock the wings with my hands on smaller aircraft like Cessna's or a Cub during the walk around.

I do that too, but I do it to see if the wing falls off or if I can hear anything in the wings or hear the bolts/screws break or rattle.  Laugh out loud



Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
25 FSPilot747 : "I do that too, but I do it to see if the wing falls off or if I can hear anything in the wings or hear the bolts/screws break or rattle." Yeah, prett
26 Cancidas : I know a few guys who have the distinctive diamond shape scar in their head from running their head into the trailing edge of a Cessna flap. i'm one o
27 Calpilot17 : I raise the gear lever on the ground to see if the squat switch works.
28 APFPilot1985 : Well, I always say the checklists out loud to myself and I also like to make all the callouts to myself out loud even when im solo. I also avoid "bein
29 Cancidas : I also avoid "being" with a girl on a day that i am flying... why? you've never lived 'till you've had that! just try to explain to center why your a
30 BrodieBrazil : "center, i already kept it up very straight and level this morning for an hour, and now i gotta fly straight too? i'm drained!"
31 Ba299 : Always give the nosewheel a light tap/nudge with my foot after finishing preflight. I started on the C150 and now I keep to do that..
32 Planespotting : Before my actual preflight inspection, i always do a walk around, starting on the pilots side just forward of the wing. i try to touch the airplane as
33 Jamotcx : If there isnt a defect on it, i wont take it lol. Jamo
34 Post contains images Aerobalance : Kick the mains...Not too hard though, they're only Cessnas and Pipers
35 SSTjumbo : All normal aspects of flight are sheer routine time after time for me, and I make sure of that. I guess the confidence in knowing I completed a full c
36 Bsergonomics : As both a passenger and pilot, I talk to the aeroplane. Because planes have souls. I figure that, if I'm nice to her, she'll be nice to me. I talk to
37 Dragogoalie : I dont really have any supersitions other than on stagechecks. I have a tie that someone from the Australian equivilent of the FAA sent me for allowin
38 Post contains images Fly727 : Not really superstitions, but every time I remember them, I do the following: When on the job: Tap the aircraft when I board it. After opening the oxy
39 Post contains images HAWK21M : I know a Pilot that Prior to his First Flight would enter the NWW of the B737 & say a prayer that lasted 3-4 minutes. [During that time once the F/O p
40 Post contains images Dragogoalie : hmm...is it maybe not a good sign as a passenger when you're walking out on the jetway and you see your pilot praying? Doesn't exactly instill confide
41 HAWK21M : hmm...is it maybe not a good sign as a passenger when you're walking out on the jetway and you see your pilot praying? Doesn't exactly instill confide
42 Santhosh : Does any one have the habit of smoking a cigarette before flying? George
43 Post contains images HAWK21M : I know a few pilots that like chewing 'Gutkha' & end up clogging the boom mikes. I know one guy that carries a small plastic case of Spices,especially
44 Cedarjet : I knock on the outside of the fuselage twice then pinch her skin - my thumb on the inside of the fuselage, the rest of my fingers on the outside (as t
45 Post contains images Santhosh : I know one guy that carries a small plastic case of Spices,especially cloves & cinamon & offers them to people he meets MEL it must be great to fly wi
46 Buckfifty : Does any one have the habit of smoking a cigarette before flying? I do, but not for good luck.
47 Post contains images HAWK21M : Where I work,Almost all Pilots have good relations with AMEs.In fact Everyday at Main base there is a Meeting with The HODs from Flt ops & Engineering
48 Musang : I'm superstition-free also. Training, knowledge, experience, instinct, and SOPs seem to work better than calling on help from the other side..........
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