Pilots fill out a form called a gripe
conveys to the mechanics problems encountered with
the aircraft during the flight that need repair or
correction. Mechanics read, correct the problem, and
then respond. Never let it be said that ground crews
and engineers lack a sense of humor. Here are some
actual logged maintenance complaints and problems as
submitted by Qantas pilots and the solution recorded by
By the way, Qantas is the only major airline that has
never had an accident.
P = The problem logged by the pilot.
S = The solution and action taken by the mechanics
P: Left inside main tire almost need replacement.
S: Almost replaced left inside main tire.
P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough.
S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.
P: Something loose in cockpit.
S: Something tightened in cockpit.
P: Dead bugs on windshield.
S: Live bugs on back-order.
P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent.
S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground.
P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
S: Evidence removed.
P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
S: DME volume set to more believable level.
P: Friction locks cause throttle levers to stick.
S: That's what they're there for.
P: IFF inoperative.
S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.
P: Suspected crack in windshield.
S: Suspect you're right.
P: Number 3 engine missing.
S: Engine found on right wing after brief search.
P: Aircraft handles funny.
S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.
P: Target radar hums.
S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics.
P: Mouse in cockpit.
S: Cat installed.
P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer.
S: Took hammer away from midget.
Back in the 70's, BOAC (British Airways) flew into O'Hare Chicago and their call sign was "Speedbird"...
O'Hare: Speedbird xxx slow to 200 kts.
Speedbird xxx: Sorry, running late, need to keep the speed up.
O'Hare: Ok, turn right 90 degrees and keep your speed up.
Speedbird xxx: Errr, how long would we be on that heading? O'Hare: ‘Till you slow to 200. S
peedbird xxx: Roger, slowing to 200
As I was heading across the Desert a few monthes back, at the height of the Iraqi war, and wanting to cut through R2515 around Edwards Air Force Base, I had the following exchange with Joshua Approach...
Joshua Approach, Musketeer 123 requesting transition through R2515.
Joshua: Restricted area currently off limits, but let me talk to them at Edwards. (About 20 seconds of dead air and then Joshua came back to me.)
Joshua: Musketeer 123, Proceed through the restricted area as requested, they need some practice on slow targets.
I was in the pattern at FXE one night and I heard an aircraft taxiing out from Banyan Air Service tell the tower that he saw some debris on the taxiway. As the aircraft got closer the pilot said it looked like a pair of goggles on the taxiway. Discussion then ensued between the aircraft, the tower and the security guard in a truck being vectored to the location, about what type of goggles, Scuba, Snoopy type Flying goggles, Foggles etc. Once it was established that they were flying goggles or foggles the controller asked if any other debris was sighted and the pilot said no but he would be on the lookout for any doghouse parts or a beagle on the run.
A pilot was sitting in his seat and pulled out a .38 revolver. He placed it on top of the instrument panel, then asked the navigator, "Do you know what I use this for?" The nav replied timidly, "No, what's it for?" The pilot responded, "I use this on navigators who get me lost!" The navigator proceeded to pull out a .45 and place it on his chart table. The pilot asked, "What's that for?" "To be honest sir," the nav replied, "I'll know we're lost before you will."
ATC: "Cessna G-ABCD What are your intentions? "
Cessna: "To get my Commercial Pilots Licence and Instrument Rating."
ATC: "I meant in the next five minutes not years."
Tower: "xxxx, clear to land"
Tower: "xxxx, I can not see any landing gear. Is your gear down?"
XXXX: "Say again, I can't hear you because there a some darn horn blaring in my ear!"
Tower: "Your landing gear is NOT DOWN"
XXXX: "Say what, I can't understand you"
Tower: "Your landing gear is ..... aw shit."