Trust a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year was had by most.
Take some time in this beginning of the year period to check out your aircraft thoroughly inside to know what you are working with. Park the aircraft in good light and systematically go through all of the pockets in doors, dasboards, seat backs; all of the boots and lockers, even under carpets ( I once found the maintenance release under the front carpet in an aircraft I was ferrying for a religious organisation in Australia).
Check that you have dip sticks for your fuel tanks and that they are labelled /identified for each aircraft. Keep some clean dry cloth with them to wipe them before and after use.
Check your tie down gear, get rid of old manila and frayed ropes; light chains are good and keep them stowed in a good quality bag.
Check the location and operation of all of your switches and control levers, operate all fans/blowers and vents, particularly any not used for a while.
This is a good time also to repair any veneers or interior fittings that may be coming adrift from age or constant wear, including floor mats etc.
When was the last time you looked at your battery? This can be a trap, particulary with cross hires from parties that may have a different standard of maintenance.
Tools and any supplementary oils fluids on board should be in bags/containers that are serviceable and secured or tied down.
Clean any funnels, hoses, tools, change old cloths for new.
Check the condition of youer seats, particularly the front crew seats ensuring all adjustment mechanisms lock and unlock by choice. pay attention to the condition of the seat elbow (especially in older types) for corrosion and strength.
Unsure any seat coverings are fitted correctly and that the lashings and ties are secured neatly.
Ensure that any equipments carried as back up for your technical flying aids are current and serviceable ie maps torches batteries pencils protractors, Kane type computers (whizz wheels).
Med and survival kits if applicable - inspect/adjust quantities and currencies with fresh product in good quality containers - a marine V sheet and a PLB are handy additions here.
Check your survey on life jackets, rafts and pyrotechnics if carried.
Its essential for all aircrew to know where the start point is, not think they know (can be a big void in reality). Don't put up with imperfections, maintain a serviceable and safe standard with all aspects.
General stuff that gets thrown about when Pilots shoot the Breeze.
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