What’s in My Flight Bag – Cessna 172 G1000 Edition!

Inspired by the PGA Tour, let’s see what’s in the bag.  I’ll explore the products I use, the features I like, and where you can get your hands on some of the best equipment to start training for your Private Pilot Certificate.

The total bag weight comes in at 7.39kg / 16.29lbs.  I’m huge into the EFB, and I really enjoy ForeFlight.  If you haven’t checked out ForeFlight, be sure to try it today.

For 2019, I’ll be considering the following:
▪ iPad Mini 5 (To Be Released in March/June 2019) + PIVOT Case for Primary EFB iPad in C172
▪ FlightGear Battery Backup
▪ Personal Locator Beacon (PLB)

Flight Bag
▪ Model:  Sporty’s Flight Gear Captain’s Bag
▪ Why:  Sporty’s has a full lineup of private label “Flight Gear” equipment, ranging from the smaller Crosswind bag to the backpack style Tailwind bag.  I went with the larger Captain’s bag, as I really intend for this bag to be used beyond flight training.  Everything listed in this article fits great, it’s the first flight bag I’ve found that I wasn’t trying to sell the following week.
▪ Where to Buy:  Sporty’s

Flight Bag.jpg

Primary Headset
▪ Model:  Bose A20
▪ Why:  Bluetooth Audio Mix (phone calls on short final – I’m kidding).  Seriously, the noise cancellation of this headset has proven itself in the General Aviation industry.  Make an investment in your hearing and go with a noise cancelling headset.  No one needs slight hearing loss from flying a plane too much.  I can still pick up pitch change in engine RPM quite well, no complaints at all.
▪ Where to Buy:  Sporty’s

Bose A20.jpg

Secondary Headset
▪ Model:  ASA HS-1 w/ David Clark Modifications (Read Below)
▪ Why:  Affordable headset if the Bose malfunction or I’m flying with a friend who doesn’t have a headset.  Make the flying experience enjoyable for them!  I have added David Clark Undercut Gel Seals and Comfort Cloth Ear Seal Covers. The combination of the David Clark accessories makes this headset incredibly comfortable for a very affordable price tag.
▪ Where to Buy:  Sporty’s / DC Gel Seals / DC Comfort Cloth Covers

ASA Headset.jpg

▪ Model:  ASA-KB-1 VFR & FlyBoys Kneeboard w/ PIVOT Case Adapter
▪ Why:  It’s a great idea to get in the habit of writing down instructions from Ground, Tower, TRACON, and Center.  Additionally, you’ll want to write things down like Frequencies, ATIS (Winds, Identifier, Altimeter, etc…).  Enabling me to do this via Paper and Pen (ASA) or via iPad and Apple Pencil w/ ForeFlight (PIVOT) give me flexibility for the day.
▪ Where to Buy:  Sporty’s / PIVOT (Flyboys)

ASA Kneeboard.jpg

Writing Instruments
▪ Model:  Fisher Space Pen, Pilot G-2, & Pencil
▪ Why:  I use the Fisher Space Pen because it writes upside down and underwater.  Paul Fisher developed a hermetically sealed and pressurized cartridge at 35 pounds per square inch for NASA in 1965.  It works from +121C to -35C.  No one wants a pen that doesn’t work.  I use a fine tip Pilot G-2 for my logbook, and it’s always good to have a 0.7 / 0.9mm pencil for paper chart planning.
▪ Where to Buy:  Fisher

Logbook Organizer
▪ Model:  Sporty’s Small Flight Log Case
▪ Why:  One place for your Private Pilot Certificate, Medical License, and Logbook.  Prevents damages to any of these critical documents.
▪ Where to Buy:  Sporty’s

Fun fact, the wording on the outline of the Wright Flyer on your Private Pilot Certificate states the following:

“Without question, flight is represented by countless heroes who have stirred greatness in others. It was a dream that had been waiting to be realized for thousands of years, and chased by countless visionaries, scholars and brave souls. But even as the mass of collected knowledge came to a crucial turning point, it was not until the ingenuity of the Wright Brothers that the puzzle of powered flight was solved. Discovery requires deep understanding, constant interpretation of knowledge and unbridled persistence."

It is part of a speech given by Marion Blakey on December 17, 2002 at the Air and Space Museum for the Centennial of Flight Kick-Off event.  Marion was the 15th FAA Administrator from 2002 to 2007.

Logbook Case.jpg

ADS-B Receiver
▪ Model:  Stratus 3
▪ Why:  Dual-Band ADS-B Traffic and Weather, AHRS (Attitude), 8 Hour Battery Life, WAAS GPS.  What I really like is the form factor (no antenna) and simplicity with calibration at start-up.  I’ve used a combination of ADS-B receivers (Stratus 1S, Stratux, and Sentry).  I prefer the Stratus 3 compared to other ADS-B receivers.
▪ Where to Buy:  Sporty’s

Stratus 3.jpg

Electronic Flight Bag
▪ Model:  PIVOT Pro 105 | iPad Pro 10.5” 64GB | ForeFlight
▪ Why:  Flight planning, briefing, traffic / weather available in flight, the list of reasons are endless.  I wouldn’t trust anything else.
▪ Where to Buy:  Flyboys, Apple, & ForeFlight


Water Bottle
▪ Model:  Cactaki Water Bottle with Time Marker
▪ Why:  Fits in C172 cup-holder, visual gauge of how much water to drink throughout the day, can also understand how much water has been consumed during the flight.
▪ Where to Buy:  Amazon

Water Bottle.jpg

Suction Cup Mounts
▪ Model:  PIVOT EFB Mount and Stratus Mount
▪ Why:  PIVOT EFB Suction Cup Mounting and Stratus 3 Mount for side window of C172.
▪ Where to Buy:  Flyboys / Sporty’s

Suction Cup Mounts.jpg

Backup Battery, Power Chargers (12V + Wall), & Spare Batteries
▪ Model:  Ubiolabs, FlightGear Dual USB, and Duracell AA/AAA
▪ Why:  Avoid a dead battery with USB charger, wall chargers.  Power output is decent (for example 5V * 2.4A = 12W).
▪ Where to Buy:  Costco / Sporty’s


Sunglasses Case
▪ Model:  Blupond Semi-Hard EVA Case
▪ Why:  Keep your sunglasses clean, free from scratches, and prevent them from being damaged.
▪ Where to Buy:  Amazon

Sunglasses Case.jpg

Flashlight & Headlamp
▪ Model:  Smith and Wesson Captain’s Flashlight & Coast Headlamp
▪ Why:  Exterior pre-flight inspections are best performed with white light for maximum area lighting.  For lighting in the cockpit (including chart lighting), a red light will preserve night vision far better than white light.  Both have white and red LED’s.
▪ Where to Buy:  Sporty’s / Amazon


Handheld Radio
▪ Model:  Yaesu FTA-550L
▪ Why:  Full communication on the aircraft communications band and additionally provides VOR and localizer navigation features on the "NAV" band.
▪ Where to Buy:  Sporty’s

Yaesu Radio.jpg

C172 Quick Reference Chart
▪ Why:  When you have an engine out, no one wants to fumble through a POH, establish Vg and begin to troubleshoot with a single page, leveraging the POH if required.

Sectional Chart, E6B (Manual and Electric), Plotter
▪ Why:  Great to learn fundamental Cross-Country flight planning procedures.

Cross-Country Planning.jpg

Fuel Gloves, Tester, Gauge
▪ Why: If stopping over at an airport, best to wear some gloves while at the PUMP to prevent fuel smell / vapors from getting on your hands. Don’t need gloves to SUMP the tanks on pre-flight, but you’ll want to sump the tanks regardless, and use a gauge to test the actual volume in the tank if not full.


▪ Why: Flying involves writing checks for block time, instructor time, and various other expenses.


Hat & Gloves
▪ Why: Pre-flight can be cold in Chicago, stay warm.

Hat and Gloves.jpg

▪ Why: Love.