In today’s world of aviation there are many sub categories of aviation maintenance from General Aviation to Corporate Aviation to Commercial Aviation and then there are Helicopters, UAV’s and Lighter Than Air Craft. This is by no means a complete listing.
My experience is with Fixed Wing Aircraft, from single engine GA aircraft to Commercial heavy jets and the purpose of this blog is to discuss the various hand tools that I have used, and that I am aware of, with the hope that the reader, whether just out of A&P school or a seasoned veteran, can glean some useful information and hopefully some recommendations to build a usable tool kit.
Disclaimer: I will from time to time post links on this blog that will direct you to some of the products discussed and some of those links will pay me a percentage if you buy from them.
Here is a sample minimum tool list for new hires at one of the US’s largest commuter airlines. While it is a good basic starting point I see tools that I no longer carry in my personal flight line bag.
There are a lot of ways to fill the Minimum List and depending on how you obtain your tools there is a wide margin on what you can spend. My current line bag contains about $1,500 worth of tools. You can get by with less cash outlay, or more. I used to carry about $4,000 worth of Snap-on tools, but I don’t have tool insurance and I found out that if some dishonest baggage handler took a shine to them, my current employer would not cover my loss. The airline baggage policy is pretty worthless in that regard too. Down grading was my best choice and to be honest I can get by without most of the high dollar tools that I used to carry. There are some tools that I just couldn’t do without. It will all eventually depend on what works best for you.