April 3, 2013

The Classic Flight Bag Adds a Touch of Class to the Cockpit

classicflightbag.jpgPaul Lemley, a fellow pilot, was dissatisfied with the quality of flight bags available on the market. At first he settled for what was available. Then finally decided he would solve the problem and build his vision of the perfect flight bag. In homage to the Pan Am era of aviation where aviation was a luxury and passengers and pilots were well-dressed he has created the Classic Flight Bag. The hand stitched bag is made with genuine Crazy Horse leather and has a very sturdy feel. The inside is cotton fabric lined and has what I would deem an appropriate amount of pockets.

I admit to having used a wide variety of bags in my nine years as a pilot, never being fully satisfied I had the right bag. I went from one extreme a duffel bag sized flight bag that could carry anything and everything I might need in the cockpit down to cramming all my needs into a headset bag. With technology taking over I think most people can fit there equipment into something between those two extremes.

This weekend I took the Classic Flight Bag for a test flight. I loaded the following into the bag with ease:

  • Zulu Lightspeed Headset
  • iPad
  • FlyingEyes Sunglasses
  • Canon T2i Digital Camera
  • Logbook
  • Notepad and pens

The downfall of most flightbags is that they provide too many pockets and compartments that I can never find what I am looking for easily. Paul suggest pilots with these types of bags "throw out that over pocketed trapper keeper and take pride in what you pack your travel essentials in". The only downside I could find in the classic flight bag was that it has three buckles, which is fashionable but makes getting in an out of the bag a little time consuming. This was not a design flaw so much as Paul ensuring he developed something beautiful "It's an attempt at highlighting style over function and craftsmanship over mass production."

Sounds like a reasonable tradeoff for someone like me who flies for recreation and is not in an out of the bag all day long seven days a week. The bag worked for my purposes and surely looked nicer than my previous bag. Sadly, I don't think I fly frequently enough to justify using this bag solely for flying. Instead I think I might use this bag for commuting to work knowing that each time I look at it I will evoke a feeling of that Pan Am era of travel and flying.

The Classic Flight Bag is available online and retails at $495 but is currently on sale for $395 and ships for free.

Posted by at April 3, 2013 7:15 AM

Love the blog AND the bag. As a professional pilot for 20+ years I love the look of the bag but would have some concern for the buckles getting caught on things and being dificult to get into.

Still there is nothing like the look and feel of a leather flight bag.

Posted by: Charles at June 2, 2013 12:44 PM | Reply

How to you get online to order this bag. Every time I try, I get a message that they are doing a little maintenance and will be up in no time.

Posted by: Nancy at December 10, 2014 11:22 PM | Reply

"Hears one from downunder".I first came across the Classic flight bag.while doing some training in the US,a few weeks ago.I loved the look,and feel of a truely iconic old fashioned,and historical pilot accessory in the form of the Classic Flight bag.it is now being carried and used while operating my Learjet 60,and PC12.It has caused some really good comments from my aviation friends.

Posted by: Robin J Parnaby at April 26, 2015 9:25 PM | Reply

G'day again from Downunder.Just a small problem,or could you call a blast.I obtained a Classic Flight bag (second hand on Ebay),after a friend of mine alerted me about it,when I was last in the US,doing my training.I have received many good comments about the bag,such that a couple of my friends down in Australia also wanted to get one."Problem",I have been trying to order one for them,but have not had any success using their website,and no responses to my emails to Paul Lumley the CEO of Classic Flight bags.Is Classic Flights bags atill operating??,or have they down under,If so a message on their website would be nice.As I have now been able to obtain a real good copy Downunder from a leathergoods company down here,that I would consider is a better product,

Posted by: Robin J Parnaby at May 30, 2015 8:18 PM | Reply

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