Modern aircraft are engineering marvels employing the most up to date technology available to human beings (Excluding those secretive bitches at Area 51) These systems include fly-by-wire, fully powered control surfaces, digitally/electronically controlled ultra efficient engines, and advanced auto pilots which let real pilots get laid in-flight-in-the-cockpit while the plane flies to your destination. (Yes…airhostesses are dumb-sluts and it happens ALL the time) But getting back to the point…maintenance of these complex machines require highly skilled, dedicated, pure genius individuals like myself to ensure all systems are fully functional, operational, and available during the duration of the flight.
Aircraft maintenance engineers study for 2 years continuously with no sleep OR food in order to pass exams given to us by aliens who flew from LV-426 to earth (hence being the supreme-est flying beings known to us) and upon passing these exams which you mere mortals cant even imagine of getting through we are considered “suitable” to maintain the “airworthiness” of your planes. Maintenance can be broadly seen as carrying out checks, tests, and inspections of the one trillion systems available onboard to ensure that they function as required and if not are fixed, or are in an acceptable state (wont explode, fall off, melt) during the next flight. We employ many manuals to determine these things. AMM or Aircraft Maintenance Manuals which contain all the data needed to carry out maintenance on a plane. MEL or Minimum equipment lists which detail the minimum requirements needed to carry out a particular flight, CDL or Configuration deviation List which basically tells you which parts of the plane are allowed to fall off or be missing completely during flight and so on and so forth.
In addition to the above mentioned data we use many other alternate methods based on experience and industry based knowledge. One of the most widely used methods is the Rock-Paper-Scissor method which is extremely popular among airlines these days. To employ this method you need 3 senior engineers locked up in a conference room…using this method they can determine the most appropriate course of action to dispatch a crippled aircraft. The exact details of this method are a closely guarded secret but it involves meticulous troubleshooting skills and is used only by the most experienced personnel employed within an airline.
Another popular method used in the cockpit is the voice-command-based instruction set. in this procedure the cockpit is cleared of all unwanted, non-essential personnel and the engineer reads out a variable list of commands to reset computers and systems using the cockpit voice recorder interface. Commands include “Reset you fucking piece of shit”, “fucking-shit-piece computer WORK dammit”, and even some customer specific commands which can be programmed in ones local language, eg: “vesigey pariganakaya reset veyallah” (Translation: prostitutes computer reset NOW)
For external components such as engines, landing gears, and control surface actuators, mechanical maintenance methods can be used. Violent blows with a hammer or other hard objects, kicking or shaking violently coupled with above voice based commands can be used. In extreme cases the self-fixing-method can be used, whereby a component is thrown on the concrete ground or against a wall in an attempt to let the component fix itself using the energy imparted by the velocity suddenly becoming zero upon reaching the floor/wall. However this method is highly dangerous and requires an industry expert to be executed.
Minor faults can be cleared using circuit breaker resetting; Each system has a related electrical circuit breaker which resets that particular system, resetting this causes the computer to “reboot” thereby clearing spurious warnings. If this method fails one can reset many CB’s across many systems thereby confusing the computers and causing them to revert into “WTF-Mode” which in most cases clears all faults AND prevents any other faults from being displayed until the plane is airborne after which it’s the pilots problem and engineering is vindicated.
However like all things nothing is 100% and the chances are something very VERY important can always fail in flight in which case you have a few minutes to use a reliable pencil to write down a small note to a loved one (which they probably wont get). But know that in your fiery fall to doom it was all your fault. Given the reliability of simple household items such as hair dryers, microwave ovens, and personal computers, you DECIDING to fly was a phenomenal flaw on your part and hence your personal lapse in judgment led to your demise. You have been warned. You have seen the signs, the writing on the wall…the rest is up to you. Ayubowan. *evil grin*