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Within the United States Air Force, when pilot/copilot exchange control of an aircraft is there formal, required language, such as "You have control..."/"I have control..." and if so, what are the specified forms?

And if departure from these norms is either permitted or de facto, what else might be said, e.g. "Your plane"/"My plane", etc.

Input from other contexts (Navy, commercial, etc.) are also welcome for general information (and general site value) as long as the context is clear, but I am specifically asking about the USAF initially.

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In early Navy training in tandem seat aircraft, (where you couldn't see the other pilot's hands) we actually used a 3 step transfer process. (Give, take, acknowledge.) For example, "You have the controls" - "I have the controls" - "Roger, you have the controls".

I seem to recall this relaxed a bit later in the program. And outside of training, in dual controlled transport category aircraft with crews who flew together regularly and sitting side by side, that might relax even more to match your example in the second paragraph, i.e. "my plane" - "roger, your plane".

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  • $\begingroup$ Thx Michael. Give, take, acknowledge - final acknowledgment step makes good sense. $\endgroup$ Feb 5, 2023 at 10:23
  • $\begingroup$ @JulianMoore, yeah except now that I think about it more it may be been because they were tandem seat aircraft, (front and back) so you couldn't see if the other person had their hand on the controls. I think it might be excessive for most circumstances otherwise. I edited my answer somewhat to mention this. $\endgroup$ Feb 5, 2023 at 16:04
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    $\begingroup$ Thx again; good clarification. Will wait a little longer just in case there's a specific AF answer, otherwise I'll assume all aviators are the same (that should put the cat among the pigeons :) ) $\endgroup$ Feb 6, 2023 at 17:58

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