Submitted by Eric Daniel
One of the side effects of my participation in the 1991 Canadian Army Trophy (CAT) tank gunnery competition was I became a voracious note taker. Between logging boresight data, referencing range maps, and plotting positions, my gunner's station became cluttered with paperwork.
My solution to this was to employ an aviator's kneeboard. Used by pilots to keep vital information organized and close at hand, a kneeboard is essentially a small notebook strapped to your thigh. Kneeboard styles run the full spectrum, from the simple, single panel clipboard, to the extravagant tri-fold design with built in fuel management calculator.
The one I opted for was large and simple. It was a tri-fold design, meaning it had a central panel with a rigid aluminum plate in it to serve as a writing surface, along with flap pockets on either side for storage. The left hand flap was a zippered compartment which could hold note cards, casualty feeder cards, my artillery protractor and what not, while the right hand flap was faced with a piece of clear plastic, which allowed me to insert a folded section of map, as well as apply graphic overlays on. The kneeboard attached to my leg via a single velcro strap, and was easily removed.
While I have since moved on to a custom built one (those crafty folk in Korea can make anything) in looking at what's out there now, if I had to pick again, I'd go with something along the lines of either the ASA tri-fold, in either the standard or long board configuration. Both are simple, rugged, have all the features I was interested in, and are cheap (the long board will run you about $32.)