Compiling a flight log is a prerequisite to making a cross-country flight. It is used to record the calculations and measurements made in the briefing room, and provides a plan to follow on your knee-board during the actual flight.
The flight log allows you to calculate the heading correction required to achieve a certain track given the forecast wind velocity, and also to estimate your ground speed and thus the time and fuel required for the flight. These calculations are usually done by hand using an E-6B or similar flight computer. This is fine until you realise you’ve made a mistake and need to go back and correct everything. Or maybe you want to set up your flight log the night before, and want to just plug in the wind forecast on the day without having to waste valuable time using the whiz-wheel.
It is much more efficient to use a PC for these simple, but repetitive, calculations. This MS Excel spreadsheet does just that.
The spreadsheet contains a lookup table of waypoints that can be easily updated with the latitude and longitude of your own airports and private landing sites. Then simply select the waypoint codes of your departure point and destination on the flight plan, and your required track and distance are calculated automatically. Given the forecast wind velocity, the spreadsheet then calculates the heading you require, your ground speed, and your estimated time enroute.
If you would like more information on the wind calculations done by the flight log, have a look here at the solution to the triangle of velocities. The track and distance are calculated based on the Rhumb line (or loxodrome) between your two coordinates.
The flight log also contains some useful mnemonics for various procedures, and also the available manifold pressure requirements for limited-power operations in the Robinson R22 helicopter. These can all be easily changed to your own needs. The spreadsheet requires Microsoft Excel 2003 or later.
Please feel free to leave any comments or suggestions on how the Flight Planner could be improved.
Download Flight Planner V3.0 Lite
The “lite” version of the spreadsheet is fully functional, except it does not contain the waypoint lookup and route calculation functions. You can manually enter track, distance, and the forecast wind velocity and it will calculate your required heading and your groundspeed.
Flight Planner v3.0 Lite (75.0 KiB, 861 hits)
Purchase Flight Planner V3.0 Professional
If you like what you see, please use the link below to purchase the pro version of the flight planner. Then all you need to do is add the coordinates of your regular landing sites, and you’re good to go. For an incredibly low price you get free updates for life, and priority customer support!
All files and tools on this page are provided “as is” with no express or implied warranty for accuracy or accessibility. Use at your own risk. All calculations should be checked against the relevant pilot’s operating hand book before being relied upon for flight planning purposes.