random picture

Flight Planning

Is Essential to Fly Without Stress

With even a simple flight plan, actually flying an aircraft is considerably easier than if no flight plan at all is prepared. In the real world, one would add "and much safer", and under IFR, a flight plan is mandatory. The flight plan being discussed here is the flight plan for the pilot, and may be alternatively called the "Pilot's Log". The flight plan required for VATSIM is for the benefit of the Air Traffic Controller. They are slightly different, but the VATSIM flight plan is simpler and can be quickly generated from the Pilot's flight plan using the built in Flight Plan forms included with Squawkbox and FSInn.

Flight Planning Tools

Plan-G
This is an excellent free flight planning tool, written by Club member Tim Arnot. Based mainly a database it builds from your Flight Simulator together with a mapping resource, it provides everything the Virtual pilot requires, including flight tracking, and display of other aircraft.
Flight Planner 818
A flight planning spreadsheet with built in database. The database contains over 1000 records including most UK airfields, VORs and NDBs, Visual Reference Points and over 100 farm strips. Enter your departure and destination aerodromes, en route waypoints and winds and the programme creates your flight plan and a Pilots Log which can be printed out. It comes with a separate Instruction document (pdf file). The current version (28/06/10) consists of Software Version 8.10 and Database version 8.18.
Pilots Log
A simple spreadsheet form for use as a Pilot's log (PLOG) including entry boxes for aircraft type, fuel and endurance, brakes off, brakes on, radio frequencies, weather etc. for Departure En-route and Arrival phases of flight. A5 landscape format makes it handy to put on the desk alongside yoke or joystick. Prints two forms to an A4 page.
Drift Calculator
A very simple Excel spreadsheet to do the wind calculation. Enter airspeed, track, wind speed and direction, it gives you the drift angle, the heading to steer and the groundspeed.
Flight Formulae
Speed/Distance table, inches/Mb conversion, fuel unit conversions & weight and several other useful formulae in this simple spreadsheet. Version 3.7 added a new page which holds a drift calculation formula. Version 3.8 adds a DME Arc calculator with user input cells, rather than the table of values in V3.7.

Flight Plans

Inter-Location Plans
A set of up to three different types of flight plan for trips between any two of Manchester Barton, Biggin Hill, Carlisle, Gloucestershire, and Shoreham. There are two printable flight plan forms, one for 100 kts the other for 180 kts, and a text file.
Gloucester-Sywell
Flight Planner spreadsheet for use by members flying from Gloucester to Sywell.
Gloster-Valley-IOM
Flight Planner spreadsheet and pilots log for a fly out to Ronaldsway. The Outbound sheet is Gloucester-Valley. The Inbound sheet has been used for the valley-Ronaldsway leg.
Biggin-Kemble
Flight Planner spreadsheet for a flight from Biggin Hill to Kemble.
Biggin-Southampton
Flight Planner spreadsheet for a flight from Biggin Hill to Southampton.
Gloster-Cardiff-Bristol
Flight Planner spreadsheet for a VFR tour around the Severn Valley.