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Log Book Entries for Student Pilot

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I started flying in July of this year, and at that time my flight school used a number system to crossreference flight maneuvers to make log book entries easier. So for example, if I practiced straight-in-autos, I would flip to the back cover of my log book (where the key was pasted), and find the correct number, and put the number in the small amount of space where is says maneuvers after each flight. It made sense to me, especially considering the small space in most log books to write what was learned/practiced in each flight. Well, all was well until a student went for his checkride, and the FAA examiner looked at his log book. Supposidly, he said that this is not correct practice, and that each maneuver should be hand written after it is demonstrated by cfi and after first practiced by student. So now I'm not allowed to use the number system. This got me thinking, what is the correct method, and what are the rest of you doing??? That small space is enought to maybe hand write three or four maneuvers, but that's it. I do not want it to be an issue down the line when an FAA examiner or future employer is looking over my log book. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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I personally wrote my flights up long hand (in the small box in the logbook). This is the way it is normally done.


However, I have had students (particularly foreign ones) who have come with the kind of system you describe.


When I put them forward for examination, the examiner didn't really like it, but accepted it if the 'key' was printed on 'official' looking paper, and even better stamped by the school, as being part of a syllabus. Occasionally, he'd want to see the full syllabus documentation.


For example, a 141 syllabus is very structured, with supporting documentation. Many military courses are the same, as are some training courses from different countries (JAA training). An examiner would be much happier to accept a Numbered System & Key' style training log from this sort of course. I could understand an examiner being unhappy to accept someone who say, had done Part 61, and who's 'key' was written on a peice of scrap paper and sellotaped to the back of the logbook! Do you see what I mean?


As for whether this is 'CORRECT' or not, I don't know. I can't think of anything that says it is incorrect to do this off the top of my head. I'll have a look around and see if I can find some information.


**Inserted edit after thought - Actually, I don't think it can be 'incorrect' to do as you say. I can't think of any rule that dictates 'how' the training must be logged, or even that it needs to be included in the logbook. Infact there is not actually an FAA definition of a logbook anywhere! It simply says training must be recorded in a way that is 'acceptable to the administrator'. With that, and all the military pilots who go through the system I can't see that it is a wrong to do it like that. I am sure (not that I did) that I could have presented my 141 training record as proof of the coverage. Again, need to look into this.


From a practical point of view, yes the space in a normal logbook is quite small and this can pose a problem. Remember though, that for the purpose of the Practical Test and issuance of the certificate, you only have to log each of the 'Areas of Operation' once. OK, it would be pretty dumb to present to an examiner those areas once...he'd smell a rat! What I am saying is that you don't have to log everything every time.


In a normal course you do, lets say, 'autorotations' many times. Well after you have logged a good number of 'autorotations' you don't necessarily need to keep logging them every time you do one. Does that make sense? If you are short of space, try to simply ensure you have a good balance of the skills showing. Don't cheat though. They must match the correct flights. You'd feel a little embarrased when the examiner points out that you logged day kinds of skills during a night flight...or if you'd logged SWP on a solo flight...etc..etc..


Lastly, consider a computer logbook aswell. There was a thread about electronic logbooks on here a while ago. They should allow plenty of room in the 'notes' column. Although, not presentable for a checkride, it gives you a place to keep a detailed record of your training, while in your paper logbook you log only what you need for the practical test.


Hope this helps,





Edited by joker
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With some logbooks its just not possible to fit everything into the space provided. I've used two lines if needed, usually my endorsement ends up stuck somewhere other than in the remarks and endorsement column. Like Joker said, you don't need to list everything, everytime, you just need to make sure that all the maneuvers are listed at least once. The trick is to be able to write very, very small :D


I have also seen Instructors list all the maneuvers with the endorsement for the practical test


I certify that Mr. rotor head has received the flight training per FAR 61.127 b, 3 for a rotorcraft category helicopter class rating. i) preflight preparation, ii) preflight procedures, iii) airport and heliport ops, iv) hovering maneuvers, v) takeoff, landings and go around vi) performance maneuvers, vii) navigation, viii) emergency operations, ix) special operations, x) postflight procedures. And recommend him for the commercial helicopter practical exam.


It is my understanding that the examiners want (or are required) to see the maneuvers listed, and that you have received the required training per the FAR's


Fly Safe

Clark B)

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