How Should I Log My Simulator/Training Device Time?
It all boils down to how you are going to log the time. This all depends upon which rules you fly under. For the purposes of this article, we are going to assume you fly in the US and under FAA regulations.
The FAA has no definition for Total Time. Therefore, Total Time can be defined by the pilot as Total Pilot Time, Total Aeronautical Experience, Total Flight Time or Total Aircraft Time. To make matters even more confusing, the FAA allows some Full Flight Simulator (FFS) time, Level C or higher, to be used to complete a certificate or rating, whereas other simulator levels cannot be logged towards certificates or ratings. Oftentimes, when a pilot is interviewing, that particular airline will specify what time they want to see (Total Flight vs Total Experience) - and this is where people get confused and also very particular in how they log time. The way training devices are all categorized can be explained here.
At Coradine, we have not defined Total Time as one particular way or another. Its up to the individual to log the time how they choose to define Total Time.
The default behaviour of LogTen Pro is to calculate a Total Time if you use an OUT/IN or a HOBBS OUT/HOBBS IN value. Any other opion (e.g. Tach) requires manual entry.
So you can get quite detailed in how you want to log your simulator time. For the most part, it boils down to the type record in LTP. In cases of full motion or full flight simulators (FFS), you'll already have a type for that aircraft, then duplicate the type so that you have two, and call one B733SIM, for example, with Category set to Simulator. You can then assign an aircraft ID to have type B733SIM each time you do recurrent in the simulators. Each time you log a flight with that aircraft ID, then the time also gets added to the Simulator Category column (see below).
The same is true for Category of Training Device. The time will automatically get added to the respective Training Device or PCATD Category column (see below). It won’t, however be added to Simulator time field.
How LogTen Pro Tracks Category Times
LogTen Pro does track and differentiate time by Category. You can show these columns if you use Configure LogTen Pro... from the Manage menu and check the box next to Category: Airplane or Category:Simulator. And if the Type records are properly categorized, the time shows up properly in Airplane or Simulator as required. You can also use a Smart Group to track your times based on type or any Category you choose.
NOTE: the Simulator category column is different than the SImulator Time field in the Flight Detail. In the current version, we do not automatically fill in time in the Simulator Time field, only the Simulator category column. The simulator time field can be used when you want to log sim time that does not count towards total time. This field, if you wish, can also be added as a column using Manage | Configure LogTen Pro....
Our recommendation is you differentiate the simulator sessions by using a flight record with a SIM type. It's your choice how you want to log Total Time and most people tend to not include Simulator time in their Total Time (definition=Total Aircraft Time). But again, that is up to you. As long as you are consistent, LogTen Pro allows you to report on and segment your time nearly any way you like. So if you are ever audited or present at an interview, you can clearly show them the difference between Aircraft vs. Simulator or Aircraft vs. Training Device.