Making Your Own Checklists

turbojet28

Well-Known Member
Hey Everybody,

I was just contemplating; it seemed to me that I would better suit myself if I made my own checklists to use. I get tired of getting to the aircraft and seeing the FBO's 30 different checklists spewed about. Everyone has a different order and it is hard to decide which is best to use. As I progress in my training, I have had some of ideas of things which I think I should include in a checklist and things that would make each flight safer, more organized, and more enjoyable for me.

I was also thinking it would be a good idea to color code them (i.e. putting standard procedures on white and emergency procedure checklists on red).

So, I am wondering, what do you guys think of the idea of making your own checklists (using the POH as a guideline)? How are they viewed upon by the FAA (especially the DE on a checkride)? Any input would be appreciated! Thanks.

-TJ28
 

DrBenny

New Member
When I transitioned to a different airplane, AFTER getting my PPL, I did make my own. However, I used several sources: the POH, a local school's checklist, my CFI, and the local school's CFI. When I and the two CFIs liked what we saw, I went with it.

Make absolutely sure you do not violate anything in the POH. For instance, there are those at a local school that insist on using the fuel pump on short final in the C-172R. That might be fine for a Piper (I don't actually know), but it is NOT in the C-172R POH. Indeed, there is a possibility that you can flood the engine and lose it, right there on final.

So, don't violate the POH.
 

EatSleepFly

Well-Known Member
I worked with an instructor that swore up and down that you can't make your own checklists, but I never found anything to substantiate that. As long as you don't operate the aircraft in any manner contrary to the POH/Operating Limitations, I don't see why not. I know lots of people who make their own.
 

PhotoPilot

New Member
We often use our own checklists. Most of the time they contain the exact items that are in the POH plus other items specific to our operation that are not prohibited by the POH. For instance, we include things like "check windsock" and "pre-takeoff briefing," in the Runup List. There are often items that don't directly relate to the manufacturer's proceedures that you don't want to forget . . .
 

davetheflyer

New Member
When I was teaching FAR 61, the Cessna factory checklists we had weren't very good so I made up my own. I made sure to include everything on the Cessna checklists, plus a lot of clarification and stuff that I was taught. I practiced before making the final draft to ensure that it had a reasonable flow.

When I completed it, I gave it to my students and used it myself. I never had any complaints from DEs.
 

SteveC

Really?
Staff member
I've done this on every plane that I intended to fly more than just a few times.
I stick with the company checklists when doing 135 flying, but the exercise of making my own is a great way to familiarize myself with the plane.
 

sbe

Well-Known Member
I've always made my own checklists, even as a student pilot. However, what I do is xerox out the POH, or the surecheck checklist in the plane, and use that as a go-by. 99% of the checklist is straight from those sources, I put a few things in additionally that I personally do when preflighting or doing before flight stuff, etc. I also sometimes change the order of things to better suit the flow I like to use.

The Cessna POH checklists tend to be pretty good; but for instance the checklist in the Arrow IV POH I had copied is terrible. So I followed my previous formats as far as checklist flow, adding in items from the POH checklist in the order and style that I prefer.

I make 'em up in Quark, print them, trim them down (they're fairly small), laminate the sheets, and coil bind them at the top. On the bottom 1/2 of the back page I've got a quick reference list of local airport & approach frequencies, in addition to area VORs. My CFI said I should make them for my future students! My DE dug my checklist on my PPASEL ride, too.

Sarah
 

tonyw

Well-Known Member
I'll bet you'vbe got the best laid out, best designed checklists out there, don't you?

Anyway, I was amazed at how little the old POHs have as far as a checklist goes. For example, you don't have to lower the flaps according to Cessna!
 

FalconCapt

New Member
Yes, you can make your own checklists and use them (Part 91 ops)... I wrote the entire Normal Procedures checklists for our companies Falcon 900EX's and Falcon 50EX's. You must make sure that you include all of the items from the AFM (POH) and you can not go contrary to any limitations in the AFM (POH)...

Hope this helps...
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
I'll bet you'vbe got the best laid out, best designed checklists out there, don't you?

[/ QUOTE ]Probably. Home made checklists tend to be the best ones for the individual pilot. By using a format that makes sense to you, and then conforming all airplanes to the same format, they end up being (a) a checkout sheet for the new airplane (b) easier to be used since similar tasks are in similar places (except when they have to be different) and (c) more likely to be used consistently.
 

sbe

Well-Known Member
Well tony, you are right, it's kind of right up my alley...
I've got each page 'stairstepped' (each succeeding page is .25" higher than the last) with a black label bar at the bottom of each page, so when on the preflight page, for instance, I can see and easily flip to the other pages.

But midlifeflyer said much more succinctly the exact reasons why I do my own checklists - consistency in format, flow, and organization between aircraft.
 

pilot602

If specified, this will replace the title that
In some cases it's almost mandatory. The Apache had not checklists (hell the POH is all of 20 pages thick) so I sat down and took everything from the POH and the "Owners Handbook" and put it together into a kneeboard sized, six page checklist that includes everything from normal lists to emergency lists, Vspeeds and W&B tables as well as power charts.

Just don't leave anything out that's in the POH and I think it's a great way to learn the systems/procedures of an aircraft.
 

ready2fly

Well-Known Member
I find that by digging into the POH and making my own checklist, I tend to learn the systems and procedures a bit more in depth.
 

tonyw

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Well tony, you are right, it's kind of right up my alley...
I've got each page 'stairstepped' (each succeeding page is .25" higher than the last) with a black label bar at the bottom of each page, so when on the preflight page, for instance, I can see and easily flip to the other pages.

[/ QUOTE ]

You know, what you are doing sounds just like the checklists that FSI issues to people. A friend of mine gave me his Falcon checklist from those guys and it's just like that. It's got tabs for various items and it's laminated.

If I only had time to actually put one together.




quote fixed by eagle
 

Eagle

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
I was also thinking it would be a good idea to color code them (i.e. putting standard procedures on white and emergency procedure checklists on red).

[/ QUOTE ]

Actually using red is a bad idea. If you use a red lens flashlight or if your cockpit is red lit, you won't be able to see the times at night.
 

farwellbooth

Well-Known Member
I made my own.

One regular piece of paper, two columns both sides. That gives you four columns of whatever, plenty for a Cessna etc. Laminated and folded down the middle, it's pro. I used Excel, used red in the title bars of emergency procedures and whatever color you want for other procedures. I also have V speeds and radio freqencies.
 
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