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Fuel estimate question

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dsherman
Class G Airspace
Posts: 8
Joined: January 2nd, 2019, 1:47 am
VA Name: Pan American
VA ID: 26271
Callsign: PA31

Fuel estimate question

Post by dsherman » February 10th, 2019, 3:29 pm

Being a little bit of a noob here, but how accurate is the fuel estimate, and does it factor in weather conditions? I flew from KBOS to KORD, B737-800. Fuel estimator came up with around 21,000 pounds, and from the breakdown it looked like it had reserve fuel figured in. I loaded the center tank only with 28,800 pounds (100% capacity), but by the time I was halfway there I was scratching my head if I was going to have a problem, as my ground speed kept creeping slowly down, and the gas gauge was already below half. Had 4,000 pounds left when I got to the gate (whew). Cruising altitude was 31,000 feet, 0.74 mach.

Is there a rule of thumb for how much to pad that estimate?

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Sven2157
Class A Airspace
Posts: 2354
Joined: January 13th, 2012, 4:35 pm
VA Name: Chicago Flights
VA ID: 17898
Callsign: CFX2157
Location: Chicago, IL
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Re: Fuel estimate question

Post by Sven2157 » February 10th, 2019, 11:13 pm

I generally try to land with about 10-15% remaining fuel. You want to be light for landing, but not empty. The Client is more of a guesstimate, in perfect conditions. Personally, I use the FSX fuel planner, if the aircraft I am flying doesn't have one (PMDG, QWS, etc), as it will be far more accurate than the VAFS client.

I also created a script that averages fuel used on actual flights, that were flown in FSX using VAFS (XML data plugin), and then adds 15% (short flight) or 25% (long flight) more to the fuel load recommendation.

- Hope that helps! Happy Landings! :ugeek:
Regards,

Sven2157

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