Navigation Calculator

Not sure where to post this and if it is even allowed. But was going through my old basement stuff and came across this… Who still has and uses this ? Or should I say do some of the newer pilots even know what this is ?

I stopped flying many years ago and this was an essential piece in my “flight bag”. Went through a couple of these…lol…

In my flying days and the region where I did all my IRL flying we did not have aircraft with modern equipment like GPS etc… and neither did we have a whole lot beacons. The whole region had 3 VOR’s and a hand full of NDBs scattered all over the country, which did not work half the time.

So …any flying was with maps, a stop watch and this piece of equipment… :slight_smile: Airplanes I flew had only basic instruments (T Panel ?)

Anyways… Apologies if posted in wrong section or if not allowed as it is not related to MSFS. Just a bit of my reminiscence and flying history.


I use mine quite a bit still if I am making a navlog manually. I find that I am both quicker and more accurate with that thing than with a calculator or digital navigation calculator; much less likely to make a key entry error.

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That is a great piece of equipment, I have one, I use the other side to figure descent points, etc, it is a round calculation ruler. The side you show was used to, plot the winds, and find the True Heading based in the on the direction of the wind and IAS, plus other considerations.

Just got my PPL in 2019, they still train you with the E6B.

Batteries/electronics fail, this thing is forever :slight_smile:

I use mine to plot my flights in the sim to, since I’m not flying IRL much these days!

Thanks for sharing!


And the side had conversion tables… form centigrade to Fahrenheit etc…

Now that is a good use of the calculator. I did not think of that. :+1:

I still have my Dad’s E6B and its original case. It was issued to him back in the 60’s by the Navy while a RIO in the McDonnell F4J during the Vietnam War.

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Still have a couple of them laying around. I remember buying one of the first specialized electronic calculators for flight. It took a lot more time to figure out all the things on it as opposed to the good old basic E6B.

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I also have my Dad’s E6B and have spent time learning how to use it, there’s and awesome number of calculations and the wind side is amazing. Wish I was better at it, but feels good to have an understanding of how it works.

Wish I had one.

Interesting thread!
Never seen one before.
Would have guessed it was some kind of Mandelbrot generator!
But now I know and knowledge is power.

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I wish I could say wistfully that “I still have my dad’s E6B”. Sigh…I still have MY E6B…tempis fugit!

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I teach cadets ground school and we use both the E6B and CR3 (wiz wheel).

CR3 is the circular only version. Does the wind calculations in a similar manner.

Had to buy the CRP5 version for the ATPL exams 23 years ago, still required these days, costs near £90!

A software version for the E6B computer (for Android and Apple) is available at

There is also a web based version, including instructions at
Go to the website and click the image to use the calculator.

Still got mine and use it.

I’m in ground school… Just started. I just bought a brand spanking new E6-B. I love the thing although I don’t know how to use it yet. I’m getting there. I straight up love doing flight planning and flying (in the sim) the old fashioned way. VOR’s etc. It just feels like im doing something instead of hitting three buttons and tabbing out to read the news.

I still have my old E6B from many years ago.
Back then I also bought, what was a new Electronic Calculator version from Sporty

($57 Ebay – you got to be kidding !!)

USELESS … even when turned off (electronically), it would still flatern the battery in 4-6 weeks !!!, so was always unreliable, unless you carried spare batteries.

Hopefully, the newer versions do not suffer from this.

$70 – and brand new …

This is my CR3. It is more targeted at high performance aircraft calculations than the typical E6B, including Mach, SAT/TAT etc.