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Easier way to make dense dates in line charts clearer?


New Member

I often work with quite dense time series data (example entry per 10 minute interval over 1 month) with each line having a separate time and date field. When this data is charted, Excel is quite good about auto selecting the time clearly for the chart, but (given the same date value repeated for 144 lines) dates typically appear far too dense.


Date Time value1 Value2

1/1/09 12:10 111 222

1/1/09 12:20 115 201

1/1/09 12:30 109 201

1/1/09 12:40 112 202

1/1/09 12:50 101 195

1/1/09 13:00 97 205

1/1/09 12:10 115 207

1/1/09 12:10 119 220


If I eliminate the duplicated date values (PivotTable style -- date only in the first line), then the dates will appear inconsistently across the chart. My existing method to fix this is to manually populate the date fields within the first 5-7 lines of a new day, with some hit and miss, to get the dates to appear correctly. Obviously not optimal.

Is there a better method?


New Member
I put date and time together into one cell, and then tell Excel to display every X labels as the major ticks, but use minor ticks to get the hours. Not sure if that would work for you as you have so much data that you want the date/time shown - 144 data points per day, for a month.

My use was to show every a label 5 minutes or so, where my data was by the second for several hours.