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Old 12-11-2017, 10:00 PM   #1
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Advice Needed Please - Maintenance Log or Tracker

Greetings,

I am in need of a system to keep track of maintenance on trawler systems. I would like something such as spreadsheet that will allow me to enter different systems (e.g. main engine, stabilizers). I would like the capability to add maintenance processes with service intervals (e.g. oil change, 12 months or 250 hours) and have the spreadsheet track and alert me.

What are you using? Why do you recommend it? What would you do differently?

At present I am leaning towards obtaining a dedicated Windows 10-based netbook to run excel. This machine would remain aboard and be backed up to an external USB drive. It could also house manuals in PDF format.

Thanks in advance for the guidance.
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Old 12-11-2017, 10:27 PM   #2
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Here's one from the Hamiltons on Nordhavn 52 Dirona: Maintenance log – MV Dirona

You could adjust it to the systems on your boat.
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Old 12-11-2017, 10:30 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IRENE View Post
Greetings,

I am in need of a system to keep track of maintenance on trawler systems. I would like something such as spreadsheet that will allow me to enter different systems (e.g. main engine, stabilizers). I would like the capability to add maintenance processes with service intervals (e.g. oil change, 12 months or 250 hours) and have the spreadsheet track and alert me.

What are you using? Why do you recommend it? What would you do differently?

At present I am leaning towards obtaining a dedicated Windows 10-based netbook to run excel. This machine would remain aboard and be backed up to an external USB drive. It could also house manuals in PDF format.

Thanks in advance for the guidance.
why use a dedicated netbook. Just enter the info on a spreadsheet on whatever device you already use, and store it in any one of the cloud based systems. With low useage, they are free, keep everything as you put it in, and are generally recoverable in the event a file is lost on your end (usually by mislabeling)

We use something called "the box" we store all of my personal and office files on it. I have access from anywhere, including my cell phone, for data entry or retrieval or review.
Only trouble is you have to get over the obsession for paper, which most of us "old guys" still have.
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Old 12-11-2017, 11:13 PM   #4
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Advice Needed Please - Maintenance Log or Tracker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Retriever View Post
Here's one from the Hamiltons on Nordhavn 52 Dirona: Maintenance log Ė MV Dirona

You could adjust it to the systems on your boat.


I use this spreadsheet to track maintenance. Itís pretty easy to adapt it to your own needs and systems. Itís nice that the Hamiltonís offer this for others to use.
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Old 12-12-2017, 06:12 AM   #5
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I wouldn't store any of it in the "cloud", at least not unless 100% of your boating is within range of abundant internet. Almost none of our boating is.
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Old 12-12-2017, 07:05 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IRENE View Post
I am in need of a system to keep track of maintenance on trawler systems. I would like something such as spreadsheet that will allow me to enter different systems (e.g. main engine, stabilizers). I would like the capability to add maintenance processes with service intervals (e.g. oil change, 12 months or 250 hours) and have the spreadsheet track and alert me.

What are you using? Why do you recommend it? What would you do differently?

At present I am leaning towards obtaining a dedicated Windows 10-based netbook to run excel. This machine would remain aboard and be backed up to an external USB drive. It could also house manuals in PDF format.

We use Excel on a Win7 laptop... that I've had aboard since about 2009-ish.

Separate worksheets within the Excel file for mains, genset, plumbing, HVAC, etc., etc., etc. Also includes a few sheets for "trip log" stuff; places we stay and things we see/do from time to time.

I haven't included programmed tracking and alerting; I can remember (roughly) when the next service for System X is going to be about due, so the spreadsheet is more for record-keeping and double-checking my memory. OTOH, I have entered interval info and various part numbers at the top of a relevant worksheet (e.g., impeller, water pump, fuel pump numbers at the top of the genset sheet, etc.).

That laptop is also our documentation library, one of our back-up nav systems (with MaxSea TimeZero), our usual on-board hotspot (usually with a USB-powered WiFi adapter), and our general-use computer for e-mail, Internet browsing, etc.

Periodic back-ups for the Excel file to our home desktop (simple e-mail to myself) plus periodic whole-computer back-ups to an external hard drive.

-Chris
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Old 12-12-2017, 09:31 AM   #7
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I do much the same as ranger42c, using Excel. Automated alerts seem to me like more trouble than they are worth.

Also have a separate spreadsheet to keep track of spares - inventory on board, part#, cost, etc. Another one to keep track of travel distances and fuel usage.

Frequent backups to two different external disks, including all my documents, spreadsheets, photos, Coastal Explorer routes and waypoints, etc. A single W7 laptop seems plenty stable so far for all my uses.
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Old 12-12-2017, 09:55 AM   #8
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I like the Memento Database for my tablet. I have a separate library for Operation, Maintenance, and Spares. It lets me create categories for systems (Main engine, genset, 12DC, AC, potable water, waste water, ...) for sorting, charting, totals, averages, etc. Fairly simple to operate. $15 for Pro version to sync to cloud, phone, run backups, etc. My spare parts list with part numbers, descriptions is always on my phone while I'm in the ship's store or browsing the web.

There are several competing products like Memento. It's just the one I picked.
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Old 12-12-2017, 03:17 PM   #9
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I have no suggestion and I keep my maintenance log on paper but I do have a warning:

While it is possible to use Excel or another spreadsheet as a flat file data base, it is very easy to corrupt a spreadsheet table just by sorting improperly and it's not difficult to do this accidentally. Doing this corrupts the table and makes your work worthless.

I haven't been shopping for this but I'll bet there are simple maintenance management programs out there for a few dollars that would be more suitable. They wouldn't have to be marine oriented, motor vehicle maintenance is pretty close.
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Old 12-12-2017, 06:27 PM   #10
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I simply use the notepad ap pre installed on my tablet
Each system a different heading on a different notepad.
Spare parts, stock level and location onboard the same.

As simple as "Genset Maintenance"
Aug 17 2017
Replaced anode
New oil and filter @ 436 hours
Next change @ 536 hours
Check anode on change.

I make it a point of every couple of weeks flicking through them to see whats coming up.
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Old 12-12-2017, 08:16 PM   #11
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Here's one from the Hamiltons on Nordhavn 52 Dirona: Maintenance log Ė MV Dirona

You could adjust it to the systems on your boat.
That is a great spreadsheet by Dirona. The guy knows his stuff.
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Old 12-12-2017, 08:23 PM   #12
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That is a great spreadsheet by Dirona. The guy knows his stuff.
My maintenance spread sheet is very similar. It was a take off from my aviation stuff, modified for boats. I'm still tweaking it but when done it will sort for whatever parameter, date, time, category, action, etc. It is NOT cloud based and don't want that, too many issues.

But the Dirona one looks cool!

However, I'll back it up every time it's used.

Will be glad to share it when perfected.
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Old 12-12-2017, 08:27 PM   #13
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I am using a spreadsheet stored on google drive. One worksheet per for the log of what was done, one worksheet for the todo list, one worksheet for planning what is coming up next.
I am thinking to move to microsoft OneNote, not a fan of MS but using OneNote at the office and really start to like it.

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Old 12-12-2017, 09:05 PM   #14
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Thanks all - best wishes.
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Old 12-13-2017, 08:37 PM   #15
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I need to create a spreadsheet myself. I have used a commercial product but while it has some cool features, it annoys me. An Excel sheet is simple, can cross platforms, and is something that I can create and modify myself.
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