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Old 05-30-2020, 07:45 PM   #1
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How do you organize your"junk"?

I live on my boat. Big items, things, collections, etc. are easy to organize and store. But all the misc. crap is tough to figure out where it goes. And the longer I live on my boat, the more of this misc. crap tend to accumulate. I don't know what to do with it. How do you all organize this stuff? It's all the stuff that would end up in a junk drawer, but there isn't really a drawer big enough on my boat for that. I've been putting crap in plastic boxes, but I lose track of what I have and end up buying more of the same junk

Help! Or advice 😉

Thanks!
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Old 05-30-2020, 08:24 PM   #2
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I like boxers...
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Old 05-30-2020, 08:33 PM   #3
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I've seen some of the youtube cruisers who have detailed inventories of what they have and where it's stowed, neatly organized in a spreadsheet.

I could do that.

I bet you I don't, though.
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Old 05-30-2020, 08:44 PM   #4
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Greetings,
Mr. cb. Well, we still have one junk drawer: $$coinage, pens, pencils, spare keys, misc. odds and sods. For the excess, a good variety of plastic boxes WITH good clasps of some sort (less likely to pop open and spill contents WHEN dropped). I've found the simple snap on lids to be a PIA unless in quite small sizes. Really helps to label in LARGE letters. Top and sides.








Wally Mart has a wide variety. I've even gone to the point of putting a bunch of smaller containers into a larger container (suitably labelled, of course). Much easier to move one big box about if you don't have the perfect spot to store it.


Edit: Mr W. I tried the itemized list once...lost the damned list.
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Old 05-30-2020, 09:59 PM   #5
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I always “dress left”.
Works for me!
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Old 05-30-2020, 10:20 PM   #6
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None of it is junk.
Get it right.
It is JUNQUE.
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Old 05-31-2020, 07:02 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cool beans View Post
I live on my boat. Big items, things, collections, etc. are easy to organize and store. But all the misc. crap is tough to figure out where it goes. And the longer I live on my boat, the more of this misc. crap tend to accumulate. I don't know what to do with it. How do you all organize this stuff? It's all the stuff that would end up in a junk drawer, but there isn't really a drawer big enough on my boat for that. I've been putting crap in plastic boxes, but I lose track of what I have and end up buying more of the same junk

We use several solutions. One is the toilet bowl, although that tend to be very short-term in nature. Another is "dress left."

Others include milk crates for larger "junque" and for collections of smaller "jungue" usually in either ziplock bags (if the stuff is routinely used) or in vacuum-packed bags (for longer term storage, as for spares and so forth).

Ideally, each category of "junque" gets its own milk crate, or sometimes a crate is filled with a collection of stuff based on where it might be used (cabin, engine room, etc.). And we keep a directory (map) for some of the stuff that's buried further south in the boat or in other less accessible locations.

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Old 05-31-2020, 07:13 AM   #8
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I had to take an hour a month or so ago and get everything out of the lazarette as I tend to sort stuff into marked plastic clip boxes and find a place in the lazarette for them.

Since I added the watermaker in there last spring there isn't as much room, add in a big toolbox, two captain chairs, two beach chairs, the 50 foot power cord, the water hose, the washer and dryer, and it was getting a bit much. So a lot of the boxes were moved to under deck seating around the boat - I just hope I remember what i put where!

On a recent trip to Cumberland I started emptying out the salon lockers - found five bottles of bug spray in one! Stuff sure collects fast!
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Old 05-31-2020, 09:21 AM   #9
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I inventory the boat once a year. On my charter, everything came off at the end of the season and was stored in a heated garage for the winter. The purpose of inventorying isn't to make a list but to physically look at everything. Remove date expired items as applicable to your standard. Replace all small batteries once a year (do you have any idea how many are on your boat). Cull the duplicate items.

More to be added when I land.

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Old 05-31-2020, 09:30 AM   #10
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Wifey B: Best to have a woman take care of your junk.
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Old 05-31-2020, 09:35 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ranger42c View Post
And we keep a directory (map) for some of the stuff that's buried further south in the boat or in other less accessible locations.
I, like most owners, suffer uncontrollably from this malady & have come to the conclusion that after a good "weeding out", Ranger 42's solution is probably the best! Let's face it, the problem isn't that we have too much stuff on board, the real problem is "we don't know where everything is!"
A map, inventory list with locations, etc., call what you will, is almost mandatory. Below are just some of the places that I honestly don't know what's in them.
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Old 05-31-2020, 09:43 AM   #12
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I keep a LOT of tools and spares on the boat at all times, but I want the boat neat and things put away. So I use decent quality plastic containers and have a spreadsheet to keep track of where everything is (it’s currently 11 pages, broken up by type, engine, generator, electrical, maintenance, etc). Yes it takes a little time to set up but nowhere near the amount of time and frustration trying to find things when you don’t really know where they are. Also, having a list of what I have makes it more clear what I don’t have that I may want to have.

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Old 05-31-2020, 10:18 AM   #13
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Greetings,
Ms. WB. Them's fightin' words lassie! MY mate is a tosser. She's good about culling some of HER stuff (out of style, doesn't fit, doesn't like any more etc.) BUT I dearly wish she would stay out of MY treasure trove of goodies. Her answer to "clutter" is throw it out and if you need it again, buy another one. She simply doesn't seem to realize that some of this stuff is either not available anymore or would be atrociously expensive to replicate.


I'm the chief cook and have been for the last 50 years, or so. The kitchen AND it's accoutrements are MY domain. This lockdown business has had ONE advantage in that I've re-organized the drawers and cupboards to make best use of limited space while keeping those items that we actually use. Might only be twice a year but...For example: I usually only bake apple pies on a few occasions. The apple peeler makes preparing apples much easier and quicker. I've had to rescue it twice, from the trash, during the last tidy-up sessions. Yes, I could toss it and buy another one but that would be inane IMO.



She seems to have this thing about water bottles. We must have 3 dozen taking up valuable space in the kitchen BUT, a pox on me if I even suggest she gets rid of some.
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Old 05-31-2020, 10:30 AM   #14
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I'm one who can't seem to bring myself to toss out hardware items. On the boat I have one of these parts bins solely for stainless nuts, screws, etc. Another for connectors, light bulbs and other non-stainless hardware. I keep those under one of the seats in the cockpit. In that same area are bags of zip ties, and other misc items.



Under another seat are my emergency items: flares and one of the new fangled electrical flares.

Engine/trans/genset spare parts are stored below in the engine room. Lots of space down there to accumulate junque but I keep the inventory down to a minimum.
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Old 05-31-2020, 11:49 AM   #15
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I'm one who can't seem to bring myself to toss out hardware items. On the boat I have one of these parts bins solely for stainless nuts, screws, etc. Another for connectors, light bulbs and other non-stainless hardware. I keep those under one of the seats in the cockpit. In that same area are bags of zip ties, and other misc items.

That reminded me... I also use an elaborate plastic fishing tackle box for all (most of) my electrical tools and small supplies like bulbs, connectors, fuses, heat shrink, etc. Some of the larger boxes come with pretty decent and sometimes customizable (?) drawers and so forth...

Anyway, that means I can schlep the whole box to wherever the project du jour might be...

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Old 05-31-2020, 12:14 PM   #16
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I have a 32 boat but do not live aboard.

For tools I use several sturdy plastic tool boxes:
---One 14" long for screwdrivers, electrical tools,knives and other small tools.
---One 14" L for the 3/8 drives, scrapers, combination wr. up to about 13/16, adj. wrenches, pliers, a couple odd wrenches specifically for working on the steering and stove diesel copper tubing.
---a third large one for the 1/2 drives, larger combination wr, up to 1.25", large water pump pliers, hammers, a trq. wrench, filter wrenches, 2 pipe wrench 14" and some odd balls I made over the years for specific jobs.
Yes, in all of them there are some misc. odd balls.
---another 4 lighter tool boxes for rope, rigging and dome snaps working, Sealers/glues, lubes/greases, screws,
Several bins contain electrical supplies such as heat shrink, term. blks, duct seal, switches, wire, clamps,
A couple years ago i closed in the underside of the salon 2x3 and put doors on with latches. Now those compartments hold the electrical crimp terminals quite nicely.
I made one rack that hold frequently used small tools so I don't have to pull a box every darn time I need a small tool, small pliers and electr. cutter, small wrenches screwdrivers, 1/4 & 5/16 nut drivers, small adj. wrench. Whatever has been a major pia to be constantly digging for.
I made over head bins and shelves with latched doors that hold more trays that then hold jars of hyr and flare ftgs, more nuts/bolts/washers by bolt size in plastic peanut butter and the like jars., They also hold the filters and such.
Milk crates, both the 4 jug and the 8 jug sizes can be used.



For oil and coolant I love the small 1 gal size red plastic jerry jugs. They hold 5 litres and can be fitted into many nooks and crannies where a larger container will not go. To boot they are tough, not destruction proof, but FAR better than the typical plastic oil or A.freeze jug. Of course they are all red so labels are needed. A felt pen works well but needs to be renewed from time to time. Or tyrap a plastic label to the handle. Those in immediate active use I wrap a piece of Velcro around the handle so I don't end up with multiple partial containers.
In my case I also have each fluid container numbered so I don't manage to leave one unused forever. When they are stowed anywhere they fit it is too easy to miss one or two constantly. I do then have to be sure to look for them though.

I do keep a battery operated drill aboard.but you may want additional items of that nature. I don't as home is close by.

THere is more but you get the idea. Really look around and you likely will see opportunities to store stuff. It won't be like the garage but good use of the existing space in the E.R. , lazarette, can help you. It will also take some time. My E.C. is quite busy now and I can see I have to be carefull.

You may have to build storage such as shelves, racks or compartments.
I no longer use metal or steel tool boxes. I ruined a couple of nice ones. Also the plastics tool boxes won't do the damage a steel one will if an errant box bashes something.
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Old 05-31-2020, 12:46 PM   #17
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Greetings,
Ms. WB. Them's fightin' words lassie! MY mate is a tosser. She's good about culling some of HER stuff (out of style, doesn't fit, doesn't like any more etc.) BUT I dearly wish she would stay out of MY treasure trove of goodies. Her answer to "clutter" is throw it out and if you need it again, buy another one. She simply doesn't seem to realize that some of this stuff is either not available anymore or would be atrociously expensive to replicate.


I'm the chief cook and have been for the last 50 years, or so. The kitchen AND it's accoutrements are MY domain. This lockdown business has had ONE advantage in that I've re-organized the drawers and cupboards to make best use of limited space while keeping those items that we actually use. Might only be twice a year but...For example: I usually only bake apple pies on a few occasions. The apple peeler makes preparing apples much easier and quicker. I've had to rescue it twice, from the trash, during the last tidy-up sessions. Yes, I could toss it and buy another one but that would be inane IMO.



She seems to have this thing about water bottles. We must have 3 dozen taking up valuable space in the kitchen BUT, a pox on me if I even suggest she gets rid of some.
Wifey B: I don't think we're talking about the same junk.
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Old 05-31-2020, 04:11 PM   #18
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I always enjoy reading about tool storage methods; but I think the OP is asking about less lofty things. I have the same problem so I would like to hear about if anyone has solved it. That is, what about stuff that you don't want to throw out, but is NOT tools of importance. Paper clips, tablets, that one screw you know goes to something specific, a piece of bronze mesh, rubber bands.... whatever. Maybe you could say the Important Detritus of Daily Life. How to corral it if it's stuff you shouldn't throw away?
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Old 05-31-2020, 04:21 PM   #19
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If it is just crap then it goes into the junk drawer and gets gone through at the beginning of the next season. If it is things like screws, etc I have some Stanley storage boxes that have small boxes in them for different screws and different sizes of screws. I have one for sheet metal screws, nuts and bolts, electrical connectors, large electrical connectors (2 boxes), snaps (2 boxes), heat shrink and cushion clamps. It is really nice to have them organized and saves lots of time when I am doing projects.
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Old 05-31-2020, 08:15 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cool beans View Post
I live on my boat. Big items, things, collections, etc. are easy to organize and store. But all the misc. crap is tough to figure out where it goes. And the longer I live on my boat, the more of this misc. crap tend to accumulate. I don't know what to do with it. How do you all organize this stuff? It's all the stuff that would end up in a junk drawer, but there isn't really a drawer big enough on my boat for that. I've been putting crap in plastic boxes, but I lose track of what I have and end up buying more of the same junk

Help! Or advice 😉

Thanks!
To hoard or not to hoard. If you cannot fit this crap into a single small box, and we are NOT talking essential tools etc, you have a mental problem with lightening the load. You would have trouble physically lifting what I think of as essential tools on board.
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