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Old 11-03-2015, 22:49   #16
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

MS Office is less than $140 - I just bit the bullet and purchased a version that can be installed on 3 machines.
Admittedly, I do have a small love affair with Excel and wish I could spend more time with her.
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Old 11-03-2015, 22:50   #17
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Yes but Open Office is free and does the same thing.
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Old 11-03-2015, 23:05   #18
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Does it do pivot tables?

Maybe it does... maybe for most people it's a perfect substitute.

I tried using Open Office when it first came out, and I've tried using Google Sheets, but i get frustrated when I try to do things and discover I can't (or can't do them the way I want).

Horses & courses.
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Old 11-03-2015, 23:16   #19
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Open Office went through a tough patch a few years back but I am happy with their product now that they are under the Apache umbrella. To be honest I don't know if they do pivot tables and I have not used it, or MS Office, for anything advanced for quite some time. But I think it would work well for the OP's needs, especially as he mentioned he needed something that wasn't expensive.
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Old 11-03-2015, 23:24   #20
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wannabe-007 View Post
Does it do pivot tables?
Yes, it does and also many other things Excel will do. One notable exception is running VBA macros.

Also, there's an alternative for OpenOffice called "LibreOffice" which is kind of a fork for the open source purists from the OpenOffice suite since the latter came back within the clutches of Oracle.

Personally, I use Google Drive and Google Docs for making notes because in my case I usually figure out what needs to be done or supplied on the boat, but make it happen back at home. Google Docs and Drive allows me to keep the document on the cloud and work between PC and tablet as required. Of course this needs Internet access from the vessel to work.

If you are involved with doing some major work, one of the free project management applications like OpenProject aren't too bad. If you've used project management software in the past then this isn't a bad solution. Even those comfortable with a spreadsheet should pick up the gist with the help of online tutorials.
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Old 11-03-2015, 23:45   #21
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Wow, I'm impressed that OpenOffice seems to be a real big boy now

I tried using the Google Products and spent a long time trying to get some kind of offline system working. I never got it to work and gave up - although I still have a bunch of important files there and need to make the time to migrate back and then tidy everything up.

I've used OpenProject too but I think it's the wrong tool for what we're talking about here (basically lists).

I also use another product called TickTick. It is basically a task management tool, but I spent a long time trying to find something with the specific featureset that ticktick has.

For organising all my boat stuff, I would probably agree that OpenOffice would be the bees knees (if you dont have Excel).
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Old 12-03-2015, 09:02   #22
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Paul & Sheryl Shard did produce a spreadsheet thingie to do what you are looking for.


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Old 12-03-2015, 09:38   #23
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

I use a spreadsheet for all my projects and inventory. I created the spreadsheet to double as an inspection sheet after the projects are done so that I have a printable list of my weekly, monthly and yearly inspections handy. This is helpful to my wife and anyone else on the boat. Our inventory sheet is based on a diagram of the boat's storage areas. Each compartment is labeled and a section of the inventory sheet is dedicated to that compartment. Every thing in that compartment is on the sheet. My wife loves this because she became overwhelmed at the shear amount of cubby holes on our boat. I let her organize how everything fits and we are both happy with the results.

Good luck with your projects and your adventures.
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Old 12-03-2015, 09:54   #24
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

My wife likes Trello for project management.

There's your answer: let the Admiral look after the paper and relegate yourself to being the maintenance man.

It WILL work out better in the long run

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Old 12-03-2015, 10:07   #25
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

You are talking about two different things here. One is project management, and the other is inventory control.

Our system is old now, but the fundamentals remain the same. In about 2000, we received an email from the US Navy sailing squadron, asking if they could adopt it for theirs.

In a nutshell, every locker or storage place needs a number or name. There should be some logic to this. Compartmentalize the boat fore to aft. A number such as 102 would mean fwd cabin, port side, locker two from front, low. 192 would be the same but a high locker. etc. Number them physically.(odd stbd, even port) Then we have a spreadsheet with the locker number and then the contents. The contents are written in reverse or military notation. Eg. Hickory Smoked Baked Beans, is Beans baked hickory smoked. Shirt, blue, working, etc

When stocking up, the sheet is sorted by locker number, then for searching and working after its alfa, but on the description column.

Here is a link to the relevant page on our web page....

Inventory system


No she is not for sale, its just hard to change the directory name because of all the links that point to it.

There is a feedback button there if you need further info.
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Old 12-03-2015, 10:24   #26
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

I use excel for inventory spread sheets and presail check lists. I use a pen and a yellow legal pad for making my lists of things to do, I guess I could put them in a spreadsheet when I get home, but that would mean spending more time at the computer than repairing the boat. I do keep a 3 ring binder for maintenance on all the systems. Manuals, and specs, photos etc... kept in there.
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Old 12-03-2015, 12:06   #27
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by appick View Post
Hi all,
We've just recently purchased our bigger long term cruising capable boat. With it as usual comes many projects, upgrades, paint and varnish ect. Also with a new to us boat I feel I have a chance to do better than I did before. Organization is not one of my strong suits being an ADD child and adult. The plus side is right now there is almost nothing on the boat. I hope to keep an accurate inventory of whats on board as far as spares and replacements, as well as location of said parts. I also hope to keep a good list of projects completed and pending, materials used, materials needed ect.

My question to you dear readers is this, How do you do it? Do you have any apps you find helpful? My wife likes Trello for project management. What do you use, for either project management, and inventory? I'd consider excel but I'd have to buy Microsoft office and that can get pricey. Maybe google's google docs suite has a good usable spreadsheet software.

Let me know what you like to do in this area I'm very interested in all your creative ways to solving this problem.
Hi Appick,

We have always used spreadsheets [Google Docs that last few years...] with great success.

If you want some excellent models take a look at this recent post from Attainable Adventure Cruising [yes, a membership is required but in our opinion well worth it... and there is nothing in it for us other than what we gain as members...]

We are also in the process of converting over to an iOS app MyStuff2 and really like it so far. [We are using MyStuff because as we transition to being on the boat full time, we are tracking inventories in 4 disparate locations, and this does so wonderfully... e.g., house, camper, trailer- full of boat supplies and parts, boat.]

For projects we really like Omnifocus [we also come from project management and engineering backgrounds...]

We sync all of our data to Google Drive [which stores originals on our local computer and syncs to the cloud whenever we have internet connectivity. Works great, and provides a back-up accessible online worldwide...]

Good luck with your projects!

Cheers!
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Old 12-03-2015, 13:03   #28
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Whenever I open up a new project, I take full stock of the situation and of perceived needs in each department. I often take 3 to 5 weeks to build a proper vision of what needs to be done. I found that complete emptying, washing and cleaning of the boat IN PERSON works best - I mean go to the top of the mast but also clean the bilges ... yes. Start every system, run every piece of equipment. Time consuming, yes, but lets you know the boat intimately which speeds all up work later on.

As I go thru the boat and her systems, I daily dump this virtual salad into a spreadsheet (actually, I no longer use Excel as there are so many decent free options, starting with OpenOffice, King suite, Libre O suite, etc etc). I keep a small booklet, a camera and a pen on me at all times. I fill them up daily, as I go. I take down everything. Everything.

Now with this very raw and general picture in my spreadsheet, I split the jobs into groups as per each boat department, and I keep track of the department in the right column, then envisioned time frame in the next column, then the pro forma budget in the next column, and so on.

I make a copy of this spreadsheet on another computer. Just in case. I back up later, on a regular basis (weekly, unless I take a week off).

Then whenever I need the time-frame view or the budget view, etc. I simply sort the table by respective column.

I expand and extend the table as I go deeper and deeper thru the project. I also generate views for all contractors, the owner, etc. as necessary. I never remove the "done" items (a common mistake with project greenhorns) - I mark them gray and keep them in the table.

One thing I have learned the hard way: making a great vision-plan is one thing, following up and keeping track is another art, possibly equally important for less stress on the job and for better progress (as well as lower budget ...). Take notes, keep bills, review them, REGULARLY.

I also make regular (weekly and monthly) reports, also when such reports are not required by the owner. These reports somehow help me clarify the vision of what has been achieved and what is coming up next.

The above is roughly how I work on big boats, where projects tend to last 6 months to 3 years.

Now on our own boat (that is only 8 meters long) ... I just make a handwritten list of jobs, split them into dry (boatyard) and wet (marina) jobs and then I go at them and do as many as I can before we depart. Last time I started with about 100 items and went down to about 30 (with maybe another 100 items that rolled thru the list). That was 6 months of pseudo work, OK 3 months of so-so work, OK 1 month of hard day to day work.

Sure thing, if you are already into any specific project management software, then the choice is obvious. But if you are not using one every day, then you can just make do with a spreadsheet and a notebook.

Cheers,
b.
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Old 12-03-2015, 13:32   #29
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

Believe MS OneNote is free, I have office and use it but OneNote is my go to for organization and it will run on your phone, online, tablet and PC highly recommended
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Old 12-03-2015, 16:50   #30
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Re: Project and Inventory Management What do you do?

I use a spreadsheet (MS, Libra, open office are equally good) For big projects do a basic page listing jobs then use the workbook to give a detail page for each area such as 'deck work'. Good for tracking orders and dong budgets.
I also use B-Folders Android app, Its a multiple to-do list that works well on phones or small tablets. Very good for jotting down shopping list etc as you work so you have them with you in the shop. Also good for noting down things like dimensions so you can check things will fit.
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