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Old 24-08-2013, 20:30   #1
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Logs?

Mods please feel free to move this this if it should be somewhere else.

OK, now at the risk of being crucified ... let me start by saying I keep a meticulous maintenance log.

Having sailed on a lake for 15 years we never keep a log, except a maintenance log. The five years previous to this last year the boat was in charter service and whenever thought to keep a log.

Now we are cruising and I expect we should be keeping a cruising/transit log, but our only log is a maintenance log. I don't even know what we should be putting in a log or how often we should be putting entries.

So now let the flaming begin -- hopefully someone will help me figure out how to do this amongst the flaming. Please remember I am a baby cruiser and be kind!

Thanks, Robyn

P.S. who else do you know who would be so honest about their ignorance -- help please.
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Old 24-08-2013, 21:18   #2
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Re: Logs?!?

If you are a member of ASA one of the benefits is an online log you can access with your membership number on their website.

Otherwise, I'm sure there are apps available for purchase online or you can create your own log format with relevant details:

date, boat, hours, miles, conditions, destination, etc.
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Old 24-08-2013, 21:40   #3
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Re: Logs?!?

A log is for your own protection, if anything ever occures, an accident, or things of this sort, you need a solid record of your response to things that occure at sea. Also it sure helps to keep track of your daily NMs, course, location. It also helps others if you see objects afloat during the day or night, you can log thier position at the time you see it, possibley helping others to be found if lost, or to find thier stuff that went over board, like the kayak we found last week 2 miles offshore floating all alone!(we picked it up, but you know what I mean) A log is a lot of fun to read after a few years, lets ya remember things all over again, the fine sunsets and sunrises, rainbows, the first Island siteing and so on ! anyway there are really nessasary for lots of things ! just my 2 cents, and we have a darn big bunch of them we have kept !!
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Old 24-08-2013, 22:16   #4
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Re: Logs?!?

Here are some other observations

log books - Page 2 - SailboatOwners.com

I am "amused" by folks responding by saying they keep their logs "in the cloud." Do those folks assume they have internet access ALL the time?

Just askin'...

Paper and pen(cil).
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Old 24-08-2013, 23:37   #5
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Re: Logs?!?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobconnie View Post
A log is for your own protection, if anything ever occures, an accident, or things of this sort, you need a solid record of your response to things that occure at sea. Also it sure helps to keep track of your daily NMs, course, location. It also helps others if you see objects afloat during the day or night, you can log thier position at the time you see it, possibley helping others to be found if lost, or to find thier stuff that went over board, like the kayak we found last week 2 miles offshore floating all alone!(we picked it up, but you know what I mean) A log is a lot of fun to read after a few years, lets ya remember things all over again, the fine sunsets and sunrises, rainbows, the first Island siteing and so on ! anyway there are really nessasary for lots of things ! just my 2 cents, and we have a darn big bunch of them we have kept !!
We agree with all that...and especially the bit that says logs are "a lot of fun to read after a few years". We could add a few other good things too, e.g. helps you to remember dates and where you were when something happened; or to chronicle (blog!?!) your voyages (if you're into that sort of thing?!) and so on.

We agree as well with Stu Jackson's feeling about logging electronically...

We log all passages (position, weather, vessel log, etc) every 3 hours and all major maintenance issues or events.
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Old 25-08-2013, 02:41   #6
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Re: Logs?!?

I fully agree with bobconnie.

I faithfully keep a log in an accountants minute book with numbered pages. I also keep a maintenance log but not so diligently. From a forensic viewpoint hand written documents particularly in properly bound, numbered pages books or journals carry much more weight than anything typed or on a computer.

I do not keep what is called a deck log with all sorts of weather observations etc. as it is too much work, however I keep a daily record of where the vessel has been, is anchored etc. and comments on anything unusual. An exception is anything which may or may not come up in any claims against me, boats dragging down onto me etc. which I write up in carefully considered detail with diagrams.

The minute books I use have an alphabetically indexed section in the front which is very handy for recording boats and people you meet and contact details.

Now that I am getting on a bit I find the log very handy in keeping me informed of where I was yesterday. I also often refer to the old ones on conditions and times for voyage legs and the anchorages I previously used and nasties I may have encountered but have now forgotten.

I am slowly finding out the incredible practicability of OpenCPN and will be keeping records of voyages using the many different functional feature of the program but will continue to maintain my hand written log book as well.
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Old 25-08-2013, 09:33   #7
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Re: Logs?!?

Why not just start writing the log and then adjust as you go?

We do not keep a log but I do take notes underway (often on the margin area of the chart). Just in case.

b.
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Old 26-08-2013, 18:02   #8
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Thanks everyone for your Input. Sorry for the mis-spellings, it was late and I wasn't really paying attention to the spell check.

One more question, do I start a log from today or do I try to recreate the last nine months?
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Old 26-08-2013, 18:21   #9
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Re: Logs?!?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobconnie View Post
A log is a lot of fun to read after a few years, lets ya remember things all over again, the fine sunsets and sunrises, rainbows, the first Island siteing and so on ! anyway there are really nessasary for lots of things ! just my 2 cents, and we have a darn big bunch of them we have kept !!

FUN TO READ IS RIGHT!!!

when i bought my boat i read the very nice log.
several race wins, including a block island to bahamas,
and saving a guy that had been in the water for over 40 hours!!!!
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Old 26-08-2013, 18:26   #10
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Re: Logs?!?

Generally I ended up with two logs, one for maintenance & fuel which i did use, one for travels and navigation, which only got used much on longer passages really. A trip log just degraded to nothing as it became obvious that anyone we knew really wasnt that in tune with what we were talking about enough that it would interest them much later anyway!
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Old 26-08-2013, 18:34   #11
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Re: Logs?!?

I use a Rite-in-the-Rain 4"x6" spiral model with a pen from the same company. It can handle getting completely saturated and as the name implies you can write and read when it's totally soaked.

Things I scribble down:

- Every hour, or four hours, or several hours, or whatever: the GPS lat/long, cog, sog, means of propulsion, wind speed if relevant. Usually at that point I'll check my position on the paper chart, double check my required course, and write down the heading I need to hold and maybe an ETA based on some various speed options.

- Any relevant radio conversations (pan-pan's or maydays offshore, etc).

- Any sightings of unknown lights, usually a beacon on land that isn't charted. I've seen some weird lights.

- A noonsite if I manage to take one.

- Danger bearings for the person taking the watch after me since I'm typically the navigator (not being cocky, it's just something I take pride in and enjoy doing).

I think in general it's fine to write almost anything down. I've written about fish I've caught, being lonely, all kinds of stuff. Your log books (and your worn out sun faded courtesy flags) can serve as very small but powerful reminders of your seafaring.
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Old 26-08-2013, 18:40   #12
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Re: Logs?!?

Regarding the necessity of log keeping, I was in the Navy and they drill logs into your head at an early point. Within your first week you're up at night with a flashlight doing log entries and doing them exactly right.

At this point a lot of safety is derived from mine. Both from the recording but also because it forces me to stop, look at things, re-verify my location and heading, do ETA calculations, observe things outside the boat, etc. For small <50nm hops there's probably just an entry or two in there, if that. But offshore, overnight, or in new areas for sure I'm writing a lot.

I think it's akin to studying where if you write things down in a notebook you commit more to memory. The process of observing, writing, and reading your observations is a lot more powerful than glancing around and calling it good.
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Old 28-08-2013, 17:18   #13
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Re: Logs?!?

Quote:
One more question, do I start a log from today or do I try to recreate the last nine months?
One of the values of a log is it's intimate connection in time of the events it describes - it is recorded as events occur and consequently records "observations" whereas one recorded some time after takes on the properties of "recollections" which are subject to the frailties of human memory. As a first entry in your new log I would write up a summary of the previous nine months stating the circumstances and that that they were recollections and then commence recording your observations as daily entries.
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Old 28-08-2013, 21:14   #14
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Re: Logs?!?

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One of the values of a log is it's intimate connection in time of the events it describes - it is recorded as events occur and consequently records "observations" whereas one recorded some time after takes on the properties of "recollections" which are subject to the frailties of human memory. As a first entry in your new log I would write up a summary of the previous nine months stating the circumstances and that that they were recollections and then commence recording your observations as daily entries.
We agree with that...and well said RaymondR
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Old 29-08-2013, 19:09   #15
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Quote:
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One of the values of a log is it's intimate connection in time of the events it describes - it is recorded as events occur and consequently records "observations" whereas one recorded some time after takes on the properties of "recollections" which are subject to the frailties of human memory. As a first entry in your new log I would write up a summary of the previous nine months stating the circumstances and that that they were recollections and then commence recording your observations as daily entries.
Good advise. I have kept a blog for the last year, I will use that to summarize.

Thank you, Robyn
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