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Old 17-08-2019, 08:50   #31
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

Don't track....you'll just end up crying!
Bill



What do people here use to plan/track/record their boat projects?
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Old 17-08-2019, 09:18   #32
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

I'd use an approach where I can see the dependences of different tasks. That would help me to see clearer which ones I must do first to enable others. Stickers and lines between them would do. When the choice limiting tasks have been done, I can pick anything from the list, depending on my mood.

The most important thing is however to have an up to date shopping list. That would save me many trips to the shops and many frustrating moments of not being able to proceed.
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Old 17-08-2019, 09:24   #33
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

We use a spreadsheet. The advantage for us is we add and delete tasks as things evolve while keeping items sorted by priority using the ABCs and 123s method. A-critical, B- important, C-long-term. Then prioritize the order to be completed, 1-2-3, etc. You can do it on paper, of course, but Rewriting three hundred items gets challenging.
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Old 17-08-2019, 09:38   #34
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

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Originally Posted by GILow View Post
Hmmm... lots of paper based approaches here. I am not sure if the problem is me or the size of the lists, but I am finding paper too hard. In part because each simple project involves so many steps, resources, stages.

So, take the fridge as an example.

I have to build a fridge box... ok.

Before the build I had to run the dimensions past my refrigeration supplier to make sure the proposed box would suit the equipment.

So I had to get dimensions right by measuring down at the boat. Now that I have confirmed the dimensions with the fridge guy, I have to build the mold and check that I can actually get the box into the boat once built. (Yeah, I've fallen for THAT one once.) And the mold has to be built at home in the garage and taken down to the boat BEFORE I start glassing.

To build the mold, it turns out I need a number of tools that are down on the boat. So that project goes on hold until the next boat visit (40 km round trip.) And I need to remember to bring those tools back. Where do I record that info so I don't forget...?

Etc... etc....

I CAN, in theory, do all this on paper, but all it takes is me leaving a critical bit of paper at the boat, or at home, and I am stuck on that project...

I like the idea of something software based, possibly in the cloud, which I can access and update from home and the boat. It almost feels like one of those project management tools that seem so popular, which is ironic because I've resisted them in 30 years of management, only to find I feel like I need one now.

Conachair, I hadn't considered a mind map... I can see how it might work. I've used them as a teaching tool in the past... I think of them as a bit too graphical for such a large list of projects... but maybe a mind map for each project would work..... I'll give it a go.

Matt

Looking at this example problem, I have identified your main construction bottleneck.

Stop living away from the boat project.

You need to pick up an RV, van or other similar or put up plastic sheeting in the boat in such a way you can have a place to eat/sleep/cook/pee.

You absolutely cannot be efficient with a shop 40Km from the thing you're working on.

At the very least, get a box truck and put your "shop" in there, driving that to the boat.

Your problem isn't planning. It's bad fundamental logistics.
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Old 17-08-2019, 09:41   #35
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

Workflowy app

hierarchical outline, each node collapsible

flexible for GTD or other prioritization, also topical filtering using #tagging, also @tags, custom keywords - google for blog posts

saved views

synchronizes across all your devices, different OSs

Standard OMPL import export or copy/paste from other outlining note taking programs
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Old 17-08-2019, 09:43   #36
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

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Hi all,

I am counting down the days until I move aboard. Only 94 days to go.

The list of projects to be completed is... daunting.

I have the skills, materials and tools for all the known jobs, but I just feel like I have no handle on the list as a whole. I've tried various ways of mapping this next couple of months, but nothing, so far, feels right.

What do people here use to plan/track/record their boat projects?

(I am not looking to blog this or anything, just to be clear, this is for my own use, so something online is all very well, but only as a tool of convenience, not some kind of social media device.)

Matt

Hello Matt,


There are many good ideas already posted, so I will just say "don't count the days, unless you want to make your life very miserable and become very discouraged". Refitting an old boat as a DIY project cannot be tightly scheduled because it's impossible to determine the scope of the work at the beginning - every step reveals new items requiring repair or replacement. If you want to go long distance cruising in comfort, then you've got to finish pretty much everything before you depart, but that will take years, so concentrate on items that make the boat seaworthy rather than comfortable, then you can go day sailing or Wednesday night racing and get some sailing use out of the boat. Also, you've got to enjoy doing boat work- the project itself must be a source of fun and satisfaction, because you're going to be on it for a long time. If that's not you, don't get into it, it will end up driving you crazy.
Sorry, got to go, just starting on fifth year of a small boat refit, which I work on full time - only another three years to go. (Hahaha - howls of derision from wife and family (they don't understand me))

Good luck
John Mardall
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Old 17-08-2019, 09:45   #37
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

Google Keep is a great resource. Let's you create lists with checkboxes, take photos inside the app (which I use all the time for serial/model numbers, 'before' pictures when I'm disassembling something, and to see things in areas I can't access), and clip webpages. I have different tags for different categories on the boat, but all of them also get the "Boat" tag. Free, synchronizes across all your devices.
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Old 17-08-2019, 10:44   #38
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

I use Excel spreadsheets, easy to prioritize, sort, hi-light, add notes, hide unimportant (for now) stuff, etc.
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Old 17-08-2019, 14:25   #39
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

I put all my “boat” money in an single account, when the money was gone I just had to make do and go sailing
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Old 17-08-2019, 14:32   #40
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

Thank you all. Some good ideas here. I’m trying Trello to see how it compares with the mind map approach. And I will look at Google Keep then Workflowy next.

Just to reassure people that their advice isn’t being ignored, in no special order...

Paper is out. I never mastered carrying a diary and I have terrible form leaving stuff at the boat already. I did try it, but I quickly ran into problems with not having what I needed with me. I really think I need to go cloud based for this job.

I tried a spreadsheet, it was close, but I kept running into problems with the way my work lists change with the job, I had trouble expanding job lists in Excel. Maybe I chose the wrong layout initially?

Timeline is non negotiable. I have to move out of this house on the 20th of November so now it’s 93 days and counting. Likewise I have to stay in this house for those 93 days as I am seeing my son through year 12, and as capable as he is, I want him focussed on his exams, not cooking himself dinner or trying to run the house.

Thankfully I drive a light commercial van so the logistics of moving stuff to and from the boat are not daunting.

Thank you all for the good advice, back to work for me.
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Old 17-08-2019, 15:00   #41
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

Keep is great but only one indent level.

Trello or any ticket-tracking project-management tool is way overkill, spend too much valuable actually-doing time managing the tools.

Are you susceptible to procrastination, paralysis by analysis? Google "shaving the yak"

Might be better off with a "Hipster PDA" stack of index cards and a binder clip
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Old 17-08-2019, 16:26   #42
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

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Are you susceptible to procrastination, paralysis by analysis? Google "shaving the yak"
Thankfully I am not, which is why I won't google the yak thing.
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Old 17-08-2019, 17:17   #43
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

I like checkvist.com. Its like listing on steroids and the app is great too.
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Old 17-08-2019, 17:33   #44
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

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No you don't. Trello can be used on it's own. I have 5 or 6 boards - Gear, Maintenance, Gear list and so on. For a project you can break it by function (electrical, plumbing etc) or by area of the boat (aft cabin, galley, rudder) and each board has a list of cards. Each card is a task or job. You have a list for "to do", "doing", "done" , "waiting" etc and just move the card from list to list.

you can use it on the web but I also use it on the ipad and phone and it's all synced automatically.
There are many Project Management software systems and many are complementary rather than mutually exclusive.

Trello is a task management system that lets you track the flow of work as it moves from left to right. It is simple and easy to get into, with most of its interface being self-explanatory.
Asana (CPM) is among the best project management software and allows you to check dependencies. It works better with larger projects in which relationships between tasks are more complicated.

"Allows you to check dependencies" is exactly what Matt (and I) need. If we put the lid on the fridge/freezer we can't install the thermometer probe or seal the refrigerant tubing outlet..... We must proceed with our projects according to a certain planned Critical Path

https://www.cloudwards.net/trello-vs-asana/
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Old 18-08-2019, 03:04   #45
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Re: Favourite way of tracking boat refurb project

Lots of good advise given. Whether on paper, a word document or on your mobile devise, does it matter?
I keep a list on a word document on Dropbox and I make a point of retaining what has been done so as to keep a positive reminder of progress otherwise i find it can be a bit disheartening. Other thoughts
- the list is never finished but that should not stop one sailing.
- keep prioritizing and highlight safety related tasks
- separate the nice to do items
- don’t loose sight of regular maintenance
Good luck.
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