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Do folk still use log books when cruising long distance, or just electronic records? If a log book, any recommendations on ones suitable for sailing, showing for each entry, for example, date, time, speed, heading, wind, conditions, and general notes. I'm imagining each page having roughly 20-30 such single line entries, so some pages will reflect a single day, others multiple days. Can't find anything simply like that on Amazon, even if they say sailing logs they seem to imagine each trip fitting on one page, or are for celestial navigation, or are all about engine hours, oil pressure, etc.

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My log books are one dollar lab notebooks. Handwritten. Here is a page. Below are log entries every few hours. Above are transcribed WX reports from the radio. Other pages might have storm track histories or lists of things to buy or repair at the next port. No computer. Too slow and unreliable.

11DD9160-74F9-4F50-ADD4-0DCEFD674FB5.jpeg

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We've used these for years.

image.png.8f59fa3f01c8ff72f13b0024517cbc78.png

I had some nice log records of my first couple of years cruising, then the hard drive on my computer shit the bed and they're gone. They were records in MaxSea, not easy to backup regularly.

Newer versions of MaxSea dropped that nice log function, which still annoys me.

We keep hourly logs on passages, which we will often transcribe the salient points from into the permanent log.

Evenstar Passage Watch Log v2.docx

 

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Absolutely!  We like to use a simple leather blank book.  There are lots of reasons to keep a paper log, regulatory, the CG and others are big fans, something non-electrical to go in a ditch kit etc.  Mostly it's a diary of you, the fam, friends and the boat.  There is nothing quiet so gratifying as sitting quietly on the hook in a new ancorage with everything put away and tidyed up after a long passage, then filling out the logbook about a awesome  place.  Well maybe having your kid do it and reading it later with all the drawings and excitement..Hard to beat.

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My wife keeps the log, such as it is. So when I'm solo, it vanishes. It is nice to read what was going on after the fact, filtered through someone else's eyes.

When we go on a trip, 2 weeks, a month, two or three months, I don't read anything until we're done. Makes it way more interesting.

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13 hours ago, El Boracho said:

My log books are one dollar lab notebooks. Handwritten. Here is a page. Below are log entries every few hours. Above are transcribed WX reports from the radio. Other pages might have storm track histories or lists of things to buy or repair at the next port. No computer. Too slow and unreliable.

11DD9160-74F9-4F50-ADD4-0DCEFD674FB5.jpeg

Where do you find $1 lab notebooks (says the guy who just bought lab notebooks for the lab, and they weren't cheap).

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We have one of those Weems and Plath logbooks (but we skipped the fance, expensive wood cover for it).

Since we're just sailing in the Chesapeake, we don't record hourly fixes. My wife has nice handwriting and a creative mind so I generally let her log what happens each day but I provide input on sailing conditions, meteorlogical conditions and navigation data. I log maintenance when it occurrs.

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1 hour ago, bplipschitz said:

Where do you find $1 lab notebooks (says the guy who just bought lab notebooks for the lab, and they weren't cheap).

Actually the tag reads 41 Philippine pesos. so only 80 cents. I used to get the larger US style college notebooks but the boat wear and tear prohibited their use beyond half way so these are more of a grade school level. But still stitched and durable enough. Every consumer thing cheap in PI.

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39 minutes ago, El Boracho said:

Actually the tag reads 41 Philippine pesos. so only 80 cents. I used to get the larger US style college notebooks but the boat wear and tear prohibited their use beyond half way so these are more of a grade school level. But still stitched and durable enough. Every consumer thing cheap in PI.

Tear out the pages and they double as toilet paper.

There -- I said it.  Watch them fly off the shelves now, and prices skyrocket.

You're welcome.

In all seriousness, I wish I could find some locally as cheap.

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I've used the Evergreen Pacific Log book. It's a bit pricey, but has some good formats for maintenance logs.  

I usually keep a deck log that gets copied into the main log once a day or so. 

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I have used a log book for passages as navigator to Hawaii on races and back with deliveries.  On my own boat, I have a written log of all the trips and day sails I have done.  Been doing this for many years on several of my boats.  Fun to look back and reminisce. 

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We log similar to bplipschitz,  but as we sail short handed with only one person on watch.  I have the watch log info every half hour.  This gives you a position to start from if you your crew goes overboard, as well as good info to DR and see currents, etc. 

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Mostly here to spectate, as I haven't found the ideal solution for the boat.  There's always a trade-off between printing up a form and using freeform pages. Forms can be helpful when they double as a check-list.  Then there's the problem of adding digital information - tracks, photos, etc... ( A small version of problems experienced in the lab - some time around 1984, computer-generated data started blowing up the written notebook.)

For most mobile note-taking, I buy Ben Meadow's Fieldbooks by the case.  Fairly weather-resistant, fit in a hip pocket, stack neatly on the shelf.  Well crap... appears BM doesn't exist any more.  Pretty much this:  Slap your own label over the cover imprint.  

5735_49352_p2.jpg

 

Last year, I tried printing up some worksheet-style logbook pages, for ring or comb-binders, with the idea that the written notes are on the chart table, then in the evening, one could transfer that information to the computer/iPad and mix in photos and other data.  It sort of grew out of making a logbook for drone flying.  Didn't really follow through though.  A lot of day-sails could have been one-liners.  Well, except for the list of stuff that broke...

 

 

 

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20 hours ago, TheDragon said:

Do folk still use log books when cruising long distance, or just electronic records? If a log book, any recommendations on ones suitable for sailing, showing for each entry, for example, date, time, speed, heading, wind, conditions, and general notes. I'm imagining each page having roughly 20-30 such single line entries, so some pages will reflect a single day, others multiple days. Can't find anything simply like that on Amazon, even if they say sailing logs they seem to imagine each trip fitting on one page, or are for celestial navigation, or are all about engine hours, oil pressure, etc.

Yes 

complete accurate log book 

 

the log book is the only way to keep you crews head  in the boat ,  become competent with all machines and aware of the situation 

A good log book also keeps track of valuable phone numbers , business cards and other details 

 

these items are sticky glued to the back of the relevant log book sheet 

 

 

 

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Concerning the actual log book I prefer loose log book pages

these pages fit better on the chart table ,  extra days pages like comments  can be added , soiled pages can be redone ... blood stains, dinner blobs , coffee spills will not contaminate the log 

 

these loose pages are then organized into a compact ring binder  

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33 minutes ago, slug zitski said:

Concerning the actual log book I prefer loose log book pages

these pages fit better on the chart table ,  extra days pages like comments  can be added , soiled pages can be redone ... blood stains, dinner blobs , coffee spills will not contaminate the log 

 

these loose pages are then organized into a compact ring binder  

We were going to do a loose page logbook, but I was under the impression that some governmental agencies, should they request logs, are not happy with loose pages because they can be easily modified/removed/replaced.

While you can easily tear stuff out of a ring bound bound book, it's harder to screw with if say, the pages are numbered. And a fully bound book will show where pages are cut out.

I have no idea of the truth of this, but was things I read somewhere years ago.

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52 minutes ago, slug zitski said:

Concerning the actual log book I prefer loose log book pages

Totally cheating, loose pages are. Coming from a research and engineering background, loose leaf notebooks are a sure sign of a scoundrel up to no good. Certainly wouldn't fly in my company. Same with the sales staff. Given the general tendency towards malfeasance of many sea captains I would think the same would be true on a proper ship. If I were a ship owner I would be very skeptical of my captain carefully transcribing the log. Computer records would be okay if there were some RCS (revision control software) used.

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1 hour ago, toddster said:

Mostly here to spectate, as I haven't found the ideal solution for the boat.  There's always a trade-off between printing up a form and using freeform pages. Forms can be helpful when they double as a check-list.  Then there's the problem of adding digital information - tracks, photos, etc... ( A small version of problems experienced in the lab - some time around 1984, computer-generated data started blowing up the written notebook.)

For most mobile note-taking, I buy Ben Meadow's Fieldbooks by the case.  Fairly weather-resistant, fit in a hip pocket, stack neatly on the shelf.  Well crap... appears BM doesn't exist any more.  Pretty much this:  Slap your own label over the cover imprint.  

5735_49352_p2.jpg

 

Last year, I tried printing up some worksheet-style logbook pages, for ring or comb-binders, with the idea that the written notes are on the chart table, then in the evening, one could transfer that information to the computer/iPad and mix in photos and other data.  It sort of grew out of making a logbook for drone flying.  Didn't really follow through though.  A lot of day-sails could have been one-liners.  Well, except for the list of stuff that broke...

 

 

 

The "Rite in the rain" books are great for misc stuff use one for a radio log and have at the helm for taking notes.  They are pretty bullet proof.  On log books in general it's pretty easy to go overboard, no pun intended.  Whatever you are putting in it is only of value if it's going to be referenced.  There are some general items that probably should go in like weather seastate and machinery history.  There definately isn't a one size fits all format. 

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19 minutes ago, El Boracho said:

Totally cheating, loose pages are. Coming from a research and engineering background, loose leaf notebooks are a sure sign of a scoundrel up to no good. Certainly wouldn't fly in my company. Same with the sales staff. Given the general tendency towards malfeasance of many sea captains I would think the same would be true on a proper ship. If I were a ship owner I would be very skeptical of my captain carefully transcribing the log. Computer records would be okay if there were some RCS (revision control software) used.

I don’t sell shit 

And I don’t   give a dam about your background

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So, to jump in this thread...   I’m going to start crewing on a boat this year, with the hopes of owning something in the next year or so.  While I don’t think I’d ever sit for a Capt lic,  obviously good habits are always a good thing and getting in the habit of logging ones time in a boat makes sense   

shouod I keep a log of my time spent crewing on someone else’s boat?  Even if I’m down in the belly  bagging sails or sitting on the rail?

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Yeah, in past lives, we were not only supposed to sign and date every page in the official bound controlled notebooks, but we had to get the boss (or more usually, just each other) to look at it and sign as a witness to ensure no funny business.  But it got to the point that most of the actual data were pieces of print-outs or photos scotch-taped to the pages.  Or just references to computer files.  Kind of defeated the purpose.  

In my lab now, (no boss) I use loose-leaf notebooks. Pre-printed worksheets for common procedures.  Each project accumulates a set of worksheets and print-outs from the instruments.  Extra stuff on engineering pad pages.  Customer-supplied documents.  Etc.  When everything on the master sheet is completed, the whole file gets scanned as an (immutable?) PDF file and the paper gets thrown away.  I'm sure modern people aren't using paper at all.  

Like BJ, I've heard that bound books are what "The Authorities" want to see, if they ever want to look at your logbook.  But like Slug, I figure I mostly have only myself to please at this point.  

Well, this is somewhat embarrassing, but here are the worksheets I made up last year for the boat logbook. I'm changing a few things this year.  It's a little bit silly, but the point is to figure out a system that works before I actually need it.  Could always go back to the fieldbooks.  If one had a sufficiently organized mind, one probably wouldn't need worksheets...

One page a day worksheet (Actually two half-pages):    

image.thumb.png.b4cfb8c53cb46fc4d91c1a2f78f73521.png

If more than one day, or a really complicated day, there are these extra sheets to drop in:

image.thumb.png.ff84af7146c2325b124097809a18a554.png

Plenty of blank pages on hand if needed.  Extra space for notes turns out to be often needed:

image.thumb.png.b053d2378fca3b758b9d173b9c9e8126.png

And some radio log pages to drop in if needed.  (The "call sign" is to sort out whether I'm operating as ship's station or ham. Should be separate logs, probably, but see above about "pleasing myself.")

image.thumb.png.619128657d9bd58ff08057786d23eff8.png

Maintenance log is just free-form at this point.  Except fuel & lubrication tables.  Though it might be handy to have a few pages printed up with boat diagrams. Lots of messy sketches & scribbled measurements that get taken home and drawn on the computer before attempting to execute a project.  

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9 hours ago, Marcjsmith said:

So, to jump in this thread...   I’m going to start crewing on a boat this year, with the hopes of owning something in the next year or so.  While I don’t think I’d ever sit for a Capt lic,  obviously good habits are always a good thing and getting in the habit of logging ones time in a boat makes sense   

shouod I keep a log of my time spent crewing on someone else’s boat?  Even if I’m down in the belly  bagging sails or sitting on the rail?

You mention captain's license. You never know...it makes it easier if you have the time logged.

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16 hours ago, Marcjsmith said:

So, to jump in this thread...   I’m going to start crewing on a boat this year, with the hopes of owning something in the next year or so.  While I don’t think I’d ever sit for a Capt lic,  obviously good habits are always a good thing and getting in the habit of logging ones time in a boat makes sense   

shouod I keep a log of my time spent crewing on someone else’s boat?  Even if I’m down in the belly  bagging sails or sitting on the rail?

Can't hurt.  MIght make interesting reading later in life. . .

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On 3/10/2020 at 9:57 PM, Ishmael said:

My wife keeps the log, such as it is. So when I'm solo, it vanishes. It is nice to read what was going on after the fact, filtered through someone else's eyes.

When we go on a trip, 2 weeks, a month, two or three months, I don't read anything until we're done. Makes it way more interesting.

"Tuesday. Wednesday? The voices are getting louder. Every day, water water water. I have taken to hiding kitchen knives around the boat. He thinks I am enjoying this, ha!"

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18 hours ago, Marcjsmith said:

So, to jump in this thread...   I’m going to start crewing on a boat this year, with the hopes of owning something in the next year or so.  While I don’t think I’d ever sit for a Capt lic,  obviously good habits are always a good thing and getting in the habit of logging ones time in a boat makes sense   

shouod I keep a log of my time spent crewing on someone else’s boat?  Even if I’m down in the belly  bagging sails or sitting on the rail?

If you are in the US you can download a USCG generic form for seatime and have the captain or owner of the boat sign it for you.  Much to the chagrin of the rest of the maritime world you can literally use a kayak for seatime towards a entry level captains license like a Six Pack in the US.

If you are keeping a sailing log it helps to get the dates and time sorted when you tally it all up.  Also a good idea to let whoever is running the boat know what you are up to, some captains or owners can get a little wierd about it.

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On 3/11/2020 at 8:05 PM, toddster said:

Yeah, in past lives, we were not only supposed to sign and date every page in the official bound controlled notebooks, but we had to get the boss (or more usually, just each other) to look at it and sign as a witness to ensure no funny business.  But it got to the point that most of the actual data were pieces of print-outs or photos scotch-taped to the pages.  Or just references to computer files.  Kind of defeated the purpose.  

In my lab now, (no boss) I use loose-leaf notebooks. Pre-printed worksheets for common procedures.  Each project accumulates a set of worksheets and print-outs from the instruments.  Extra stuff on engineering pad pages.  Customer-supplied documents.  Etc.  When everything on the master sheet is completed, the whole file gets scanned as an (immutable?) PDF file and the paper gets thrown away.  I'm sure modern people aren't using paper at all.  

Like BJ, I've heard that bound books are what "The Authorities" want to see, if they ever want to look at your logbook.  But like Slug, I figure I mostly have only myself to please at this point.  

Well, this is somewhat embarrassing, but here are the worksheets I made up last year for the boat logbook. I'm changing a few things this year.  It's a little bit silly, but the point is to figure out a system that works before I actually need it.  Could always go back to the fieldbooks.  If one had a sufficiently organized mind, one probably wouldn't need worksheets...

One page a day worksheet (Actually two half-pages):    

image.thumb.png.b4cfb8c53cb46fc4d91c1a2f78f73521.png

If more than one day, or a really complicated day, there are these extra sheets to drop in:

image.thumb.png.ff84af7146c2325b124097809a18a554.png

Plenty of blank pages on hand if needed.  Extra space for notes turns out to be often needed:

image.thumb.png.b053d2378fca3b758b9d173b9c9e8126.png

And some radio log pages to drop in if needed.  (The "call sign" is to sort out whether I'm operating as ship's station or ham. Should be separate logs, probably, but see above about "pleasing myself.")

image.thumb.png.619128657d9bd58ff08057786d23eff8.png

Maintenance log is just free-form at this point.  Except fuel & lubrication tables.  Though it might be handy to have a few pages printed up with boat diagrams. Lots of messy sketches & scribbled measurements that get taken home and drawn on the computer before attempting to execute a project.  

You can have as many entries as you want in a log book

I like the log to be compact 

With a log book I am most interested in ensuring  my crew knows how to Dead Reckon and  that they record their watch observations 

no corrected SOG or COG 

 

that  calculated data is all over the chart plotter, radar , B and G  , iPhone 

I simply enter  time  , course , speed,  wind speed , wind angle , Wind direction ,log , ,position , bilge level  , sail combo and comment 

 

the watch  plots their DR on the chart

 

comment  is a  brief description of how you sailed the  boat during your watch ...... a short story 

poled out  starboard  jibe ,  sailed  15 degrees high of course to avoid shipping lane  , wind soft ..........

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