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Old 05-28-2013, 07:55 AM   #1
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Record Keeping On the Road

Iíve noticed from their responses that some forum members seem to keep good track of their travels. They can tell you how many days their Airstream has been on the road, how many total miles theyíve traveled, and so forth.

Iíve never been much inclined to keeping records while traveling, but it sounds like a good idea. As we get closer to retirement and to making longer trips, Iíd like to start keeping better track of our time on the road.

All this is just to ask, if you keep records of your trips, why do you do it, how do you do it, and what information do you collect?
Thanks,
Don
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:07 AM   #2
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We keep a written log for our dear Lucy, and have done so since she was new in 2006. That's how we can tell that we have camped in Lucy for 1,271 nights, and have towed her for 102,700 miles. Our log also shows where we have camped and the length of stay.

We started doing this primarily to track Lucy's rolling miles so that we would know when to service her hubs. As we do so much day touring while on camping trips, the tow vehicle's odometer is useless in determining mileage on the Airstream. To get our towing mileage, we use Microsoft Streets and Trips to get the driving distance between two points.

We also post repairs and maintenance item in Lucy's log.

Brian
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:58 AM   #3
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Don, we are retired. I can't think of a good reason to keep this kind of record. It's good to know how far a planned trip might be, but we usually don't follow the plan closely anyway. And after the trip, who cares.

The newer Airstream bearings on most models cannot be lubed, and brake wear isn't dependent on miles. I do inspections and preventative maintenance on the trailer, but this is dependent on the calendar (quarterly, annual) and the weather and road conditions we have been in.

doug k
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Old 05-28-2013, 09:20 AM   #4
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I keep a log of our travels for my own amusement. I don't keep track of mileage, but write down where we went and where we spent the night. This started mostly because of a State campground we wanted to remember not to stay at again.
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Old 05-28-2013, 11:55 AM   #5
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We have always kept camper logs, even when tent camping.

I currently use a 3 ring binder, we put the date, miles driven, where we spend the night, any maintenance performed, pictures, etc. I know a couple of people that are using some form of electronic log book, one is nothing more than a Word Doc that they add a new page to every day.

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Old 05-28-2013, 12:03 PM   #6
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I don't see any benefit from any record except mileage for oil changes and tire rotations. We don't even have to keep up with mileage. The truck tells us when it is time for service every 5,000 miles. I will do tire rotations on the truck 'n' trailer every other oil change or 10,000 mile. How many nights have I stayed in my Airstream? A bunch. How many miles have I towed my Airstream? A whole bunch.
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Old 05-28-2013, 12:07 PM   #7
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I like writing. Typing only a necessary skill.

To be upscale a bit check out moleskine
http://www.moleskine.com/us/

I use their products for quality, feel and how the paper takes the ink.

If you don't care about that sort of thing, I understand. Imagine tho... Miles down the road and a stack of very presentable books for your own reminders or recollection.

Some 45 years ago my family purchased an old home. Whilst rummaging through left behind items we discovered links to our family's past which no one recalled until we shared the contents. D
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Old 05-28-2013, 01:11 PM   #8
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Just Because ...

I too use a little Moleskine notebook. The little book's got tow vehicle and trailer VIN numbers, tire inflation pressures vs. load charts, lubricant requirements, lamp specifications and current draws, recorded scale weights, etc. so I don't have to look such stuff up more than once.

I log every trip and record miles travelled, fuel consumption average when towing, number of nights and number of person-nights, and any needed maintenance / repairs. (Whaddya' mean that LED lamp burned out? Seems like I just installed those. Hmmm; I've only had it for, let's see ....!) Depending upon my mood and state of sloth, I also sometimes record data about my solar system's performance, such as peak charging rate (which if and as it drops over time tells me it's time to wash off the solar panels again!). One other thing that I like to do is to keep track of the "nicer" sites at places I stay, so that if / when I go back, I can get one of those sites. This has frequently proved useful, as I do sometimes wind up in the same place more than once.

It's sort of amusing to look at the older entries and see how much I've learned and how much I've forgotten. Seems like it's mostly the latter!
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Old 05-28-2013, 01:21 PM   #9
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In our pop-up days we kept a written journal of our travels - kinda, sorta ...... pretty much a hit and miss record that varied widely in level of detail depending on who was doing the writing. Since purchasing the Bambi in 2003 the journal - now an Excel spreadsheet - has become an impressive and detailed record of all of our travels since - with incredibly little effort required to keep it up to date.


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Old 05-28-2013, 01:24 PM   #10
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I don't keep records. I can tell you where I went, and how many days I've stayed, and maybe a few quirks about the places I've stayed, for every trip I've made. Not because I write any of it down, but because each trip in my Airstream is memorable.

Relying upon my memory rather than on a piece of paper or a computer screen is my way of exercising my brain. Like they say, use it or lose it!
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Old 05-28-2013, 01:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AirsDream View Post
I too use a little Moleskine notebook. The little book's got tow vehicle and trailer VIN numbers, tire inflation pressures vs. load charts, lubricant requirements, lamp specifications and current draws, recorded scale weights, etc. so I don't have to look such stuff up more than once.

I log every trip and record miles travelled, fuel consumption average when towing, number of nights and number of person-nights, and any needed maintenance / repairs. (Whaddya' mean that LED lamp burned out? Seems like I just installed those. Hmmm; I've only had it for, let's see ....!) Depending upon my mood and state of sloth, I also sometimes record data about my solar system's performance, such as peak charging rate (which if and as it drops over time tells me it's time to wash off the solar panels again!). One other thing that I like to do is to keep track of the "nicer" sites at places I stay, so that if / when I go back, I can get one of those sites. This has frequently proved useful, as I do sometimes wind up in the same place more than once.

It's sort of amusing to look at the older entries and see how much I've learned and how much I've forgotten. Seems like it's mostly the latter!
Moleskine is keeping with the times a bit.

Their website has a link for a FREE online app! I just installed it. Yet another "app" to bother me!

It has nice features. You can photo your existing pages then paste into the app! Once you do that you can "save" the whole File to "Dropbox " or Evernote. Then you can view from a less visually challenging screen.

But I can't figure out how to get this ink off my iPhone.
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Old 05-28-2013, 01:59 PM   #12
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Keeping a good record of what you have done will make good reading some day by someone, if not you.

The day you have to deal with an insurance agent, if you have no record to support your claim, the insurance company wins.

The day you want to sell your unit, if you can not produce a detailed record, you loose again.

And that memory will fail in time. A few pictures and notes will keep those memories forever.

When you get those flashbacks, it is nice to be able to go back in the book and associate it with the correct moment/event. (I like winning those arguments with my GW.)

Dave
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Old 05-28-2013, 02:14 PM   #13
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Having been an OCD record-keeper for many years, which was a highly functional trait in my career , I simply don't want to do this any more.

We did keep daily records of expenses the first several months of extended travel, to get a feel for what we were spending and to make sure we didn't spend too much. We got settled in and gave up that minutia.

Maybe having chronicled for decades every movement and task I completed has filled me up in this respect. Those who haven't had to do this for their jobs may have an innate need to document, document, document. We have met a lot of people who do this, but we don't really understand why.

That said, many keep a diary of their travels, and that is pretty cool.

Some friends of ours retired and began traveling about the same time we did. We recently spent some time with them, and she showed us the US atlas they bought when they first set out in 2007, within which she has marked every road they have traveled in every state they have been in. Places they visited and loved are circled and many notations made in the margins.

I was envious, and wished I had thought to do it.


Maggie
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Old 05-28-2013, 02:24 PM   #14
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I kept my travel log on my computer for the last several years. I recorded destinations, number of nights in the trailer, mileage, maintenance dates, weather, etc. Computer crashed and I could not recover my data. So now I do not keep records other than I keep a paper file of receipts for my trailer maintenance and camping gear. I jot notes, dates, and mileage on those receipts.

My brain is not what it used to be. My memories of one trip gets confused with another trip. I have a hard time remembering when I greased those bearing, so I just do it in the fall before I head south. I head out on a trip and go the wrong direction, but I always get there. Still having fun!

I like the idea Maggie's friends used. I'm going to get a US / Canada Atlas
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