Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Using software to catalog a gun collection

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by RM, Oct 20, 2006.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. RM

    RM Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2003
    Messages:
    596
    Location:
    Maryland
    I have seen some different programs for cataloging your gun collection. None of them particularly appealed to me. Mostly they have too much stuff I don't need. I read that you can use a basic spreadsheet to do the same thing. Can you upload pictures to a spreadsheet as well as written information? I would like to custom-make a catalog of my guns with information and photos.
     
  2. cloudedice

    cloudedice Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2006
    Messages:
    278
    Location:
    CT
    Apparently you can put pictures into a spread sheet, but it's a little more than drag and drop...

    So, if you could design a program to catalog your firearms, what features would it have? Maybe someone knows of something similar.

    [edit] http://www.computing.net/office/wwwboard/forum/6194.html - forgot the link about pictures in excel
     
  3. RH822

    RH822 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2006
    Messages:
    419
    Location:
    Indiana
    I know you can if you use Microsoft Excel, thats' how I catalog my collection. It is quite simple to figure out, once you have "played" with it a while.

    RH
     
  4. Crosshair

    Crosshair Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2005
    Messages:
    1,985
    Location:
    Grand Forks, North Dakota
    I just use Notepad and a TXT file.
     
  5. The Scandinavian

    The Scandinavian Member

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Messages:
    247
    Location:
    Finland EU
    I'd use excel for mine. However I don't need to yet - either 'old age' hasn't set in properly yet or I have too few guns, as I can just about remember what I've got ;)

    Seriously, notepad or excel - the latter would enable you to search / organise more effectively, if you have a really big collection.
     
  6. Third_Rail

    Third_Rail Member

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2004
    Messages:
    4,981
    I use notepad, as well. .txt files can be read by almost anything, and they're small enough that I simply add the file to my other backup files when archiving things.
     
  7. windjammer

    windjammer Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2005
    Messages:
    71
    Location:
    Mid----Tennessee
    I use GunTracker. It is easy to use and store pictures.
    The verison I have has Fjestad's Blue Book built in.

    Windjammer
     
  8. Deanimator

    Deanimator Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2006
    Messages:
    10,696
    Location:
    Rocky River, Ohio
    I use my Palm Pilot. It came with database software.

    You could use a spreadsheet or a real database program like MS Access.

    An Access database of personal firearms would be very simple, even if you used lookup tables to let you pick manufacturer, caliber, etc. from pulldown lists.

    Apart from cost, the thing I don't like about Access is that it's not compiled. You can't just give your database to anybody and have it be usable. They also have to have Access. There used to be a database compiler back in the '80s and early '90s called Clarion. When you were done with your project, it compiled like any other program and you could give your database application to anyone without them needing Clarion. You can do that with Visual Basic, but VB is a LOT more work than Clarion was. Clarion got very popular, then got bought by another company who totally screwed it up to the point of unusability. It may still be around, but I think it's only popular in South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. It's quite expensive now too.
     
  9. Billy_H

    Billy_H Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    Messages:
    264
    Location:
    Tampa, FL
    I use Access for mine, but it would be just as easy to use Excel if you aren't familiar with Access. I'm able to decide what information I track and what I don't and it allows for easy sorting based on any of that information.

    I do agree with what the poster above me said about using Access and trying to give it to someone else...however it is easy to just export the data to Excel if needed. It won't look as pretty, but it will get the job done if I ever have to hand the information over to the police/insurance company.

    To add a picture it's as easy as right-clicking and choosing the option to insert a picture, then picking the correct picture. Simple.

    Here is a screen shot of the interface I have set up.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. timothy75

    timothy75 Member

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Messages:
    481
    Anyone can make a generic one with Windows in my documents. Thats what I did.
     
  11. ProguninTN

    ProguninTN Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2006
    Messages:
    416
    Location:
    Tennessee
    Software

    I would use Excel, Access or Wordpad. (Some files can be too large for notepad, and are better accommodated by the latter.)
     
  12. SoCalShooter

    SoCalShooter Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Messages:
    3,091
    Location:
    That's for me to know and not you!
    I agree with the others. Put the info into a spreadsheet and then use an access database to pull the info into a nice little form.
     
  13. Holleta

    Holleta Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Ne PA
    I use Excel (without pics but I'll try the suggestion) Access is surely a better way to do it but is not as common of a program found on most PCs as Word/Excel is.
     
  14. Aguila Blanca

    Aguila Blanca Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    Messages:
    1,693
    I'd go with Access or, better (and easier) yet Alpha Five. Or go to Staples and get a copy of one of those inexpensive utility databases that allows you to inventory your household possessions for insurance purposes. You can then use it to document everything in your house (not a bad idea, but I've been too lazy to do it), or just use it for the firearms. You can usually find programs like this for around 20 bucks.
     
  15. Farnham

    Farnham Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2004
    Messages:
    641
    Location:
    Texas
    Apache, MySQL, PHP, Solaris (AMPS)

    Great for CD collections, photo libraries, asset management, and GUN COLLECTIONS! :D

    'Course, it's a bit of a learning curve. ;)

    S/F

    Farnham
     
  16. hksw

    hksw Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2002
    Messages:
    4,157
    Location:
    OH
    I use Excel. With all of the data entered, you can also do quite a bit of statisical analysis. As for importing photos, the more current Excel versions are a simple cut/copy and past onto the sheet and you can edit it there if need be. One thing about using Excel, though. With photos, file size starts to really pile up.
     
  17. Deacon Aegis

    Deacon Aegis Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2006
    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    Rockwall, Texas

    Dude, delivering up a web app... hehe, why the heck would you at least not stay open source and go LAMP (Linux/Apache/MySQL/PHP)... adding unix to the fray is just cruel.

    (needless to say we're far beyond catalog at this point and talking 3-tier architecture. :p)

    Remember, Linux is not Unix. Hehe.

    Hello World. ;)
     
  18. aaronrkelly

    aaronrkelly Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2005
    Messages:
    1,087
    Like the above poster I use Access, I built my own interface with the information that I want to have on hand, including pictures.

    Here is a screen shot.

    [​IMG]

    I also have a version without the picture capability.....its alot smaller and I would be glad to send you a copy of the database (it will work great if you have Access). Just let me know.
     
  19. dfaugh

    dfaugh Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2004
    Messages:
    1,994
    As a database programmer (primarily Access, SQL Server, and Oracle), I of course, am biased towards Access. My buddy (who has an extensive collection, and used to do some programming), built a nice Access database for his collection. Besides all the information about each gun, he also keeps reloading info (gun specific & general) in there. Now, you can use Excel, but one of the biggest advantages of Access (or most database programs) is the "search" capabilities, which can be quite extensive/programmable.

    Access is not very difficult to learn, for making "basic" databases, in fact there's lots of "Wizards" to help you along. However once you get a certain level of complexity, it CAN be daunting for a non-programmer.

    I've often thought of writing a "gun collection database"(plus reloading info), and I even have a compiler for Access, so I could distribute it, and the users wouldn't need Access to use it. Or I could do it in Visual Basic, which when comiled is a little faster, but takes more programming) If there were enough people willing to pay a few dollars for it, I'd probably consider it. (For me, this is something I could whip up in a day or 2, depending on how fancy I got with it.)
     
  20. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2005
    Messages:
    11,379
    Location:
    TN
    Aaronrkelly: That is an excellent!

    For those not as computer literate, a simple spreadsheet on Excel or any spreadsheet program will work nicely. I use this method. Just never spent the time to set up Access to do something like aaron has.

    One of the things I do with the spread sheet is use color to my advantage. For example, I use a notation as well as text color to document that firearm is no longer owned by me (i.e. sold). I also document whether or not the Form 4473 was completed with the purchase as well as purchase date, price (less tax). You just have to forget about sales tax. I document where I purchased the firearm as well as to whom I sold it to.

    A simpler "database" using pictues could easily be set up with Powerpoint. Inserting pictures is very easy as well as descriptive text. I use a form that gets copied into the next "slide" and then insert pictures and correct descriptive text. I think that documenting if you completed the purchase via a FFL dealer and filled out a 4473 is very good information to save.

    It depends on how many guns you own and what your objectives are with the information.

    The truth is that I use several methods and tinker with this from time to time. I do this with othe things as well. I also show estimated value (with year) if I have a fair handle on market value. I do tend to value low as I keep a runing total on "net gun worth".

    After a few years, it is hard to remember all the little details. Computers come in really handy for these things. Be sure to save a backup copy not on the same computer and perhaps a hard copy as well. Three ring binder works well for the hard copy archive.

    I password protect the infomation as well. Don't want unwanted eyes viewing the information.
     
  21. hexidismal

    hexidismal Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2006
    Messages:
    1,853
    Location:
    Ulster County, New York
    I had been looking to do some similar cataloguing, not so much of my guns, but rather of my ammo stock. Having only a relatively small number of guns, it's not like I'm going to somehow lose track and forget what I do and do not have /paid/etc. Ammo on the other hand.. With at least 8 different calibers, and the subcatagories within each (i.e. bullet type, grain, manufacture) I find it very hard after a ( albeit rare ) day of shooting, to know what I have and what I need to replenish my stock of. Several times I've considered using software to manage that problem , but I've always given up because I had no idea where to begin.
     
  22. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2005
    Messages:
    11,379
    Location:
    TN
    That should not be much problem at all. You just need to reason the whole thing out and organize a spreadsheet in a way that makes sense for your situation. Simple one.... caliber on left column, subsequent columns contain different loads or bullets or brand. List number of rounds or boxes. Then it is just a number listed on the row for each type. The problem is to continually update the spreadsheet. The ideal would to organize it in such a way that you can print it comfortably on a single sheet of paper. I like paper copies of things to read. What's the worst thing that could happen? You set it up and then change it. It is called learning and using your experience to benefit your objectives.

    As time advances forward and the number of firearms increase, you will forget or confuse the details. Best to get the information recorded while it is fresh in your mind. Some would say "Who cares?" For that person, perhaps the receipts in a file folder is enough or save or document nothing.
     
  23. hexidismal

    hexidismal Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2006
    Messages:
    1,853
    Location:
    Ulster County, New York
    hehe .. easy for you to say .. Me, I open Access or Excel and I sit there and stare at it saying "Ummm...."
     
  24. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2005
    Messages:
    11,379
    Location:
    TN
    Do it on paper first and then get on the computer. Rough it out first on paper. You can refine it later as you get comfortable. Think of it as a reason to learn how to use excel or lotus, whatever you use. They are all the same for the most part.

    Don't use Access. Too complicated for beginners. Use Excel and if you get proficient, you can always import those into Access. All Access is IS a spreadsheet or series of spreadsheets. With Access, you need to have a pretty firm idea of what your objectives are as it affects the way you can access the informaton. Just keep it simple.
     
  25. DoubleTapDrew

    DoubleTapDrew Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2006
    Messages:
    5,356
    Location:
    Oregon
    I use GunSafe ver. 2.05. It looks like those access forms but it's easy to use and it's freeware. http://somanyroads.org/gunsafe/
    Can't beat the price! You can add pics and other info as well.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page