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Old 12-01-2009, 06:48   #166
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As you more than likely know...the Vendee Globe racers are in day 64 of their single handed sojourn. I don't know what their routines are and would be interested to learn about it---does anybody know the details?

Physiologically there's a price to pay for sleeping in 20 minute stints because your body has to get into REM sleep for it to properly benefit. Over a short duration we can all deal with this in different ways, and a 20 minute kip does a world of difference over the short term as we've all experienced, but your decision making abilities decline fairly quickly when you're getting into sleep deprivation and harder core fatique. You can't keep that up for extended periods.

I'm not questioning the 20 minute nap protocol over a short duration because I know it works and you have to balance the risk/reward for what you're doing. I'm really looking to learn more about how this has to work over a longer term situation.

The math on a 20 minute protocol would have to look something like this. I operate proficiently on 7 hours sleep over an extended time frame. The planned sleep each day for the extended period then is 420 minutes of sleep per day. If you're doing that in 20 minute stints you've got 21 kips to get in a day which is 1 kip every 1.1 hours (every 1 hour and 8 minutes.) You need to account for periods of time when you're going to be up because of bad weather, sail changes, equipment fixes, navigation and charting.

They must have a sleep pattern they use for good weather to 'bank hours' and a strategy for operating under optimum conditions so they can cope with the unknown variables out there when things really hit the fan. I'm sure they don't want to spend a lot of time planning their sleep as it's probably impossible to stick to such a plan so I'm sure they consider the weather, the territory, their personal condition and act accordingly to get what they can get.

Does anyone know the strategies here?
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Old 12-03-2009, 13:58   #167
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Hi I spent 43 months in a westerley cirrus 23ft on circumnav solo. I know all the arguments about solo sailing but we must remember why we go to sea. I had just been medicaled out of the Royal Marines having been shot up in Ireland and need to get things together. After 10 years in the Marines the dangers of sailing solo were not daunting to me. Once I had cleared the shipping lanes I used to reef the yacht and go below at sun set and get up at sun rise or about 8-10 hrs sleep in the intire time I was at sea I saw only 3 Ships all well over 5 miles from me and when I called them they said that they had seen me and what was I doing in the middle of the ocean in such a small yacht. I must point out that this was 30 years ago. Now I have a georgus wife who shares the watches so probably safer. Still we go to sea to test ourselves but should always be aware of the dangers
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Old 12-03-2009, 14:18   #168
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Hi I spent 43 months in a westerley cirrus 23ft on circumnav solo. I know all the arguments about solo sailing but we must remember why we go to sea. I had just been medicaled out of the Royal Marines having been shot up in Ireland and need to get things together. After 10 years in the Marines the dangers of sailing solo were not daunting to me. Once I had cleared the shipping lanes I used to reef the yacht and go below at sun set and get up at sun rise or about 8-10 hrs sleep in the intire time I was at sea I saw only 3 Ships all well over 5 miles from me and when I called them they said that they had seen me and what was I doing in the middle of the ocean in such a small yacht. I must point out that this was 30 years ago. Now I have a georgus wife who shares the watches so probably safer. Still we go to sea to test ourselves but should always be aware of the dangers
During our circumnavigation we saw more ships at night than in the daytime. Haze makes them harder to see in the daylight until they are fairly close. At night we could see the ships lights far off quite easily. Many nights we used night vision binoculars to see even more ships.

On the sail from Galapagos to the Marquesas, we only saw 5 or 6 ships, and yachts that slept saw none.
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Old 18-03-2009, 12:32   #169
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Not sleeping for a 57 day passage is not a good idea.
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Old 19-03-2009, 12:13   #170
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I had a friend--a crusty old Nam vet--who had a radar alarm that he swore by. He single-handed a lot, and the alarm apparently beeped when he was painted by someone else's radar. I never saw the device, but he said that it was cheap and would wake him frequently even before the boat painting him appeared over the horizon.

You could probably modify an old car radar detector, you can change out the crystals(if i remember how to build one) to match marine radar frequencies or an old analog AM/fm radio or bearcat scanner and catch higher or lower freq harmonics. Youd just hear a buzz on the speaker that gets louder as the signal get closer but it would do the trick. Technically you could run a waveguide/antenna up the inside of a mast and get even more stuff, kind of like an ESM mast on a submarine.


Is there a known marine product that does this already?


and mounting a depth sounder facing forward would be useless - signal scatter from the surface would kill the return.
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Old 19-03-2009, 13:05   #171
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I've always wondered why there are no cheap radar detectors for marine use. If I can get a detector for less than $100 that will go off when detecting anything in the ranges of 10.475 - 10.57 Ghz (police X band), 24.0 - 24.25 Ghz (police K band) and 33.4 - 36.0 Ghz (poice Ka band), why can't I have a cheap detector that will make a loud noise when it detects the marine radar frequencies around 9.4 Gz or 3.0 Ghz?

I can't think of any technical reason why we can't have a cheap and effective detector for marine use.

DGC
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Old 20-03-2009, 14:31   #172
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I've always wondered why there are no cheap radar detectors for marine use. If I can get a detector for less than $100 that will go off when detecting anything in the ranges of 10.475 - 10.57 Ghz (police X band), 24.0 - 24.25 Ghz (police K band) and 33.4 - 36.0 Ghz (poice Ka band), why can't I have a cheap detector that will make a loud noise when it detects the marine radar frequencies around 9.4 Gz or 3.0 Ghz?

I can't think of any technical reason why we can't have a cheap and effective detector for marine use.

DGC
I better call the patent office, that is a great idea!

How you would shield it from your own radar without sacrificing accuracy would be the only issue I could think of.
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Old 08-05-2009, 13:38   #173
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Three round trips Chesapeake to FLL, Catalina 42, all outside, three legs solo. My MO:

#1 GOOD AUTOPILOT. Hydraulic, below deck. A backup autopilot. (ST4000 in my case)

Alarm every hour on the hour, around the clock. Some hours sleep, some hours do what the boat needs, some hours do what I need. Sleep in the cockpit. Sleeping bag with water proof outer bag. Reef before dark if there's any chance of needing to do so. This adds up to 10 hours of sleep/24 hours. It becomes a rhythm. I have done it for 6 days, but could have gone on for ever if I wanted to. The boat wakes you up if it needs you.

Get well offshore before the napping starts. Beyond 50/60 miles off-shore 99% of what you run into is large. Check PAPER charts for solid objects 50/60 miles ahead.

AIS!!!!! Alarm hooked up to ship's stereo LOUD. (I'm a pt musician, and LOVE music, but for some reason not at sea.) AIS makes the traffic a non issue. You know about every one of them 20 miles before they get to you, 10 miles before you can see them.

Last but not least. Plan a landfall with an IMMEDIATE place to drop the hook and take a long nap. Once you get into the above described rhythm for more than 24 hours you are living "from paycheck to paycheck" sleep wise. Once you get in-shore again there's too much going on and you start missing the naps.....you VERY quickly become dangerous. Make landfall, park and nap.

I remember being abeam Stuart FL, at 1 am and needing "a few minutes" I set every alarm and laid down. When I woke up it was.......DAYLIGHT and I recognized West Palm!!! 25 miles, 5 miles from shore.... Fortunately it just babbled along at 4-5 knots.
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Old 08-05-2009, 13:53   #174
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Banana Boat

Becalmed 4 days with no fuel in a 20' sailstar 40 miles north of Port Antonio Jamaica. I was about to lose my mind because I had very little water and only corned beef, onions, bread and mustard. AAhhh the naivety of my first boat. I was sleeping in the cockpit in sweltering heat with no moon. I kinda got that funny feeling...you know the one? I sat up as a Banana Boat was just pushing me to the side with it's bow wake. I got sucked up along the side scraping right down the starboard side of this "ghost ship" no lights........I knew it was all over now. As I got closer and closer to the stern I could see the wheel (prop) of the ship with about 1/4 of it spinning out of the water.........it pulled me towards it and just as I thought it would suck me into the wheel, it spit me out the side instead. Jeeez no more sleep for me...Of course the next morning the Trade wind went from nothing to about 35 knots in a second snapping my gooseneck......
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Old 08-05-2009, 20:27   #175
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Regarding the muse about radar detectors. survivalsafety.com makes one called CARD Collision Avoidance Radar Detector. Its $650usd. Looks pretty good to me. Low power drain and alarm when it picks up a ships radar.Great for slumbering sailors,but no good for whales or containers. Cat naps in the cockpit works for me BILL
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Old 09-05-2009, 08:31   #176
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Does that system have working radar, or just the avoidance principle.....either way sounds like something I would like to have when single-handing
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Old 14-05-2009, 13:55   #177
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The last passage I made was 57 days non stop. Not sleeping for that length of time would have been a bad idea. Saw only two ships the whole way.
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Old 14-05-2009, 14:19   #178
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Don't know if mentioned previously my furuno radar has watchman mode where it sleeps with very low power draw, then wakes up at preprogrammed interval and scans if anything has changed it sets off alarm, an external alarm can be hooked up so you could mount it next to berth. On the closest range setting it picked up a pelican floating in the water. Would definatly set it to farther range for sleeping with ,maybe 8 mi with 5 min interval?
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Old 14-05-2009, 17:47   #179
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I better call the patent office, that is a great idea!

How you would shield it from your own radar without sacrificing accuracy would be the only issue I could think of.
The assumption is that you don;t have/can't afford radar.

Just a simple detector, that would sound an alarm when it detected a transmission within that frequency range. It would be enough to keep solo skippers from getting run over. Shouldn't cost more than $150 or so. If I was better schooled in radio design, I'd build one myself.

DGC
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Old 15-05-2009, 10:32   #180
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I had a friend--a crusty old Nam vet--who had a radar alarm that he swore by. He single-handed a lot, and the alarm apparently beeped when he was painted by someone else's radar. I never saw the device, but he said that it was cheap and would wake him frequently even before the boat painting him appeared over the horizon.

Collision Avoidance Radar Detector (C.A.R.D)

SURVIVAL SAFETY ENGINEERING

But considering the price, might as well step a notch and get the radar instead....
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