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Old 08-02-2012, 16:54   #16
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

I think its a value-for-money choice. Both options add a lot of value at low cost.

IMO, if I had receive only fitted already I would live with it happily. But adding the transmit function adds a lot of value at a fairly small price. I don't care if only half the commercial vessels are watching, it can still save my hide if a watch gets sloppy.

But having an alarm set on a receive only unit is a good solution too (where I sail).
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Old 08-02-2012, 17:03   #17
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

In some responses I read about changing your course to avoid a collision.

I feel more comfortable to stay on my course, and call them on the radio.
While I do 5 knots, the freighter does 20! and maybe he saw you on the radar and already took evasive action. But that will be based on your present course.
When you don't call and steer the wrong direction it may be too late.

Only when you cannot make contact, then you should alter your course.
(parallel to, and in the same direction as the big one. Keep calling on 16 or make a direct DSC call which will be recorded.)

Therefore, AIS is a must!!
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Old 08-02-2012, 17:43   #18
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gruntled View Post
Greetings: I'm adding AIS and a new chart plotter to my 40' sailboat. I'd like an AIS display unit at the chart table, outputting to the new chart plotter in the cockpit. Cruising grounds, for now, are California and Mexico; lots of shipping lanes, etc. What's the collective wisdom on spending the extra money to get a transponder unit such as the Vesper WatchMate 850? Will it add a sufficient amount of safety to justify the higher (around $600 U.S.) cost?
Thanks for your input, and fair winds!
Richard
Santa Barbara, CA
My watchmate 850 is the first thin on; always on. We love it. Great knowing what is comming 20 miles out. I like knowing we are seen and how to contact other boats. We also find people & boats we know while cruising. The 850 is a great anchor watch too and I think it uses less power than any other A-B trransciever. It is incredibly easy to use to the point that you may not ever read the instructions.
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Old 08-02-2012, 17:44   #19
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

This may be cynical but.....

if I am transmitting, and they run me down, then there is a better case of a lawsuit against them by my survivors.

The threat of a lawsuit is probably the greatest threat, inducement I can give them to treat me fairly.

2

Less cynically, a transponder puts two sets of eyes to the task, a 100% improvement over 1.

I just bought an Icom MA-500 that integrates with my VHF.
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Old 08-02-2012, 20:05   #20
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hans van os View Post
In some responses I read about changing your course to avoid a collision.

I feel more comfortable to stay on my course, and call them on the radio.
While I do 5 knots, the freighter does 20! and maybe he saw you on the radar and already took evasive action. But that will be based on your present course.
When you don't call and steer the wrong direction it may be too late.

Only when you cannot make contact, then you should alter your course.
(parallel to, and in the same direction as the big one. Keep calling on 16 or make a direct DSC call which will be recorded.)

Therefore, AIS is a must!!
If you have AIS, you know if the other ship made a course change the second they make it. You also know the ship's course and speed from 20 miles away and can make a 3-5* course change very early on to safely avoid a dangerous situation.

Personally, I take responsibility for staying out of danger. AIS lets me do this with the slightest heading change well before I am in the position of making large course corrections, and without needing to call the other ship or guess how they are going to react.

Mark
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Old 08-02-2012, 21:29   #21
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

While every profession has a few bad actors, it is simply foolish to imagine that most commercial ship captains aren't going to use every tool at their disposal to avoid a collision - including AIS B. Even if no one is hurt, a collision at sea is usually the end of a commercial captain's career.

Here's the very detailed report of the sinking of the yacht Ouzo by a British ferry before AIS was in common use. Despite an experienced bridge crew, good weather, radar and a radar reflector -- three experienced sailors on a small sailboat died. The captain of the ferry was tried for man slaughter. Although found not guilty, he retired the next year having not worked after the incident.

Marine Accident Investigation: Ouzo

Carl
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Old 08-02-2012, 21:31   #22
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
They are coming down, but there is still a 3X differential in price between them and receive only units. So in the PO's case, this brings his $600 differential down to $400.

The difference between a $200 receive unit and a $600 transceiver can mean the difference between any AIS capability and none for some.

Mark
The OP asked if he should spend an extra $600 and buy the $1100 Watchmate 850 transponder. I showed him an option to save ~$600 and still get a transceiver.
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Old 08-02-2012, 23:25   #23
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

Vesper have a black box transponder, which isn't really black at all, coming on the market later this year. Because it doesn't come with a screen it should be cheaper than the 850.
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Old 09-02-2012, 05:16   #24
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

The ICOM, with screen, was only $850.

Less than insurance, and more useful.
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Old 11-03-2012, 10:58   #25
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Re: AIS Receive only or Transponder ?

Has anyone bought and used the EM TRAK MARINE ELECTRONICS
B100 AIS Class B Transceiver?
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Old 11-03-2012, 12:44   #26
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Re: AIS Receive only or Transponder ?

Take a look at the Standard Horizon Matrix 2150, the nicest feature is that the vessels on AIS are automatically added to a list on the vhf, all you have to do is select the vessel, and the squirt him your pos.crs.spd.mmsi by just keying the mic. We have had AIS since 2006 and DSC since '99 and find both fantastic, but never have had the need or desire to tx our AIS info. By the way, the habit of confirming and discussing passing arrangements between two vessels on VHF is being actively discouraged by maritime authorities. Its Colregs Colregs, Colregs....
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Old 11-03-2012, 12:51   #27
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Re: AIS receive only or transponder?

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How do you know they didn't "see " you on radar?...
Small boats make very poor radar targets.
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Old 11-03-2012, 12:54   #28
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Re: AIS Receive only or Transponder ?

Something to keep in mind when cruising with AIS, is that anyone with a receiver can see your signal. For example, Belizean officials were using AIS to harass cruisers a few years ago. Unless in an area with lots of commercial traffic I would turn it off.
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Old 11-03-2012, 13:19   #29
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Re: AIS Receive only or Transponder ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sy_gilana View Post
Take a look at the Standard Horizon Matrix 2150, the nicest feature is that the vessels on AIS are automatically added to a list on the vhf, all you have to do is select the vessel, and the squirt him your pos.crs.spd.mmsi by just keying the mic. We have had AIS since 2006 and DSC since '99 and find both fantastic, but never have had the need or desire to tx our AIS info. By the way, the habit of confirming and discussing passing arrangements between two vessels on VHF is being actively discouraged by maritime authorities. Its Colregs Colregs, Colregs....
Colregs says within specified closing distance you must make arrangements. Radio is an acceptable alternative to horn signals. Funny, I don't hear many horn signals. If the Hundreds of boats transiting just the channel in/out of Muskegon Lake (deep water shipping channel) were to use the required horn signals we would need ear muffs. We all don't do either all the time but if there is any doubt, especially fog or night, the radio operator can acknowleged my call. If you had a collision, the examiner would be asking you all about the signals you used.

The outbound sailboat learned; what 5 blasts means; what tonnage means; what constrained by draft in a narrow channel means. The ferry is the burdoned vessel but the little guy determined he had the right of way and did not acknowledge signals. We give this very wide guy a lot of space. Notice the bow spotter with "no other duties" on the closed circuit intercom. We hang out in the wave expander pond until he passes if traffic is heavy.
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Old 11-03-2012, 13:22   #30
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Re: AIS Receive only or Transponder ?

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Something to keep in mind when cruising with AIS, is that anyone with a receiver can see your signal. For example, Belizean officials were using AIS to harass cruisers a few years ago. Unless in an area with lots of commercial traffic I would turn it off.
I think most have a 'stealth mode'. Not an issue on the Grteat Lakes. OUrs lets us turn off the transmit and continue to receive.
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