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Old 05-06-2015, 06:36   #76
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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Originally Posted by s/v Beth View Post
This is what I suspected. I am amazed that most of you keep your GPS up all the time. .

A GPS uses <0.2A. Are people really that starved for power that they put their GPS on a separate breaker or unplug it from the system when off shore?

With the chart plotter off, all off our instruments combined (GPS, depth, speed, AIS, wind, and three small MFD's) use ~1.3A. If we turn off the two redundant MFD's, the draw drops below one amp.

Mark
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Old 05-06-2015, 08:11   #77
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Hmm, are not folks supposed to maintain a radio watch on 16 when under way? We do... wouldn't want to miss a mayday from a nearby mariner.

So for us, VHF, AIS, wind instrument, gps, autopilot. Occasional HF, computer (OPCN).

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Thank you Jim
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Old 08-06-2015, 17:46   #78
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

If it's dark for several days in a row and I need to save power my low power setup is:

Vesper Watchmate AIS transceiver and VHF. This gives me position from the AIS built-in GPS (very simple LCD display with position, COG & SOG), the vhf stays on no matter what anyway.

At night the radar is always on standby and gets spun every 20 minutes or so.

Tri-colour at the mast-head.

PC gets fired up a couple of times a day as needed for email, weather fax etc.. and route planning; as Evans said I run routing every now and again for an insight if I'm not sure of my eyeball assessment.

Otherwise.

Tend to leave the N2K network on with the PB200 sensor on (this has GPS, Wind and other environment sensors) but with the displays off. It uses little power and the data is available instantly when I switch on a display.

We have an large button very loud professional chefs kitchen timer which the on-watch uses in the cockpit to avoid any chance of dosing for too long.

I have an external 12V very loud buzzer on the Watchmate that will sound for AIS alarms.

If there is no power issue I leave everything on and sometimes even take notice of things like apparent wind angle etc..

Autopilot if not on windvane.

Been thinking about an radar warning receiver - another trick is to turn off interference suppression on your radar; if you are getting scanned you'll see funny spiral traces on your display (my poor mans radar warning receiver).

Chris
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Old 08-06-2015, 18:30   #79
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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Originally Posted by Littlechay View Post
Been thinking about an radar warning receiver - another trick is to turn off interference suppression on your radar; if you are getting scanned you'll see funny spiral traces on your display (my poor mans radar warning receiver).
Good trick. But since my radar detector uses 50 mA and my radar something like 5 A, I still like my radar detector better
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Old 08-06-2015, 19:32   #80
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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Originally Posted by Littlechay View Post
Been thinking about an radar warning receiver - another trick is to turn off interference suppression on your radar; if you are getting scanned you'll see funny spiral traces on your display (my poor mans radar warning receiver).
Interference would only happen if the other boat is close by or has a very powerful radar (ie, large). In both cases, I suspect you would visually see them well before you noticed interference on your radar.

Besides, if your radar is showing interference, that means it is on and sweeping - so you would see the ships on radar.

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Old 08-06-2015, 19:45   #81
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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Interference would only happen if the other boat is close by or has a very powerful radar (ie, large). In both cases, I suspect you would visually see them well before you noticed interference on your radar.

Besides, if your radar is showing interference, that means it is on and sweeping - so you would see the ships on radar.

Mark
Not so Mark. I have seen interference when I have not got a visual on a target many times. It is often easier to see than a weak echo.

We are talking open ocean here. So no other interference around and gain can be wound well up etc.. Works best too in easy trade wind conditions with little sea clutter.

I'm not promoting this as an alternative to an alarm. Just saying that I turn interference suppression off when offshore and it adds another string to the bow. I'm a radio engineer, spent my whole life working with mircowave devices so know what I'm looking for.. not for everyone of course.....
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Old 09-06-2015, 06:53   #82
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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Not so Mark. I have seen interference when I have not got a visual on a target many times. It is often easier to see than a weak echo.

We are talking open ocean here. So no other interference around and gain can be wound well up etc.. Works best too in easy trade wind conditions with little sea clutter.

I'm not promoting this as an alternative to an alarm. Just saying that I turn interference suppression off when offshore and it adds another string to the bow. I'm a radio engineer, spent my whole life working with mircowave devices so know what I'm looking for.. not for everyone of course.....
Interference suppression is always off on our radar, and the few times I have seen interference have been from large ships close to us. For small radars on recreational boats, those boats need to be almost right beside us to see interference.

Perhaps some radars naturally reject interference more than other ones? After all, interference is considered an undesirable trait, not a positive one. Ours is a newer 4kW Furuno.

But my point still stands - if your radar is on and sweeping so that you can see the interference, why not simply look for targets?

Mark
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Old 09-06-2015, 07:06   #83
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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But my point still stands - if your radar is on and sweeping so that you can see the interference, why not simply look for targets?

Mark
OK I'll re phrase the first line of my last reply so that it makes sense

Because many times at sea I have seen the interference long before I have been able to detect a target, the interference is an early warning that there is somebody out there.

I'll qualify this a bit in that I have seen it often on Raymarine radars and rarely seen it on my own boats Furuno however I have seen it.

Says a lot about the RF design of Raymarine but I won't go into that here.

Chris
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Old 09-06-2015, 07:20   #84
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

GPS, AIS, AutoPilot, 100%. Tri-color 100% at night. Radar & VHF if ship is spotted or in squally weather. Weather Fax couple of times a day, everything else as needed.

Wind generator always on. Usually run the main engine for 1 to 1.5-hrs at nightfall (105-amp alternator) to top up batteries and maybe watch a movie. Engine uses 5/8-gallon per hour at 1500-rpm.

Refrigeration (Adler Barbour) if needed to keep something cold or if we have excess power available.
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Old 09-06-2015, 07:34   #85
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

GPS, and radio
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Old 09-06-2015, 07:43   #86
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

I'm surprised that no one here is equipped with a Raymarine Lifetag, or one of the newer personal AIS transponders. If someone goes walkabout at 3 AM, and drifts more than a boatlength away, alarms go off and a MOB icon comes up on the multifunction display of your chartplotter. Uses virtually no power until the alarm goes off.

http://raymarine.com/view/?id=715
http://www.mcmurdomarine.com/

I would think that B&G/Simrad would have one of these in the works one of these days. I had six personal Lifetag units until I switched over to the Zeus2 system. I should have kept the Lifetags. They communicated with the MFD via NMEA 0183.
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Old 09-06-2015, 08:04   #87
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

GPS, AIS, Compass, Auto Pilot, Paper Charts.
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Old 09-06-2015, 08:10   #88
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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I'm surprised that no one here is equipped with a Raymarine Lifetag, or one of the newer personal AIS transponders.
People do have them but in the case of the McMurdo; which we have, there is no need to leave anything extra switched on. As my Watchmate is never switched off there is no extra power penalty in having them.

Chris
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Old 09-06-2015, 08:12   #89
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
A GPS uses <0.2A. Are people really that starved for power that they put their GPS on a separate breaker or unplug it from the system when off shore?

With the chart plotter off, all off our instruments combined (GPS, depth, speed, AIS, wind, and three small MFD's) use ~1.3A. If we turn off the two redundant MFD's, the draw drops below one amp.

Mark
Hi Mark
I guess that I seek solitude when out there, but I do not want to sacrifice safety. So I thought I would ask what the rest of you keep on. My GPS is on a separate breaker, as is the radar, AIS, VHF, etc so I can shut down what I do not need. I enjoy sailing with out all the gizmo's and I am sure that I am strange because I will sail the boat sometimes with nothing on but the wind and the tuned sails- the helm balanced and the boat taking care of herself. That is fine when I am awake, alert and tied into my cockpit.
I just want to get a feel for what others think when they are offshore.
Please continue, as usual I am learning a lot and gaining the perspective of others..
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Old 09-06-2015, 08:31   #90
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Re: Open sea, what do you use for Navigation?

Littlechay, which McMurdo are you using? Any comments? I haven't purchased an alternative to the Lifetags yet, but the idea that a MOB would register on a nearby vessel, besides my own, is appealing. If someone goes in the drink, I want to pull them out as rapidly as I can.
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