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Old 05-12-2015, 12:17   #16
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You Thought You Hit a Whale

I believe these things are actually semi-submersibles, not real subs, although I have a couple of friends that fly for the State Dept that tell me that real subs are in the works. But up to now I think that they are really low lying boats, and only get used once.


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Old 05-12-2015, 18:14   #17
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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Originally Posted by senormechanico View Post
We hit mysterious big wakes often around here in Northern Puget Sound with nobody in sight for an hour with only a 5 mile shore to shore space.
Doesn't take an Einstein to figger it out.
The wakes surprise me too, but ship's wakes travel surprisingly slowly. The math for a deep-water wake from a ship moving at 20 kts gives me a wake propagation speed of about 3.4 kts (at right angles to the ship's course). If the "phantom" ship were in the center of that five-mile wide channel, the wake would hit the shore in about 45 minutes.

A slower ship will generate a wake with more of a forward angle to it (fanned out), and while the wake waves are traveling at about the same speed, the propagation at 90 degrees to the route is even slower.

So it might not be submarines, but instead a long-gone-by ship.
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Old 05-12-2015, 18:21   #18
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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Originally Posted by Paul Elliott View Post
The wakes surprise me too, but ship's wakes travel surprisingly slowly. The math for a deep-water wake from a ship moving at 20 kts gives me a wake propagation speed of about 3.4 kts (at right angles to the ship's course). If the "phantom" ship were in the center of that five-mile wide channel, the wake would hit the shore in about 45 minutes.

A slower ship will generate a wake with more of a forward angle to it (fanned out), and while the wake waves are traveling at about the same speed, the propagation at 90 degrees to the route is even slower.

So it might not be submarines, but instead a long-gone-by ship.
That's good to know. Thanks for sharing that.
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Old 05-12-2015, 19:11   #19
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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Originally Posted by Paul Elliott View Post
The wakes surprise me too, but ship's wakes travel surprisingly slowly. The math for a deep-water wake from a ship moving at 20 kts gives me a wake propagation speed of about 3.4 kts (at right angles to the ship's course). If the "phantom" ship were in the center of that five-mile wide channel, the wake would hit the shore in about 45 minutes.

A slower ship will generate a wake with more of a forward angle to it (fanned out), and while the wake waves are traveling at about the same speed, the propagation at 90 degrees to the route is even slower.

So it might not be submarines, but instead a long-gone-by ship.
Other forms of reflective, refractive, or harmonic waves can seem to appear "out of nowhere" and sometimes mimic wakes.
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Old 05-12-2015, 20:10   #20
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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You know, this craziness it is quite amazing what this Mexican engineers have been able to do. And when I say Mexican engineers I mean American PhD's who have been kidnapped and brought down!

No joke, I'm Mexican and I have heard countless stories of really smart guys been kidnapped and brought down to make, for example, an entire cellular network for the narcos at the border.

Simple economics at work really.
No doubt the 'mule' subs are real, and numerous; they are operating in the GOM and Carib too (I have 'contacts'...errr, kids in a CG sector covering this).

But Tito, your example of narc "cellular networks" is, frankly, pretty far-fetched. I've actually put them in (cellular), and Los Compadres Drogas aren't going to be getting frequency clearances from the FCC or Mexican equivalent.
Plus, it is an extremely complex system, with many 'parts'.

I can see (even know of...) the 'cartels' having whole comms techs/divisions, but they're using the same comms as every one else: mobile, internet, VHF, those 'walkie talkie' bands that you can buy a set of HH's at Walmart, etc. And, as IP and radio based comms, they are accessible to anything/anyone with the right equipment, interpretive intel, and/or cryptographic capabilities.
Hell, Los Drogas are even operating drone fleets! (As we do)

Bottom line is that the only solution to this 'drugs' problem is to legalize it all, and then regulate it and tax it (as some US jurisdictions are now doing w/MJ, with no major probs).

Most of all, take the extreme, exorbitant profits out of the trade.

A whole galaxy of problems would be solved by doing that: such as (very partial list) corruption of all involved, including many governmental branches (and whole govs too), escalating violence, the constant growth of the 'industry' (yes, it is far bigger a business than long ago*, etc., etc.).
The problems of those who use the stuff would of course remain, but they would be manageable, and the number of users would stabilize at a lower number.

One of the big downsides is that large numbers of the 'worst' people have become enormously wealthy from it.
Have y'all? It has been a major economic sector and employment driver in the US and elsewhere though, on both sides.

Just like our failed experiment with alcoholic beverages, the National Prohibition Act, Volstead Act/18th Amendment, the so-called "War on Drugs" is an utter failure (on a majorly greater scale).

How many of y'all like a nice drinkie in the cockpit at sunset, eh? Used to be illegal, contraband, didn't it? As in: rum-running between the US and Canada once upon a time (did wonders for speedboat design, heh).
(my fav 'app' is a rum Painkiller, ahhhh)

*I lived most of my life in Texas just a few miles from 'La Frontera' (now a little N of that), kinfolk on both sides (many LEO's).
I have witnessed much of this whole clusterf..k up close, since it really got going in the '70's and since.
(Y'all should watch a tv prog called "Border Wars" to get a sampling of today's Frontera. There always have been 'things' going on down there (heheh), but it's absurdist today (the smuggling used to go the other way, electronics and stuff, due to import tariffs (a form of "prohibition", yes?))


Exactly as Tito said above: "Simple economics at work really.".

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Old 05-12-2015, 20:55   #21
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

" I've actually put them in (cellular), and Los Compadres Drogas aren't going to be getting frequency clearances from the FCC or Mexican equivalent. "

I have a little trouble believing that they will be asking for "frequency clearances" for a covert communications set up....
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Old 05-12-2015, 22:51   #22
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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" I've actually put them in (cellular), and Los Compadres Drogas aren't going to be getting frequency clearances from the FCC or Mexican equivalent. "

I have a little trouble believing that they will be asking for "frequency clearances" for a covert communications set up....
Your snark-o-meter is way overdue its' ISO 9000 calibration checkup, innit?

Besides, there are almost no unallocated/unused channels/bands in the radio frequency spectrum, anywhere. Governments make a bundle auctioning off available spectrum (one of the reasons why our terrestrial television systems were converted to 'digital', to free up some tv channel hogspace bandwidth for cell use).

The cell switching systems themselves are a very specialized hitech machine. There are just a handful of manufacturers/vendors of them worldwide: Lucent-Alcatel/Nokia, Huawei, Siemens(?), Hitachi(?), maybe Daewoo; supplying all the worlds' mobile service providers?
None of those global companies are going to E&F complete cellular systems to some droga padron in MX.

At a minimum, an ECM and one or two cell radio sites, plus interlinking infrastructure would be needed? I guess they could buy a used system somewhere. And the appropriate phones of course (those bands/protocols again). Plus all the telco operating overhead, mtce, etc.

There might be a few locations in Mexico that aren't blanketed by existing mobile systems ("No Cell Signal Available"), and those remote places could possibly have a clandestine mobile system operating 'undetected' for a little while (without interfering with existing systems, a cell radio range spans from a few hundred feet to a max of 20-30 miles from a tower/antenna).
And then somebody roams out of there, and: 'nada servicio' (unless you're using a dual-SIM phone like two of mine, hehe).

Remember, the mobile system radio equipment is designed and made for just a few well defined radio channels/frequencies, so you can't just cobble together one either. System control is very complex too.

.
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Old 06-12-2015, 09:47   #23
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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Your snark-o-meter is way overdue its' ISO 9000 calibration checkup, innit?

Besides, there are almost no unallocated/unused channels/bands in the radio frequency spectrum, anywhere. Governments make a bundle auctioning off available spectrum (one of the reasons why our terrestrial television systems were converted to 'digital', to free up some tv channel hogspace bandwidth for cell use).

The cell switching systems themselves are a very specialized hitech machine. There are just a handful of manufacturers/vendors of them worldwide: Lucent-Alcatel/Nokia, Huawei, Siemens(?), Hitachi(?), maybe Daewoo; supplying all the worlds' mobile service providers?
None of those global companies are going to E&F complete cellular systems to some droga padron in MX.

At a minimum, an ECM and one or two cell radio sites, plus interlinking infrastructure would be needed? I guess they could buy a used system somewhere. And the appropriate phones of course (those bands/protocols again). Plus all the telco operating overhead, mtce, etc.

There might be a few locations in Mexico that aren't blanketed by existing mobile systems ("No Cell Signal Available"), and those remote places could possibly have a clandestine mobile system operating 'undetected' for a little while (without interfering with existing systems, a cell radio range spans from a few hundred feet to a max of 20-30 miles from a tower/antenna).
And then somebody roams out of there, and: 'nada servicio' (unless you're using a dual-SIM phone like two of mine, hehe).

Remember, the mobile system radio equipment is designed and made for just a few well defined radio channels/frequencies, so you can't just cobble together one either. System control is very complex too.

.
And how on earth is this related to sailing? Must be some sort of power cruiser thing
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Old 06-12-2015, 10:07   #24
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

Oops. I should have checked my math. I had a scaling error.

The perpendicular propagation speed of the wake from a 20-kt boat is about 7 kts (not 3.4). Cut that 45-minutes by half.

But most ships on the Puget Sound area are going closer to ten knots, than 20, and my numbers for the wake propagation from a 10-kt ship show a speed of around 5.7 kts. Still slow enough that the ship can be a long way away before you feel the wake.


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The wakes surprise me too, but ship's wakes travel surprisingly slowly. The math for a deep-water wake from a ship moving at 20 kts gives me a wake propagation speed of about 3.4 kts (at right angles to the ship's course). If the "phantom" ship were in the center of that five-mile wide channel, the wake would hit the shore in about 45 minutes.

A slower ship will generate a wake with more of a forward angle to it (fanned out), and while the wake waves are traveling at about the same speed, the propagation at 90 degrees to the route is even slower.

So it might not be submarines, but instead a long-gone-by ship.
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Old 06-12-2015, 11:52   #25
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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Originally Posted by Paul Elliott View Post
The wakes surprise me too, but ship's wakes travel surprisingly slowly. The math for a deep-water wake from a ship moving at 20 kts gives me a wake propagation speed of about 3.4 kts (at right angles to the ship's course). If the "phantom" ship were in the center of that five-mile wide channel, the wake would hit the shore in about 45 minutes.

A slower ship will generate a wake with more of a forward angle to it (fanned out), and while the wake waves are traveling at about the same speed, the propagation at 90 degrees to the route is even slower.

So it might not be submarines, but instead a long-gone-by ship.
Several years ago I was able to get a VIP tour of the USS Abraham Lincoln, a nuclear powered aircraft carrier which at the time, was based in Everett WA. During that tour (there were about ten of us) for about 20 minutes we were able to visit the Executive Officer in his office aboard ship. He has been trained to be able to operate absolutely everything on that ship from the galley to dropping anchor to operating three nuclear power plants.
During the Q and A, he mentioned something which sparked my question.
I mentioned the,
"mystery wakes we occasionally run across when sailing in Admiralty Inlet when there haven't been ANY ships or boats of any kind in well over an hour. Are those from submarines?"

He looked very sheepish for a second, then he thought to himself for at least ten seconds before answering.

He said,
"I can't directly answer your question because it's classified, but I CAN say we are protected 24/7 by two submarines whether at the dock or underway."

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Old 06-12-2015, 13:41   #26
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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And how on earth is this related to sailing? Must be some sort of power cruiser thing
Well, the OP (under the "Scuttlebutt" forum) was about possibly hitting drug running submarines or whales (something not mentioned: IIRC, one 'cartel' actually procured a small, real, former warship submarine from somewhere; which was interdicted).

Either of which can happen to a sail or power boat (collision w/submerged thing).
Then the thread drifted (into wakes, real subs, etc.), as CF does. I just thought to impart some 'inside' info to topics that (I'm assuming of course) few know of: up close 'Drug War', a radio-related technical field, whatever; so, sue me.
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Old 07-12-2015, 10:17   #27
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Re: You Thought You Hit a Whale

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" I've actually put them in (cellular), and Los Compadres Drogas aren't going to be getting frequency clearances from the FCC or Mexican equivalent. "

I have a little trouble believing that they will be asking for "frequency clearances" for a covert communications set up....
"Mexican Drug Cartels Have Built Their Own National Radio System"
Zetas Drug Cartel Radio Relays Messages Across Mexico

Sorry, totally unrelated to boating but I just wanted to point out their advancement in technology and how that relates to these "subs"
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