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Old 23-05-2015, 20:56   #16
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

I guess there is never fog where you cruise?

I wouldn't own a boat without it.
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Old 23-05-2015, 20:56   #17
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

IMHO some folks may be relying too much on AIS.

Not reqd on Canadian vessels < 500T,fishing vessels <65ft ,etc,etc

Not reqd on US vessels of less than 150T,fishing vessels <65 ft etc,etc

Not reqd on recreational vessels unless they exceed above.

I'm sure a quick Google will show Not reqd on similar vessels in any country.

Tells me that the vast majority of vessels are not reqd to have AIS.

If you have a working radar,are going to be travelling at any time outside of clear blue daylight,& will never be caught unexpectedly in "inclement" conditions, or after dark, keep it working.

But then again,you have never been or will be north/south of 30deg Lat-right?

Cheers from the foggy Gulf of Maine / Len
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Old 24-05-2015, 08:51   #18
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

Re the argument that "I only use it once or twice a season...":

If that one usage keeps you from colliding with an unlit fishing vessel with no AIS, well, seems a good investment to me! And yes, we do see such vessels when cruising in out of the way places, so be warned.

Jim
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Old 24-05-2015, 09:30   #19
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

A use not mentioned so far:

I use radar to keep a specific distance off a shoreline or a reef, and have used it to locate the pass into an atoll. Ours is "blind" in heavy rain, unfortunately. Practice using it, the more adept you are with it, the better your results using it will be.

I think the OP's decision to try and find the intermittent, himself, is a good one, and hope he has many good hours of radar usage ahead.

Ann
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Old 24-05-2015, 09:48   #20
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

I have recently installed AIS (receiver), and am in the process of installing Radar for the first time. How essential radar is definitely depends on where, and how, you cruise. I am well-veresed in cruising in thick foggy areas without radar, but these have always been low-traffic zones (Lake Superior). As we head down the St. Lawrence I expect to be cruising in foggy, busy areas. I also look forward to learning how to use it in squalls, and to peer into anchorages at night.

From my perspective, AIS is not a substitute for Radar, just like a chartplotter is no substitute for a chart, compass and depth sounder. Their functions compliment and overlap, but radar and compass/sounder are delivering real-time measurements of the actual reality. AIS/plotters are showing only a partial picture of reality, and one that is at least one step removed from what is actually out there. I think too many people forget this as they navigate with their heads staring at the digital screens.
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Old 24-05-2015, 09:53   #21
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

Radar is also useful to determine (or confirm) a position fix
and in heavy rain conditions to determine what is in front of you.

In rain the range will be limited but even at 100-feet it is a help.

Richard
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Old 24-05-2015, 09:58   #22
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

as my radar is antique jrcfunky, i am gonna mebbe replace it--radar finds th e approaching storms on occasion better than even my spider senses do..and that is damearly.....
i has ais iff i ever hook up with a puter jeenyusss, as nmea 2000 makes it possible on my current an dfuture gps .....
but my damneyeballs is bestest evvaahh tools i own, same old antique earbones...gut feeling, spidey sense, wtf ye wanna call it will keep ye from hitting a dark object in a dark moon night sail.....and keep ye far enough from rocks --watch for breakers..even far from shore of that jumping island you are passing
orthe panga fishing with no lights 20 miles from the puebla they came from.
once i have decent and actually functional radar, i might think otherwise....
except the pangas still wont show up...
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Old 24-05-2015, 10:04   #23
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

As with any tool, one should know how to use it. Radar takes some time to get to know.... what it can (and cannot) see and in what conditions. If the OP is going out into the Pacific, there are enough partially submerged shipping containers to warrant the use of radar but it is anyone's guess as to how well any brand will work at that, given the sea conditions, etc. I certainly wouldn't set off across the pond without it, even if sailors have been doing just that for millennia. I have the tools, I will use them, not leave them in a locker.
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Old 24-05-2015, 10:32   #24
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guy View Post
I would not want to cruise without one. At night I like to know where a squall is headed or how far off shore we are. AIS is super but there is more than just a few big ships out there. It's stupid but I've used them to enter an anchorage at night also.
why is that stupid? just the other night I tried to get into a small anchorage and as I entered I discovered none of the boats in the anchorage had any navigation or anchor lights on it was dark no moon and I was only able to see boats when I got very very close if I had radar I could have seen from a distance there was no room in the anchorage I wasted an hour motoring around trying to find a space. seems like it would have been a nice thing to have the other nightnight
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Old 24-05-2015, 10:36   #25
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
A use not mentioned so far:

I use radar to keep a specific distance off a shoreline or a reef, and have used it to locate the pass into an atoll. Ours is "blind" in heavy rain, unfortunately. Practice using it, the more adept you are with it, the better your results using it will be.

I think the OP's decision to try and find the intermittent, himself, is a good one, and hope he has many good hours of radar usage ahead.

Ann
Hi Ann,

I had wondered about the use of RADAR to help locate a low lying atoll (e.g. Tuomotus) and reefs while voyaging at night in the Pacific.

I can imagine clustered palm trees on an atoll would give some reflectance, but does a lower outside reef? Is it seen because of breakers or what is seen from outside the reef when approaching the reef (via RADAR)? Is it a line where the reef is located?

If you will, please describe what you see (on the RADAR). I am just curious.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 24-05-2015, 10:44   #26
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

Personally I would have radar a higher priority than AIS.
AIS wont show you oncoming water spouts, squalls, thunderstorms. It wont get you into harbor on a late arrival after dark. It wont do it in fog either.


Radar will show you a pass into a harbor that you cant see with the naked eye, it will show you waves breaking on a reef etc.
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Old 24-05-2015, 11:01   #27
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

Hey Travellerw I see you are located in Alberta so that means chances are likely that you will be sailing in the Pacific NW --Georgia Straits, Vancouver, Vancouver Island etc--which means FOG! ...often and heavy. If you've got AIS then that means that those BIG, Heavy yacht-killers (aka tugs, freighters, and ferries) that cannot turn worth a dime will see and know that they are running you down---but you might have some trouble figuring out what to do in the fog with 4 freighters somewhere out there coming towards you (by the way this is not an imaginary situation ---its happened to me)...

Also as mentioned, weather (ie: storms,fronts etc), harbour entrances, small fishing boats, rocks etc do not send out AIS signals.

So for me, I'd keep or upgrade the radar before relying on AIS..just my 2 bits
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Old 24-05-2015, 11:07   #28
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

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Originally Posted by travellerw View Post
Let me quantify my plans.

We will be sailing in the carribean for 1-2 years. After that, we may go through the canal and head off over the pond. All our sailing will be tropical..

From what I'm hearing.. I'm thinking I will attempt to fix the C80 myself (I have an EE background). It has a loose connection that caused the screen to glitch every once in a while. After its fixed, I will install it below and use it on those rare occasions..
I would not have a cruising boat without radar, especially up here in the foggy PNW. But I don't turn it on very often but it is a key tool in the kit. I'd put it over a chartplotter if I only could have one or the other. I can use charts and my GPS to stay relatively safe with objects attached to the earth (if they are on the charts).

But if you do have a radar, you need to practice with it in good conditions in daylight to stay up on how to use it and how your particular unit operates. They sometimes need some adjustment in some conditions and it isn't very intuitive oft times. And it's something you sometimes need right NOW to get out of a tricky situation.

If it isn't adjusted right you can have a false sense of security as well. Nothing on the screen does not mean nothing out there you can hit that you could see on the screen if adjusted and used correctly.
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Old 24-05-2015, 11:09   #29
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

I crossed the atlantic on a swan 48. The owner had a brand new radar installed. However, he had no idea how to use it, or even turn it on. Since we were low on battery power, I didn't want to mess around with it. So did the crossing without ever using the radar. The AIS was good, but so many boats, big and small, not transmitting AIS data. Kept a human lookout the whole way. Luckily did not run into any serious fog.

I think you can live without radar.
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Old 24-05-2015, 11:16   #30
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Re: Question - I know this will blow up!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steady Hand View Post
Hi Ann,

I had wondered about the use of RADAR to help locate a low lying atoll (e.g. Tuomotus) and reefs while voyaging at night in the Pacific.

I can imagine clustered palm trees on an atoll would give some reflectance, but does a lower outside reef? Is it seen because of breakers or what is seen from outside the reef when approaching the reef (via RADAR)? Is it a line where the reef is located? Our radar displays black target returns on a light grey background, and the distance rings are also black. What gives the best signal are the breaking waves, the elongated blob of the target's return following the shape of the land. If you are on the leeward side, and there is little break, the trees, being round, and wood are not such good targets, and I don't really remember at what distance they would show. Breaking waves are good targets: not as good as huge ships, but pretty good. It was very easy to keep 5 mi. off the windward side of Chesterfield Reef, despite the onshore set.

If you will, please describe what you see (on the RADAR). I am just curious.

Thanks in advance.
I hope my answer in blue answers what you wanted to find out. If not, ask me again, and I'll see if I can do better.

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