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Old 05-12-2015, 16:51   #31
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

We left all electronics on 24/7 since we generated more power than we consumed and also keeping them on helped reduce mosture and surge damage. Included water maker, navigation and radar, emergency lighting, battery monitors and charging, as well as communication systems.
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Old 05-12-2015, 18:05   #32
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
None.

In some specific conditions AIS may be on or / and radar. I think many sailors keep VHF on. I did too, on our most recent passage. Your wind instrument may be on too - especially at night in bad conditions.

So, basically, nothing is on 24/7. EXCEPT: VHF, if you care about others. AIS, for same reasons (AIS MOBs).

b.
I sailed this summer 3 months and done 2500nm without wind instrument doing several passages at night. I have an optional tricolor on the mast the puts a lot of light on the windex. But then my first boat had only a compass and I made lots of miles on it, at night too.

Specially at night I turn everything out except navigation lights and VHF. If the batteries are on the low side from time to time the autopilot too, even if I hate to do that because I like to have some short naps at night.
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Old 05-12-2015, 19:11   #33
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

I believe vhf channel 16 is prudent 24/7 to respond to an emergency. I believe AIS if you have it, when asleep/not on watch is prudent. The other most important 24/7 off sure electronic device is the depth sounder. Not because of going aground in +100 feet of water, but because there be whales that can hear you and possibly avoid a conflict (which you will lose).
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Old 06-12-2015, 06:59   #34
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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Originally Posted by s/v Beth View Post
Why guys? why use all the power? If I am close to shore sure....but off shore, AIS transceiver on, and radar at night. We have had this discussion on VHF, and I agree it should be on if you have a fair chance of a transmission. But to me it is nice to sail with nothing on but the wind (during daylight). Let the solar save up for night.
Then you can pay attention to more important things....
VHF is for local calls, and should be turned on for collision avoidance and receiving nearby distress calls. It would be a terrible shame if you sailed past someone needing your assistance.
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Old 06-12-2015, 07:53   #35
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

Got to be rude enough to say that you today's cruisers amuse me with all your electronic gadgets! What did we do before all this stuff came on the market? We sailed, we kept a lookout as per ColRegs and we navigated (a lost black art) and we normally made satisfactory landfalls, this all added to the adventure of blue water cruising. Oh well, must be time to turn the chart plotter on!

Talking of chartplotters I recently sailed from Curacao via Panama and the Galapagos to Tahiti and have to admit I didn't look at a paper chart the whole way so I guess I've joined the electronic set. I must comment on the wonder of DSC on HF. We got into serious trouble some 1000 miles SouWest of Galapagos and some 2000 mines to tahiti. Given that the situation could deteriorate at any moment, and with only 2 crew on board, we declared a PAN using DSC on HF. It was picked up by the MRCC in Canberra Australia and Tapo Radio in New Zealand. after discussing our situation with Canberra, they relayed our situation to the French Navy in Tahiti who monitored our progress via SITREPS through sailmail. Problem was we had a rope wrapped around the prop which dragged the whole stern gland out of the boat, whipped the shaft so it broke the internal shaft log hence open at both ends. Underwater putty proved useless and we hammered plastic bags around the internal open appeture which reduced the inflow of water but didn't stop it. The diaphram bilge pump packed up after 24 hours and we were left with 2 west marine stirrup pumps plus we could run the engine in neutral to charge the batteries so we could run the electric bilge pump. Given he fact that we couldn't stop the ingress of water, we pumped some 30 -40 litres every 30 - 40 minutes by hand while on watch. We kept this up for 23 days until we reached Tahiti and the boat ws quickly lifted from the water to get repaired. We didn't keep the VHF on as it is useless offshore but AIS was a godsend in the confines of Panama city anchorage.
So there you are, a tale of sun at sea and the use of HF DSC!
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Old 06-12-2015, 12:32   #36
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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Originally Posted by Onemoreproject View Post
I am inter connecting my MFD, VHF. which is AIS and D.SC. capable, and SSB.
The MFD needs AIS from VHF and the SSB needs GPS to receive and send D.SC.
All these instruments on at r the same time adds up to about 40 amp hours per day. So I am interested in knowing what other cruisers are running on a daily basis.

I also have stand alone AIS receiver and GPS tfrom my last. Boat that I could connect but they draw about .5 amps per hour also.
Are you alone or do you have a crew? If you have a crew, you have options that you may not have when alone. AIS for example is less important if you have someone on watch at all times. If you are taking a nap, than AIS is certainly helpful, especially if you are near shipping lanes or other potential traffic. Likewise, time of day (or night) and location may have an effect on your choices.
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Old 06-12-2015, 15:40   #37
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

Too much rum (your profiled first listed interest) JOHNNO, way too much rum!
Yep, modern stuff is terrible. It cost the Australian government a fortune when you PAN'd on HF DSC.
And YOU were defending MY country!!
I'd either abstain or learn to love technology.
Because....one day you might sail off the end of Mercator's Projection......history shows that it does happen.
Oranges trees, Tea trees, Coconut............
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Old 06-12-2015, 17:02   #38
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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Yep, modern stuff is terrible.
I'd either abstain or learn to love technology.
............
I too love technology but it is just a tool, no better nor worse than the person using it. Just ask Team Vestas Wind Myself, I prefer to have on as little as possible. This really is a different thread since he was asking what do we use when bluewater sailing.

The question could perhaps be better phrased as either "What electronics and equipment are mission critical?" or "What do you leave on all the time and how do you justify its electricity usage (e.g. why)?"
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Old 06-12-2015, 17:24   #39
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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When I built my new electronic system three years ago, I organized the NMEA2000 network into two separate networks, and put cockpit instruments and other instruments needed only for under way on one of them so that these could be shut off while the core instruments at the nav table and key sensors are kept on.

This was good in theory and didn't work in practice. There was always something I needed from the other network so just never shut it down.

So to answer your question -- my electronics run pretty much 24/7/365 unless I am off the boat. If I am docked for a long time, the maximum I might do is shut off the chart plotter in the cockpit.

When I am anchored or docked, I still spend a lot of time at the nav table working on the next passage, etc. I keep 24 hours graphs of wind and barometric pressure. Even when not at the nav table, I always like to watch what the wind is doing. When I run the generator, I need the network for the generator instrument display. Chart plotter is needed for planning.

I pretty much gave up shutting anything down.
I did the same thing; two circuits and had the same results I needed to keep both circuits on anyway.
SO now, SInce I also like looking at the Maretron weather, I just leave it on.

the entire system, including one monitor on and computer running everything use about 8 to 9 amps per hour. Also includes Wi-Fi extender
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Old 06-12-2015, 17:59   #40
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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Originally Posted by Dauntlessny View Post
the entire system, including one monitor on and computer running everything use about 8 to 9 amps per hour. Also includes Wi-Fi extender
(I bet most of you saw this coming )

No they use 8 to 9 Amps, no matter how long they are on.

Amps v Amp hours v Amps/Hr
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Old 06-12-2015, 18:00   #41
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

My freezer drinks almost 4 amps.
Would kill me to lose 30 days of frozen foods so I have cop it. It's cyclic rate is C. 30%/time.
I simply run everything and have gotten used to running generator (1600w) which runs the Sterling ProUltra 12/60.
Part of life. Worth it to not have to steer and to not have to eat too much packaged food.
Sure, there are those who love steering.....but for 30 hours??
And if I were to be caught out and can't enter my destination because the port is closed or plenty terrible....well, if I can't anchor off (very unlikely being 50 feet of water in 50 knots capable), I can head toward another continent to the east....letting the pilot , plotter proximity alarms, ais, etc etc give me time to sleep.
FWIT, I'm seriously over anchored, chained, windlass'd, battery'd....tiny boat but its all essential.
Sure, not everybody has a diesed gen set.
Honda, Yamaha ...all good ....in an inversion mine will get a soaking but spraying with the right stuff prevents corrosion and ensures restart.
Gen been living on poop for 5 years.
Bit of thread drift but if I can do it then the OP can too, possibly more batteries/charging capacity req'd.
Will shortly get an Aerogen or LVM 900mm wind gen to reduce fossil dependence.
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Old 07-12-2015, 00:43   #42
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

You are required under sailing rules by most countries to keep a listening watch on VHF 24/7 and on SSB if equipped. Also is your vessel has radar you are required to use it during reduced visibility, this includes the hours of darkness. Navigation requires running a log so either an log instrument or a GPS needs to be capable of providing a readout of distance run. It is not required but is certainly sensible to run AIS if you have it.
So on my boat VHF and AIS and small stand alone GPS 24/7. The GPS it is the simplest way of logging position (Offshore I do this at the end of each watch) and it updates the AIS transponder.
At night I run the radar on economy mode or continuously in bed weather. A wind instrument is very useful if it works especially in bed weather as I find I overestimate wind strength when cold or tired and find myself imagining it is rising when it isn't!
Not measured the power it takes but it should be under 10a/hr day. Anything running a large screen will use a ton of power so GPS should just give lat/long and log if you want to be ecconomical.
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Old 07-12-2015, 00:54   #43
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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You are required under sailing rules by most countries to keep a listening watch on VHF 24/7.
Didn't the listening watch requirement on 16 get dropped some time ago? Still a good idea though, I use a cheap baofeng uv3r tuned to 165. 8, draws next to nothing.


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Old 07-12-2015, 10:13   #44
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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Originally Posted by dick sargent View Post
depth sounder. reason: the pinging alerts submarines and whales of your presence. Study not conclusive, but sounds logical and uses minimal power
Either that or just is just annoying to them. Have been in close proximity to both on multiple occasions and they seem to be aware of my presence with or without the depth sounder on.
Any submariners want to chime in on this one?
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Old 07-12-2015, 10:21   #45
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Re: Which instruments are always on when Bluewater sailing?

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Either that or just is just annoying to them. Have been in close proximity to both on multiple occasions and they seem to be aware of my presence with or without the depth sounder on.
Any submariners want to chime in on this one?
Your lucky. Fifteen years ago off Honolulu's Mamala Bay, a navy sub surfaced right under a Japanese fishing boat, ripping it into two parts, killing most of its crew, and sinking the vessel. If the fishing boat had left their depth sounder and sonar on, the sub would have heard them.
We have regularly sailed past whales that were "asleep at the helm" so to speak, usually big male sperm whales. They just motor along and will hit anything in their way unless warned beforehand. Seen them bump into islands, logs, and other whales.
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