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Old 29-04-2015, 10:44   #31
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

I'm sorry to say I am with Boatman on this subject having soloed about 30,000 miles including the Red Sea twice and along the length of the Med in winter and summer too several times.

When in open water, radar alarm and sleep for as long as you need to, Red Sea difficult, had to pull in and anchor when simply too tired to go any further, catnapping doesn't work for more than 2 days. Med, once out of obvious shipping lanes, used to get 4 hours + at a time with guard alarm on radar. In flat seas, say Med in mid summer, the guard alarm works really well.

Its risky anyway solo sailing, getting so tired you make mistakes is more risky than getting a few hours in I reckon. One passage I lay a hull in gales twice between Port Said and Crete one April for 7 days total, at night you could not see anything anyway, spray and waves breaking over the pilot house made seeing much in daylight difficult. You are so depressed dozing tied to a table in my case, looking out seemed a bit pointless. (I finally gave up that tack and broad reached to Marmaris to await better times.)

Solo, you do what risk you are prepared to take. Its your life, a yacht is extremely unlikely to sink someone elses, they would have to have no watch on too. If its another solo sailor you can meet in hell and swap notes.
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Old 29-04-2015, 11:03   #32
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Radar alarm with radar set to scan every 15 minutes works well. Try time it with the egg timer so you can zoom in and out while looking around. Our egg timer is a wind up kitchen timer with a necklace. Works well so long as you fully wind it and return to the 15 min mark and buzzes for a few seconds. If you just turn to 15 mins the buzz doesn't last as long but still haven't slept through it yet. Dead mans switches are good too, there's probably a few iPad apps that countdown and will alarm till the button is pressed, but then your relying on the iPad battery to last
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Old 29-04-2015, 11:16   #33
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by HighFly_27 View Post
Hello All,

I have a multi tiered question to ask regarding sailing Solo for several days at a time. The sailboat will be equipped with --
Radar, Autopilot with Nav. Tracking, AIS with Transponder and Alarm Functions & Collision Avoidance.

I'm aware of being run over by larger ships as they barrel right thru. and will sink you if don't get out of their way quick enough. I realize that when you're around shipping lane traffic, you need to be alert or big trouble for you.

One time, I asked about being idle/ stopped (too deep to anchor) to take a power nap. I was told that this was not the way it was done (solo or not) on open water. It was not addressed about being around shipping lanes or one shows up {not a shipping lane) and you don't move when you need to get out of their way.

I know that (above) that I have not covered all the different scenarios that one may encounter when solo and sailing on a long voyage. So, feel free to add your experience(s) when sailing long distances.

*** I'd like to hear about some of the ways that it's done, " Solo" and have a degree of safety. Remember, this is for a sailboat with above equipment.

Thanks' in Advance,

Avery
Hi Avery,

There is never a sensible duscussion on Cruisers Forum about this as the pedants fall out of the cyber lounge to blather on.
However if you would like my method please feel free to private message me (without bolding every word)


Mark
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Old 29-04-2015, 11:22   #34
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Has anything new happened with sailors using sleep enhancing drugs?

About eight years ago, at a safety seminar for an ocean race, folks were talking about how sailing is one of the few sports that has not been affected by performance enhancing drugs. But there is the opportunity for it, that military pilots have drugs that allow them to skip a sleep cycle and remain functional and alert. Without crashing when they do sleep. Some folks were speculating those drugs would soon be used in ocean racing.

What happened next? Are racing sailors now using these drugs?
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Old 29-04-2015, 11:25   #35
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrong View Post
There's a certain element of pride among sailors who've done it and survived to tell about it.


Relax. If you've never sailed solo for weeks at a time alone, try it sometime... And if you have, why not share your experience in threads like this?
And there are kids who surf on car roofs at 55mph and survived to tell about it. They also often show a sense of pride when you read thier facebook posts.

Maybe you would like to try it?

Bottom line, after around 24hrs, there is no way to maintain a proper watch single handed. Double handed is drastically better but even that can fall into a gray area.

End of grumpy old guy statement of facts.
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Old 29-04-2015, 11:29   #36
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

The Mini Transat class races SH from France to Brazil - If you visit the class website you can find lots of links to individual competitors and info on training for sleep management. The website has French and English posts - Google "Classe Mini". My old website also has links - Google "North American Mini Transat"
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Old 29-04-2015, 11:40   #37
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bvimatelot View Post
carry an Egg-Timer and sleep in the cockpit with a life jacket on. Then calculate how long a super-tanker or a container-ship will take to appear over your visible horizon and then hit you. Work this out for varying speeds (they'll travel at 18 to 24 kts). Without doing the sums myself - its about 15 minutes. Set the egg-timer for that and do an all round look, then re-set the timer.....you'll get used to it!!
Forget the egg timer. Get a "Screaming Meanie" 120 db
See "ScreamingMeanie.com"
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Old 29-04-2015, 12:34   #38
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Well said "Sun and Moon" for anyone who has actually sailed an ocean,; - - SHEEEZ.! To those who haven't,: Get a set of Pilot charts for your area, and the shipping routes that are shown are very closely followed by major shipping. For the remaining vast areas of ocean, there may be an occasional Taiwanese fishing vessel every few weeks, but in the meantime, you can sleep. !
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Old 29-04-2015, 12:57   #39
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Its actually very enjoyable after the first couple of days, getting settled in.

You will find your groove and can continue on as long as you wish. Don't think night and day, think noon till noon position and rest while you can, i rest all the time really, just up and down to eyeball chafe etc, very relaxing

Agree on the radar guard and Ais. But as others have said once you are out in the clear blue there ain't much about.... BLISS.

If the weather does kick up and you have an extended period of stress, i like to heave to and get an extended period of sleep afterwards, radar gaurd and ais transponder are great for that time, i also have a strobe light fitted to the spreaders that goes on at night if i am hove to, the light reflects on the sails and lights me up!


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Old 29-04-2015, 13:28   #40
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by monte View Post
Not being vague or a smart ass mate. Not sure why you would think that? The link is to the colregs which is what you asked for.
It's only vague if you've never read colregs before.
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Old 29-04-2015, 13:34   #41
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

The colregs say what is required and the law. What you do is up to you. The courts or St. Peter will sort it out.
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Old 29-04-2015, 13:37   #42
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

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Originally Posted by Adrian NAMT View Post
Forget the egg timer. Get a "Screaming Meanie" 120 db
See "ScreamingMeanie.com"

I had a look at that site but not much info there except that it's loud! It would need to have similar attributes to the watch commander mentioned above to be really effective. A rolling 15m timer that starts starts quietly and increases to wake the dead volume. Something that requires fiddling with a few buttons every 15 mins to reset would get old fast. It does mention a 10 and 5 minute pre alarm but seems pretty sketchy on details. Watchmate is also good for Double handed crews where the volume increases enough to wake the off watch crew in the event the crew on watch doesn't reset it. I.e. They will know within 15 minutes if the crew in watch has fallen overboard or in distress and have half a chance of recovery.
If the screamingmeanie is suitable let us know and I'll order one to try out.
Cheers
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Old 29-04-2015, 13:45   #43
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pirate Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Always makes me chuckle when folks say 'LAW'...
The ColRegs are recommendations that may or may not be applied in the results of a collision.. they are definitely not 'LAW' as they apply to areas inside and outside territorial waters..
To many lower deck lawyers on here methinks..
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Old 29-04-2015, 13:47   #44
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

When I can't avoid o'nite passages , more than 1 day , bunk down in co'pit,kitchen timer 15 min .set , Redbull and coffee. During a 40,000 mile RTW only had 2 very close ones. The system seems to work but it is essential to walk aro' deck to watch , don't rely on radar.
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Old 29-04-2015, 14:00   #45
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

If you have an AIS transponder, you might consider entering your vessel name as S/V Soundasleep or S/V Not Under Command, or S/V DeathWish
Or S/V Chowder Head or S/V Not Budgen.
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