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Old 29-04-2015, 15:49   #46
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

I know that the COLREGS do require an dequate lookout at all times and I know that singlehanders cannot be in conformance. In 1980 I made a singlehanded passage from San Francisco to Hawaii The oceqn in that area was probably more crowded than usual since there were 37 other singlehanders out there that started at the same place and planned on finishing at the same place. I sleep through egg timers, darkroom timers, school bells, you name it. My procedure was to stick my head out of the hatch and make a couple 360° horison seeps. Then call on th VHF to see if there was anyone within VHF range (and had left his radio on). Then I drank a 16 oz. glass of water and went to sleep. In on hour and 15 minutes (+/- 10 minutes) I woke having to pee. I repeated this cycle day and night. I'd estimate that there were MANY 24 hour periods where I got 20 hours sleep in 1-1/4 hour increments. (Most of the time there was NO ONE within VHF range.) When I got closer to Kauaii (and more concentrated shipping and fishing boats) I didn't want to sleep that long - so I drank the same volume of tea or Pepsi. Gave me a half hour to 45 minutes. (Since then I have talked with an early American historian that said that the same method was used by American Indians when they wanted a short nap, but didn't want to chance sleeping too long.) And, of course, I did NOT sleep when I was within sight of land or at night when the same distance from land, or when the distance on my chart was within 4 hours of land. No GPS, SatNav, radar or Loran.
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Old 29-04-2015, 17:55   #47
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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 valhalla360 View Post
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.
Sure. But this discussion is not about kids who surf on car roofs at 55mph...

Boatman61 and Brightontrader have described the reality of what many, if not most solo sailors resort to. It's about coping in the most obvious, realistic way a human being can if they are to maintain their ability to stay awake and manage the boat when sleep is not a possibility.

My method for doing the best I can at watchkeeping, when odds are there may be other vessels or hazards in my vicinity hasn't been mentioned. So, here it tis. I lie face up with feet planted on a bulkhead. If I fall asleep, it won't be long before the feet fall from the bulkhead waking me up. I peruse the horizon for hazards and if all's clear I repeat the process. I rarely if ever get to the stage of deep sleep doing this, but some rest is better than nothing and it's foolproof. Sessions last at most 15 minutes.
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Old 29-04-2015, 18:11   #48
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

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Sure. But this discussion is not about kids who surf on car roofs at 55mph...

Boatman61 and Brightontrader have described the reality of what many, if not most solo sailors resort to. It's about coping in the most obvious, realistic way a human being can if they are to maintain their ability to stay awake and manage the boat when sleep is not a possibility.

My method for doing the best I can at watchkeeping, when odds are there may be other vessels or hazards in my vicinity hasn't been mentioned. So, here it tis. I lie face up with feet planted on a bulkhead. If I fall asleep, it won't be long before the feet fall from the bulkhead waking me up. I peruse the horizon for hazards and if all's clear I repeat the process. I rarely if ever get to the stage of deep sleep doing this, but some rest is better than nothing and it's foolproof. Sessions last at most 15 minutes.
That is a great idea. Thanks
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Old 29-04-2015, 18:14   #49
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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 boatman61 View Post
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..
Sorry I used "law" instead of "internationally agreed upon rules."
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Old 29-04-2015, 22:17   #50
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Golly, some of you get nasty fast!

Check into the FORUM of The Singlehanded Sailing Society of San Francisco: SFBAYSSS.org every other year racers head to Kauai or, in prep, race to 126. 40 n longitude

Offshore a couple of tricks seem to work well including egg timers or alarms. Drinking as much ch water as you can before you rest works wonders.

When first short handed sailing I became furious with my husband when I found him asleep on watch. Then I realized that if the wind and sea changed, the boat made a racket and woke the On watch quickly

.
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Old 30-04-2015, 02:08   #51
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

A Hearted Thanks to Everyone that Gave Me the Real World Solution to Sailing Solo on a Long Voyage.

I have a X military background in Special Ops. and have been on duty for up to 36 hours at a time. We were permitted cat nap as others remained on watch & rotated watch between us. We were given meds. to help out with extended sleep deputation. It was pointed out that the longer you go without sleep, the tougher it gets and that's spot on. I've been on combat missions where it all went wrong and was on an adrenalin rush for hours & hours. When the mission was over and I was able to sleep, I crashed for a whole day... just used up and on empty... sleep wise.

Anyway, a lot of my trip routing is away from the shipping lanes and coastal traffic. I should be able to get some proper sleep along the way be rested up for areas that require my vigilance.

Thanks Again,


Avery
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Old 30-04-2015, 02:53   #52
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Researchers, possibly funded by military, (and NASA and/or European Space Agency, cannot remember) set up studies about sleep management in the 80ies.
Solo skippers/ racers accepted to have their brain activity recorded.
After a couple of days, results showed that skippers slept 20 minutes,checked sails, weather, position for 20' to 40', then went back to sleep.
This round the clock.


Their brain activity showed that they could reach out of the 3 possible types of sleep, the "best" one, deep, dreamless sleep, no reflex body movements, eyes still, nearly as soon as they slept.
Something which occurs normally, in the 2sd part of a normal night sleep.


Sorry do not have time to google, you will have to do your own research.


Solo sailors, practice and will power.



Edit : http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polyphasic_sleep
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Old 30-04-2015, 08:12   #53
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

In the good old days, a single-hander would use an egg timer or such device and wake at 15 minute intervals as previously stated. Now I am getting the impression from other people's stories they are relying more and more on AIS and radar safe zones to protect them. In the end it is all a crap shoot basically. All you can do is to try to boost your odds by keeping watch as much as you can.

By all means do NOT rely on "ships will see me and avoid me" for anyone reading rescue at sea stories will notice ships passing by the victim and not seeing him. Often this is because there is nobody on the bridge for periods of time. They do not keep infallible watches, and often sailboats make poor radar returns.

As well, I know of no insurance company which would pay off in a case of a collision loss when the single-hander has been sailing more than 24 hours without dropping anchor in harbour and resting. So single-handers who are doing that are giving up that protection.

I'm not saying one shouldn't be making long passages single-handed, but you have to understand the risks and they are there.
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Old 30-04-2015, 08:38   #54
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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 HighFly_27 View Post
A Hearted Thanks to Everyone that Gave Me the Real World Solution to Sailing Solo on a Long Voyage.

I have a X military background in Special Ops. and have been on duty for up to 36 hours at a time. We were permitted cat nap as others remained on watch & rotated watch between us. We were given meds. to help out with extended sleep deputation. It was pointed out that the longer you go without sleep, the tougher it gets and that's spot on. I've been on combat missions where it all went wrong and was on an adrenalin rush for hours & hours. When the mission was over and I was able to sleep, I crashed for a whole day... just used up and on empty... sleep wise.

Anyway, a lot of my trip routing is away from the shipping lanes and coastal traffic. I should be able to get some proper sleep along the way be rested up for areas that require my vigilance.

Thanks Again,


Avery

Avery, thanks for your years of service.


S/V B'Shert
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Old 30-04-2015, 08:54   #55
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
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..
They may not technically be law, but the courts often treat them like law. There was a recent court case where a boat was run into while it was anchored and the crew asleep. The judge accepted the defense contention that they had not been keeping a proper watch as required by USCG regulations (inland rules and colregs) as there was no exception in the regulations watch keeping requirements for a vessel at anchor. I would suspect that this could also be argued for a boat in a slip as there seems to be no exceptions to the watch keeping requirement if the boat is on the water. So even if a solo sailor's at anchor he's still technically required to keep a watch, at least as far as US courts are concerned.

It might be treated differently in other jurisdictions, but you might as well treat them as law in the US.
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Old 30-04-2015, 17:59   #56
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

HighFly,

I hope you've gotten something out of the responses. I choose not to sail solo if at all possible and the reason is the watchstanding. You now know what is required by colregs and how many here break the rule. You now have to make up your mind whether or not you want to accept the responsibility for what happens if you do doze off.

I try to sail outside the shipping channels if I feel that I'm getting close to nodding off.

I've been on starboard lookout on a destroyer and found myself nodding off even while standing up. Hard to do but can be done if you're tired enough. Of course, zero tolerance was in effect for us. No helpful meds allowed. In combat or near the enemy in country VN it was different when adrenaline kicks in. That was what kept us awake.
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Old 30-04-2015, 18:16   #57
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

After tens of thousands of solo miles, I came to the conclusion that, given the choice, I'd rather die in my sleep.
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Old 30-04-2015, 18:30   #58
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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 Imprezza72 View Post
There is a pdf file I'm sure you can do a search called: SinglehandedTipsThirdEdition

too big to up load...
I agree. That PDF book (Singlehanded Sailing, by Andrew Evans) also has a long section about managing sleep cycles when single-handing.

Fair winds,
Jack
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Old 30-04-2015, 22:41   #59
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

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I should have read on, maybe you already apologized and admitted to being the a**. Anyway... it's not polite to ask for help then dis someone who offers an honest assist. Misunderstandings occur on the forum all the time and sometimes one receives a snarky reply, but I think you misread this one... if you haven't already, I think you owe someone an apology.

i have read the colregs i have a fair understanding of them but i couldn't remember the exact passage he was referring to and i didn't feel like reading the whole thing just for the basis of this thread. there was a reason i asked a specific question, to get a specific answer not a vague point to the entire regs. dont look for an apology, you wont find it
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Old 01-05-2015, 00:40   #60
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Re: Advice, How to Maintain Watch & Sail When Solo Thru 24 Hr's. (+) Time Periods ?

When making night-time passages, I prefer to have a professional crew operating the boat while I relax/rest (usually costing me $50 to $100 a day including meals, entertainment, and a room steward.) Several weeks a year of this costs less than maintaining/operating my 35-foot boat.


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