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Old 12-11-2014, 15:53   #376
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Re: Do you keep a Constant Lookout?

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Originally Posted by rwidman View Post
Please consider that not everyone is operating a large sailboat or a ship. There are millions of smaller boats on the water with no provision to flying an anchor ball. A strict interpretation of the rules would have Uncle Bubba flying an anchor ball from his camouflaged duck boat.

None of the boats in my marina, including mine, have a provision for an anchor ball as delivered from the manufacturer. If it ever becomes customary around here, I'll consider hanging one from my bimini top frame.
That's true, and among the other rules, the rule of reason should be applied here.

Small boats which don't go offshore and which don't spend time in shipping lanes, which anchor in places too shallow for any traffic, certainly have less need for all the rules and dayshapes.

If I were anchored in a small boat in a shallow place with no traffic, I wouldn't hoist a ball either.

I have less sympathy for aggressive ignorance about COLREGS, because knowledge of them really could save your life some day, not to mention saving a lot of aggravation to other mariners. But I acknowledge that a lot of "boaters" spend whole lives on the water without knowing one rule from the other.

Since both vessels in a risk of collision situation are obligated to avoid a collision, you can pretty much ignore the COLREGS and rely on others to prevent collisions if you want. This is what probably the majority of recreational boaters in places other than Europe do. There will be few risk of collision situations anyway with small, shallow draft vessels; for those few you can count on being lucky or on the other mariner to be good. Is it a good idea? I don't think so, but huge quantities of "boaters" do just that.
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Old 12-11-2014, 17:37   #377
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Re: Do you keep a Constant Lookout?

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That seems like a pretty arrogant statement to me.
Or anger. He says he has to do it and here in Puget Sound, no one bothers.
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Old 12-11-2014, 18:42   #378
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Do you keep a Constant Lookout?

I'll have to admit that despite my best intentions,I could do several things better. For instance,,I'm still not transmitting AIS, although I can set proximity alarms on my AIS VHF, and hail ships directly.

When it appears to matter, I'm usually at the helm. At night,,and some in the day, I'm regularly taking,bearings on any traffic that needs my attention.

I don't have radar either. I'm just sailing on the cheap and spend money on important fundamental stuff and have just added things like the standard horizon AIS, which adds a lot of information, quickly, and affordably.

One night I was sailing the Chesapeake,,from wye river - near st Michael's, in gale conditions. I was surfing downwind, with some headsail, and making good time. Lost GPS, and no less than THREE backup gps units eventually failed, just as I was pulling out of east bay and turning south and down wind. I was purposefully sailing in these conditions, winds 25'to 35 knots on the stern is a dream in July, so I covered much of the bay in a night and part of a day,,to Portsmouth. Took three days to get to Annapolis from Portsmouth, with still, 100 degree days. Sailing in Gail conditions southbound, I'm in gore tex and a watch cap.

The big thing on that trip that was difficult was that I didn't have a depth sounder. I was doing DR on paper and auto pilot could not,reliably hold course. Winds and waves we're such that it would have been a little bit of a wreck if I broached. So I transmitted securite's on 13 at low wattage, and stared hard into the night,,all,night,,surfing on some high freq waves.

So because of all this, I was probably in the channel too much. The north bound freighters we're very prof, but sometimes when I asked,for confirmations on radar returns, I'd get a "ya, we see you there right in the channel."

I was definitely working the margins,,but for whatever the reasons,they were working the extreme margins,too. Perhaps the wave direction they were powering into dictated their course. It certainly,dictated mine, with some very exciting waves overtaking me, and winds shifting some,with me trying to keep my headsail full and taught. I took some occasional liberties,just trying to sail right.

But even though I stared intently into the night, a couple of ships loomed out of,nowhere. I'm surfing at high speeds, with winds steadily over 30'knots, using light signals everywhere to pilot. Essential to be able to use the lights, as there are many other all,over the horizon in the Chesapeake. The signals insure you take them in order. But I stared into the night, and some ships just did not register, and I had no,technology to see them. Twinkling, tiny running lights on the bow, blending right in with all the twinkling lights of very bouncy buoys. Red and green everywhere.

First time I realized a ship could run me down even if I was watching,,if they weren't. None of the two close calls responded on 13 or 16. They were not too close, but way closer than anyone would want to be surprised by this giant looming above me. Close enough that it felt like luck I wasn't in front of them.

I have other examples too, but this a unique one. Anything can happen.

I keep a close lookout single handing, but you do have to sleep some, eat, use head, for when the pee bottle,can't accommodate. Usually the high traffic areas take more attention, but there are times I ease off some. I intend to add a vesper transponder, and an HD radar. Seems only the responsible thing to do, rather than to keep,relying on some amount of luck.

But I try.....


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Old 12-11-2014, 20:08   #379
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Re: Do you keep a Constant Lookout?

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Originally Posted by Astrid View Post
Here's one:

Looks just like my radar reflector...
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Old 12-11-2014, 20:19   #380
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Re: Do you keep a Constant Lookout?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cheoah View Post
I'll have to admit that despite my best intentions,I could do several things better. For instance,,I'm still not transmitting AIS, although I can set proximity alarms on my AIS VHF, and hail ships directly.

When it appears to matter, I'm usually at the helm. At night,,and some in the day, I'm regularly taking,bearings on any traffic that needs my attention.

I don't have radar either. I'm just sailing on the cheap and spend money on important fundamental stuff and have just added things like the standard horizon AIS, which adds a lot of information, quickly, and affordably.

One night I was sailing the Chesapeake,,from wye river - near st Michael's, in gale conditions. I was surfing downwind, with some headsail, and making good time. Lost GPS, and no less than THREE backup gps units eventually failed, just as I was pulling out of east bay and turning south and down wind. I was purposefully sailing in these conditions, winds 25'to 35 knots on the stern is a dream in July, so I covered much of the bay in a night and part of a day,,to Portsmouth. Took three days to get to Annapolis from Portsmouth, with still, 100 degree days. Sailing in Gail conditions southbound, I'm in gore tex and a watch cap.

The big thing on that trip that was difficult was that I didn't have a depth sounder. I was doing DR on paper and auto pilot could not,reliably hold course. Winds and waves we're such that it would have been a little bit of a wreck if I broached. So I transmitted securite's on 13 at low wattage, and stared hard into the night,,all,night,,surfing on some high freq waves.

So because of all this, I was probably in the channel too much. The north bound freighters we're very prof, but sometimes when I asked,for confirmations on radar returns, I'd get a "ya, we see you there right in the channel."

I was definitely working the margins,,but for whatever the reasons,they were working the extreme margins,too. Perhaps the wave direction they were powering into dictated their course. It certainly,dictated mine, with some very exciting waves overtaking me, and winds shifting some,with me trying to keep my headsail full and taught. I took some occasional liberties,just trying to sail right.

But even though I stared intently into the night, a couple of ships loomed out of,nowhere. I'm surfing at high speeds, with winds steadily over 30'knots, using light signals everywhere to pilot. Essential to be able to use the lights, as there are many other all,over the horizon in the Chesapeake. The signals insure you take them in order. But I stared into the night, and some ships just did not register, and I had no,technology to see them. Twinkling, tiny running lights on the bow, blending right in with all the twinkling lights of very bouncy buoys. Red and green everywhere.

First time I realized a ship could run me down even if I was watching,,if they weren't. None of the two close calls responded on 13 or 16. They were not too close, but way closer than anyone would want to be surprised by this giant looming above me. Close enough that it felt like luck I wasn't in front of them.

I have other examples too, but this a unique one. Anything can happen.

I keep a close lookout single handing, but you do have to sleep some, eat, use head, for when the pee bottle,can't accommodate. Usually the high traffic areas take more attention, but there are times I ease off some. I intend to add a vesper transponder, and an HD radar. Seems only the responsible thing to do, rather than to keep,relying on some amount of luck.
Wow. If I was sailing without a depth sounder and without a GPS though congested areas along the ICW:
I would only sail during the day. What gives? Your schedule that important that you have to risk your life?
I don't care how good the wind was. If I was going through tight areas with commercial traffic in stormy conditions without basic instruments....
Man, I would do it during the day and I would hail all ships that get close and tell them of my limitations.
You may be an excellent mariner. But they used to die too. And they didn't have supertankers trying to head them off.
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Old 12-11-2014, 22:45   #381
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Re: Do you keep a Constant Lookout?

Like I said, room to,improve! My electronics failed right at dark,,after I was under way for a while. The Chesapeake is wide, and like I said,,I was mostly on the margins. Yep risky, the shipping traffic was an unexpected in the areas I was sailing.

Bottom line, I was keeping a constant lookout, calling securite's every time I thought I saw a ship, and every fifteen minutes. Nonetheless, ships still snuck up,on me.


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Old 13-11-2014, 00:54   #382
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Re: Do you keep a Constant Lookout?

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Or anger. He says he has to do it and here in Puget Sound, no one bothers.
No not anger, nor is it arrogance. I firmly believe that anyone skippering a boat should be fully cognizant of the Colregs (much the same way I believe that anyone driving a car on a public road should be cognizant of the laws governing that activity).

Do you need an anchor ball on a shallow draft duck hunting boat? no and the colregs say so.

Bigger boats? yes - you should. Same as you should also have nav lights.

Anchor balls, motorsailing cones etc are required not for your convenience, but for everyone else. They simply tell other skippers what your status is and from that those other skippers will know ow you (are supposed) to react in any given circumstance.

I don't know the US practice (might be different but seriously doubt it) - but in northern europe, if you are involved in a collision and you're motorsailing and not showing the inverted cone - then you're going to end up with most of the blame.
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Old 13-11-2014, 02:59   #383
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Re: Do you keep a Constant Lookout?

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Beth View Post
Wow. If I was sailing without a depth sounder and without a GPS though congested areas along the ICW:
I would only sail during the day. What gives? Your schedule that important that you have to risk your life?
I don't care how good the wind was. If I was going through tight areas with commercial traffic in stormy conditions without basic instruments....
Man, I would do it during the day and I would hail all ships that get close and tell them of my limitations.
You may be an excellent mariner. But they used to die too. And they didn't have supertankers trying to head them off.
"Sleep some"? In the Chesapeake Bay, in the shipping channels, at night, with no GPS and no depth sounder?

Sounds reckless to me. Far out to sea, maybe, but in the Bay, why in the world wouldn't you pull in and put the anchor down to get a proper rest, then proceed in daylight? Or better pull in and buy a $49 GPS somewhere? [and Four failed GPS's on one trip?] And fix the depth sounder.
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