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Old 19-02-2010, 10:31   #16
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Yes. The forecast shown is in fact the current forecast for the Bahamas. If you go to Sirius.com/marineweather they have screen captures of the graphical interface which covers the Bahamas and beyond.
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Old 19-02-2010, 10:31   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunset View Post
The weather service is graphical, not audio. It provides map depicted prediction of wind speed and direction, swell direction, position and movement of fronts and tropical systems. Also bouy data. And the forecasts are the text products from NOAA as below.

OFFSHORE WATERS FORECAST FOR THE SW AND TROPICAL N ATLANTIC AND
CARIBBEAN SEA
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
1030 AM EST FRI FEB 19 2010

OFFSHORE WATERS FORECAST FOR THE TROPICAL N ATLC FROM 07N TO 22N
BETWEEN 55W AND 65W...THE SW N ATLANTIC S OF 31N W OF 65W
INCLUDING BAHAMAS...AND THE CARIBBEAN SEA

SEAS GIVEN AS SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT...WHICH IS THE AVERAGE
HEIGHT OF THE HIGHEST 1/3 OF THE WAVES. INDIVIDUAL WAVES MAY BE
MORE THAN TWICE THE SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT.

AMZ089-192130-
SYNOPSIS FOR CARIBBEAN SEA AND TROPICAL N ATLC FROM 07N TO 22N
BETWEEN 55W AND 65W
1030 AM EST FRI FEB 19 2010

.SYNOPSIS...A WEAKENING COLD FRONT LIES FROM 22N55W TO PUERTO
RICO THEN STATIONARY TO 16N70W AND DISSIPATING OVER THE SW
CARIBBEAN. FRONT WILL REMAIN NEARLY STATIONARY ACROSS THE
CENTRAL CARIBBEAN THEN DISSIPATE TONIGHT WHILE THE E PORTION
DRIFTS E ACROSS THE NE CARIBBEAN AND TROPICAL N ATLC...GRADUALLY
DISSIPATING THROUGH SAT. THE NEXT COLD FRONT WILL STALL OVER THE
NW CARIBBEAN MON NIGHT INTO TUE.
But these are text forecasts available from NOAA from a number of sources other than paid satellite, and the radar, etc. available from Sirius is not covered outside the US, so all you are getting for the Bahamas, etc. are these text broadcasts for these broad areas and not necessarily specific to where you are. All of this and more can be downloaded to your computer free via a receiver as Hud already mentioned. WG
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Old 19-02-2010, 10:41   #18
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Not completely true.

You do not get radar but you do get graphical representations of wind and swell direction for the next few days, and graphical depiction of the movement of weather systems such as tropical storms and cold fronts. And the NOAA info.

I agree if you have an SSB it is not necessary but I don't have an SSB, assumed he doesn't and wanted to provide another option.
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Old 19-02-2010, 10:55   #19
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I greatly appreciate the info. We are in the planning stages and looking for any and all options and suggestions.

This will be quite a step for a couple old fogeys who just took the ASA courses: Buy a boat we don't know, and have never seen before, and sail it from Florida ( or wherever) across the Gulf Stream, and then down the entire length of the Bahamas. Which we also have never done. talk about your OJT...

I know this is old hat for most of you seasoned sailors....but for a couple of newbies it feels like a hell of a shakedown cruise. For both boat and crew.
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Old 19-02-2010, 11:03   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canibul View Post
I greatly appreciate the info. We are in the planning stages and looking for any and all options and suggestions.

This will be quite a step for a couple old fogeys who just took the ASA courses: Buy a boat we don't know, and have never seen before, and sail it from Florida ( or wherever) across the Gulf Stream, and then down the entire length of the Bahamas. Which we also have never done. talk about your OJT...

I know this is old hat for most of you seasoned sailors....but for a couple of newbies it feels like a hell of a shakedown cruise. For both boat and crew.
Some predeparture reading would be to get a copy of our friend Bruce Van Sant's book, The Gentleman's Guide to Passages South and have a look at the sections on anticipating weather and when is the appropriate times to make a passage. It is very insightful and covers all of the area you plan to cruise. WG
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Old 19-02-2010, 12:12   #21
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I tried to get a copy of that at the one bookstore in this entire nation... no go. Then tried to see if I could download it to my new Kindle. No go.

Guess I am going to have to wait until I am in the US next time for that one.
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Old 19-02-2010, 12:21   #22
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You should be able to order it through Amazon.com . WG
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Old 19-02-2010, 15:47   #23
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Marine Weather Info while sailing in/thru The Bahamas

Canibul,
For sailing the Bahamas (SW N. Atlantic), as well as the Caribbean, N. Atl. etc.....there is a great deal of accurate weather info/forecasts available for FREE, from the US NWS/NOAA.....

These weather forecasts are broadcast by the USCG, on HF Radio (SSB), in Voice braodcasts, Text (SITOR) broadcasts, and Fax (WeFax) broadcasts, from transmitters in New Orleans, Chesapeake, VA and Boston, MA.....

Almost all of what I'm posting here is written about here...
National Weather Service Marine Forecasts

And, the great thing is that not only are all of this weather data and forecasts the most accurate, but they are FREE.....
Yes, they are larger scale forecasts, but they accurate and up-to-date.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Canibul View Post
I greatly appreciate the info. We are in the planning stages and looking for any and all options and suggestions.

This will be quite a step for a couple old fogeys who just took the ASA courses: Buy a boat we don't know, and have never seen before, and sail it from Florida ( or wherever) across the Gulf Stream, and then down the entire length of the Bahamas.

For your application (not having the boat yet, nor what equipment would be installed on whatever boat you may be looking at...nor what equipment would be working/operational....nor whether you'd have the knowledge/experience to use any of it....), there is one simple, cheap solution that will work......

1) Use of an inexpensive (~ $100) portable HF receiver, such as a Sagean or Sony (what I have as my back-up), with a short (~ 20' - 30') length of wire strung up on a flag halyard, etc. as an external antenna, will allow you to listen to the Voice broadcasts from the USCG (both NMN in Virginia and NMG in New Orleans) 8 times a day (4 times from each station)....
This will give you accurate and up-to-date weather info and forecasts for the entire area.....
(And NWS/NOAA is going to experiment with more detailed and localized forecasts for this area as well...)
You do NOT need a computer, software, special antennas, etc.....

Here's some details...
USCG HF Voice

Here's the text from today's broadcast.....
Quote:
SEAS GIVEN AS SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT...WHICH IS THE AVERAGE
HEIGHT OF THE HIGHEST 1/3 OF THE WAVES. INDIVIDUAL WAVES MAY BE
MORE THAN TWICE THE SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT.



AMZ088-200330-
SYNOPSIS FOR THE SW N ATLC INCLUDING THE BAHAMAS
430 PM EST FRI FEB 19 2010


.SYNOPSIS...A SURFACE RIDGE EXTENDING NE FLORIDA TO HISPANIOLA
WILL SHIFT E TO A POSITION FROM BERMUDA TO SE FLORIDA LATE MON.
THE NEXT COLD FRONT WILL MOVE INTO THE NW WATERS MON NIGHT
REACHING A POSITION FROM 31N70W TO WINDWARD PASSAGE LATE TUE...
AND FROM BERMUDA TO HISPANIOLA WED NIGHT. A STRONGER COLD FRONT
WILL MOVE INTO THE NW WATERS WED NIGHT.




SEAS GIVEN AS SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT...WHICH IS THE AVERAGE
HEIGHT OF THE HIGHEST 1/3 OF THE WAVES. INDIVIDUAL WAVES MAY BE
MORE THAN TWICE THE SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT.



AMZ080-200330-
SW N ATLANTIC S OF 31N W OF 65W INCLUDING BAHAMAS
430 PM EST FRI FEB 19 2010


TONIGHT
N OF 27N W OF 72W W TO NW WINDS 5 TO 10 KT. SEAS 4 TO
6 FT EXCEPT 1 TO 3 FT W OF 76W. N OF 27N E OF 72W NW WINDS 10 TO
15 KT. SEAS 7 TO 12 FT PRIMARILY IN NW SWELL. S OF 27N W OF
BAHAMAS N TO NE WINDS 10 TO 15 KT. SEAS 1 TO 3 FT. S OF 27N E OF
BAHAMAS N TO NE WINDS 10 TO 15 KT. SEAS 6 TO 9FT PRIMARILY IN NW
SWELL. SCATTERED SHOWERS S OF 23N.

SAT AND SAT NIGHT
N OF 27N W OF 72W VARIABLE WINDS 5 TO 10
KT. SEAS 1 TO 3 FT IN NW SWELL. N OF 27N E OF 72W NW TO N WINDS
10 TO 15 KT. SEAS 4 TO 9 FT IN NW SWELL HIGHEST SEAS S OF
BERMUDA. S OF 27N W OF BAHAMAS NE TO E WINDS 10 TO 15 KT. SEAS 1
TO 3 FT EXCEPT 4 TO 6 FT S OF 22N. S OF 27N E OF BAHAMAS N TO NE
WINDS 10 TO 15 KT INCREASING TO 15 TO 20 KT WATERS S OF 23N E OF
70W. SEAS 4 TO 8 FT PRIMARILY IN NW SWELL.

SUN AND SUN NIGHT
N OF 27N W OF 72W VARIABLE WINDS 5 TO 10 KT
BECOMING S 15 KT MON NIGHT. SEAS 1 TO 3 FT IN NW SWELL. N OF 27N
E OF 72W NW TO N WINDS 10 TO 15 KT. SEAS 4 TO 8 FT IN NW
SWELL...HIGHEST S OF BERMUDA. S OF 27N W OF BAHAMAS NE TO E
WINDS 10 KT. SEAS 1 TO 2 FT EXCEPT 3 TO 5 FT S 22N. S OF 27N E
OF BAHAMAS NE TO E WINDS 10 TO 15 KT EXCEPT 15 TO 20 KT FAR SE
WATERS. SEAS 4 TO 7 FT IN NW SWELL.

MON
N OF 27N W OF 72W S TO SW WINDS 15 TO 20 KT SHIFTING TO
NW BEHIND FRONT MON NIGHT. SEAS 3 TO 5 FT BUILDING TO 6 TO 8 FT
LATE. N OF 27N E OF 72W VARIABLE WINDS 10 KT BECOMING S TO SE
WINDS 15 KT MON NIGHT. SEAS 4 TO 7 FT IN NW SWELL. S OF 27N W OF
BAHAMAS SE TO S WINDS 10 TO 15 KT BECOMING SW 20 KT MON NIGHT.
SEAS 2 TO 4 FT. S OF 27N E OF BAHAMAS E TO SE WINDS 10 TO 15 KT
BECOMING SE TO S 15 TO 20 KT MON NIGHT. SEAS 4 TO 6 FT.

TUE
N OF 27N W OF FRONT NW TO N WINDS 10 TO 15 KT. SEAS 4 TO
6 FT. N OF 27N E OF FRONT S TO SW WINDS 20 KT. SEAS 6 TO 8 FT. S
OF 27N W OF BAHAMAS SW WINDS 15 TO 20 KT SHIFTING TO NW 10 TO 15
KT BEHIND FRONT SEAS 2TO 4 FT. S OF 27N E OF BAHAMAS SE TO S
WINDS 15 TO 20 KT SHIFTING TO NW 15 KT BEHIND FRONT. SEAS 4 TO 6
FT.

WED
N OF 27N W OF 73W VARIABLE WINDS 10 KT BECOMING S 15 TO
20 KT SHIFTING TO NW 20 TO 25 KT WED NIGHT BEHIND STRONG COLD
FRONT. SEAS 3 TO 5 FT BUILDING 6 TO 9 FT LATE WED NIGHT.
N OF 27N E OF 73W NW WINDS 15 KT W OF FRONT AND SW 15 KT E OF
FRONT. SEAS 4 TO 7 FT. S OF 27N W OF BAHAMAS SE TO S WINDS 15 TO
20 KT SHIFTING TO NW BEHIND FRONT. SEAS 4 TO 6 FT. S OF 27N E OF
BAHAMAS S WINDS 15 TO 20 KT SHIFTING TO NW 15 KT BRIEFLY BEHIND
FIRST FRONT SHIFTING TO S 15 TO 20 KT LATE WED NIGHT. SEAS 4 TO
6 FT.

2) If you wish to read this exact forecast, rather than just listen to it on the radio, you can use the JVComm software and your laptop to decode this text forecast, from the SITOR broadcasts of the USCG, which your same little portable receiver will allow you to receive......
Here's the destails on the NWS/NOAA text forecasts broadcast by the USCG.....
USCG HF SITOR

And, if you want to read the forecasts on-line, go here, and click on the area of interest...
NWS Marine Offshore Marine Forecasts by Zone


3) For graphical weather data and forecasts (weather charts and satellite photographs), you can also use the same receiver and JVComm software and your laptop, to receive "wefax" (weather facsimilie) charts.....
Here's some details...
NWS Radiofax
http://weather.noaa.gov/pub/fax/hfgulf.txt
http://weather.noaa.gov/pub/fax/hfmarsh.txt
Marine Radiofax charts



4) VHF-Marine NOAA Weather Radio (162mhz) in South Florida broadcasts NWS / NOAA marine coastal forecasts, covering areas out to 60nm offshore the Florida coast (including Bimini, Andros, etc.)


5) VHF Marine radio will also be of some help here, since in many areas of the Bahamas you'll hear a daily "Cruiser's Net" (ch. 68), where you'll be able to get daily weather info.....(although, this puts you a bit outside of my goal of self-sufficiency, most cruisers will give you the staright scoop.....)


6) ZNS-Radio Bahamas, main station in (ZNS-1 AM) Nassau (1540 khz) along with ZNS-2 AM, ZNS-FM, and ZNS-3 (in Freeport), air daily weather reports and forecasts......
As well as some South Florida AM radio stations giving accurate weather info and forecasts (limited to only near-shore coastal forecasts, but even this along with the "continental" South Florida weather is useful...)



ALL of the above weather data / forecasts are FREE and most are the "gold standard" for accuracy and reliability.....


7) Now, don't get me wrong, I have nothing against Sirius Marine weather.....it is useful and accurate......{Sirius' weather provider (WSI) uses NWS/NOAA Marine weather data and forecasts, as their primary marine weather source.....}

I have friends currently sailing the Pacific coast of Mexico and others in Central/Southern Bahamas, who are all using Sirius Marine Weather.....and they love it!!!
(and another friend, currently sailing in/near St. Martean, who has Sirius Satellite Radio, and considered adding a Sirius Marine Weather receiver, but realized it wouldn't give him anything he didn't already have....and cost him $800 plus a monthly fee.....so he's decided to just continue to use his SSB and wefax software.....)

BUT, since you don't have a boat yet....and since the likelihood of whatever boat you do buy, would have a modern "Sirius Marine Weather-capable" chartplotter (such as a Raymarine E-Series, etc.) is very low, I'd think the likelihood of you considering Sirius Marine Weather is NILL....




I do hope this helps...

John
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Old 19-02-2010, 16:00   #24
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Yes, enormously, John. Thank you.
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