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Old 27-11-2019, 21:33   #931
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

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Iím with funjohnson, my wife and I donít need a bunch of people around to feel whole, sorry you donít feel the same security.
You sir, know nothing about me, so your comment is rather asinine. I suppose mine was as well...but I was speaking "tongue in cheek."

I often single hand, but when I do bring on crew it is not because of loneliness or lack of security...it is for friendship and sharing an adventure with someone I trust.
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Old 28-11-2019, 00:00   #932
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

the intrepid travellers ( as of 08.00 gmt ) seem to have leveled off at the 42 mark and are now headed due E again , the calm period would seem to be over and the next wind system is about to catch them up ,, hope fully they can use the wind and push the boat a bit more and hopefully catch the NE wind off Portugal come the 4/5/6th before is too disappears .
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Old 28-11-2019, 00:21   #933
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

[QUOTE=Pelagic;3024763]Thanks Breaking Waves with staying on course with this fantastic exercise in modern weather routing.
...
/QUOTE]

Hear hear, it's been an education to see professional weather routing, my thanks to Breaking Waves for all his work in this.
What a revolution since I was professionally sailing in the 1st half of the 1980s
On Watches, Ros and I did classic 4on, 4off with dog watches Darwin to East London. There we met 2 Ausie couples doing 3on 3off at night, flexible during the day, and have been doing that since ad it works better for us. The important thing is to have a watch system. You can always modify it if it's not working well for you.
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Old 28-11-2019, 03:13   #934
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

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but I was speaking "tongue in cheek.


As was I
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Old 28-11-2019, 03:20   #935
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

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When you learn a new skill, do you want one teacher, who believes there is a right way or a wrong way, a my way or the highway? For those that believe that, my nature is to think i can get the same knowledge from someone with a better attitude. I'm not talking about learning a skill like tying a knot that has a right or wrong, but about seamanship, leadership, etc.
For skill sets like seamanship and leadership there are often varying degrees of "right" in which some are better than others. There are usually many ways to be wrong - much more than there are ways to be right.

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Of course, I'm only familiar with her public resume, I'm not on the boat with them or can read their minds and intentions from across an ocean, so, sure, maybe it's true that ". . . she might be a boob that uses a headlamp on bright with three LEDs." as someone posted so recently......
You are either taking my statement out of context or didn't read what I wrote. Someone challenged Ms. Hendrickson's light discipline (an element of seamanship). I pointed out that one can often read with ambient light. The fact of reading is not sufficient to differentiate between reading by available light or using a bright headlight.

@Dockside then made a case that reading on watch is de facto poor seamanship independent of light discipline.

A subtext to a broader discussion of varying degrees of right and wrong in which Ms. Hendrickson was an example and not a target.

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Originally Posted by Dsanduril View Post
My wife and I generally sail as two and we have settled on a 6-on, 6-off routine under most conditions. That allows about 5 hours of solid sleep for each of us during the night and another 3 hours or so during the day. While we are happy to reach a quiet anchorage we in general feel rested during a passage.

To my mind there are two things that make this possible:
  • A good autopilot/self-steering system. We would not be able to keep this schedule if we had to hand steer the whole 6 hours.
  • Conservative sail management to reduce (but not eliminate) the chances of having to wake the off watch for a sail change.

It means we proceed more slowly than the boat is able, because we reef early and un-reef late. LV seems to be using a similar tactic. Personally I wouldn't be using a 2/2 or 3/3 night watch schedule with essentially two watchstanders, BTDT, but if it works for them....

Having a third person aboard, even if they only stand watch during the day is a game changer. We've had a few passages with others aboard who were comfortable on the boat but not with night work. It still allows a little leisure/relaxation that is much harder to get with two.
An autopilot is a tremendous safety component. As you point out it contributes to rest and avoiding fatigue. In addition it saves splitting attention between steering and watching.

For two aboard I agree that watches 6-on/6-off are much to be preferred over 2-on/2-off or 3-on/3-off. The focus for decision-making should always be maintaining long enough rest periods. Fatigue is cumulative, cat naps are not enough, and you end up least effective at landfall when you need to be at your best.

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Question of philosophy, I guess, but for me -- a well-run vessel at sea, whether it's a ship or a yacht, has AT ALL TIMES at least one person who is devoting 100% (not 10%, not 50%, not 90%, but 100%) attention to the vessel and to being aware of everything going on around and inside the vessel.
I don't have a big issue with minor entertainment. Do you play the radio in your car while driving?

HOWEVER, I suggest that you are more right than I am. *grin*

What is your expectation of watchstanders who need to use the head? Do they wake someone to relieve (ha!) the watch or just not dawdle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
"Passengers" of course are more work, but I rarely have any passengers. Whoever is on board my boat is with rare exceptions crew and gets trained to do something useful. Keeping a good watch is not rocket science and I can't recall that I've ever had anyone on board who could not be trained fairly easily to do it.
Agreed. One of the discussions I have in preparing for owner-aboard deliveries is of who is in charge. As skipper I have full tactical authority. The owner is my customer, not boss. There are implications to that differentiation. If the owner decides he wants the boat in Antigua rather than Grenada that's fine presuming we have the supplies and can safely make the change; for the latter I have unilateral authority.

There should have been a similar discussion in making arrangements for this trip of La Vagabonde. Perhaps there was. We don't know. For my part I would have put the Thunbergs in the watch schedule - even if they split a four hour watch two and two. Nights also. Even if someone has to sleep in the salon to be convenient back-up.

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They /crew/ are encouraged to sleep every chance they get -- 8 hours of sleep (or even more), 8 hours on watch, 8 hours doing other useful things like cooking, fixing things, making coffee for others, helping with navigation, splicing, preparing meals ahead which can be microwaved in bad weather, whatever. I have been known to ORDER people to go get some sleep, if I see them just goofing off.
^^ this

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On passage, I sleep with a plotter/radar repeater in my bunk. This is why I think it's extremely important that wherever possible the skipper is NOT in the regular watch rotation. The skill of accumulating enough sleep in repeated one or two hour snatches is especially important for the skipper. Whether or not I'm in the regular watch rotation, I normally do not sleep during the graveyard shift (02:00 -- 06:00) in any case, and try to get most of my sleep during the day.
Agree. I rarely have access to radar in my bunk but I do have nav on my phone. Some boats I get a NMEA feed over WiFi which is great. You may note I often talk about waking the skipper - that's because I sleep at every opportunity. Never miss an opportunity to eat, sleep, go to the bathroom, charge something, or press up fuel and water.

For more than two or three days I sail with three crew and don't stand a watch. I'm always 'on' even when asleep.
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Old 28-11-2019, 03:43   #936
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

Quote:
Originally Posted by barryglewis View Post
On Watches, Ros and I did classic 4on, 4off with dog watches Darwin to East London. There we met 2 Ausie couples doing 3on 3off at night,
My preferred watch:

0600-1200
1200-1800
1800-2300
2300-0300
0300-0600


Works well for both 2 and 3 watch schedules.
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Old 28-11-2019, 03:50   #937
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

Looks like maintaining fairly good boat speed today, another 10.5 knots between posts ,,looks good to continue until this current system passes them by , they are going to need it
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Old 28-11-2019, 04:01   #938
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

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Originally Posted by OldKetch View Post
Accepting faults in one's heroes, idols, favourite media celebs, etc. is amongst the most difficult human tasks. If somebody is not comfortable with that, they may always opt for strategy b) above.
Agree. Life, and people, are full of shades of gray. By way of example, Ms. Hendrickson is unquestionably an accomplished sailor. If she reads at night with a bright headlamp (something we do not know) that may reflect (ha!) on her judgment but takes away nothing from her accomplishments. We should recognize that many people grow with time.

Story: I heard Nigel Calder speak a few years ago before a couple of hundred people. One fellow in the audience was following along in his copy of 'Boatowners Mechanical and Electrical Handbook' and at the end asked a question about a discrepancy between something Nigel said that morning and what was in the book. Nigel's response was brilliant: "Did I really write that? I'm smarter than that now."

On the subject of lights, catamarans with galley up are particularly problematic. Dinner preparation requires some degree of light and that intrudes on the watchstander even with a raised steering position. Some people do fit light blocking shades but they are the exception rather than the rule. This is a real issue with catamarans as well as deck saloon monohulls.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Breaking Waves View Post
This is some distance out in the forecast timeframe and divergence is not unexpected. just keep track of it, and make sure to take a close look around 28th mid-night when deciding whether to turn more north or not.
@Breaking Waves has compared models but I don't recall comparing results in the time domain. This is easier with synoptics but you can do it with gribs. You just have to save the files and have enough screen real estate to look. Specifically, todays 24 hour forecast and yesterday's 48 hour forecast and the three day old 96 hour forecast are ALL for tomorrow. Certainly forecasts get better as the valid time gets closer but substantial changes reflect instability that may be atmospheric or data driven. In either case decision-making should (<- opinion) be more conservative.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
In my personal opinion, it is a fool's errand for a single hander to try to keep the visual watch at all times or minimize the lapses to 15 minutes or 30 minutes or whatever.
I agree. My longest single-handed passage was seven days. I'll never do that again. I still will run single-handed for a day or so (most often Annapolis MD to Norfolk VA) but not longer. My risk threshold simply doesn't extend that far.

Electronics alarms are rarely loud enough to wake someone tired without fitting an external sounder. The gentle beep of an autopilot dropping to standby is unlikely to wake anyone.
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Old 28-11-2019, 06:53   #939
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

@Auspicious always writes too many words, and often comes across as too pedantic...

But I must agree that his last few posts (not all ) are right on target.

As leader, skipper, captain, master, or whatever, I often set no scheduled watch for me, normally much to the initial chagrin of the crew (thinking who is this diva captain, etc...)

Why? Because the Captain is ALWAYS on watch - 24/7
(even ashore having a drink in the bar you still somehow feel on watch)

Crew are unsure - captain is up. Course change necessary - captain is up. Sail changes necessary - captain is up. Skip it's gusting 40+ - captain is up. The forward head is leaking into the bilge - captain is up. Pre-cooked food is running low, crew are seasick - captain is in the galley. And on it goes.

And that is just all mostly normal passage stuff. If something really actually goes wrong, the Captain is up until it's resolved - and that might be 1 hour, or 3 days...

So Dave the best comment you always make is "I'm coming" (even if at the time multiple expletives are muttered to one's self!). It's always very correct in both action and mindset, as well as for the understanding and confidence of the crew.

Plus a fresh and rested Captain is always ready to help or rest crew at anytime, with anything.

On that note and strange as it might seem, on any size boat, yacht, vessel, or ship, somehow I always seem to have washed and dried a lot of dishes over the years...

Those that know will understand
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Old 28-11-2019, 07:33   #940
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

LV is right on the prior routing (11nm south of it), but has been making rather better speed than I expected.

This moves the jibe point (when the winds shift fully to the west, from sw) to 10 hrs from now.

Then the routing is quite similar, NE with the winds on the backside of the low and when they are close to falling off the back edge of the low finally turn direct to the destination.

picture for the 30th as they turn toward barn.

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It does not appear absolutely necessary to go that far north, but it does offer the fastest and best wind angles for the last leg. dec 5 eta on this routing.
-----------------------------
I probably should tune my polars up a bit, but I don't think I will mess with it - will not make a significant difference at this point. But I believe the boat is noticeably faster than when they started. I'm sure it is lighter, but also the crew have probably learned to sail it better.
-----------------------------
On technique - Comparing weather forecasts (including via gribs) over time for consistency is a fundamental practice. Frankly with say only 3 synoptics I could do it from memory. With routing software the quick and dirty way to do it is to keep a couple of the past routings you have run (from each model) and have them up on screen as you make the latest one. Any significant change which effects the routing will be immediately visible without any extra work.

Then if you want to go examine it in more detail it is best to split-screen the current and prior gribs (which most of the programs are set-up to do immediately if you have more than one routing on screen).
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Old 28-11-2019, 08:27   #941
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

I think they maybe pushing the boat a bit more now as there is getting less and less distance to go , good steady 10 / 11 knots today , hope they can catch the NE later on !!
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Old 28-11-2019, 08:39   #942
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

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I think they maybe pushing the boat a bit more now as there is getting less and less distance to go , good steady 10 / 11 knots today , hope they can catch the NE later on !!
This is more the sort of boat speed I had originally expected - nice to see.

They are well settled in now and more focused and comfortable. They had a pretty rough start, probably not feeling all that well, lots of fatigue, and not knowing each other, and Nikki not knowing the boat.

SailDocs server seems to be on holiday today - not great if you are at sea and depending on it - always worthwhile knowing how to access backup resources.
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Old 28-11-2019, 08:52   #943
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

Yes , I too was expecting a little more boatspeed all along but obv they have been somewhat conservative with the boat and their own bodies which has meant missing out on some positive weather but has worked out pretty well for them ,all in all , with ,I think , a bit of good fortune thrown in ,and hopefully they can hit that next system with a positive sailing angle. Ps, I wish that I had had access to forecasts as far forward as yours , mine have only been about 6 days ,but have still been spot on , only boat speed has been the unknown ,, but then after 6 days even expert forecasts are not writ in stone !!
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Old 28-11-2019, 09:02   #944
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

Is there any, completely unscientific, comparisons that can be drawn from La Vaga’s performance in this passage compared to those in the ARC? Basically is their performance cruising cat outperforming many of the more common ~ 45’ cruising cats (Lagoons, FP etc.) currently underway in the ARC.

Different weather systems, different crews and a many other variables I’m sure make an apples to apples comparison invalid but over a series of weeks do those average out into something comparable?
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Old 28-11-2019, 09:19   #945
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Re: La Vagabonde's crossing

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Is there any, completely unscientific, comparisons that can be drawn from La Vagaís performance in this passage compared to those in the ARC? Basically is their performance cruising cat outperforming many of the more common ~ 45í cruising cats (Lagoons, FP etc.) currently underway in the ARC.

Different weather systems, different crews and a many other variables Iím sure make an apples to apples comparison invalid but over a series of weeks do those average out into something comparable?


You could follow Biotrek, an Outremer 5X currently doing the ARC, on the YB Races app, and compare to other cats that way.
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