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Old 28-09-2020, 15:55   #1
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Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Is anyone aware of some sort of device that will make you push a button or flip a switch within a given period of time? Failing to do so would raise some sort of alarm.



I've got a long passage (at least for me) coming up and I want to ensure that whomever is on watch is actually awake and at least quasi paying attention every 15 or 20 minutes.


Thanks in advance
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Old 28-09-2020, 16:17   #2
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Kitchen timer, alarm on cell phone, etc...

Would be easy to build a simple circuit if you wanted something dedicated/custom.

Would be an easy Arduino (or other SBC) thing to build...a non-latching push button and bright LED/alarm at helm, software timer on SBC, every "x" period of time set off notification at helm, if button is not pressed in time then set off similar in captain's bunk.
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Old 28-09-2020, 16:20   #3
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Google Marine watch alarm. there are several./ Len


https://www.fisheriessupply.com/aqua...i-system-20011
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Old 28-09-2020, 16:22   #4
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Kitchen timer, alarm on cell phone, etc...

Would be easy to build a simple circuit if you wanted something dedicated/custom.

Would be an easy Arduino (or other SBC) thing to build...a non-latching push button and bright LED/alarm at helm, software timer on SBC, every "x" period of time set off notification at helm, if button is not pressed in time then set off similar in captain's bunk.
Only problem with these is the watchkeeper could forget to reset them so it doesn't restart the counter.


Before I re-invent the wheel, I'm just checking to see if one already exists.
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Old 28-09-2020, 16:24   #5
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

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Originally Posted by deblen View Post
Google Marine watch alarm. there are several./ Len


https://www.fisheriessupply.com/aqua...i-system-20011
Brilliant, this is exactly what I had in mind.


Cheers.
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Old 28-09-2020, 16:36   #6
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

The official term in the commercial world is a "Bridge Navigational Watch & Alarm System (BNWAS)"

All vessels of a certain tonnage/age are required to have them fitted, some are fairly complex and monitor movement through motion sensors as well as having timers that need resetting on a regular basis and alarms that sound in off-watch officers cabins if the unit is not reset.

If the unit times out without been reset an alarm will sound on the bridge, if after 60 seconds that alarm has not elicited a reset then it goes to the off-watch cabins whereupon the bridge is invaded by a bunch of pissedoff off duty crew.

The commercially approved systems are fairly expensive but im certain someone with basic electronics knowledge could build a similar reliable system......or get a wind up Kitchen timer as belizesailor suggests....
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Old 28-09-2020, 16:50   #7
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NaClyDog View Post
Only problem with these is the watchkeeper could forget to reset them so it doesn't restart the counter.


Before I re-invent the wheel, I'm just checking to see if one already exists.
Last one I suggested, simple custom circuit/software, doesnt require watch keeper to reset, it resets itself. Search around, someone likely has built something similar.
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Old 28-09-2020, 16:57   #8
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

most auto-pilots have a built in watch alarm

cheers,
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Old 28-09-2020, 16:57   #9
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Basic logic already built on github.

https://github.com/Yortw/Yort.DeadManSwitch
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Old 29-09-2020, 08:09   #10
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

You could have some fun w a project like this and make them do something different each time the timer expires....like press colored buttons in a certain sequence...would help keep the watch keeper awake...like the old "simon says" electronic game!
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Old 29-09-2020, 08:27   #11
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Wind up egg timer.
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Old 29-09-2020, 08:33   #12
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
You could have some fun w a project like this and make them do something different each time the timer expires....like press colored buttons in a certain sequence...would help keep the watch keeper awake...like the old "simon says" electronic game!
I do appreciate the sentiment in this but since I will be subjected to the same rules, I'm confident I would fail to find the humour in it at 3:30am.


Cheers.
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Old 29-09-2020, 08:33   #13
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

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Wind up egg timer.
Too easily ignored once it has finished going off the first time.
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Old 29-09-2020, 08:44   #14
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

Watchkeeper alarm for superyachts.

http://wirelessbnwas.com/WatchKeeperSystem-Phone.pdf
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Old 29-09-2020, 10:01   #15
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Re: Night Watch Deadman's Switch?

When we were offshore I built one and it was a godsend. It beeped every ten minutes and if you didn't hit the reset button after two minutes it sounded the main ship's alarm - which would wake the dead.

When you DID hit the reset button it would shut the beeper (or alarm) off and automatically reset the timer for another ten minutes.

It was inspired by an incident off the west coast of the Baja when the watchkeeper fell overboard and was lost. Of course she then didn't rouse the off-watch crew (her husband) at the correct time and he slept in. She could have been up to six hours behind at that point and so impossible to locate. At least with my system it would be a maximum of 12 minutes. Still too long and so led to my idea for a man overboard system (not yet built).

Also inspired by my sleeping through a kitchen timer a few times.
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