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Issue No.

177
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The Nordhavn 56 Motorsailer: First rate... solidly built... absolutely fit for off-the-beaten-path cruising.
- Ralph Naranjo

Plan to see the new Nordhavn 56 M/S in Dana Point, California Call to arrange a private showing. Ralph Naranjos cruising and marine industry experience has spanned decades and ranges from a five-year family voyage around the world to managing a full-service boatyard/marina. As the Vanderstar Chair at the US Naval Academy, he monitored the safety and seamanship of the USNAs sail training program. He is a past chairman of US Sailings Safety at Sea Committee, and is Practical Sailors technical editor. Nordhavn asked Mr. Naranjo to review the N56 M/S, prior to its debut this summer: The Nordhavn 56 Motorsailer is absolutely fit for off-the-beaten-path cruising, states Mr. Naranjo. It is a view of transoceanic voyaging that embraces technology along with the wisdom of sea tested tradition. A Closer Look A close look at the plans and engineering behind the new Nordhavn 56 M/S spells out how a voyager should be put together and what it takes to make a motorsailer fit for far away voyages, says Mr. Naranjo. In short, theres much to be said for a vessel that can reach in a fair breeze, sip fuel while motor sailing in lighter air, and yet have the power and punch to churn to windward when and if that type of passage making becomes desirable. Functional Ruggedness Shunning the growing trend to keep sailboats as light as possible, and therefore use less material and less expensive equipment, the new Nordhavn 56 M/S takes a different tack, says Mr. Naranjo. Its engineering and construction are all about a functional ruggedness that only comes with a solidly built boat. Equipped for Confidence First rate is the only way to summarize the lengthy list of equipment chosen to outfit the Nordhavn 56M/S, Mr. Naranjo points out. But equally as important as what gear has been chosen is the way in which it has been installed. Finally, its hard to beat the seakindliness of a heavy displacement motorsailer, and its penchant for caring for the crew. The Nordhavn 56M/S has taken that concept one step further by merging these attributes with the best technology available today, and building an ocean voyaging motorsailer thats absolutely fit for the task at hand. The Experts Full Report A boat that stands up to the scrutiny of experts will, no doubt, stand up to the demands of passagemaking voyagers. For the complete text of Ralph Naranjos indepth review and virtual tour of the N56 M/S, please visit nordhavn.com and read or sign up for the latest issue of On Watch, the Nordhavn newsletter specifically published for N56 M/S fans. Or call Nordhavn today at (949) 496-4848. www.nordhavn.com

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Annual 2009 Issue 177

42
BLUEWATER GEAR
After more than a decade of voyaging, Harry Hungate and Jane Lothrop are still going strong 6 Deep discharge, fast recharge New battery technology could change voyagers approach to their boats DC systems By Nigel Calder 11 Windlass wisdom A reliable anchor windlass is a principal asset aboard any serious voyager By Ralph Naranjo

VOYAGING SKILLS
For voyagers Mark Roye and Nancy Krill, the farthest destinations require the best skills 42 Cruising crimes World girdling voyagers need to keep their wits about them especially on land By Eric Forsyth 47 Dinghy security How to prevent your dinghy from being lost or stolen By Darrel Trueman 20

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Installing an HF SSB and a Pactor modem Tips on how to equip your voyaging vessel with long-range radio By Harry Hungate 24

FIDDLERS GREEN
Notable mariners who passed away in 2008 57

FROM THE TAFFRAIL


From landsman to sailor The transition to full-fledged ocean voyager can have its speed bumps, but the rewards are great By Twain Braden 64

OFFSHORE SAFETY

33 38 30

Sue and Adrian Payne have only been voyaging a short time, but theyve long considered safety 30 The unthinkable Dealing with a major trauma offshore By Jeffrey E. Isaac, PA-C

OCEAN ALMANAC
33
Offshore safety checklist Geographic range table GPS compass adjustment Radar controls AIS explained Satellite communications systems Distance, speed & time formulas Set & drift calculations Medical resources Temperature conversion Weatherfax stations and broadcast schedules U.S. Coast Guard HF/MF weather broadcasts Internet links Pacific distance table Atlantic distance table 2009 races of note Logbook 2008: The year in review 9 12 13 14 16 18 21 23 36 39 40 41 44 46 46 54 57

Plenty of weather data How do you use it? A process for using the extensive weather data available to the voyager By Ken McKinley 38

Cover: The sloop Bahati, on right with wind generator, and another voyaging boat lie at anchor off Isla Porvenir, in Panamas San Blas Islands. See more about Bahatis westward-bound circumnavigation at www.bahati.net. Josh Warren-White photo

47

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OCEAN NAVIGATOR
ISSN 1546-4814 This magazine is printed in the United States
Ocean Navigator is published in January, March, May, July, September, October and November, with an annual special issue of Ocean Voyager in April, for $27.95 per year by Navigator Publishing LLC, 58 Fore St., Portland, ME 04101. Periodicals postage paid at Portland, Maine, and additional mailing offices. Postmaster: Please send address changes to Ocean Navigator, P.O. Box 461468, Escondido, CA 92046. Copyright 2009 by Navigator Publishing LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reprinted without written permission from the publisher. Subscription rate is $27.95 for one year (eight issues) in the U.S. and its possessions. Canadian subscription rate is $31.95 U.S. funds. Other foreign surface is $33.95 U.S. funds. Overseas airmail is $62.95 U.S. funds per year. Distribution: Newsstand distribution, domestically and internationally: Coast to Coast Newsstand Services LTD., 5230 Finch Ave. East, Suite 1, Toronto, ON M1S 4Z9. Phone (416) 754-3900; fax (416) 754-4900.

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OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

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Bluewater Gear
After more than a decade of voyaging, Harry Hungate and Jane Lothrop are still going strong

Harry Hungate photos

In This Section

Liveaboard voyagers, Jane Lothrop and Harry Hungate check out the view from the Glass House Mountains in Australia.

arry Hungate and Jane Lothrop purchased their boat Cormorant, a Corbin 39 aft cockpit cutter, in early 1997, resigned their jobs (he, in international sales of industrial process control systems and she, director of upper school at a girls boarding school) and moved aboard Cormorant in July. Their plan was to not have a plan and to cruise as long as it is fun. As Cormorant had just completed a world circumnavigation with its previous owners, a major

refit was called for. The refit was done in Annapolis and it included a new engine, completely new standing and running rigging, lifelines, all pumps, installation of an electric anchor windlass, new dinghy and outboard motor, and several other smaller items. They spent the next two years sailing around the tip of Florida and across the Gulf of Mexico to Louisiana, exploring the east coast of Mexico, Belize and Guatemalas Rio

Deep discharge, fast recharge Windlass wisdom Installing and commissioning an HF SSB and an SCS Pactor modem

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

Dulce in the western Caribbean, and then back up to Florida and down to Trinidad via the thorny path. A watermaker and solar panels were added along the way. After several months in the San Blas Islands of Panama, they transited the Panama Canal in early 2000. Visits to mainland Ecuador, Galpagos Islands, Marquesas, Tuamotus, Society Islands, Palmerston Atoll, Niue, Tonga, and finally New Zealand completed their cruising for 2000. Both are amateur extra class ham radio operators and American Radio Relay League (ARRL) volunteer examiners. They organized ham exams in Trinidad, Tonga, and New Zealand for fellow cruisers. The next two years were spent in beautiful New Zealand, improving their boat even more and coastal cruising. In 2003 they voyaged to Fiji, Vanuatu, and New Caledonia, before returning to New Zealand to wait out the cyclone season. The entire 2004 cruising season was spent in Vanuatu, the best voyaging grounds so far. Highlights of their voyages have been the San Blas Islands, mainland Ecuador as well as the Galpagos, New Zealand, and Vanuatu. Trips to Vanuatu in 2004, 2005, and 2006 ended with arrival in Sydney, Australia. In 2007, they sailed from Sydney to Singapore with several stops in Indonesia. Now in their early sixties, they

have encountered a few health problems. Harry had recurring bouts of vivax malaria in 2004 and 2005, and prostate surgery in Brisbane, Australia, in 2007. Jane had hand surgery in Auckland, New Zealand, to repair arthritis damage. Beginning their twelfth year of voyaging, they are winding up their visit to Southeast Asia. In 2009, they will cross the Indian Ocean and sail up the Red Sea to the eastern Mediterranean. What is your philosophy regarding voyaging gear? Do you like to add as many systems as possible or do you prefer to keep it simple? Our thinking lies somewhat midrange between all the bells and whistles and bucket and chuck it. One of our first purchases when we moved aboard Cormorant in 1997 was an Interphase Probe forward scanning sonar. By far it has been the most reliable (and useful) piece of electronic gear aboard and has saved us from groundings several times. It never failed in 11 years, but we have just replaced it because it has had very hard use and we are preparing for some major miles this year. So far, we have resisted buying a satellite phone, but do have a quad-band cell phone for which we can buy SIM cards for any country. We

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dont really like telephones, though, and we only use ours to call family when we are in an affordable place or to contact businesses if we need supplies. Four years ago, we somewhat reluctantly purchased a Raymarine C120 multi-function display when all we really wanted was a good radar display. We now freely admit to being addicted to the Navionics electronic charts on the chart plotter function of the C-120 display, although we still insist on having paper charts at least for route planning and harbor approaches. In 2007, we added an AIS receiver which displays on the plotter, and it has been wonderful. It was especially useful in the crowded and constricted waters of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and in the waters around Singapore and the Malacca Straits. We highly recommend the AIS equipment for all boats. We have refrigeration (12-volt Waeco/Adler Barbour) and do enjoy our ice cubes. The actual freezer is small, but it also cools a cold box and flows over into a large refrigerator which is really a cool box. Hot and cold pressure water are also a pleasure to have. On the less complex side, we only use the pressure water to take a shower usually with the hose in the cockpit. Otherwise, we have foot pumps on both the head and galley sinks. These keep water usage

Left, Cormorant, Hungate and Lothrops Corbin 39, at anchor in Southeast Asia. Above, Hungate explores with the dinghy.

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Bluewater Gear
down and also draw no power. We have a Spectra 180 watermaker which we installed in 1998, and it has been a champ. It really does make water just off the solar panels and wind generator, and we very rarely run the engine to charge batteries or make water, even when we are at anchor for weeks. We like making our own water and not worrying about the safety of shore water in many lessdeveloped parts of the world. We upgraded our old Aero4Gen wind generator to the larger Aero6Gen in 2005. It is whisper quiet and does not offend neighbors like another well known brand of wind generator. We also have two 75-watt solar panels permanently mounted atop the bimini, and a third 80watt panel that we tie to the top of the furled mainsail when at anchor. How do you decide what spare parts to carry? Has your mix of spares changed as you have voyaged more widely? If a part is critical enough to stop us or cause us to put in to port for repairs, we usually carry a spare. We practice comprehensive maintenance and as a result, unexpected repairs are thankfully infrequent. We carry most critical spares such as bilge pumps, float switches, alternator and spare alternator drive belt, starter motor, sea water cooling pump, spare impeller for main engine and outboard engine, spare propeller for main engine and outboard, spare anodes, three changes of oil and fuel filters, engine oil and transmission fluid. We also carry a complete spare electronic autopilot, VHF radio, LPG pressure regulator, fuses, wire, coax and connectors, etc. We also carry sail repair material, one spare forestay which can replace any of the other stays, spare furler, spare Norseman fittings, cotter pins, etc. Our spares list hasnt changed much in the 11-plus years of voyaging except for the spare laptop computer added a couple of years ago. As our engine ages, we will increase the spares to include a set of injectors and coolant hoses. What types of tools do you carry on the boat? Are you better equipped for certain types of repairs? We carry a complete set of mechanics hand tools in both imperial and metric sizes, including a torque wrench, digital calipers, impeller extractor, compression gauge, refrigeration gauges and refrigerant, various wood-working tools, battery-powered drill, drill bits, taps and dies, temperature controlled soldering station, Fluke 73-III digital multimeter, MFJ-259B antenna analyzer, vinyl and rubber electrical tape, Coax Seal, J-B Weld, silicone grease, polyurethane caulking, etc. We are equipped to repair just about everything on the boat, including ourselves, with a well-stocked medicine chest. How much repair work do you attempt yourself? What kinds of repairs do you think all voyagers should be able to handle? We prefer to do all of our repair work ourselves, with the exception of sail repairs. A voyager who can repair his own vessel is a happy voyager. At least be able to service your engine and outboard motor, and have a basic understanding of the DC electical systems. This should get you to a place where professional help is available. Do you use a wind vane selfsteerer or do you rely exclusively on an electronic autopilot? We have a Hydrovane self-steerer which is very reliable and works quite well. We use its rudder to assist in maneuvering astern and in close quarters. We also carry a tiller pilot which can steer the boat using the wind vane rudder. It works well in light winds when the wind vane wanders, and it does not draw much power. Our main Raymarine electronic belowdeck autopilot gets more use each year, however. So far we have been able to economize enough on power drain from other sources to keep using it and it is easy. Do you have a watermaker? How easy is it to use and maintain? We installed a Spectra 180 reverse osmosis water maker in 1998, and we cannot imagine voyaging without it. We have had very few problems with it, and Spectra factory support has been superb. It is easy to use, and provided that it is used often or flushed or pickled when not being used often, its as simple as turning on the inlet valve and turning on the feed pump. The original membrane still

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OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

OCEAN ALMANAC

PILOTING & NAV

Offshore safety checklist


The following lists contain items that most well-found cruising boats have on board for extended voyages. Items not considered essential are included in the Optional list. NAVIGATION sextant Nautical Almanac for current year sight-reduction tables chronometer plotting sheets charts for intended route ships log tide tables Light List Coast Pilots and cruising guides pilot charts radio receiver for time and weather radio frequency lists binoculars adjusted compass hand-bearing compass dividers course plotters and parallel rules calculator speed and distance log depth sounder GPS and/or loran spotlight EMERGENCY & SAFETY flares spotlight horn smoke flares radar reflector signal mirrors EPIRB fire extinguishers first-aid kit backup prescription medications spare eyeglasses safety harnesses life jackets flashlights knives for each crew bungs for seacocks life ring and/or life sling storm sails storm anchor and rode parachute sea anchor and/or drogue extra chafing gear for lines emergency tiller or steering system backup autopilot or wind-vane parts tools and repair materials jumper cables abandon-ship bag emergency food and water life raft COMMUNICATIONS VHF radio emergency procedures card near radio emergency contact information hand-held VHF radio waterproof case for hand-held emergency antenna for VHF horn bell whistles for crew radio frequency lists OPTIONAL sight-reduction calculator Radio Direction Finder electronic chartplotter or computer electronic charts radar radar detector SSB radio ham radio satellite communication weatherfax Navtex signal flags personal strobes and/or EPIRBs survival suits wet suits or dry suits solar panel for emergency charging emergency generator watermaker for life raft

Marten 49, Francolini / Azzura Marine Photo

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Self-tailing winches free your tailing hand and allow a single person to trim or raise the sails. Either manage light loads with one hand, or use both hands to deliver more power to a Speedgrip handle.

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2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

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Bluewater Gear
meets full performance specifications. We just had the Clark pump rebuilt at the Spectra factory in California. The pump still worked very well, but after 11 years and facing a 4,000-mile trip to the Med, we just didnt want to press our luck. How extensively do you use a computer for navigation, and for keeping track of supplies and spare parts? We use the computer for route planning and then transfer the waypoints to our Raymarine C-120 chart plotter. Jane keeps inventories of food, medical supplies, spares, etc. on the computer, but uses a paper copy of the food inventory in the galley to record consumption. Since we do not keep our computer on all the time, it makes more sense just to use hash marks on a paper inventory. What kind of communications gear do you use when voyaging? We are both extra class hams (Harry is N1UDE/ZL1HAH and Jane is AB0T/ZL1JRL). Two years ago we installed the Icom IC-M802 single side band transceiver which can operate on ham frequencies and the marine single side band frequencies. We have an SCS Pactor III modem and run SailMail and Airmail on our laptop computer. We use e-mail every day, both to communicate with friends and family and also to get weather information. GRIB files give wind and pressure forecasts and have practically replaced the old reliance on weather faxes sent on set schedules by shore stations. We often participate in nets and we also post our position on Yotreps. We maintain a listening watch on VHF Channel 16 while at sea. We also carry marine and ham VHF handheld radios. Last year we purchased two personal radios for use when docking or anchoring. They are full duplex, which means that they operate hands-off no need to press a transmit switch. We have an ACR 406-MHz EPIRB and also carry a Class B (121.5/243-MHz) EPIRB in our life raft. What new gear do you plan to purchase for your boat and why? We have no immediate plans to add any gear. Most of our purchases in recent years have been replacements of existing gear. Now that the Class B AIS transponders have been FCC-approved, we might purchase one in 2009, but it is a low priority. We are very happy with what we have, but maintaining it all takes all the time we have to devote to that chore. Its important to allow time to just kick back and enjoy the voyaging lifestyle. Some people get so involved in adding new systems, changing old ones, and making lists of boat chores that they never leave the yard. Our advice is to learn all you can about what you have, be able to fix it or do without it, and go.

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OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

Bluewater Gear

Deep discharge, fast recharge


New battery technology could change voyagers approach to their boats DC systems
Story and photos by Nigel Calder

or the past 30 years, leadacid batteries have been the principal limiting factor in designing a high capacity DC system for a boat. Over these years, we have seen a number of technologies that could potentially circumvent the lead-acid roadblock NiCads, Nickel Metal Hydride, Lithium-ion, fuel cells but none has had sufficient life expectancy at the kind of price that is necessary to become a viable everyday product. The hybrid and electric vehicle industries have been stumbling over the same obstacle, but unlike the recreational boating industry, they have had the money to do something about it. Now new high performance products that look to be affordable are being released into the marketplace. We may finally be on the cusp of a revolution in DC systems performance and design. Enter thin plate pure lead

(TPPL) technology. This has been brought to the marketplace under the Odyssey brand name by EnerSys, successor of Gates Energy, the original developer of absorbed glass mat (AGM) batteries. TPPL batteries are a variant of AGM technology. But whereas AGM batteries (and all other conventional lead-acid batteries) have cast lead plate grids, which conduct current into and out of the battery, and into which the active material of a battery is pasted, the TPPL batteries have plates stamped out of a roll of pure lead. In order to make cast plates strong enough to withstand the physical stresses in a battery over time, and to resist acid corrosion at higher states of charge (from the sulfuric acid in the electrolyte, which increases in concentration as the state of charge rises), the plates must be relatively thick (a typical AGM plate is 2 to 4-mm thick) and

must contain additives, such as calcium or antimony, to strengthen the lead. The thicker a plate, the longer it takes for current to percolate into and out of inner plate areas during charges and discharges, while the alloying of the lead in the plate grids results in a certain amount of internal resist-

Above left, voyagers appreciate long-lived batteries both because they are easier on the wallet and on the back. A 144volt hybrid battery pack being installed on Calders boat Nada.

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Bluewater Gear
OCEAN ALMANAC

PILOTING & NAV

Geographic range table


The following table gives the approximate geographic range of visibility for an object that may be seen by an observer at sea level. It also provides the approximate distance to the visible horizon for various heights of eye. To determine the geographic range of an object, you must add the range for the observers height of eye and the range for the objects height. For instance, if the object seen is 65 feet, and the observers height of eye is 35 feet above sea level, then the object will be visible at a distance of no more than 16.3 miles: Height of eye: 35 feet Range = 6.9 nm Object height: 65 feet Range = 9.4 nm Computed geographic range =16.3 nm The standard formula is d = 1.17 x square root of H + 1.17 x square root of h, where d = visible distance, H = height of the object, and h = height of eye of the observer. HEIGHT Feet Meters 5 1.5 10 3.0 15 4.6 20 6.1 25 7.6 30 9.1 35 10.7 40 12.2 45 13.7 50 15.2 55 16.8 60 18.3 65 19.8 70 21.3 75 22.9 80 24.4 85 25.9 90 27.4 95 29.0 100 30.5 110 33.5 120 36.6 130 39.6 140 42.7 150 45.7 200 61.0 250 76.2 300 91.4 350 106.7 400 121.9 450 137.2 500 152.4 550 167.6 600 182.9 650 198.1 700 213.4 800 243.8 900 274.3 1000 304.8 DISTANCE nm 2.6 3.7 4.5 5.2 5.9 6.4 6.9 7.4 7.8 8.3 8.7 9.1 9.4 9.8 10.1 10.5 10.8 11.1 11.4 11.7 12.3 12.8 13.3 13.8 14.3 16.5 18.5 20.3 21.9 23.4 24.8 26.2 27.4 28.7 29.8 31.0 33.1 35.1 37.0

Source: Defense Mapping Agency, The American Practical Navigator (Bowditch); U.S. Coast Guard, Light List.

ance that translates to heat under high recharge and discharge rates. If this heat exceeds a certain threshold, battery plates buckle and short circuit, and other damage occurs. In other words, the relatively thick, high-resistance plates limit discharge and recharge rates, while the heat generated is indicative of significant energy losses (over a full discharge/recharge cycle, these can be as high as 30 percent). The TPPL plates are stamped out of a 1-mm thick roll of 99.99 percent pure lead with a very low internal resistance. The rolling process, I am told, changes the grain structure of the lead at a microscopic level such that it is highly resistant to acid corrosion, making it possible to have much thinner-than-normal plates. The combination of ultra thin, densely-packed plates with low resistance greatly reduces the time it takes for current to percolate into and out of inner plate areas while also greatly reducing the heating effect. As a result, the batteries will support much higher discharge and recharge rates than conventional batteries with lower losses. In particular, the recharge rates are truly astonishing at a 50 percent state of charge, I have verified that these batteries can be charged at a rate of up to six times their rated capacity, as opposed to 40 percent of rated capacity with conventional AGM technology: thats a recharge rate up to 15 times higher than we have been used to! High recharge rates can be sustained up to much higher states of charge, radically reducing the time it takes to get to a full charge. EnerSys has a graph showing that with an initial charge rate of three times a batterys rated capacity, from a fully discharged state these batteries can be 100 percent charged in 30 minutes. Testing what the factory and I have done verifies that the charge acceptance rate (CAR) at a 90 percent state of charge is around 30 percent (once again, much higher than conventional lead-acid batteries). Preliminary testing also suggests that these batteries will have a higher cycle life at deep discharge levels

Thin plate pure lead (TPPL) batteries use a low resistance perforated lead sheet , allowing fast discharge and rapid recharge. Above, the sheet lead comes out of the perforating machine and is rolled onto a spool.

than conventional AGM batteries. However, as with any lead-acid battery, cycle life is still a function of depth of discharge, so this gives the DC systems designer a choice of deeper discharges with the same cycle life as previously, or similar discharges with greater cycle life. Ceramic and foam The Odyssey batteries represent a refinement of existing AGM technology. A more radical adaptation of AGM technology, using something known as bi-polar porous lead-infiltrated ceramic (LIC) plates, is slated to hit the marketplace in mid 2009. The driving force has come from Volvo and a Swedish battery company (Gylling Optima Batteries). The resulting Effpower batteries (www.effpower.com) are being produced in 24-volt and 150-volt variants. They are reputed to have similar performance to nickel metal hydride (fast discharge and recharge rates and long cycle life) at one fifth the cost. The focus is on hybrid cars, but there may be a useful spin-off in the boat world. Then there are companies such as Firefly Energy (www.fireflyenergy.com). Firefly emerged from a search by Caterpillar for better battery technology for its earth-moving equipment. Firefly has developed a process that replaces the lead plate grid in a conventional batterys negative plate with a lightweight conductive carbongraphite foam (in the first generation batteries, the positive plate is a conOCEAN VOYAGER 2009

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Ultra Anchor
OCEAN ALMANAC

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PILOTING & NAV

GPS compass adjustment


The following method is useful for quick compass adjustments. The services of a professional compass adjuster should be secured to obtain the best accuracy. On a calm day in an area with no current, proceed to an area with several miles of maneuvering room. For best accuracy, use a GPS unit receiving corrections from a DGPS receiver. If you are not using DGPS, each course segment should be at least several miles long to minimize bearing errors. In any case, the longer the runs between waypoints, the greater the accuracy of the GPS bearings. An autopilot can be used to minimize steering errors. GPS bearings are very accurate, especially at distances greater than two miles. However, dont use the course-made-good display to correct your compass. The course made good is calculated based on rapid changes in position measured every second or two, making it much less accurate than a calculated bearing to a distant waypoint. Head to the center of an open body of water. Record a GPS waypoint (#1), then proceed on a course of 090, as measured on the main steering compass, for at least one mile when using DGPS (more than two miles without DGPS). Record a GPS waypoint (#2). Now note the GPS bearing to the first waypoint saved. It should be close to the reciprocal of 090, or around 270. While holding your steady easterly course, take half the difference between the GPS bearing and 270, and turn the east/west adjusting screw on the compass to eliminate this amount of error. Half the error is corrected for on each run since it is assumed the errors on reciprocal courses will be about equal to each other. Turn the boat around in a tight circle and steer a compass course of 270 back to the vicinity of waypoint #1. Note the GPS bearing to waypoint #2, which should be close to 090. Again, correct for half the difference between 090 and the bearing to waypoint #2. Follow the same procedure for courses at 000 and 180. Always compensate for half the error. Once you have done all the cardinal points, the compass should be about as close to compensated as its going to get. However, it is a good idea to run through the procedure again to measure what the remaining deviation is. A card can be created noting the deviation on various headings. At a minimum, its good to record deviations at 000, 045, 090, 135, 180, 225, 270 and 315. A compass adjuster would probably measure the deviation every 15. If errors of more than 3 remain on any heading, you should contact a professional compass adjuster. Unusual deviations are found due to the proximity of magnetic material, including eyeglass frames, radios, winch handles, large piles of anchor chain under the floorboards, etc. Every effort should be made to keep such items well away from the compass.

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2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

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Bluewater Gear
OCEAN ALMANAC

COMMUNICATIONS

Radar controls
Many of the following imaging controls are automated on modern radar sets, but it is still useful to understand how they work for those times when the automation needs adjustment or you ship out with an older set. Tuning This control adjusts the radar receiver to match exactly the frequencies of the signals being transmitted. The normal routine is to turn rain and sea clutter off, reduce gain and adjust tune for a known target. This is generally done only when starting the set and is now fully automated on some machines. Gain This adjusts the sensitivity of the entire screen. If the gain is too high, the entire screen will be covered with noise return. If the gain is too low, radar returns wont show up on the screen at all. Generally, the gain should be set so there is a very faint bit of clutter showing. Gain often has to be lowered when switching from longer to shorter ranges. Rain clutter, or fast time constant (FTC). This control helps remove weak returns from longer ranges, usually caused by rain or snow. These weak returns can obscure the stronger return from a ship or landmass. The higher the setting, the stronger the return that is eliminated, so it is sometimes prudent to adjust the control frequently during squally weather. When the rain ends, turn it off. Note that some units have both a rain control for close-in rain and snow, and FTC for farther-away precipitation. Sea clutter, or sensitivity time control (STC). This lowers

gain for nearby targets, thus reducing the clutter of echoes generated by wave tops. Like rain clutter, it can hide real targets and should be adjusted carefully and shut off when not needed. There are numerous other radar controls you should understand, and they often have associated acronyms to simplify screen displays. Range is the most basic control, determining the distance covered by the birds-eye radar display, sometimes called the PPI (plan position indicator). If the range is set to one mile, the distance from the center of the scope to the edge is one mile. Shorter ranges usually offer higher resolution, meaning smaller targets can be identified closer to the boat; however, longer ranges are often useful for navigation and spotting large ships at a safe distance. Consequently, operators often change ranges frequently. Traditionally, a navigator compares the radar image to the active chart to determine which targets are fixed and to corroborate the DR. Range rings help with the cross referencing, and EBLs (electronic bearing lines), VRMs (variable range markers) and/or a screen cursor can be used to plot identified land features or aids to navigation relative to the vessel or vice versa. EBLs and VRMs are also useful for plotting moving targets. Plotted on a paper maneuvering board, you can determine how close the other vessel will get, termed the closest point of approach (CPA), and when, the T (time) CPA. With a little vector work on the

board, you can calculate the other vessels true speed and course, sometimes important to understanding the Rules of the Road situation and to making wise course or speed changes. There are several modern aids to target tracking. One is tracks, or wakes, which is simply the ability of the display to keep showing old target echoes, usually in a lighter shade or different color. The result is that fixed targets show straight-back tracks (actually plotting your motion), while moving targets show tracks that are the vector sum of your motion and theirs, aka relative motion. Radar sets integrated with heading and speed instruments can often perform MARPA (mini automatic radar plotting aid), able to lock onto user-selected targets and show each ones true or relative forward-motion track and a data window with CPA, TCPA, true speed and true course. Nowadays, many vessels also have some level of integration between radar and chart plotter. Waypoints may appear on the radar screen as lollipops and/or radar cursor position may appear on the plotter as a TLL (target latitude/longitude). There are other radar functions that an operator should learn, like IR (interference rejection), which is the ability of a receiver to reject the distinctive swirly jamming caused by another radar unit sweeping in its vicinity. Some users leave this off to help warn them of an active vessel. IR and other clutter filters can sometimes mask racons (special aids to navigation that electronically respond to a radar echo).

ventional plate). The active material in the battery, in the form of a paste or slurry, is contained in the foam. The cellular structure of the foam results in a much greater utilization of the active material (Firefly claims it is up from 20-50 percent utilization in a conventional battery to 70-90 percent utilization), with higher discharge and recharge rates than with a conventional battery (largely because the diffusion path for the electrolyte from negative to positive material is reduced from the millimeters found in conventional batteries to microns). The discharge/recharge losses are lower than in a conventional battery, with less heating effects. The carbongraphite matrix pretty much eliminates sulfation while also substantially reducing the weight of a battery. Firefly released a prototype 107 amp-hour (Ah) (at the C20 rate) Group 31 Oasis battery in late 2008. The battery is slated to be in production by the end of 2009. According to the specifications sheet, it can be charged at up to 300 amps, and can be fully recharged in an hour. It has a reported cycle life of 800 cycles to 80 percent depth of discharge, and 700 cycles to 100 percent depth of discharge. Firefly is working on a second generation battery in which the conventional positive plate grids will also be replaced with carbon-graphite foam grids, resulting in additional performance improvements. The Advanced Lead Acid Battery Consortium (ALABC a worldwide research and development alliance of AGM battery manufacturers that includes Effpower) is another entity focusing on modified plate grid designs that will deliver high-rate discharges and recharges with minimal sulfation even if a battery is operated in a partial state of charge. Cell balancing and safety At the present time, for truly astonishing performance we still have to look outside the realm of lead-acid batteries, and in particular at lithium-ion. Lithium-ion results in energy densities, and energy delivery rates (power densities), that are several times higher than those

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OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

of lead-acid. It does this at a fraction of the weight. Whereas a conventional lead-acid battery has discharge/recharge losses of around 30 percent (the Odyssey, Effpower and Firefly technologies are significantly below this), lithium-ion is close to zero percent, and whereas lead-acid has a CAR that tapers down to minimal levels as a battery comes to charge, lithium-ion accepts a very high charge rate to almost a 100 percent state of charge. Lithium-ion is an immensely attractive technology which has long since caught the eye of hybrid automotive developers. Unfortunately, its also hard to handle in the real world, and comes with an exotic price tag, which is why we have not yet seen any significant implementation in high-powered applications (it is, of course, commonplace in lowerpowered applications such as laptops, cell phones, and portable electrical tools).

In the laboratory, almost all lithium batteries have terrific cycling capabilities most can be discharged by 80 percent of rated capacity and recharged 2,000 times with little loss of capacity but its not so easy to achieve these performance levels in real life. It requires cell balancing, which is a form of computer-controlled charging and discharging at the individual cell level (as opposed to at the battery level, or battery bank level, as with other technologies). To create the kind of powerful batteries needed in hybrid applications, you need large capacity cells. Some are now advertised at up to 200-Ah. Typically lithium batteries can be charged and discharged at a rate equal to, or greater than, the cell capacity i.e. 200 amps or higher in the case of a 200-Ah cell. With individual cell balancing, we now need computercontrolled charging and discharging

An Odyssey PC2250 with its top cut off. Even though the battery is on its side, no acid spills out it is all contained in the plate separators between each of the plates. The battery is composed of six individual cells, divided by plastic walls. Each cell has a two lead straps welded to alternate plates to form the positive and negative terminals. These are then connected in series through the plastic cell walls to form a 12-volt battery.

2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

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Bluewater Gear
for each cell at 200-plus amps. In effect, you need an individual 200-amp battery charger on each cell, but have you ever seen a 200-amp charger, and if so, how big was it? Now consider putting one on a car or boat for each cell in a battery. Its a daunting prospect. The problem with creating large-scale lithium batteries is not so much finding suitable cells as it is figuring out how to charge them. Then theres the safety issue. If you hammer on, or pierce, the case of many lithium-ion batteries, they
OCEAN ALMANAC

explosively catch fire. You can bang nails into others without much effect. Many lithium-ion batteries will also catch fire if overcharged. Others will not. The rush to market Just in the past few months alone several major battery companies (e.g., Saft and Ener1) have announced lithium developments in the hybrid field, including setting up factories for the production of large-scale, cell-balanced, lithium battery packs with deliveries slated to begin in 2009. One of the more interesting developments is the Arc Lite battery from EnergyTech Marine (www.energytechmarine.com). In November 2008, Mastervolt (www.mastervolt.com) beat everyone into the marine marketplace by releasing a cell-balanced, 24-volt, 160 -Ah battery at the Marine Equipment Trade Show in Amsterdam. We really do seem to be on the cusp of having viable high-capacity lithium batteries, although the price is still shocking. Supercapacitors Even a lithium battery cannot be indefinitely deeply cycled. Supercapitors (ultracapacitors) have the potential to greatly reduce cycling. A supercapacitor is a device that can absorb limited amounts of energy at very high power levels, and then rapidly discharge this energy back into the system, with very little loss along the way. It can do this hundreds of thousands, and sometimes millions, of times without damage. However, if left in a charged state, it has, relative to battery technologies, a high self-discharge rate, so it is not suitable as a storage device for anything other than short periods of time. It has been recognized for some time that the characteristics of supercapacitors perfectly complement those of batteries in applications where rapid cycling of batteries would otherwise take place. For example, in hybrid cars supercapacitors can absorb the high energy spikes created by braking events, and then immediately deliver this energy back to the drive

PILOTING & NAV

Automatic Identification System (AIS)


AIS is a shipboard broadcast system that functions like a transponder operating in the VHF maritime band. Its primary function aboard an AIS-equipped ship is vessel identification and collision avoidance. With AIS, every ship within radio range can be identified for communication purposes (including vessel name, classification, call sign and registration number) and for maneuvering information, such as course and speed, closest point of approach (CPA) and time to closest point of approach (TCPA). When integrating AIS with radar, a navigator can now plot the target vessels course, speed and rate turn, along with an identity profile of the ship, simplifying bridge-to-bridge communications.

The plate stack from a single cell in a PC2250 battery. The heavy lead straps on top of the plates are welded to alternate plates which then become negative and positive during the formation process. In between the plates are fiberglass mats that hold the electrolyte.

U.S. Coast Guard AIS Carriage Requirements


Self-propelled vessels of 65 feet or more in length, other than passenger and fishing vessels, in commercial service and on an international voyage; Passenger vessels of 150 gross tons or more; Vessels other than passenger vessels or tankers of 50,000 gross tons or more; and Vessels other than passenger vessels or tankers of 300 gross tons or more but less than 50,000 gross tons.

train, thus protecting the batteries from short-term cycling. Another application is to continue to absorb high charging currents when the CAR of a battery begins to taper down (this will keep any charging device well loaded, minimizing engine run times), and to then slowly discharge this current into a battery once the charging device has been turned off. Theres a good deal of experimentation going on in the supercapacitor field, with some promising results. Batteries are being constructed with supercapcitors built into the battery terminal posts. Maybe not in 2009, but quite soon we may see these devices filtering down to practical applications in the boat world. The practical implications What are the implications of these new technologies? First off, if batteries will support a deeper level of discharge, and/or can be more fully recharged on a regular basis, as compared to conventional batteries, then for a given level of performance the battery bank can be down-sized, or else for a given size of battery bank, performance can be enhanced. However, as useful as this is, this may not be the principal benefit of these batteries. From a design and performance perspective, the single biggest impact may well come from the enhanced CAR. The limiting factor in a DC system will now be the charging current that can be
OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

International Maritime Organization AIS Carriage Requirements


All vessels of 300 gross tons and upwards engaged in international voyages, cargo ships of 500 gross tons and upwards not engaged in international voyages, and all passenger ships irrespective of size.

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supplied to the batteries and not the batteries themselves. Take my last boat, with a 450-Ah, 24-volt AGM battery bank. With discharges limited to 50 percent of capacity, and the CAR being a maximum of 40 percent of rated battery capacity at a 50 percent level of discharge, the maximum CAR was 450 x 0.4 = 180 amps at 24 volts (which is 4.5-kW). I had a 180-amp, 24-volt alternator on the main engine, and a 220-amp, 24-volt auxiliary generator, which was never fully loaded. After a few minutes charging, the CAR would taper down to 100 amps or less and continue falling. I replaced these batteries with Odyssey batteries on the new boat. Lets say the batteries will truly support a 600 percent charge rate at a 50 percent state of charge. This translates to 450 x 6 = 2,700 amps at 24 volts, which is a staggering 65-kW! If the CAR is a more modest 300 percent, Ill still want a 1,350-amp charging device at 24-volts (33.5-kW). In practice, I have a 22-kW generator on the boat (for my hybrid propulsion system), which gets driven to continuous full output. In 20 minutes, I can put enough energy into the batteries to keep the boat going at anchor for 24 hours, including running my laptop all day. On most boats, it wont be possible to establish the kind of charging capability that I have on my boat. What is going to happen is that whatever charging capability there is will be driven to continuous full output by these batteries for extended periods of time, stressing the charging devices and their associated voltage regulators to the maximum. As high charge rate batteries find their way onto boats, I suspect we are going to see a rash of burned out charging devices until we figure out how to properly integrate the batteries into the system (the Odyssey people report they are beginning to see the first burned out alternators). Hybrid boats The new battery technologies have special relevance in the realm of hybrid boats. At present, I have a
2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

conventional inboard diesel engine on my boat with an auxiliary dieselelectric system in parallel so that I can collect hard numbers on relative fuel efficiencies. In order to get reasonable diesel-electric performance in adverse conditions, I have a 16-kW (21-hp) electric propulsion motor. The 22-kW (continuously rated)

diesel generator for this system is the default generator for battery charging and house loads at anchor. Its most efficient operating point (its sweet spot) is at 16-kW. Because of the low CAR of conventional batteries, most generators are very lightly loaded when charging batteries, making it extremely ineffi-

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Bluewater Gear
cient. High CAR batteries transform this picture. The batteries soak up whatever charging current is thrown at them up to a high state of charge. Given a sufficiently sophisticated control system (this is still under development), the generator can always be loaded at its sweet spot, which is not only fuel efficient but also greatly reduces generator running hours, with a concomitant reduction in maintenance. The net effect will be a lowered fuel and maintenance bill, with the cost of the generator amortized over a longer time span. The pieces all fit together rather nicely so long as the batteries will tolerate this kind of use with a life expectancy that is at least as great as conventional batteries. At the present time, this is one of the big unknowns that I intend to explore. Relative costs Currently, there is no pricing information on the Effpower and Firefly batteries. The Odyssey TPPL batteries have been available for a year or two. I have done some Internet searches for conventional AGM batteries and Odyssey batteries. I have found that the Odyssey batteries are typically 25 to 30 percent more expensive then what is already a relatively expensive technology (AGM batteries tend to cost more than other conventional batteries). Is it worth paying this kind of a premium? If the Odyssey batteries have a longer life expectancy for similar performance, then the numbers immediately pencil out. Similarly, it may be possible to trade off enhanced performance, resulting, for example, in a down-sized battery bank, against the extra per-battery cost. The other
OCEAN ALMANAC

major cost issue that should be looked at, but which is rarely considered, is the real cost of charging batteries. Lets say I have a 50-hp inboard diesel that I run for an hour a day at anchor to charge my batteries. The life expectancy of this engine is somewhere between 5,000 and 10,000 hours. The all-up replacement cost will be somewhere between $15,000 and $25,000. The capital cost per hour of running time (i.e., excluding fuel and maintenance) is therefore between $1.50 and $5.00 an hour a good ballpark figure is $3.00 an hour. Fuel and maintenance costs will add another dollar or so, depending on fuel prices (in the summer of 2008 and at any time in Europe it would have been $2). If the Odyssey batteries, or some other new technology, cut engine running hours for battery charging in half

COMMUNICATIONS

Satellite communications systems

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OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

(which is easy to project in many applications, the savings could be much greater), there will be a considerable saving that can be set against the added cost of the batteries. This will vary from application to application according to boat use. Many times, it will make the batteries look positively cheap. So far as lithium is concerned, the only suitable battery currently available is the Mastervolt battery. It is priced around $4,000! Given that it is a 24-volt battery with a 160-Ah capacity, its capacity is 24 x 160 = 3,840 watt-hours (Wh), so the cost is approximately $1 per Wh, as compared to, for example, high end AGM batteries at $0.20 per Wh (based on an 8D battery with a 225-Ah capacity at 12 volts and a $550 price tag). This would seem to be an insurmountable price differential, but in fact if you do an analysis of the amount of energy the Mastervolt battery can deliver over its lifetime, and the cost of putting that energy into it (i.e. recharging costs) in many applications, even at this price, its lifetime cost will be less than that of the AGM, while its performance will always be superior. Of course, this presupposes that it will live up to its projected life cycles in the real world, which is something we dont yet know. Costs for lithium are predicted to come down to $0.50 per Wh, and perhaps even $0.30 per Wh, over the next few years, at which point the technology should be extremely competitive for high-end boats with demanding DC applications. Entering a new era Im always reluctant to predict radical breakthroughs in technology. In fact, until recently I have bemoaned how little things have fundamentally changed in the past 30 years with respect to boat electrical systems. But if these new battery technologies pan out as I think they will, and if they are coupled to the new digital switching and power distribution systems. I believe its fair to say we are on the cusp of the most radical change in DC systems design that we have seen in a generation.
2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

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Bluewater Gear

A reliable anchor windlass is a principal asset aboard any serious voyager


Story and photos by Ralph Naranjo

Windlass wisdom T
he best of offshore voyaging sailboats benefit from a set of intertwined design priorities that are linked to the job at hand. Structural integrity and operational reliability are two of the more important factors, and they apply to a wide range of attributes from hull scantlings to the fitting out process itself. The old adage one size fits all is best set aside, especially when it comes to adding gear such as the right anchor windlass aboard a long range cruiser. The growing trend toward installing look-alike hardware aboard both weekenders and longdistance voyaging boats defies the job at hand rule. Their anchor windlasses should be as different as a hatchet and an ax. Choosing the right windlass is a bit like engineering the hull laminate itself, both should be based upon load calculations that simulate the conditions the vessel is likely to encounter. Increased exposure to wind and sea, both

Top, whether electric, hydraulic, or manual, a windlass needs to be sized for the job. A more powerful unit beats an underpowered windlass when conditions get rough. Right, a powerful horizontal capstan unit with a manual brake.

under way and at anchor, justifies both a stronger hull and an anchor windlass upgrade. Ground tackle and anchor windlass can become a voyagers first line of defense when conditions deteriorate and a marginal anchorage turns untenable. Unfortunately, lighter anchors, less chain and smaller windlasses have become something of a trend. For day sailors and weekend cruisers it may be an appropriate fad, but for those bound for remote landfalls, the anchor windlass takes on a whole new level of importance. And for those in the market for an upgrade, a mindset based upon operational reliability and power to spare needs to replace bargain hunting. The voyagers anchor windlass is like a mainsail that must also do double duty as a storm trysail. It needs to be designed to handle the worst of conditions and also take day-to-day use in stride. Attributes such as a larger diameter chain gypsy, a clutch release rather than sole reliance on the power down option, and a reduction gear design that will stand up to the test of time rank as high priorities. The compromise of a thimbleless rope-to-chain splice rode and a small compact windlass is not the right option for those headed off on a lengthy voyage. Skimping on a windlass purchase is lot like saving money by re-rigging with smaller diameter wire. In the worst conditions,

the true value of the right anchor and ground tackle handling gear can be equal to the value of the vessel itself. Picking the right windlass The tough question, is what makes some windlasses better than others, and the best way to answer it is by tallying up the tasks that must be handled, and the actual loads encountered. One popular boating catalog advises that a windlass should be used only to lift the weight of the chain and anchor, correctly pointing out that the vessels engine should be engaged to lessen the tension on the rode and provide thrust to break the anchor free. Consequently, the resulting loads will be the sum of the anchor weight and the amount of chain suspended. The effect of buoyancy even helps by reducing the weight of steel and iron when they are immersed in water. So on first glance, it sounds perfectly reasonable for a vessel with a 50 pound anchor and 250 pounds of chain to be equipped with a 500-pound capacity windlass. Unfortunately, the marine realm is all about dynamic influences that defy static calculations, and a real world look at anchor retrieval paints a different picture. Lets tweak the entering argument with a wind shift and a modest 2-foot chop, gusts to 30 knots are linked to an unanticipated line of thunderstorms, and
OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

20

tranquility has turned into a middle of the night tempest. The new loads associated with the wind gusts and pitching bow significantly skew the calculations mentioned above, placing increased tension on the ground tackle and windlass. Even with intentions of using the vessels propulsion system to unload the energy imposed by the rode, yawing, heaving and surging put immense new forces into play. Add to this the timing and need to quickly recover the ground tackle in order to head for a safer anchorage, and the reasoning why longterm voyagers opt for heavy duty anchor windlasses is clear. Tension spikes of two or three times the calculated weight of the ground tackle is a regular occurrence, and undersized hardware will have trouble with the surging loads. The energy developed between the moving vessel and the fixed sea bed is transferred from the chain rode to the boat via a chain gypsy, and the smaller its diameter the fewer links that are engaged in the process. Smaller units are usually also equipped with a smaller shaft diameter and a housing base with less surface area, features that negatively

influence load transfer. In short, deep sea fishing reels are much larger than those used on the poles of fishermen out to catch flounders. The trend toward miniaturizing anchor windlasses may make sense for the casual sailor, but its the wrong choice for the voyager. Ideal Windlass Co. owner Cliffe Raymond, refers to the current market trend as a price point driven development, not the evolution of better technology. He continues to hold that, when it comes to handling serious ground tackle, size counts. Power to spare The golden rule of windlass selection says that its important to pick a unit with power to spare. The reasoning stems from an engineering 101 theory a unit operated well under its safe working load rating is likely to outlast a unit repeatedly stressed to its max load. One voyager I knew kept blowing his anchor windlasss breaker and remedied the problem by installing a 50 percent higher rated breaker. He never blew the breaker again, but he soon melted the windings in the undersized anchor windlass motor, and wisely replaced the unit with a larger rendition of the same type of windlass. The vertical versus horizontal capstan debate rages on, and both factions have valid claims to rally around. However, when all is said and done, the horizontal windlass noses ahead as long as theres room on the foredeck for its sizable presence. The key reasons for its dominance is the natural chain stripping action linked to the lead angle, and the straight drop of the chain accumulating below in a deep forepeak chain locker. This arrangement also eliminates the vertical windlasss omnipresent deck leak linked to the shaft penetrating the foredeck. Add to all of this the versatility of having two separately clutched line/chain handling capstans or gypsies, and the reason for horizontal windlass choice grows even clearer. Vertical capstan windlasses do have some compelling appeal of their own, and the first is their less obtrusive nature, at least from an on-deck perspective. They rely on a finger-like chain stripper that coaxes chain off the gypsy instead of simply letting gravity do the job. The up side of this arrangement is seen in situations where theres less room for a deep fall, such as in shallower foredeck chain lockers. These units vary in capacity and the best of the breed sport large dive gears that rotate in oil baths providing high power reduction ratios and lots of torque. Electric (12 or 24-VDC) windlasses are the overwhelming choice among voyagers, but there are also manually- and hydraulically-operated units offering some endearing attributes. The former uses the person on the foredeck equipped with a lever or hand crank as the prime motive force. Several decades ago, we sailed our 41-foot sloop to New Zealand via the South Pacific, enduring a year with a rope/chain rode and no windlass. One of our first projects upon reaching New Zealand was to swap a high-end wind point
A vertical capstan unit occupies less deck space than a horizontal capstan windlass. Above, some are equipped with a drum for handling rope rodes and some, below, are set up for chain only.

OCEAN ALMANAC

PILOTING & NAV

Distance, speed & time formulas


Formulas for calculating Distance, Speed or Time: D = S x T S = D/T T = D/S Note that the unit of measure must be the same for time and speed, usually hours. To convert minutes to hours, divide by 60. Aids to calculation include the logarithmic scale found on maneuvering boards and the use of six-minute (0.1-hour) increments.

2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

21

Bluewater Gear
mid-sized cruisers, and with its convenience comes a few complications. Ohms Law does not favor low voltage DC current transport, especially when it comes to carrying lots of amps over half the length of the boat. Batteries are usually located in the amidships portion of the vessel and the 100-plus amp appetite of a 12-VDC windlass is a long way away. This current demand is equivalent to run length and wire size. Some skippers prefer to install a secondary power source in the forepeak. This is usually accomplished by providing the windlass with its own 12-VDC (starting type) battery and simply bring smaller diameter charging leads forward to the battery. In either case, a breaker and solenoid operating deck switch need to be added, and all electrical connections need to be as protected from moisture as possible. Going to a 24-VDC windlass cuts the current demand in half, but adds more complexity to the ships system battery bank. Conversely, opting for a 120 or 240-VAC drive motor, run from a generator, puts too much high voltage danger into a very wet portion of the vessel. Corrosion abatement The foredeck is unfriendly to dissimilar metals and electrical connections, and the last place where aluminum cases and unbushed stainless steel mounting bolts will benignly coexist. Corrosion abatement is part of the design process and whether its a sealed solenoid box or a plastic dielectric sleeve in the mounting holes, attention to detail pays off in the long run. The same goes for the underdeck reinforcement used to anchor an aftermarket installation. Many older, ocean-capable sailboats sport only modestly reinforced foam or balsa core fore decks that were built without the designer contemplating the instillation of a powerful windlass. In such cases its important to add reinforcement under the deck that can be accomplished with fiber-reinforced polymer, aluminum, or plywood and epoxy. Most windlasses work just fine on a bright sunny day when the sea is flat and the bow willingly faces into a light breeze as the rode and anchor clatter their way home. Combine a 0300 squall that can turn a safe anchorage into a seething caldron with a groggy crew summoned to the pitching foredeck, and its clear why veteran voyagers have great admiration for a powerful and reliable windlass. The bottom line resides in the art of prioritization, and knowing what gear is truly essential. Ralph Naranjo is a freelance writer and photographer living in Annapolis, Md.
OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

A manual windlass undergoing maintenance. While powered winches are convenient, on a smaller voyaging boat manual units can make sense. One prerequisite for a manual windlass, however, is physical strength especially in deeper anchorages.

wind speed system for an anchor windlass. Today I continue to value and rely upon the hand crank Nilsson windlass and windex at the masthead. In truth, a manual anchor windlass best suits those with good shoulders and a vessel under 40 feet and 10 tons displacement. Beyond that, electric and hydraulic options steal the show. The latter is a rare bird on mid-sized yachts, but a favorite among commercial operators. Its upside is its low RPM, high torque, small-sized motor that runs reliably and demonstrates some of the key laws of fluid dynamics. The downside is the costly addition of a pump, bracket assembly and high pressure hosing, not to mention the assault on an already crowded engine space. Some larger yachts use a hydraulic system to run a bow thruster and windlass as well as a small dinghy launching davit. Because each are used at different times, the capacity of the pump does not have to be massive and plumbing the vessel with a high pressure hose makes more sense. Windlass installations The electric windlass rules the foredeck aboard most
22

that of the high load of the engines starter itself, and as Mr. Ohm so elegantly portrayed in his E = IR equation, resistance is the enemy of energy transfer. Low voltage can safely shuttle a lot of current, but it takes thick copper wire to get the job done. Leads in the diameter of a welders cable must be snaked forward and the longer the run, the heavier the gage of the wire. Windlass manufacturers provide tables specifying

An electric windlass motor during refurbishment. The foredeck area can get wet so a windlass needs to be well protected from leaks.

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OCEAN ALMANAC

PARA-TECH

PILOTING & NAV

Set & drift calculations


Current may slow a vessel, increase its speed and/or throw it off course. Heres a way to determine a course to steer (CTS) to compensate for current. You need four values: the desired course, the set (direction) of the current, the drift (speed) of the current and the boats speed through the water. Current set and drift may be taken from current charts or tables, or may be observed, but you will likely get the most accurate information by measuring it yourself. First, fix the vessels position (A) using navigation aids, visual bearings or electronics. Then proceed on your desired course for a specific time, plotting this course and distance on the chart (B, a DR position). Now determine your actual position (C) and compare it to B. The direction from B to C is the set of the current. The distance in nautical miles between B and C, divided by the time in hours, will yield the drift. Thus, if the time between A and B is 0.2 hours (12 minutes), and the distance from B to C is 0.3 nm, then the drift is 1.5 knots. In other words, a line plotted between where you thought you were and where you actually are is the tidal current vector. Additionally, a line plotted from where you started to where you actually are, A to C, is a vector of your actual movement, indicating course over ground (COG) and speed over ground (SOG). Now that you have plotted the set and drift, youre ready to determine what CTS will make good the desired COG. First plot a new desired course from your present position. Then extend the current vector for an hour to point D (this technique is known as the one-hour vector method). Then measure with dividers the distance your boat can travel in one hour from the latitude scale on the chart. Place one point of the dividers on D and swing the other end until it intersects the desired course line. Mark that spot (E), and draw a line from D to E. The direction D to E is your CTS. So D to E is the vector of your boat moving through the water for one hour, while C to D is the current moving your boat for one hour. The sum of the vectors, C to E, is the COG that your boat should actually move during that hour (unless the current changes!). Hence, the distance from C to E will be your boats actual speed. The value of using waypoints with a GPS is that the unit can then do this sort of calculation continuously, delivering updated CTS as conditions change. Its highly advisable to plot both these waypoints and connecting courses to better visualize where a route takes you and as a check against what youve input to the GPS.

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2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

23

Bluewater Gear

Tips on how to equip your voyaging vessel with long-range radio


Story and photos by Harry Hungate

Installing an HF SSB and a Pactor modem T


here are many communications options for the voyaging mariner. One approach is using a high frequency single sideband (HF SSB) radio and a digital modem. This setup allows you to use the SBB for voice and for sending e-mail. Icoms latest marine SSB transceiver, the model IC-M802, is popular with the voyaging community, as it is legally usable without modification on both the marine HF and amateur radio HF frequencies (with appropriate licenses). Combine this radio with the SCS Pactor modem, to shop around on the Internet for the best deal that you can find. You are advised to get help from someone who has installed and commissioned the same equipment, no matter what you purchase. The steep learning curve that you will be facing in this endeavor is quite a challenge when faced alone. The IC-M802 consists of three parts: 1) the radio controller or display unit 2) the external speaker and 3) the radio main unit or electronics. The handheld microphone plugs in to the controller. Prefabri-

Above, the Icom IC-M802 HF SSB installed at Hungates nav station. Right, the Icom AT-130 antenna installed in the lazarette.

and world-wide e-mail is a reality. If you are contemplating the purchase of an SSB transceiver, the Icom IC-M802 is worthy of consideration. No license is needed for installation and commissioning of the radio and Pactor modem, but if you have no prior experience with radio installation, purchase the package from a dealer who can provide installation and commissioning services, as this is not an appropriate learners project. If you feel that you are ready for the challenge, its a good idea

cated 16-foot cables are supplied to connect the controller and external speaker to the main unit. None of the three parts are weatherproof, so they must be mounted in protected areas. Mount the main unit as near to the external antenna tuner as possible. Antenna tuner connections Icom recommends the model AT140 tuner, but the model AT-130 tuner will work just as well. Internally, the difference between the two is that the AT-140 has a sepa-

rate dedicated tuner circuit for 2,182 KHz (the emergency frequency) should the automatic tuner fail. Externally, the AT-140 has the coax and tuner cable connectors on short pigtails, making for a much easier set up. Connect the main unit to the tuner with a marine quality coaxial cable such as Ancor RG-213 and high quality PL-259 UHF silver and teflon coax connectors for minimum signal loss. If you are not familiar with soldering these connectors, high quality compression-type connectors are available and their use is recommended. A second coax connector is provided on the radio for reception of digital selective calling (DSC) transmissions. This is a receive-only circuit and any 50-Ohm marine coax cable such as the smaller diameter RG-58U can be used. Simply terminate the coax on a chainplate. The ICM802 tuner control cable plugs into the main unit and the pigtail connector on the AT-140 tuner. Install a T-4 ferrite isolator (www.radioworks.com) or MFJ915 (www.mfjenterprises.com) in the coax at the tuner. This device prevents radio frequency

24

THE AMEL 54'


QUALITY TIME
This is what your days aboard should be all about. Sharing moments of serenity and adventure with family and friends. Enjoying the world's finest stress reliever which is uneventful and effortless passagemaking under sail. Recharging our souls with the pleasure that comes from a restful life at sea, be it for the weekend or around the world. AMEL ownership is a top quality experience from beginning to end because of the top quality efforts we make to ensure it is so. QUALITY IN DESIGN. The AMEL 54 was conceived and designed to be the safest, easiest to manage and maintain, as well as the most comfortable sailing yacht in this size range. A cruising couple can handle her alone in all circumstances, even the most trying. Four watertight bulkheads define six watertight compartments. There is a fully weather/sun/spray protected helm station beneath a fiberglass dodger. You will enjoy immediate and complete access to all maintainable components throughout the boat, including a full size/stand up engine and machinery space beneath the cockpit. Swift and seakindly under sail, 200 miles a day runs are easily obtained. The AMEL 54 is designed to thrive as a liveaboard offshore cruising yacht. QUALITY IN CONSTRUCTION. Our exclusive one piece/full monocoque construction eliminates the typically weak, leaky and trouble prone hull to deck joint. All mechanical equipment receives a prototype process where the installation is perfected. Attention to the smallest of details and overall fit and finish is second to none. Each and every component is chosen to best fulfill it's function, never just because of price. QUALITY IN SALES AND ONGOING SERVICE. AMEL spends a large sum of money each and every year to train me so I know the AMEL 54 from masthead to keel. I can fully explain any aspect of the boats construction and outfitting. We have always had a one price/no hassle purchase program. We have never delivered a new boat even one minute later than promised. Our after sales service and warranty department is second to none. Just ask anyone who owns an AMEL

JOEL F. POTTER CRUISING YACHT SPECIALIST, LLC AMELS SOLE ASSOCIATE FOR THE AMERICAS
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Phone: (954) 462-5869 Fax: (954) 462-3923 E-mail: jfpottercys@att.net

NEW AMEL 54 AVAILABLE FOR INSPECTION IN FORT LAUDERDALE. BY APPOINTMENT, PLEASE.

Bluewater Gear
Left, an SCS Pactor modem installed behind a wooden frame. The Pactor modem allows voyagers to send e-mail via HF SSB. A large number of stations are availble worldwide to forward messages. Below left, a schematic for connecting the computer, modem and radio.

energy from flowing along the outside of the coax shield, and thus eliminates radio frequency feedback into the radio. Place a small amount of electronic silicone grease on each coax connector. Wrap the coax connectors with Coax Seal to exclude moisture. While mounting yokes are provided for the controller and speaker, you must purchase the Icom flush mount kit MB75 or construct panel mounting brackets if they are to be mounted as shown in accompanying photo. The IC-M802 is provided with a power cable in which there are two 30amp in-line fuses. Best practice is to con-

controlled crystal oscillator for extreme frequency stability. This element consumes power even when the radio is switched off, so it is important to open the circuit breaker when the radio is not in use to avoid unnecessary power drain. Grounding and antennas There is considerable information available on these subjects of grounding and antenna requirements and they are identical for all radio installations. Suggested reading is the SailMail primer downloadable from www.sailmail.com. Isolating capacitors installed on the copper grounding foils are highly recommended, see the section on grounds in the SailMail document. After installing these isolating capacitors, the service life of the zincs (anodes) on my boat was extended by an additional six months. Buy them from www.digikey.com as part number P4911-ND 0.15 microfarad monolithic ceramic capacitors. Power up and configure the IC-M802 before going on to the Pactor modem. GPS can be connected to the IC-M802 to automatically transmit your position when the DSC feature is used. The connector is on the radio main unit and the circuit is opto-isolated internally. Connect the NMEA data + pin to the center conductor. The IC-M802 comes programmed with all ITU marine channels. A licensed technician must change these marine channels. Spare channels can be easily programmed with your favorite ham frequencies if you are appropriately licensed.
Alfred Wood/Ocean Navigator illustration

Select a working frequency and press the Tune button. You should hear the relays cycling in the tuner and the Tune symbol on the display should flash, indicating that a solution is being calculated. If no relay clicking is heard and/or thru is displayed, then do not transmit as damage may occur. Review the tuner cable connector first as it is the usual source of trouble. Measure the voltages at the radio and also at the tuner end of the cable (they should be the same): Looking at the connector on the radio, from left to right: 1. Key (yellow or white wire): about 7.5 V DC to ground and to -0.5 to 0.8 V DC during tune. (If more than 8 V DC, move S1 in the tuner to off (bottom position.) 2. Start (Green wire) to ground: about 7.5 V DC it must go to less than 1 V DC to start tuning process. 3. Red wire: supply voltage: 12.6 V DC up to 13.8 V DC. 4. Black or brown wire to ground: zero voltage. 5. No connection. 6. No connection. Once you are satisfied with the transmitting and receiving functions of the IC-M802, then proceed with the installation of the Pactor modem. Be sure to observe good operating practices and listen for a clear frequency before tuning or transmitting. Install the SCS Pactor modem near the radio controller where it can be easily seen while operating the radio. It has no front panel external controls so it can be located behind a transparent protective cover. Connecting cables Four cables are required for the modem: A serial or USB cable to the computer (depending on the model purchased) A control cable from the modem to the radio main unit A data cable from the modem to the radio main unit A power cable for the modem as

nect the power cable directly to a dedicated battery to minimize conducted noise. This circuit should be protected by a 25-amp circuit breaker in the positive lead and placed in an easily accessible position. The radio has a temperature26

Right, Hungate soldering cable connectors. Solder connections can be challenging, so if you are not an expert, it is a good idea to practice the technique on some spare wire to get a feel for the process.

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

an option, power can be supplied via the data cable. Begin by drawing out a connection diagram or schematic. Write the cable lengths on the diagram and use it as a check list to keep track of the cables, connectors and ferrites. Route the cables as far away as possible from transmitter coax cables and alternating current-carrying conductors. Measure the lengths carefully, and allow at least 10 percent excess. Construct the cables per the cable diagram. To prevent interference, shielded cable must be used without exception. Tin the ends of the conductors prior to soldering them to the connectors. Use a mating half of the connector to act as a heat sink and to hold the pins in position during soldering. Work quickly to avoid overheating the connectors. Carefully inspect your work to insure that no solder bridges or wire fragments short circuit one pin to its neighbor. Remember to solder the drain wire to the shell of each connector. Complete the cable assembly by checking for continuity end-to-end on each conductor. Also check to ensure that there are no connections between conductors or to ground. Have a second set of eyes review your work, as no second chances are granted in electronics. Place a small amount of electronic silicone grease on the connectors and connect all of the cables. Install a clip-on ferrite on each end of all cables. A small nylon cable tie around the cable will keep the ferrite close to the cable connector. Download and install a copy of SailMail software from www.sailmail.com, which also contains an up-to-date station and frequency list. Obtain your subscription for one year service at US $250. If you are a licensed ham operator, download a copy of Airmail from the same site.

Consider sending a small donation to the ham operator of the station that you connect with to help defray his expenses for providing this free service to you. (Its certainly not free to him!) Connect the serial or USB cable from the modem to your computer, power up the modem and start the SailMail program.

Power up the Icom IC-M802, select a quiet frequency, set the radio to mid power, press the tune button to activate the antenna tuner. Set the PTC output from the terminal window: Go to tools options xmit unproto fsk. Set the output to four bars (1/2 full output). Then to to xmit unproto psk and set the output to four to seven bars.

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27

Bluewater Gear

Alfred Wood/Ocean Navigator illustration

When constructing the system, shielded wire must be used to avoid interference. Tin the ends of the conductors prior to soldering them to the connectors. Have a second pair of eyes look over your work.

Do this very quickly!) Radio current draw is not a good indication of voice output. Give a long verbal AHHHHH into the microphone. Do this quickly just a few seconds is sufficient. The display unit should show eight bars. Read the Application Note on Setting Drive Levels in the SailMail primer for more details. Sending your first e-mail SailMail allows you to import your address books from other e-mail programs, or you may manually enter the details. Compose your message as you would with any e-mail program. Click on the right most icon on the toolbar to bring up the message page. Select a station from the drop down menu, logically, the one nearest your location. Next, click on mode and select scan frequencies. This directs the SailMail program to order the IC-M802 to sequentially scan the available frequencies for that station. Listen carefully for a buzzing or chirping sound characteristic of Pactor traffic. Select the frequency with the strongest sounding signal, generally the lower frequencies at night and the higher ones in the daytime. Before transmitting, wait until the frequency is clear (quiet). The sending station will sometimes end its transmission with its call sign in Morse code. Set the IC-M802 to mid power (about 60 watts). (Never use full power. FCC regulations require you to use only sufficient power to complete your communications.) Click on the send icon, and the radio will begin to transmit. After 20 or so cycles, the radio will stop transmitting if
28

no connection is made. You will learn to disconnect after about 15 or 16 cycles if no connection is made. Either a distant station is using the frequency or propagation is insufficient on that frequency to secure a connection. Try the next higher or lower frequency or try again on another station. Once connected, message transmitting and receiving is fully automated with no operator intervention. Before leaving the dock, turn on your autopilot and transmit on your new Icom IC-M802 at full power. If this radio transmission causes your autopilot to behave erratically, then you have a radio frequency feedback problem. Review your radio installation, paying particular attention to the antenna ground foils. Also, install a ferrite on the rudder position transducer cable at the transducer. Make sure the problem is fully solved before dropping your mooring lines. If all else fails, find a fellow voyager experienced with SSB radio and e-mail and ask for his help. A note about the e-mail button on the IC-M802 and the preprogrammed email frequencies: Ignore it all. They have nothing to do with this setup. Harry Hungate (N1UDE/ZL1HAH) and his wife Jane Lothrop (AB0T/ZL1JRL) live aboard their Corbin 39 Cormorant having departed Annapolis, Md. in 1997. Both are amateur extra class hams and Harry holds the FCC GROL with radar endorsement license. They cruised the west coasts of SE Asia in 2008 and they plan to transit the Indian Ocean and Red Sea in early 2009.
OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

Offshore Safety
Sue and Adrian Payne have only been voyaging a short time, but theyve long considered safety

ue and Adrian Payne and their sons George and Oliver left Britain six years ago aboard their 38-foot 1997 Westerly Ocean Ranger, Pagos.They had decided to sail around the world before even learning to sail. Departing in July 2003, they took a different approach from the usual well-worn path to the Caribbean. They sailed to Portugal and then Morrocco then went east to Algeria and Tunisia before returning to Gibraltar. From the Rock the Paynes crossed to Senegal and Gambia before calling at the Cape Verde Islands and the northeast coast of Brazil. They spent six months in the Amazon. To these destinations they added Trinidad and Tobago, Greneda and Venezeula. Next was a passage through the Panama Canal and the trip west to the Galpagos. They crossed the

Sue Payne photos

Pacific, spending Christmas 2008 at sea, en route to New Zealand where Pagos will get some refitting before the Paynes head toward Japan. How do you approach the subject of safety? Has your experience of sailing offshore influ-

OV:

In This Section

Right, Adrian Payne at the radio in Pagoss nav station. Upper right, looking every bit a voyaging boat, Pagos sails in the Pacific.

enced your thinking on safety? We bought our boat Pagos in 2002. We had never owned a boat or had any experience of even going on anything smaller than a cross channel ferry. Our two children were then 2 and 5, so we not only had ourselves to think about. Our first job was to rig safety netting around the deck and to instill into George and Oliver that no one was to leave the cockpit at any time without express permission. I think it sank in as even now, seven years later they still ask

S&AP:

The unthinkable Lots of weather information - what to do with it?

30

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

before they leave the cockpit when underway! Sailing offshore has definitely shaped the way we approach safety issues. After our first offshore passage we invested in an SSB marine radio, which we use for weather, contact via e-mail and as a long range radio for nets when passage making. When passage making you have to rely on your vessel and each other, there is no one else to help you if you get into difficulty. But it should be said that it is far safer on passage across an ocean than a short trip from one bay to another. Miles of endless ocean, masses of sea room, no tides, rocks or leeward shores. We feel far safer on a 25-day passage than a 60-mile trip. How do you plan for medical emergencies. Have you received any medical training before you began voyaging? The thought of being in a situation where the life of a loved one was in my hands terrified me. I had a pretty good idea of how to use a band aid, but that was about it. I decided to enroll in an intensive seven day medical course, dealing with medical care aboard ship. As most of the participants were

OV:

S&AP:

potential cruisers, the course was angled towards the specific problems which may present themselves on a yacht. Making readily available items useful for emergencies such as life jackets for
2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

splints and magazines or newspapers for neck braces were useful and pertinent for cruisers who neither have the space or the money to completely fit out their yacht as a doctors surgery. Adrian completed the basic three-day first aid course as well. Our family physician helped to make up our medical kit, amending drugs and dosages for our two children. What type of life raft do you have? How often do you have it serviced? Whats in your abandon ship bag? We have a fourman plastimo offshore life-raft, which was one of the first items of safety gear we purchased. Originally it was stored in our capacious cockpit locker, until we had an emergency day where we tried out all our safety gear. It took two of us 20 minutes to get the life-raft out of the locker, then we were too tired to do anything else for the rest of the day. We soon traded the valise for a cannister and now have the liferaft on the stern, easily accessible but out of the way of the everyday running of Pagos. We have had the life raft serviced twice in the last seven years. The first time when we changed the container and the last time whilst in Chile. Upon opening the life-raft we found that there was no safety equipment in there at all. (We were not present at the last service). We upgraded to Solas B level as it was the most we could afford to do at the time. Our grab bag is bright yellow and sits on a shelf in the companionway. We have a hand-held GPS, plus spare batteries, a torch, fishing equipment, a hand held water maker bought off another cruiser for $50.00 which had never been used. There is also a compass, rocket flares, parachute flares and a welding glove to ensure no burns when setting them off. We have small in date prescription medicines we take and spare pairs of glasses. Water cannisters are filled and strapped to the stern rail next to the life raft.

OV:

S&AP:

have EPIRB? OV:Do youtype of an do you What communications/signaling devices have in your life raft? We have a Pains Wessex 406 EPIRB. We keep it on the wall next to our SSB and VHF radios by the navigation table. Both George and Oliver know how to set off the EPIRB and how to make a distress call over the VHF and the SSB. For visitors on Pagos we have check lists by the radios, just in case. We have just replaced the flares in our life raft and have a parachute signal, two hand flares and a smoke signal. These are in addition to those in the grab bag. We also have a signalling mirror and a mouth operated signal horn. We believe that you should step up from your yacht into the raft, a boat is a far more safe, warm place to be than in a rubber raft with no creature comforts. We hear so many times of crews taking to a life raft, only to have their boat spotted days later, still afloat.

S&AP:

Left, Adrian works aloft about Pagoss fixed radar reflector. Above, the Payne family enjoying the tropical sun.

31

Offshore Safety
your policy on OV:What is life jackets and or wearing harnesses while underway? Do you normally rig jack lines on deck? We have a centre cockpit with really high sides and all of our reefing can be done from there. If we do need to leave the cockpit when under way we always wear harnesses and life jackets. When we started our voyage, George was 6 and Oliver 3 years of age so they were always harnessed into the cockpit, but now we have a more relaxed attitude. Pagos was fitted with stainless steel rigging wire jack lines when we bought When on land with access to the internet we download files from NOAA and buoy weather. We also supplement this information with GRIB files via our Sailmail account on our SSB and weather faxes, which load onto our laptop. On passage we continue with the synoptic charts on weather fax and the GRIB files on a daily basis. If we have a long crossing to make we usually contact weather gurus such as Herb who runs a weather net throughout the Atlantic and Don Anderson who does the same in the Pacific. Its nice to chat with someone and get a second opinion each day. spare parts which meant, for us, September was too late to consider completing our Pacific crossing. So we went to Chile for five months and set off to cross the Pacific the following year. Whilst on passage if we are aware of bad weather coming, we prepare ourselves and the boat and get on with it. We have now sailed over 30,000 miles with only one rough time, 50 knots of wind and 30-foot seas in the variables on the way to Chile. We couldnt outrun the weather system, so we spent the time prior to its onset clearing the decks, removing anything with too much windage such as the cockpit dodgers and the bimini and set up the storm gib. We had lots of sleep, made sure we could cook easy meals and waited for it to hit. We hove to for 48 hours and rode it out. What types of safety gear do you plan to purchase and why? We have discussed buying a flare gun to supplement our array of flares and we do need to purchase new strobes for our lifebuoys as ours are waterlogged, but they would be the only things we feel we would need. All our safety equipment is in good working order and checked on a regular basis. We feel we have enough safety equipment on board Pagos for any emergency we may encounter.

S&AP:

OV:

S&AP:

Pagos at sea. Note the lifeline netting for keeping children aboard. Adrian, with freshly caught fish, wears an inflatable PFD on deck.

her; other than checking them on a regular basis, we have never removed them. We can clip our safety lines onto them from the cockpit. Our safety lines have two clips on one end so we can swap to the opposite side of Pagos without being unhooked at any time. What type of weather information do you use when making an offshore passage? How do you gather the information? We are one of those strange breeds of sailor that never uses the engine unless absolutely necessary and therefore will not leave unless we have a good weather window.

to OV:Doatyou tryanddo weather routing avoid bad weather all costs?

S&AP: ing charts on

We do have rout-

OV:

S&AP:

board for our long passages, such as the 2,500 miles from Easter Island to Chile, and our crossing from West Africa to Brazil. There are better months to cross oceans than others. Personally, we feel it would be foolish to make a long Pacific crossing in the typhoon season. We never set unrealistic time-scales, we are cruisers, not racers. For example, in 2007 we lost our forestay on passage from the Galpagos Archipelago to Easter Island. We had to wait four months for

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Offshore Safety

The unthinkable
n Dec. 18, 2008, the French sailor Yann Elis fell on deck fracturing his femur (thigh). This would be a devastating injury under any circumstance, but Elis was alone in the southern Indian Ocean. Somehow, he managed to get below decks aboard his Vende Globe open 60 Generali and into his berth where he spent the next three days awaiting rescue. The femur is a major weight-bearing bone. It is richly supplied with blood and surrounded by the largest muscles in the body. It is difficult to break, but doing so renders the victim physically incapable of walking or crawling. Muscle spasm and grinding bone fragments cause intense pain. Blood loss into the fracture site can cause volume shock. Dealing with an injury of this magnitude while alone aboard a racing yacht must have required a superhuman effort. Nevertheless, Elis survival is not a quite a miracle. He had a lot going for him. He is young and strong. His vessel is equipped with sophisticated communications including a GPS transponder. His position was constantly monitored by the race committee and there

was an Australian frigate available to go get him. His safe rescue by competent professionals was the best possible outcome for a worst case scenario.

Courtesy Australian Navy

Elis must have had something else going for him, too; a survivors instinct. He was able to overcome fear, pain, fatigue, and probably some degree of despair. This is a self-selecting prerequisite for anyone willing to drive a giant over-powered racing dinghy around the world. In fact, it is a good addition to the resume of anyone willing to take a small boat offshore. In his excellent book Deep Survival, Laurence Gonzales points out that only 10 to 20 percent of people can stay calm and think in the midst of a survival emergency. They are the ones who can perceive their situation clearly; they can plan and take

correct action, all of which are key elements of survival. Confronted with a changing environment, they rapidly adapt. In dealing with major trauma these qualities are more useful than medical skill, equipment, or any amount of medical advice. Thats why cultivating and refining the ability to make the best of a bad situation is core curriculum for any good wilderness and rescue training course. Nobody likes to contemplate the worst, much less plan for it. Theres a good reason its called the unthinkable. As soon as you have it figured out, things change. The moment youve planned for every contingency, theres a new one. It is impossible to be completely prepared or totally safe. Any sailor who believes theyve mitigated all the risk is in for a big surprise. Risk is a function of both probability and consequence. The probability of Elis breaking his femur in the Southern Ocean was a lot less than his chance of

Dealing with a major trauma offshore


by Jeffrey E. Isaac, PA-C

Jeff Isaac

Above, Yann Elis, a competitior in the Vende Globe solo nonstop around the world race broke his femur and was rescued by the Australian Navy. Left, an x-ray of a fractured femur. This is a major trauma for a voyaging sailor.

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Offshore Safety
While most sailors readily accept the risks involved in an offshore passage, most also strive to reduce them. Reducing the probability of serious injury is good seamanship. Reducing the consequence is good medicine. Knowing something about both makes a good sailor.
Courtesy Australian Navy

Elis boat Generali and the Australian Navy frigate Arunta rendezvous in the Southern Ocean.

doing so at a ski resort in the Alps. But the consequences could have been far worse. At a ski resort, the ski patrol would have had him off the slopes in an hour. The Australian Navy frigate took three days to reach his boat. The risk associated with his injury was vastly magnified by time and distance.

Trauma management For practical purposes we can separate major trauma into three categories: the kind that will kill quickly no matter what; the kind that will kill within an hour or so without medical intervention; the

kind that is not directly fatal, but exposes you to risk of death by hypothermia, dehydration, or infection. Regardless of your level of medical training you can ignore the first category; the cause of death is merely interesting. However, it is the other two that you should prepare for and might be able to do something about. You dont need to know a lot of medicine to effectively handle the immediate emergency. Bleeding control, spine protection, airway management and ventilation are all covered in any good first-aid course. But, in addition to those basic skills you also need to know how to focus on the problems you can treat and not be distracted by the problems you cant. Your goal is actually pretty simple: give your patient the best chance of survival under the circumstances.

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OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

Head trauma, one of the most common serious problems aboard small boats, offers a good example. You cannot do anything about brain swelling or intracranial bleeding. But you can protect your patients airway from blood and vomit and keep him or her warm, hydrated, fed, and secure from further injury. Let the brain take care of itself while you focus on everything else. Given a chance, most head trauma patients survive. Severe bleeding is another example. External bleeding from a lacerated blood vessel in an arm or leg can be stopped with a pressure dressing or even a tourniquet if necessary. Internal bleeding from a ruptured spleen is out of your control. Again, focus on the possible. Keep your patient hydrated, fed, protected and warm and he or she, too, will probably survive. Most solid organ injury is not directly fatal, but the combination of blood loss and hypothermia is. A fractured femur or lower leg is rarely fatal. Unless the bones have penetrated the skin there is only so much space available for bleeding, so shock does not progress. The danger is in the disability. The patient cannot run or swim to safety, or find food and water without help. A leg fracture can be splinted to the other leg for quick extrication. Straighten the leg if neces-

Recommended reading
Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why
by Laurence Gonzales W.W. Norton, 2003

Wilderness and Rescue Medicine: A Practical Guide for the Basic and Advanced Practitioner
by Jeffrey E. Isaac PA-C and David E. Johnson, MD Wilderness Medical Associates, 2008

sary then wrap both legs firmly together with padding between them. A femur can actually be splinted this way for a long time. A lower leg will need additional splinting to include the ankle. As long as there is good blood flow all the way to the toes, the patient can endure a days-long evacuation if you pay attention to pain control and the basic body needs. You dont need to worry about putting the bones back exactly where they belong. The orthopedist can do that tomorrow or next week. Preparing for major trauma includes practicing some techniques for quickly moving a casualty from the deck or water to the berth or cockpit. For the short handed crew this will be quite a challenge. You should be able to control bleeding and splint extremities, but you may have to modify or abandon the meticulous spine immobilization procedures you learned in your first-aid course. Falling overboard or becoming hypothermic may represent the greater threat. A detailed plan is unnecessary, and even undesirable. A good set of rigging skills and the ability to adapt them to a variety of situations will be much more valuable. Be sure to have your life saving tools easily accessible. Aboard Generali. Elis was incapacitated by pain and unable to reach the pain medication in his medical kit. Dee Caffari, sailing Aviva, made the comment that she would have had a similar problem. These kits are heavy and they have to go somewhere you cant just leave them lying around. Mine is stacked on the shelf, but it is not easy to get to. A comprehensive medical kit, like a life raft, is just expensive ballast if you and your crew cant find it. Consider breaking it up into smaller kits that can be stowed where theyre needed. In doing this, remember that a short handed crew will not just be dealing with a medical emergency;

they will be trying to manage a boat underway at the same time. Keep a basic trauma module just inside the companionway. This should include a pair of protective gloves, a pressure dressing and tourniquet for bleeding, a splint and wrap for injured extremities, and a pocket mask or NuMask for rescue breathing. It should also include a couple of extrication straps (long sail ties will do) and a stiff cervical collar to help you move your patient to safety. Pain medication should also be easily accessible. Pain control is an emergency medical procedure, especially in the short handed survival situation. If pain is not controlled the patient will not be able to protect himself, eat, drink or effectively communicate. Pain is the most common and treatable cause of respiratory distress in chest and abdominal trauma. The fear that pain medication will mask symptoms and allow a patient to injure himself further is unfounded. Any patient who is awake and able to move around will feel pain and modify activity accordingly. A dose of medication sufficient to mask all pain will put the patient to sleep. Unless you have plenty of crew to monitor him, drugging your patient into coma is not a good idea.
Jeff Isaac

Examples of pressure dressings, also known as an Israeli bandage. These bandages are designed for easy battlefield application and thus are well suited for use in voyaging situations.

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Offshore Safety
OCEAN ALMANAC

MEDICAL INFORMATION

Medical resources
There are numerous services and insurance plans available to sailors. Resources range from companies that assemble specialized medical kits or are ready to fax medical records in an emergency, to organizations that provide worldwide consultation and insurance, including emergency evacuation (medevac). Adventure Medical Kits Medical kits for every outdoor adventure. P.O. Box 43309 Oakland, CA 94624 800-324-3517 fax: 510-261-7419 www.adventuremedicalkits.com Travel Assistance International Medical insurance and medevac program for overseas travelers. P.O. Box 668 Millersville, MD 21108 800-821-2828 www.travelassistance.com Worldclinic Maintains a virtual emergency room, staffed 24/7, which allows you to take U.S. quality heath care with you whenever you travel. 276 Newport Road, Suite 205 New London, NH 03257 800-636-9186 fax: 603-526-9003. www.worldclinic.com FieldTex Products, Inc. Medical kits for daysailors to passagemakers. 3055 Brighton-Henrietta TL Rd. Rochester, NY 14623 800-772-4816 fax: 585-427-8666 www.firstaidpak.com International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers Free member service offering health information for travelers with a directory of English-speaking doctors worldwide, immunization needs and more. 1623 Military Rd. #279 Niagara Falls, NY 14304-1745 716-754-4883 www.iamat.org TravelHealth.co.uk Extensive online resources for travelers. www.travelhealth.co.uk Centers for Disease Control Disease status around world. 800-311-3435 www.cdc.gov Maritime Medical Access Provides 24-hour access to board certified emer. physicians George Washington University 2140 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20037 202-741-2919/2918 www.gwemed.edu International Society of Travel Medicine Health professionals dedicated to the advancement of travel medicine. Directory of providers available online. 2386 Clower St. Suite A-102 Snellville, GA 30078 770-736-7060 fax: 770-736-0313 www.istm.org Marine Medical Systems Custom medical kits including prescriptions, consulting and supplies. c/o Tully Health Center 32 Strawberry Hill Court Stamford, CT 06902 203-323-9988 fax: 203-323-7772 www.marinemedical.com MedAire/MedLink Inc. Medical support, training and equipment, including global medevac, insurance and security services. 80 East Rio Salado Pkwy. Suite 610 Tempe, AZ 85281 480-333-3700 fax: 480-333-3592 www.medaire.com Health Force, Inc. Offers 24/7 physician healthline. 11805 North Creek Parkways Suite 113 Bothell, WA 98011 425-806-5700 fax: 425-806-5701 www.healthforcepartners.com Medex Assistance Corp. Emergency travelers assistance and medical evacuation firm. 8105 LaSalle Rd., Suite 200 Baltimore, MD 21286 410-453-6300 fax: 410-453-6301 www.medexassist.com OceanMedix.com LLC Prescription medical kits, AEDs, first aid kits, emergency & safety equipment for the ocean voyager. toll free: 866-788-2642 www.oceanmedix.com International SOS Assistance Member organization providing access to medical advice and services worldwide. 3600 Horizon Blvd. Suite 300 Trevose, PA 19053 215-942-8000 fax: 215-942-8299 www.internationalsos.com Wallach & Co. Offers accident and sickness insurance policies. 107 West Federal Street P.O. Box 480 Middleburg, VA 20118 800-237-6615 fax: 540-687-3172 www.wallach.com MedicalOfficer.Net Ltd. Advanced training P.O. Box 3681 Crested Butte, CO 81224 970-275-4999 fax: 970-349-6141 www.medicalofficer.net Emergency Medical Products Emergency medical suppliesInternet online sales www.buyemp.com Bound Tree Medical Emergency medical supplies P.O. Box 8023 Dublin, OH 43016-2023 800-533-0523 fax: 800-257-5713 www.boundtree.com

In a serious situation we want an injured person awake and talking, but feeling better and breathing more easily. Use narcotics if you have to, but medicate with the lowest effective dose. When you call from the cockpit to see how things are going down below, you want an answer. The more the patient can care for himself, the more you will be able to focus on the overall management of the emergency and the vessel. A near perfect choice for severe pain initially is the narcotic fentanyl for transmucosal administration. This is essentially a lollypop that is placed between the gum and cheek allowing the potent medication to be absorbed through the mucous membranes. It is easy to remove if the patient becomes drowsy. Fentanyl is short acting and the pop does not freeze, break, or melt in storage. Another useful drug is a broad spectrum antibiotic. While use of antibiotics to prevent infection in high-risk wounds is controversial in the civilized setting, you need all the help you can get when youre far offshore. The sooner antibiotics are administered, the better they will work. For long term survival you will need to manage the ins and outs. This means providing fluid, electrolytes, and calories. If the patient can eat and drink, youre all set. If not, you will need to start an intravenous or subcutaneous fluid drip or try to rehydrate rectally. Managing output may require using a urinary catheter for a disabled patient and managing defecation with an incontinence diaper. This is the part of trauma management that goes beyond first aid, and illustrates other skills and materials that you should consider acquiring. Ashore, prehospital trauma protocols often require that the patient be immobilized on a backboard or vacuum mattress to reduce the chance of exacerbating a spine injury. However, the risk/benefit ratio for this practice does not translate well to the small boat setting. In 2006, a woman drowned when the rescue boat to which she was secured on a backboard capsized in the Connecticut River. Her original injuries were minor. Blind obedience to conventional
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protocol can kill people in the unconventional setting. Remember, you are not practicing medicine in an ambulance or emergency department. Your boat is a high-risk environment where a lot more can go wrong. Your problem list includes maritime hazards as well as the medical problem. Even a partially disabled patient will have a much better chance of survival with some freedom of movement. Usually a well-padded berth with a lee cloth is perfectly adequate protection and stability. The ultimate goal, of course, is getting a severely injured crewmember safely off the boat and into a hospital, preferably before the diaper becomes necessary. But beware of the rush to evacuate. In contrast to Elis situation, some rescue efforts may not actually improve the casualtys chance of survival. With several crewmembers aboard the typical voyaging sailboat the risk/benefit of evacuation can be more carefully weighed against the risk/benefit of staying on board. Exercising this judgment is where good seamanship and good medicine really come together. Instead of an Australian frigate in fair conditions, your rescuer may be a huge containership looming overhead in 20-foot seas or a helicopter trying to lower a basket in 60-knot gusts. It would be deeply disappointing to have worked so hard to keep your patient alive only to see him or her drown in the rescue effort, or later for lack of appropriate care. Your patient might have a better chance of survival if you sailed the patient into port yourself, even if it takes five days. You should gear your training, equipment, supplies and attitude toward that possibility. Certainly, the chance is remote that you will ever deal with a situation as difficult as Elis fractured femur in the Southern Ocean. You are unlikely to ever need the survival skills and temperament described by Gonzales. If you do, it would be nice to have given it more than a passing thought in preparation. Elis crisis and its happy ending is powerful motivation for rethinking the unthinkable. Jeffrey E. Isaac, PA-C is a physicians assistant with extensive training in back country and offshore medicine.
2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

Split Lead SSB Antenna


M
M No need for backstay insulators M Easy installation M No swaging, no cutting M Tough, waterproof, reusable M Highly conductive RF elements M Watertight leadwire to antenna connection M Stiff 34 LDPE housing secures firmly to backstay wire

Communications expert Gordon West reports

GAM Electronics, Inc. 191 Varney Street Manchester, NH 03102 Phone: (603) 627-1010 Fax: (603) 622-4738 www.gamelectronicsinc.com gamelectronicsinc@juno.com

I have done numerous SSB ham and marine radio checks with this system and have found no discernible signal losses, even when used with a wellgrounded backstay aboard a steelhulled vessel. The antenna...can bang out a signal just as though it were suspended in mid-air.
Sail Magazine October 2005

37

Offshore Safety

A process for using the extensive weather data available to the voyager
by Ken McKinley

Plenty of weather data How do you use it? T


he amount of weather information available to mariners today is nothing less than staggering. Detailed text forecasts as well as weather charts depicting actual and forecast data are provided regularly by government weather services of many countries around the world. These products are available for high seas and coastal areas, bays and inlets, and also for inland waters. Some of the government data is repackaged by private vendors and offered in slick displays, providing the mariner yet another manner in which to observe the meteorological information. The availability of forecast services from private consulting meteorologists adds yet another possible level of information for boaters. While the amount and quality of meteorological information has increased dramatically over the last decade or so, of equal or perhaps greater impact has been the communications revolution that has swept through the marine industry. The wide availability of affordable e-mail communication for vessels at sea as well as full Internet access has made it possible for mariners to receive much the same comprehensive weather information at sea as they can while tethered to the dock. This communications revolution has also made it more feasible to communicate directly with a consulting meteorologist on a regular basis throughout a voyage, and also allows frequent updates of

Steve DAntonio

With so much weather informtion so readily available, getting surprised by bad weather is less of a problem for voyagers. The bigger issue may be figuring out how to use whats available.

repackaged government data in proprietary software displays. The wide availability of more comprehensive weather information begs the question: How is the mariner to make the best use of all this data? At this point, many articles would now head in the direction of giving pointers about how to interpret the various available chart products, the best ways of finding the data that are most useful, and other tidbits to improve the mariners ability to figure out what to do with the mountain of available information. The focus of this article will be somewhat different. While knowledge of the products that are available and how to interpret them is, of course, very important, it is equally important for

the mariner to know how to appropriately apply the data to his/her situation, and as a result, make the proper decisions. First step in decision making The first step in applying the available weather data is to have a thorough knowledge of your vessel, yourself, and your situation. Notice that this stage has nothing to do with looking at weather data. This is deliberate. It is essential for the mariner to have a firm understanding of the type of conditions that are appropriate for each situation. First, consider the vessel. It is necessary to know how the vessel will perform in certain conditions, and the upper limits of a vessel to handle certain conditions. For
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most vessels, this will depend largely on sea state, but wind speed and direction along with other factors will also come into play. If the vessel is one with which you are quite familiar, then you likely have a good feeling for the upper limit of conditions in which the vessel remains safe. If it is a new vessel, you may need to rely on other owners of similar vessels, or on data provided by the builder. In any case, it is essential that there is a complete understanding of the vessels limits in place prior to evaluating weather conditions for a voyage. Next, consider your personal limits. A knowledge of your ability to handle (or to be comfortable with) certain conditions is necessary. Conditions to be considered are wind velocity (speed and direction), sea state, and
OCEAN ALMANAC

METE0ROLOGY

Temperature conversion
In the United States, temperatures are usually measured in degrees Fahrenheit, in which the freezing point of water is 32 and the boiling point 212. Elsewhere in the world, the metric Celsius scale is used; freezing is at 0 and boiling at 100. Fahrenheit = (C x 1.8) + 32 Celsius = 5/9 x (F - 32) Celsius -25 -20 -15 -10 -5 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 75 100 Fahrenheit -13 -4 5 14 23 32 41 50 59 68 77 86 95 104 113 122 167 212

other weather conditions such as precipitation or limited visibility. Upper limits for these conditions need to be determined. Perhaps you are willing to push yourself all the way to the limits of the vessel, but, more likely, your personal limits will be somewhat below the limits of the vessel. Again, a complete understanding of these limits is essential prior to any voyage planning. Finally, the situation must be considered. This has to do with the type of voyage being contemplated, the ability and experience of any crew, and the goals of the voyage. If you are in a situation where you need to deliver a boat from one port to another, have ample, well experienced crew, and the goal of the passage is simply to get the boat from one place to another without damaging it, then you may be willing to push yourself to your personal limits as determined above. If, however, you are in a situation where you are taking a cruise for pleasure, your crew is not as experienced, and includes family members, and the goal of the passage is enjoyment, then the limits of the conditions will likely be lower. In fact, for this type of passage, even if winds and seas are forecast to remain well within acceptable limits, if rain and fog are forecast for most of the passage, you may decide to change your plans on that basis. I have defined six categories of conditions that are shown in Table 1. The conditions at any given time during a voyage will fall into one of these categories. The definition of these categories will be different for each voyage, taking into account the vessel, your personal abilities, and the situation as just described. Therefore it is useful to use a form like Table 2 to define these categories as carefully as possible prior to each voyage. Ideally, this procedure will be done well in advance of each voyage, and prior to evaluating any weather data for the voyage.

The reason for going through this procedure well in advance of the voyage is that it prevents what I call limit creep. This is a situation where, when looking at weather data prior to a trip, and finding that conditions might feature stronger winds or higher seas than are desired, that, due to the desire to get the delivery done or not to ruin the vacation a determination is made to go ahead with the passage even though forecast conditions might indicate that a different decision would be more prudent.

Above are a set of planning tools for defining what weather conditions a voyager finds acceptable. These tools can help rationalize the process of weather routing and voyage planning.

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Offshore Safety
OCEAN ALMANAC

METE0ROLOGY

Weatherfax stations and broadcast schedules


Radiofax, also known as HF FAX, radiofacsimile or weatherfax, is a means of broadcasting graphic weather maps and other graphic images via HF radio. HF radiofax is also known as WEFAX, although this term is generally used to refer to the reception of weather charts and imagery via satellite. Maps are received using a dedicated radiofax receiver or a single-sideband shortwave receiver connected to an external facsimile recorder or PC equipped with a radiofax interface and application software. Halifax, Nova Scotia Call sign Frequencies CFH 122.5 kHz 4271 kHz 6496.4 kHz 10536 kHz 13510 kHz Boston Call sign Frequencies NMF 4235 kHz 6340.5 kHz 9110 kHz 12750 kHz New Orleans Call sign Frequencies NMG 4317.9 kHz 8503.9 kHz 12789.9 kHz 17146.4 kHz Pt. Reyes, Calif. Call sign Frequencies NMC 4346 kHz 8682 kHz 12786 kHz 17151.2 kHz 22527 kHz Kodiak, Alaska Call sign Frequencies NOJ 2054 kHz 4298 kHz 8459 kHz 12412.5 kHz Honolulu Call sign Frequencies KVM70 9982.5 kHz 11090 kHz 16135 kHz

If the upper limits of conditions have been carefully defined ahead of time, the decisions can be much more objective, and the safest options will be chosen. For this reason, it is important to physically put the pen to the paper and write the limits down, filling out the chart as shown in Table 2. Once this is done, then you have at your disposal a set of parameters for the trip, and this will make the decision making process much more effective and safer. Examining the data The examination of actual weather data should begin several days in advance of the scheduled departure. Whether you are using data directly from government sources, repackaged data, or information from a private consultant, you should see how the forecast conditions fall into the categories which you have previously defined, and use this information to make determinations concerning the passage. Of course, the easiest situations are those when the forecast conditions all fall within the Ideal or Favorable categories, or within the Unacceptable or Perilous categories. In these cases, the passage will either proceed as planned, or will obviously need to be delayed, proceed with an altered route or schedule, or cancelled altogether. The more difficult situations will be passages where conditions are forecast to fall into the Acceptable or Marginal categories, either for short periods of time, or for a good portion of the passage. These situations will require more deliberation and thought, and decisions will, to a great degree, depend on the particular situation. Lets look at an example. Refer to Table 3, which has been completed with the limits for a trip from New York to Annapolis, Md., on a sailboat (lets assume about 45 feet or so). This particular trip is for a family vacation with the family members serving as skipper and crew. This trip would have two possible routing options, one where the vessel would sail south to the Hampton Roads, then back north through the Chesapeake Bay to Annapolis, and the other where the vessel would sail to Annapolis via Delaware Bay and the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal. Taking a closer look at how each category of conditions has been defined,

Broadcast times Continuous Continuous Continuous Continuous Continuous Broadcast times 20301028 Continuous Continuous 14002228 Broadcast times Continuous Continuous Continuous 12002045 Broadcast times 1040-1608 Continuous Continuous Continuous 1840-2356 Broadcast times Continuous Continuous Continuous Continuous Broadcast times 05191556 Continuous 17190356

notice that in the Winds column, ranges of wind speeds have been noted, and also acceptable periods of no wind have been indicated. Since this is a sailboat, and depending on fuel capacity and range under power, longer periods with no wind become less favorable. In the Seas column, notice that both wind waves and swells have been noted since the longer period swells will affect the vessel differently. In the Weather column, both precipitation and visibility have been noted, and if the passage were occurring during the cold season, temperature information might also come into play. Using Table 3 and available weather forecast information, the skipper can evaluate each route option and determine whether one or the other is more appropriate, or, whether neither route is right for the scheduled departure date. For example, if conditions on the Atlantic were forecast to deteriorate into the Acceptable or Marginal categories 24 hours after departure and to remain in these categories for a few days, then taking the route through Delaware Bay and the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal might be the best decision. In particular, if the reason for the deterioration of conditions was primarily due to sea state

All broadcast times are UTC Source: NOAA, National Weather Service

This array of conditions from acceptable to perilous can help voyagers define what constitutes a weather situation that could cause a passage to be delayed or perhaps canceled altogether.

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OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

issues, sailing in the more protected waters later in the passage might allow conditions to remain in the Favorable category. In any event, having a chart like Table 3 completed well in advance of the trip will make the decisions more clear cut, and in this case, will likely lead to a pleasurable trip, or will likely avoid a case where departure occurs as scheduled, but the family has a miserable time. Even with well-defined limits, some subjective analysis will still be required during the evaluation of weather forecast information. For example, it will be necessary to make a determination of how long a period of time conditions in the Acceptable and/or Marginal categories can be tolerated. If it appears that conditions in the Marginal category will prevail for an hour or two on a three-day passage, then a decision may be made to go ahead with the passage, but on the other hand, if it appears that these type of conditions will last for 12 hours, that may lead to a different decision. But again, even with these more subjective evaluations, having the well defined limits in place will lead to an easier decision making process. Lets look at how Table 3 might be constructed differently in different situations. First, consider the same vessel, but instead of a family vacation, think about a delivery passage from Annapolis back to New York with a hired crew with lots of experience. What will change? The Ideal category will likely change very little, perhaps slightly higher wind speeds to make the boat go faster. Somewhat stronger winds will likely show up in the Favorable category as well, and perhaps slightly higher seas. Conditions for the Acceptable category will likely feature stronger winds and higher seas along with a greater tolerance for inclement weather. This is mainly due to the fact that having a good time has been removed as a goal for this voyage, in fact the goal is simply to get the boat back to New York without any damage or injuries to the crew. These adjustments will push the Acceptable category closer to the Marginal category, which itself may be nudged a bit higher for winds and seas. With a professional crew, the Unacceptable category will likely be pushed higher toward the Perilous category. The Per2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

ilous category may be increase a bit as well, due again to the more experienced crew, but will still need to take account of the limits of the vessel. If the vessel involved was a motor yacht, the categories would also be defined differently. In this situation, periods of time with no wind change from being liabilities to being strong assets. Sea state, particularly wind waves, may become more of a liability when heading into the wind due to the higher speed of the vessel and the resulting pounding that can occur in these situations. Thus the limits for sea state as one goes up the category list may be lower than for our sailboat trip. The Ideal category would likely show wind direction nearly due astern rather than abeam. Power voyagers In most cases, for larger vessels, the definition of each category will tend to have higher winds and seas, with smaller vessels the opposite case will prevail. In fact, this procedure can be used very effectively for making decisions for trans-oceanic passages for large commercial vessels like tankers as well. Obviously, in these situations, the definitions of each category will be significantly different than for our sailboat trip, but the procedure to construct the table, and then to apply it using available weather forecast information will be much the same. To summarize, well ahead of any passage, make a determination about how weather information will be obtained. As noted at the outset, there are many possibilities for this. Also, well ahead of any passage, define the limits of conditions for the passage using a table like Table 2. Then, as the passage approaches, use the weather forecast information from your chosen source and apply it to the defined limits of conditions, and this will allow for a strongly objective decision making process which will assist in meeting the goals of a passage, or in avoiding an unsatisfactory or dan gerous passage. Ken McKinley earned a bachelors degree in atmospheric science from Cornell University in 1980, and attended graduate school in meteorology at MIT. He founded his own meteorological consulting firm, Locus Weather, in Camden, Maine, in 1991.

OCEAN ALMANAC

METE0ROLOGY

U.S. Coast Guard HF/MF weather broadcasts


The U.S. Coast Guard broadcasts National Weather Service high-seas forecasts and storm warnings from six high-seas communication stations, most of them remotely operated from master stations on each coast. Transmission range is dependent on operating frequency, time of day and atmospheric conditions, and it can vary from only short distances to several thousand miles. All broadcasts use a synthesized voice (Perfect Paul), and all frequencies are upper single-sideband (USB) HF. Carrier frequencies shown. ITU channel numbers as follows: 4426 (#424), 6501 (#601), 8764 (#816), 13089 (#1205), 17314 (#1625). All times are in UTC. All frequencies are in kHz. Camslant/Chesapeake, Va./NMN Time Frequency 03301 4426, 6501, 8764 05152 4426, 6501, 8764 1 0930 4426, 6501, 8764 11152 6501, 8764, 13089 15301 6501, 8764, 13089 21301 6501, 8764, 13089 2 2315 6501, 8764, 13089 1 offshore forecast 2 high-seas forecast Camspac/Pt. Reyes, Calif./NMC Time Frequency 0430 4426, 8764, 13089 1030 4426, 8764, 13089 1630 8764, 13089, 17314 2230 8764, 13089, 17314 Honolulu NMO Time Frequency 0600 8764, 6501 1200 8764, 6501 0005 8764, 13089 1800 8764, 13089 Kodiak, Alaska/NOJ Time Frequency 0203 6501 1645 6501 Guam/NRV Time Frequency 0330 13089 0930 6501 1530 6501 2130 13089 Honolulu, Guam and 25 Coast Guard Group stations also broadcast offshore forecasts on MF 2670 kHz following an announcement on 2182 kHz. Typical transmission range is 50 to 150 nm during the day and 150 to 300 nm at night. For schedules and much more information on National Weather Service marine products, visit: www.nws.noaa.gov/om/marine/hfvoice.htm.

41

Voyaging Skills
For voyagers Mark Roye and Nancy Krill, the farthest destinations require the best skills
or more than eight years Mark Roye and Nancy Krill have called the Rolf Modighdesigned, 44-foot Tamara their home. The Swedish-built steel ketch has taken them to the high latitudes of Labrador and the Antarctic. Mark was formerly the owner and skipper of a 91-foot commercial fishing vessel in Alaskan waters and Nancy has had extensive experience traveling and exploring in countries all over the world. After selling their workboat and buying Tamara, Mark and Nancy voyaged to Cape Chidley in northernmost Labrador, sailed to southernmost Patagonia, across the Drake Passage and then explored the Antarctic Peninsula before heading north to the Galpagos Islands and then Mexico. Mark and Nancy have heavily modified Tamara for the vessels role as a voyager. On their passage to Labrador, Tamara carried 265 gallons of fuel, giving them extended range under power; 200 gallons of water; a diesel stove and foam insulation. One of the 44-footers staterooms has been converted to a workshop and the vessel is wellMark Roye and Nancy Krill photos

equipped with saftey gear. Since Mark was twice forced to abandon ship while commercial fishing, he realizes the importance of immersion suits, EPIRBs and even a special abandon ship bag intended for use should they get driven ashore. This bag includes a tent, sleeping bags, cold weather boots and clothing, stove, food and a shotgun. What are top skills voyOV:voyaging? the know before agers need to going Good sailing MR&NK:communicaskills, navigational expertise, and tions including radio usage and weather forecast reception, electronic mail systems, remote management of finances online are pretty much axiomatic of course, as are the routines of near shore coastal piloting, radar observation, anchoring and mooring, even cooking and provisioning. But Id say that most of the cruisers weve met who have ventured beyond the typical Snowbird runs are fairly skilled in these basics. What separates those who have pushed

much farther afield from the rest is a greater degree of self-sufficiency. The ability to install, maintain and repair virtually every onboard system from the sails and rig, to the engine, outboard motor, electrical system, hydraulics, even the toilet, becomes essential. Similarly, some foreign language skill, adaptability to new surroundings, and an understanding as to how things get done or not in a different part of the world are indispensable. We have seen some people quit their cruising dream because they no longer can live without the comforts of home, be they material or interpersonal, and they feel literally like fish out of water. But to sum it all up, Id say master your general seamanship and sailing, learn to do most mechanical chores yourself, then be willing to do it all on your own wherever you are, while at the same time enjoying what it is that is different there than it is at home. Learn to keep an open mind.
In This Section

Cruising crimes Dinghy security

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

you prepare before OV:How doroutine? What is going on a voyage? your planning are pretMR&NK:Wemuchasthe ty same as most other voyagers to detailed planning, but we start with a great deal of day dreaming and fantasy. There is nothing better than to dream about where youd like to go and do, and only after some time dreaming begin to do the detailed planning. This way your planning will take into account many more eventualities than it otherwise would. Id read, dreamed, and schemed every which way before finally sailing for the Arctic and the Antarctic, and when we decided to sail to Patagonia and Cape Horn it was because another cruising couple had shown us their photo collection of their time in Chile. Nancy leaned over to me and said, Thats where I want to go next. So we began to dream, and then to plan. Once you have decided where you want to go, and why you want to be there, youll have a fair notion what it will require to do so. And by this I mean everything how much time, money, provisioning, consumables, special equipment and so on. So for example we knew what special gear we would need in Patagonia

and Antarctica before we left Maine, and knew what we had to put aboard before we sailed, and what we could get later in Argentina. In the mean time, we spent a year and a half along the way. The cold weather clothing, skis, spare parts, extra line and anchors and so on were not necessary in Brazil, but they were already aboard because a little bit of inquiring of friends, written accounts and intuition born of experience told us that we could not depend on procuring these items locally. So that voyage was planned well before the voyage that put us in position to finally go rather like the trek to base camp before trying for the summit, the approach is a voyage in and of itself. After considering special equipment or other matters, for example the very involved permitting requirements for the Antarctic voyage or special visas and so on, the timing and weather concerns of a voyage for us are driven essentially by history. That is to say that we treat the pilot charts and coast pilot references as gospel. Today they are all incorporated into computer programs as well, like Visual Passage Planner. So we always go when the going is good, as shown by sailing voyages for hundreds of

years. But we try to take that one step beyond if possible, and do any passage we can not only during the best season, but during the historically best month of that season. As a result we have been from the Arctic to the Antarctic, and have had only one gale at sea, and even that one was of short duration. Of course we have had heavy weather, such as brief but violent pamperos off Argentina, and severe rachas (williwaws) in Patagonia, and some real screamers in northern Labrador, but they were expected, or were only after wed been able to get well secured in an anchorage. After these considerations, for us, its a matter of routine generated by experience. We know the expected duration of the voyage, and we plug in a time proven provisioning list that we have refined that suites our tastes. We put on the fuel we expect to need plus a safety margin of about double if possible (if you loosen the rig, range under power is very comforting). When we returned from Antarctica we still had one third of the fuel and half the water with which we departed, as well as provisions for several more months, albeit not much fresh produce. Thus we had assured a very wide safety margin.

Above, Mark Roye and Nancy Krill enjoy a sunny day in Antarctica. Left, Tamara passes an iceberg off Labrador.

2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

43

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www.royal-met-soc.org.uk The Royal Meteorological Society in the U.K. is a boon to the weather enthusiast or amateur sailor, providing links for forewww.oceannavigator.com Ocean Navigator. Your favorite magazine casts, satellite and radar images, and detailed information on all weather-relat(and seamanship school) has even more stories in its 16 years of archives. All links ed activities. www.meteofrance.com mentioned below are posted. Another handy site for weather-related www.boat-links.com information is the French weather service, The mother of all maritime links. IncrediMto France, which includes an Englishble list of links to all things having to do language option for Franco-impaired with the water. users. www.nws.noaa.gov/om/ www.maptech.com marine/home.htm NWS marine product information. NOAAs Maptechs MapServer. Well-organized access to charts, topos, aerial photograTim Rulon maintains an outstanding phy and more. guide to all sorts of Web and radio www.ssca.org weather resources. Seven Seas Cruising Association. Features www.nhc.noaa.gov National Hurricane Center. Extensive trop- very lively and open discussion boards and downright scary news flashes. ical weather reports for the Atlantic and www.pancanal.com Pacific oceans. Panama Canal. Information on the canal, www.ndbc.noaa.gov National Data Buoy Center. Get real-time including regulations and fees. www.arrl.org/tis/info/ weather reports from buoys at sea and marine.html weather reporting stations. American Radio Relay League. Learn www.usps.org about ham radio for boaters. United States Power Squadrons. Navigawww.uscgboating.org tion instruction. U.S. Coast Guard Office of Marine Safety. www.co-ops.nos.noaa.gov NOAA oceanographic products. Real-time Regulations, publications and more. www.thedailysail.com and extended tide predictions, now The Daily Sail (formerly Mad for Sailing). improved. An excellent British site covering ocean www.usno.navy.mil racing. U.S. Naval Observatory. Sun and moon rise/set times, moon phases, eclipses and www.ussailing.org U.S. Sailing Association. The major racing other data. organization in the United States. www.navcen.uscg.gov www.sailing.org U.S. Coast Guard Navigation Center, the International Sailing Federation. Worldoffice that maintains GOS, DGPS and wide racing news. loran. Lots of communications information, Local Notices to Mariners and more. www.orc.org Offshore Racing Council. Details of multiwww.oceanservice.noaa.gov/ ple rating rules and worldwide race calendataexplorer dar. NOS Mapfinder. Once you master the www.gpsinformation.net complex interface, you can download low-resolution (85-dpi) versions of NOAA Joe Mehaffey and Jack Yeazels GPS information Web site. Much useful information charts, aerial photos and more. about GPS, www.chartmaker.ncd.noaa.gov particularly Garmin handhelds. NOAAs Office of Coast Survey. Info on www.cgaux.org ordering charts, also Chart No. 1 and U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. Boating coursmany downloadable historical charts. es and safety checks. www.marineplanner.com Marine Planner. An ambitious site with a www.boats.com An excellent resource for prospective boat full catalog of viewable and printable owners and for those researching prodSoftCharts, weather, route making and ucts. The site also offers access to the much more. With charts for your PDA. excellent newsletter Scuttlebutt, which www.weather.com supplies daily racing news from around The Weather Channels Internet site. the world. Offers weather-for-dummies-style prodwww.reedsalmanac.com ucts, including radar and satellite coverReeds Nautical Almanacs. Extensive link age, and zone forecasts. lists, cruising guide lists, free tide charts and more.

44

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

the valuable OV:What ispickedmostwhilecameskill youve up voyaging? Since I to MR&NK:voyaging afterId a career as a professional mariner owned and skippered a succession of fishing vessels throughout Alaska I was fairly well grounded in all of the basic seamanship, navigational, communications and mechanical skills. Nancy had a great deal of time on the work boats as well, and wed done a few long runs between Alaska and Seattle together. For me, the most valuable skill Ive picked up along the way has been a second language. I have a long way to go, but can now function fairly well in Spanish, as can Nancy. We find that we do very well if we are on the same page with the native speaker. So we may not be able to carry on a wide ranging discussion about general topics, but I can talk with a fisherman or diesel mechanic fairly well since we both know the underlying subject

matter. Nancy has found the same thing, so in terms of practical use of language we both have gained that valuable skill. This was so even in Brazil, since Spanish and Portuguese have much in common, so I could at least deal with checking in with the officials reasonably well by using my rudimentary Spanish. What skills do you most look for in a crewmember? We have only once had another crewmember along, as we are a cruising couple and three is a well known poor group dynamic. This was for Antarctica where the permitting process with the government essentially demanded another crew. With the commercial boats the greatest skill I looked for in crew was the ability to learn new skills I was always skeptical of those who claimed to be highly skilled as it often proved not to be the case, and then re-training was more difficult. But then Id try hard to keep

OV: MR&NK:

those people who proved out for several seasons. Do you find voyagers are more or less skilled than in years past? I have not seen a great difference in the nearly nine years weve been at this, so I cant really say. What I do see is a very great difference regionally. So those who only venture to Mexico or Snowbird to the Carribean and back are generally less skilled than those cruising the pointy end of things. But those out on the edge either have the skill to begin with or had acquired it along the way. That is not to say all of them are highly skilled, obviously. We saw occasional poor seamanship even in Patagonia and Antarctica, but for the most part the further you go the higher the standard. We have also met a much higher percentage of professional mariners the closer we are to the fringe. Retired ship captains and engineers, ex-navy, fishermen, round the

OV: MR&NK:

2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

45

Voyaging Skills
world racers and so on. I suppose, like us, the appeal to them is the greater degree of difficulty, a personal best if you wish, of going beyond the trade wind routes. We have become close friends with several of these cruisers, those with some sort of professional maritime background. The really rewarding part of these associations is the high level of mutual respect for one anothers experience and skills, even though they vary from fisherman to nuclear sub engineer, and trading of skills with each other. Professionals seem to always be interested in up-grading their skills, and instead of a trade convention or bar association meeting, we just swap marine experiences and skill sets whenever possible, or whenever its necessary due to a particular situation.

OV:Who or what most inspired you to go voyaging? The voyages MR&NK:fur traders of of Yankee whalers, sealers, and maritime two
centuries ago. Although by todays ethic we cannot condone their activities, in the context of their time these were the real explorers. They went literally to the ends of the earth, were driven by their own entrepreneurial motives, and generally kept their discoveries to themselves. At the same time, they had to be completely self-sufficient in all regards, and took tremendous risks. Even as late as 1865, one out of every 17 whale ships venturing into Cumberland Sound off Baffin Island was lost! We tried several times for Cumberland Sound from
OCEAN ALMANAC

Labrador, but the west side of the Labrador Sea is still very difficult. We failed on three attempts, even with a powerful diesel, plenty of fuel and good communications. Their efforts can not but be inspiring, no matter how we may feel about their exploitation today. What are your future voyaging plans?Where do you intend to sail next? We will sail from Mexico for Hawaii in March, then Alaska in June. Though I spent 20 seasons all over Alaskas waters, there is so much left undone. We will take Tamara along the Aleutian Island chain, and then into the Bering Sea, finally nestling her into Prince William Sound.

OV: MR&NK:

PILOTING & NAV

Atlantic distance table


Halifax New York Norfolk Miami Bermuda St. Thomas Panama Azores Gibraltar Fastnet Cape Town Rio de Janeiro Cape Horn 600 600 790 1413 756 1595 2338 1785 2708 2364 6492 4630 6800 271 1100 697 1434 2016 2246 3180 2815 6786 4770 6920 790 271 698 683 1296 1825 2401 3335 2979 6790 4723 6900 1413 1100 698 956 991 1249 2900 3800 3578 6800 4879 6882 756 697 683 956 1595 1434 1296 991 872 1072 2393 3323 3279 5904 3542 5886 2338 2016 1825 1249 1702 1072 3439 4351 4247 6508 4284 4093 1785 2246 2401 2900 2201 2393 3439 946 1377 5040 3875 6282 2708 3180 3335 3800 2903 3323 4351 946 977 5072 4180 6452 2364 2815 2979 3578 2651 3279 4247 1377 977 5880 4873 7151 6492 6786 6790 6800 6269 5904 6508 5040 5072 5880 3273 4731 4630 4770 4723 4879 4110 3542 4284 3875 4180 4873 3273 2338 6800 6920 6900 6882 6300 5886 4093 6282 6452 7151 4731 2338

Rio de Janeiro

St. Thomas

Cape Town

Cape Horn

New York

Bermuda

Gibraltar

Panama

Norfolk

Pacific distance table


Sitka Vancouver San Francisco Los Angeles Panama Cape Horn Honolulu Papeete Pago Pago Auckland Sydney Hong Kong Yokohama 823 823 1302 1640 4524 7705 2386 4537 4635 6176 6595 5136 3620 812 1091 4032 7248 2423 4396 4549 6191 6814 6361 4262 1302 812 349 3245 6458 2091 3663 4151 5680 6448 6044 4536 1640 1091 349 4524 4032 3245 2913 7705 7248 6458 6100 4162 6644 4333 5381 6232 7301 10404 9642 2386 2423 2091 2228 4685 6644 2381 2276 3820 4420 4857 3395 4537 4396 3663 3571 4493 4333 2381 1236 2216 3308 6132 5140 4635 4549 4151 4163 5656 5381 2276 1236 1565 2377 4948 4135 6176 6191 5680 5658 6516 6232 3820 2216 1565 1280 5060 4789 6595 6814 6448 6511 7674 7301 4420 3308 2377 1280 4086 4330 5136 6361 6044 6380 9195 10404 4857 6132 4948 5060 4086 1585 3620 4262 4536 4839 7682 9642 3395 5140 4135 4789 4330 1585

Halifax Sitka

Fastnet

Azores

Miami

872 1702 2201 2903 2651 6269 4110 6300

OCEAN ALMANAC

PILOTING & NAV

San Francisco

Los Angeles

Hong Kong

Cape Horn

Yokohama

Pago Pago

Vancouver

2913 6100 2228 3571 4163 5658 6511 6380 4839

Auckland

Honolulu

Papeete

Panama

Sydney

4162 4685 4493 5656 6516 7674 9195 7682

46

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

Voyaging Skills

Cruising crimes
iven the recent series of criminal incidents involving voyagers off the coast of Somalia, voyagers frequently ask me if I have ever been attacked by pirates during my two circumnavigations and numerous other passages. Although I once sailed by the Somalian coast on the way from the Maldives to Aden, the answer is No. I have found over the years that my boat, or myself, are far more likely to attract the attention of criminals on land rather than at sea. But there are a few regions to

Andy OGrady

a toughlooking hombre sporting a pump shotgun. I was making my second transit of

which I would give a wide berth; a friend of mine who lived in Brunei for many years told me several horrifying stories about pirates in the South Philippines. Like the Somalian pirates, these Philippine pirates were desperately poor locals who prowl the waters off their coasts for passers-by. In many poverty-stricken and lonely parts of the world there are opportunists who may paddle or swim out to your boat to see what they can pilfer if you are unwise enough to anchor nearby. Probably the most openly lawless place I ever voyaged to was Colon, at the Caribbean end of the Panama Canal. I should have been warned when I stopped by the local supermarket; standing by each cash register was

the big ditch in the early part of 1996; the place had clearly deteriorated since my first visit in 1991, which was surprising considering the US invasion had occurred in 1989. In cahoots We were warned at the yacht club to go everywhere by taxi, a sensible precaution unless the taxi driver was in cahoots with the local muggers, which I suspect was the case. A crewmember and I took a taxi into downtown Colon to buy a fairly commonplace electrical fitting. At the first electrical store we were told the fitting was available at another store, just at the end of the block. We walked there along the crowded sidewalk while the

taxi followed us slowly. There were several customers inside the store, as we waited three young men entered the store and dispersed themselves. I paid little attention. At a sudden shout, one of them, who was directly behind me, threw his arm round my neck in a choke-hold. The second thrust his hand in the pocket which held my wallet. The third parried any attempt by my crewmember to come to my aid. Gasping for breath, my gaze was riveted on the ceiling tiles as I held on to the wallet in my pocket. The assailant and I fought for the wallet and suddenly something tore free. The fellow gave a cry and all three darted through the door and onto the crowded street. I looked around, the other customers had prudently melted away, the assistants behind the counter grasped baseball bats, but had made no attempt to help me. Why should they? They lived there and had to deal with street thugs all the time, I was a gringo who would be gone in a few days. In my hand was a

World girdling voyagers need to keep their wits about them especially on land
by Eric Forsyth
Left, pirates on the deck of a highjacked freighter are the usual image of voyaging lawlessness. But voyagers are more likely to encounter problems when going ashore, above.

Courtesy U.S. Navy

2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

47

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Voyaging Skills
piece of the wallet, which was made of thin leather. We had torn it in half, but unfortunately for the thief my half still had the money in it. It was a well choreographed operation and could have been much worse if they had used knives, so I think we were lucky. Apart from a scratchy voice and a sore throat for a few days I suffered no ill effects. Why did I think the taxi driver had tipped them off? Although he came into the store with us initially, he left when the three entered. Also the thief knew exactly which pocket to go for. An ancient skill Picking pockets is an ancient skill practiced in much of the world, often by small gangs who are experts at causing a small distraction. I have had my pockets picked twice in Brazil, once by a bunch of kids who used the trick of squirting some green paste on my shoe and then drawing my attention to the ice cream I had apparently dropped on my shoe. In a crowded streetcar in Lisbon I was jostled by a gang near the ticket dispensing machine, one of them neatly removed my video camera from the backpack I was wearing. In Guyana, on the north coast of South America, a few dollars were lifted from my pocket while I was standing in a line at the post-office. Petty thievery was so common that the pay phones in the streets were free; the authorities had apparently decided it was cheaper to pay for local calls than keep repairing the phones after they had been broken into. At least that is what a resident told me. But sometimes it went beyond picking pockets and became more violent. The only other voyager moored in Guiana while I was there was beaten when he returned to his boat after midnight. An expensive item I lost to thieves while voyaging was a laptop computer, which also cost me a lot of lost data. I was returning to New York from Uruguay by air for a couple weeks while en route to Antarctica. The computer was not functioning properly. I figured I could get it repaired while home. I wrapped it in a sleeping bag and stuffed it in a duffel, so it was not obvious. I checked the bag, but when I got home the computer was gone. Clearly the X-ray scan had detected it at Montevideo. If the security people are also dishonest, the anti-terrorist measures make life too easy for them. To make matters worse, the airline practically accused me of fabricating the loss; although I had boarding passes and the claim ticket, I could not produce the original sales invoice! Fiona cleaned out The most expensive loss I ever suffered was when I parked the boat at Raiatea in French Polynesia. My wife and I were cruising the Society Islands, she had flown home and then developed a serious cancer which eventually killed her. I flew home to join her and left my Westsail 42, Fiona, at a small shipyard that serviced local charter boats. She was propped up on 55 gallon oil drums and locked, but I left a hatch slightly open under the dinghy on the foredeck to maintain some air circulation. When I returned a year later the boat had been thoroughly looted, mostly of tools and electronics. There was no sign of a forced entry. I had left the key to the companionway hatch with the yard owner and taken out insurance against most disasters, including robbery. I suspected the key had been lifted at some stage and the thieves had worked through the boat at their leisure. But the insurVideo stills from Eric Forsyth showing an encounter off Java when he was closely approached by a small freighter. Had he carried a gun, he would have brought it on deck. Ultimately, the event proved innocuous.

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Eric Forsyth

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

ance refused any claim citing the unlocked hatch under the inverted dinghy. I had no time to argue; the boat needed an enormous amount of work to get her ready for a departure in a couple weeks. This was the time the French officials had given me to clear out of the islands before the arrival of the cyclones, which in fact did hit Tahiti two weeks after we left. Strange behavior The closest I ever came to an apparent high seas pirate was on a leg from Christmas Island to Phuket in Thailand. It was turning into a long, mostly windless passage; we were about 50 miles off the coast of Java jogging along under full sail at about 3 knots. We became aware of the low pitched rhythmic thumping of a wheezing diesel engine which imperceptively became louder and louder over an hour or two. It emanated from a disreputable-looking small freighter that slowly overtook us on the port side. As it drew

alongside only twenty or thirty yards away, the noise was deafening and oily smoke trailed over the calm sea. We were baffled by its behavior which seemed very suspicious, if I had had a rifle on board I would have chambered a round at that stage, but I didnt carry a gun. As a precaution we started the engine, but left the transmission in neutral. There seemed to be little activity on the deck of the stranger, however. Just one crewmember calmly hanging out laundry on the stern rail. Then the freighter suddenly jogged towards us and the stern slid only a few feet in front of the bowsprit. What was going on? We eased the main sheet to slow the boat, but the visitor slowly pulled ahead and a couple of hours later its smoke and noise had disappeared over the horizon. It was a few weeks later when I found out what the probable reason was when I described the incident to an old Far East resident. He laughed and said there was

no need to have worried. The Chinese crew were simply transferring their joss, their bad luck spirit, to us. They believed bad luck came from a spirit that lurked on their boat, if they came close enough maybe it would jump onto Fiona. I dont think it did; we made it to Phuket and had a wonderful time over Christmas and New Years. I have never carried a gun except when voyaging in polar bear territory. I sail unarmed on the assumption that any genuine pirates would almost certainly outnumber and outgun us. In many countries carrying a gun results in serious problems with customs when checking in. Guns and ammunition are often confiscated and getting them back may be difficult. The incident near Java illustrates another reason why having a gun may be a bad idea something may appear ominous enough to cause the gun to be readied, and thus escalate the situation, when there is an innocuous explanation.

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2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

49

Index to Advertisers
Page Advertiser
25 c4 51 15 44 54 8 27 17 37 4 c3 37 28 9 48 54 44 19 19,37 34 60

Product

Page Advertiser
50 13 51 10 56 c2 3 45 50 5 1 23 13 58 23 49 48 54 53 29 51 55

Product

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www.nsboats.com
OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

50

Mistaken identity Many years ago a friend of mine was delivering a small sailboat from St. Thomas to Texas with only a teenager as crew. Off the coast of the Dominican Republic they were approached by a small motor boat operated by a few scruffylooking characters. No one had a radio, the men in the boat gesticulated wildly and pointed to a distant dock on the shore. My friend ignored them and sailed stolidly on. After more yelling they produced a rifle and put a shot through the mainsail. Although he was convinced he might be sailing to his death he put the tiller over and headed for the shore. He told me that if he had possessed a gun he would have been tempted to make a fight of it. As he got closer to the dock he realized he was being headed by a wind shift and put the tiller over to make a short tack. The fellows in the power boat misinterpreted this move and put another shot through the sail. He rapidly resumed his original course, sailing as close to the

Robert Mehaffy

A local boat moving during the day is not threatening, but the same craft moving at night without lights can seem ominous.

wind as humanly possible. When he was tied up to the dock he watched in trepidation as the other boat came alongside. The leader jumped on board and in a mixture of Spanish and poor English told my friend he belonged the Dominican Navy and he wanted to inspect his papers. Naturally my friend had no cruising permit for the Dominican Republic and he should have stayed outside territorial waters. He made his apologies, produced a bottle of rum and in the morning went on his way with nothing worse than a headache. It could have been a lot worse, he told me, if he had carried a rifle and made a fight of it.

What can be made from these yarns? Obviously there are a few spots in the world that require a wide berth you can keep up to date on those areas on the radio nets. If you feel impelled to carry firearms, be very careful you dont exacerbate the situation. And finally remember there are far more sharks on land than there are in the sea. Contributing editor Eric Forsyth was awarded the Cruising Club of Americas Blue Water Medal in 2000. He has made two circumnavigations and cruised both polar regions. Details of his cruises can be found at www.yachtfiona.com.

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2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

51

Voyaging Skills

Dinghy security
How to prevent your dinghy from being lost or stolen
Story and photos by Darrel Trueman

Above right, a crowded dinghy dock can be a tempting target to a dinghy thief. One approach to avoid theft is to use a small engine on your dinghy, making it less attractive for a thief to resell.

n a rolly anchorage at the Pacific side of the Panama Canal, the cruising nets Controller brought bad news: To all cruisers, I just wanted to let you know that two cruisers had inflatable dinghies stolen from the anchorage last night. I felt a sinking feeling in my stomach. I quickly glanced over at my own little inflatable, safe on deck for the night. As the net continued, both unfortunate captains spoke about their stolen dinghies. Both had engines and were locked on cables in the water. One was attached with thick old rigging wire, which was cut through with barely a whisper. A voyager whod been in the area for many months spoke up: Thieves around here just want the engines, they probably knifed the dinks and sank them. The engine can then be sold on the black market to fishermen or other boaters who need the horsepower. Upsetting as it was, the whole incident got me thinking about dinghy security. No doubt talking to locals and finding out about the security situation in the area is vitally important, but how do you stop someone from cutting through something as tough as rigging wire? I eventually found the answer to that, and discovered several ways to protect my dinghy from theft or from loss. Thieves often strike where they find an easy mark, but can be foiled by anything that increases

the time, noise, and visibility of their crime. That said, engines are usually the main target, the bigger the better. When the two dinghies were stolen in Panama, another voyager told me he also had a dinghy in the water that night, trailing on a painter rope. The trick to avoiding theft, he convinced me, lies in having a small outboard, maximum two or three horses. No self-respecting thief would lift such an engine, especially when theres little market for it. For voyagers, an excellent antitheft strategy is to carry two outboards, one small and one large. Use the small engine when in ports or other places with light fingered locals. Since many small engines have an integral fuel tank, theres also one less item to be stolen. You can then use the bigger outboard everywhere else, particularly in remote areas or when you have to dinghy a long distance. For an outboard to be covered

by insurance its theft must be forcible and violent. In other words, it needs to be locked up securely. Youll need at least two good locks one to lock the outboard to the dinghy, and one to lock the dinghy to a dock. Considering that a hacksaw or hammer can get through a cheap lock in less than 30 seconds, consider Federal, Abloy, Abus, or other sturdy brands with corrosion resistant internal components. Slot locks can also be a deterrent to thieves as they restrict access to your engines clamp screws or prevent them from turning. Stazo and Nawa brand locks can slow a determined dinghy pirate for several minutes. Perhaps more importantly, a thief may decide its all just too much trouble, and simply move along to find an easier mark. One way to lose a dinghy Having your dinghy stolen is one

52

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

thing, but losing it to sheer carelessness is something else entirely. I should have known better, particularly at a place as remote as Kanton Island, 800 miles north of Samoa. My sloop, Blue Dolphin, was anchored in the massive lagoon when my solo sleep was interrupted by a radio call from Atlantis, the only other boat there. Blue Dolphin, are you missing something? Uh what? Your dingy. I poked my head up into the cockpit and looked around. My dinghy was gone. My dinghys gone, I said into the VHF. Yeah, do you see it on the shore there? I scanned the nearby lee shore of Kanton Islands massive lagoon and sure enough, there was my dingy. Phew. Had I been anchored on the windward side of the lagoon, my dinghy would be many miles away by now.

Yeah, I see it. Thank you. Well be over in a minute to pick you up. I had tied the dinghy to Blue Dolphins stern, but the painter had rubbed up against a fitting on the transom all night long, sawing it through. This happened after Id changed the way I attached the painter that evening, just to try something different. Now, whenever I trail a dinghy for any reason, I use two painters. Get it out of the water Hoisting your dinghy up out of the water makes it much more difficult to steal, less prone to capsize in rough conditions, and less exposed to marine fouling. Itll also prevent seals from lounging in it a problem particular not only to the Galpagos. The disadvantages include the few extra minutes it takes to lift the dinghy and return it to the

Locking bars allied with solid locks designed for the marine environment, like this Abus model, make the process of removing a dinghy engine more challenging.

2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

53

Voyaging Skills
water, and the fact that the occasional fish and squid can no longer hop in to provide you with easy bait. Stern davits are a popular place to store dinghies, and can provide platforms for solar panels, fishing rods, or antennas. One experienced voyaging couple I met had davits, but used them only for lifting their dinghy when at anchor. They refused to park it on the davits during open water passages, for fear of being pooped by a large following sea. This is certainly a valid concern, as being hit in the stern by a large spilling wave could fill the dinghy with more than a ton of water and spell disaster in heavy conditions. The answer is to install davits that lift your dinghy very high above the transom and out of the reach of tall seas. Or just stow the dink elsewhere, such as on the deck. You wont be using it on open water passages anyway. Another way to get your tender out of the water is by using a halyard to winch it up beside the boat, where it can be locked to a stanchion with a chain. The tricky bit is in tying a harness that will keep the dink and its outboard level when theyre hanging in the air together. Fenders can minimize chafe between the hull and the dinghy. While on the subject of hoisting expensive things in and out of the water, its well worth attaching a lanyard to an

OCEAN ALMANAC

PILOTING & NAV

2009 races of note


Newport-Ensenada Race www.nosa.org Distance 4/24/094/28/09 Newport, Calif., to Ensenada, Mexico 125 West Marine Atlantic Cup www.carib1500.com/ac 5/01/09 Tortola, B.V.I., to Bermuda 810 ARC Europe Atlantic Rally for Cruisers www.worldcruising.com 5/07/09 Tortola to Bermuda 980 5/07/09 St. Augustine, Fla., to Bermuda 865 5/20/09 Bermuda to Horta, Faial, Azores 1,840 6/13/09 Ponta Delgada to Lagos, Portugal 940 Marion-Bermuda Race www.marionbermuda.com 6/19/09 Marion to Bermuda 645 West Marine Caribbean 1500 cruising rally www.carib1500.com/c1500 11/02/09 Hampton, Va., to Tortola, B.V.I. 1,500 ARC Atlantic Rally for Cruisers, includes IRC racing class www.worldcruising.com 11/22/09 Gran Canaria to St. Lucia 2,700

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54

OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

outboard. If you move the engine from the stern rail down to the dinghy, for example, its good to know its tied on when it slips and heads for the bottom. An outboard engine harness is also a good insurance policy particularly if youre planning a long trip. A strong lifting harness, homemade or store bought, will give you a good handhold on your outboard an item thats awkward to grapple at the best of times, let alone in a rough anchorage. No matter what method you use to get your dinghy out of the water, its important that youve got a system thats fast and easy to use. Thatll encourage everyone to take the time to stow the dinghy properly. Misidentification and misdirection According to one voyager, its not enough to just paint your tenders cowling. The reason you see so many outboards missing cowlings in some ports is because the outboards were stolen and the cowlings which make them easy to identify from a distance were disposed of. Youve got to paint the entire leg as well. While youre at it, another trick is to make your outboard engine appear smaller than it actually is. One voyager showed me his disguised 10-hp outboard, which sported the number 5. Hed scraped off the 10 and applied a 5 sticker hed bought at an outboard dealership. Boat registration numbers painted on the engine cowling may also deter theft. The crew of Amulet went further by using metal character stamps to hammer their registration number into the blocks of their outboards. Consider also that it may be better not to advertise the name of your boat on your tender, thus signaling to would-be thieves that youre away from home. Your boats registration number painted on your tender should be all the identification required, sufficient to comply with legal requirement in most areas. Brightly colored dinghies may also deter theft in some circumstances. Red or yellow can be good color choices, particularly if your dinghy doubles as a life raft. Dinghy security comes in several forms. Many dinghies are lost due to negligence, so it pays to be attentive crew
2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

on anchor watch should keep an eye on any dinghy thats in the water, for example. The main challenge is foiling determined thieves, whove been known to cut large outboards out of transoms with chainsaws. Key solutions include having a very small outboard, hoisting your dinghy out of the water, and using quality locks and chain instead of wire cable.

Taken together, measures such as these will go a long way to ensuring you and your dinghy continue to ride off into the sunset together. Darrel Trueman has crossed the Pacific twice, most recently solo on his 34-foot Columbia sloop, Blue Dolphin. His dinghy is locked securely in Cairns, Australia.

55

P R E V I O U S L Y
NORDHAV N 76 ('05)
Inside Passage III is an Aft Pilothouse wide-body model with the bulbous bow and cockpit extended 4 feet. This series lends itself very well to operation by owner, or by professional crew. She has all of the elegant transoceanic capability that continues to validate Nordhavns reputation as the premier producer of passagemaking motoryachts. US and Canadian import duty have been paid. Located in Washington.

O W N E D

Y A C H T S
NORDHAV N 62 ('01)

Patty M is the first Nordhavn 62 to conquer the globe! Delivered in 2001 she toured the world from California to England with her original owners. Her current owner did an extensive upgrade fit out in 2006 before crossing the Atlantic and Patty M is back in the Pacific.This is a captained yacht which has been given professional attention and shows much younger than her years. Shes ready for a second lap around the planet. Located in Mexico.

Asking: $3,695,000
For details contact Larry Gieselman at 949-496-4933

Asking $1,495,000
For details contact Jeff Merrill at 949-355-4950

NORDHAV N 55 ('07)
Always Friday is the newest Nordhavn 55 to come on the market. She is hull 21 of this line and is extremely well equipped. Located in Virginia Asking: $1,899,000 For details contact Dave Balfour at 401-2930910 Jeff Merrill at 949-355-4950

NORDHAV N 50 (' 04)


Inisfail is a one of a kind. She comes with hydraulic windlass, bow & stern thrusters, emergency bilge pump, custom interior, teak and holly throughout. Every electronic possible with very low hours. Located in Florida. Asking: $950,000 For details contact Ray Danet at 772-223-6331

NORDHAV N 47 ('05)
Miss Fitz offers exceptional value in a pre-owned Nordhavn 47! Some equipment includes: Trac stabilizers, air conditioning with reverse heat, 12 KW Northern Lights generator, Luggar wing engine, bow thruster. Located in British Columbia. Asking: $845,000
For details contact Barbara Lippert at 206-223-3624

NORDHAV N 46 ('00)
New to the market, Sea Once is a lightly used Nordhavn 46 that is ready to cruise. Over 30k in updates have recently been done. Located in Rhode Island. Asking: $685,000 Dave Balfour at 401-2930910 or Jeff Merrill at 949-355-4950 Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn Nordhavn 62 62 62 62 57 57 50 50 47 47 47 47 47 47 47 47 46 (07) (04) (98) (93) (04) (01) (99) (99) (06) (06) (04) (04) (04) (04) (03) (03) (00)

NORDHAV N 43 (' 05)


Stella Maris presents a unique opportunity to purchase a Nordhavn 43 at a very attractive price. She has the well-proven Nordhavn dry stack exhaust system and gravity feed fuel system. Located in Washington. Asking: $849,000 For details contact Don Kohlmann at 206-223-3624

NORDHAV N 40 ('05)
Samba is hull #49, well into the Nordhavn 40 II series perhaps the most capable 40-foot passagemaking powerboat ever designed. She has the wellproven Nordhavn dry stack exhaust system and gravity feed fuel system. Located in Washington. Asking: $595,000 For details contact Don Kohlmann at 206-223-3624

A D D I T I O N A L
$2,395,000 $1,100,000 GBS $1,965,000 $995,000 $1,100,000 $1,200,000 $825,000 $835,000 $900,000 GBS tax paid $1,150,000 $995,000 $1,095,000 NZ tax included $945,000 $995,000 $875,000 $905,000 $715,000

L I S T I N G S
Nordhavn 46 Nordhavn 46 Nordhavn 43 Nordhavn 43 Nordhavn 40 Nordhavn 40 Nordhavn 35 Nordhavn 35 Nordhavn 35 Hatteras 75 Alden 51 Cranchi 48 Hatteras 42 Chaparral 27 440 Island Packet Catalina 36 (99) (94) (05) (05) (07) (01) (04) (01) (01) (88) (95) (03) (74) (98) (07) (03) $629,000 $485,000 $799,000 $849,000 $639,000 $449,000 $459,000 $389,000 $359,000 $850,000 Pending $485,000 $128,500 $29,750 $499,000 $119,900

As a division of P.A.E., the developer and builder of Nordhavn trawlers, we are intimately familiar with each vessel on the market. We also have listings of other quality power and sail vessels. Please call our office nearest you. www.nordhavn.com

N-ON-Mar09

Nordhavn Yachts NE 222 Narragansett Blvd. Portsmouth, RI 02871 Tel: (401) 293-0910 Fax: (401) 293-0914 nesales@nordhavn.com Nordhavn Yachts SE 600 NW Dixie Hwy Stuart, FL 34994 Tel: (772) 223-6331 Fax: (772) 223-3631 sesales@nordhavn.com Nordhavn Yachts NW 901 Fairview Ave. North, Suite A100 Seattle, WA 98109 Tel: (206) 223-3624 Fax: (206) 223-3628 nwsales@nordhavn.com Nordhavn Yachts SW 24703 Dana Drive Dana Point, CA 92629 Tel: (949) 496-4933 Fax: (949) 496-1905 swsales@nordhavn.com Nordhavn Yachts Newport Beach 151 Shipyard Way #4 Newport Beach, CA 92663 Tel: (949) 706-5543 Fax: (949) 706-5548 nbsales@nordhavn.com Nordhavn Europe Ltd. 10-12 Firefly Road, Hamble Point Marina Hamble, Southampton SO31 4NB UK Tel: +44 (0) 2380 456342 Fax: +44 (0) 2380 457741 europesales@nordhavn.com Nordhavn Australasia Ltd. Level 30, AMP Place 10 Eagle St. Brisbane Qld. 4000 AUS Tel: +61 (0)1300 783 010 Fax: 61.7.3102 6253 peter@nordhavn.com.au

For more brokerage listings, visit www.nordhavn.com

Fiddlers Green
BY JOHN SNYDER

OCEAN ALMANAC

LOGBOOK 2008

The year in review


Tom Morris
Thomas de Witt Cuyler Morris passed away on Dec. 7, 2008. Born Nov. 20, 1940 in Bryn Mawr, Pa., Tom was founder of Morris Yachts, Bass Harbor, Maine, builder of world class voyaging boats. Morris was diagnosed with cancer in the summer of 2007 and fought the disease outliving all the doctors prognoses. Tom crossed the bar at his home in Southwest Harbor surrounded by his loving family. Throughout his life, Morris was a visionary entrepreneur, he like the boats he built was understated, confident, strong, and purposeful. For the last 35 years he built boats that have become classics and that have set the standard for custom and semi custom coastal and offshore sailing yachts. On-demand paper charts
How long has it been since you referred to a paper chart for serious navigation? If you are like most sailors today, its probably been awhile. Technology has made it convenient and affordable for just about anyone to equip their boat with a GPS-interfaced chartplotter and the software to take them almost anywhere they want to go. But there is a dark side to this technology. A recent white paper prepared for Minnesota-based OceanGrafix, an on-demand printer of NOAA charts, points out some of the dangers of relying exclusively on electronic charts for navigation. The white paper challenges us to consider the downsides of navigation technology. System failure, computer reboot problems, corrupted software are all problems that may be encountered when you least expect them and computers do fail, usually at the worst possible time. Also consider the accuracy and timeliness of chart software updates, and not to mention the difficulties of transferring charting data from one computer to another, licensing restrictions, daylight readability, etc. As navigation technology advances it will continue to play a bigger and bigger role for all mariners, but any prudent mariner recognizes the importance of paper charts as a back up to their electronic system. They are cheap insurance and will be a welcome sight in the event that second laptop fails. For more information and a copy of this white paper visit www.ocean grafix.com.

Russian sets record for lonely racetrack


Russian yachtsman Fedor Konyukhov successfully completed a solo circumnavigation of the Antarctic continent. As he did so, he was competing in the Antarctic Cup Ocean Race, a challenging multidivisional race around the earths southernmost continent. The Antarctic Cup Racetrack is a timed interocean race course that traverses the Southern Ocean below 40 S and passes three of the most notorious capes on the planet: Cape Leeuwin, Cape Horn and Cape Agulhas. The racetrack itself is divided into three lanes, each 300-nm wide: an outer lane between 45 S and 50, 14,500 miles in circumference; a center lane, 50 S to 55 S, 13,100 nm in circumference; and an inner lane, 55 S to 60 S, 11,600 nm in circumference. Racers may traverse lanes but travel below 60 S is out of bounds. Race organizers may also close a lane or a part of a lane in the interest of safety. The Racetrack is also divided into 10-degree meridians. There are 18 gates located on selected meridians creating 18 Racetrack sectors. The Racetrack is open to competitors during the months of December, January, February and March. Competing solo, Fedor Konyukhov sailed the Racetrack aboard his 85-foot monohull Trading Network Alye Parusa. It was the 56-year-old Russian sailors fourth circumnavigation. After setting out from Albany, Australia on Jan. 26, 2008, he returned unscathed 102 days 00 hrs 56 min 50 sec later, establishing a record time for the solo circumnavigation. Race organizers say that he has now thrown down the gauntlet to yachtsmen around the world to break his 102-day record. For more information on the Antarctic Cup Ocean Race visit: www.antarcticacup.com.
Antarctica Cup Race Track

Hal Roth
Author and two time Around Alone Race competitor Hal Roth died on Oct. 18, 2008, at the age of 81 following a long battle with lung cancer. Roth and his wife of 48 years, Margaret, began voyaging in 1966. After leaving their jobs they embarked on a 19 month Pacific adventure that became Roths book T on a Big Ocean. wo Other books and adventures followed including T Against ow Cape Horn, The Longest Race and an anthology published in 2005. Roths last book, Handling Storms at Sea: The Five Secrets of Heavy Weather Sailing was published by McGraw-Hill in 2008.

Murray Davis
Publisher Murray Lloyd Davis died in Newport, R.I. on Dec. 4, 2008. Davis was born in New South Wales, Australia in 1928, left school at 14 years old and moved to Melbourne to train and work as a radio operator in the merchant marine during World War II. After the war he studied journalism in England where he met his wife to be Barbara Keefe. They purchased a 39-foot sloop, Kanga, in Denmark. After sailing in Europe they made a trans-Atlantic passage to Trinidad. They then moved to Australia where they started a family and Davis published Australian Ocean Racing in 1967. That summer an Australian newspaper sent Davis to Newport, R.I. to cover the Australian Challenge for the Americas Cup. The family eventually moved from Australia and settled in Newport. Davis worked in New York for Boating magazine and then as

Cynthia Woods sinking


Tragedy struck the 40th anniversary of the Regata de Amigos, a 610-mile race from Galveston, Texas to Veracruz, Mexico, when one of the race boats sank. The sailboat

John Snyder

John Snyder

2009 OCEAN VOYAGER

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LOGBOOK 2008

The year in review


Cynthia Woods, a Cape Fear 38R owned by Texas A&M University, foundered 11 nm south of Matagorda on June 6. The boat began taking on water at about 2345 and within seconds capsized. Search and rescue commenced after communication was lost and the boat missed its 0800 radio call. Five of the boats six crewmembers escaped and were rescued by the Coast Guard after an exhaustive 26-hour search about 23 miles from Freeport, Texas. A sixth crewmember perished. The cause of the sinking is thought to be keel failure. Divers found the keel 32 miles off Freeport using acoustic equipment. The hull went down about 27 miles off Freeport. Officials from Texas A&M vowed to spare no expense to determine the cause of the accident that sunk the donated boat. The university has contracted T&T Marine Salvage to recover the hull. Cynthia Woods had a history of grounding. It is reported that the boat ran aground between three and seven times since it was given to the university in 2005. A 2007 grounding was significant enough to separate the keel from the hull fore and aft. After the grounding the boat was repaired by the same yard that assembled the boat when it was donated, but it is not clear whether or not a marine surveyor used ultrasound to inspect the work. While there was no annual inspection of the boat, at least three people, including a painter and a diver cleaning the hull before the regatta, noted no damage. As a precaution, a sister vessel has been taken out of commission. The accident is under investigation by Texas A&M University and the U.S. Coast Guard.

an editor in Boston for SAIL Magazine. Together with his wife, Barbara, Davis started Cruising World magazine from their home in Newport and established Seven Seas Press and Caf Zelda, a well know sailors haunt on lower Thames Street. Davis sold Cruising World to the New York Times and retired to travel and paint. He is survived by his daughter Kate of N.M.; son Paul of R.I., and Manila, the Philippines; his sister Marie Townsend; brother Ernie of NSW Australia; and Constance, his partner of 20 years. , His former wife, Barbara, died in October of 2008.

Peter Duff
Peter Duff, co-founder of Edey & Duff, Ltd. of Mattapoisett, Mass. died on Aug. 30, 2008 after a long battle with Parkinsons disease. Duff was born in 1936 west of Boston and was a graduate of Tufts University where he earned a degree in nuclear physics. In 1968 he co-founded Edey & Duff with Mait Edey and built quality, affordable sailboats. Their first cruising sailboat was Sam Crockers Stone Horse. Other designs followed including the shoal draft Shearwater, Dovekie, and Herreshoff designed Doughdish and Stuart Knockabout. Edey & Duffs boats are were perfect for gunkholing and are still being built in Mattapoisett where they continue to build one boat at a time.

400th Alerion design delivered


Warren, R.I., boatbuilder, Pearson Composites LLC, delivered its 400th Alerion Express 28 in June. The R.I. boatbuilder also builds J/Boats, 44-foot sail trainers for the U.S. Naval Academy, True North expedition express powerboats, PDQ power catamarans and several other brands of sail, power and commercial vessels. Pearson is often credited with introducing this popular style of elegant day sailer, a modern boat loosely based on the 26-foot sloop of the same name that Capt. Nathaniel Herreshoff designed for his personal use in 1912. The popular appeal of the design gave rise to countless imitations over the years. Today a number of boatbuilders are meeting the demand for these boats with a variety these gentlemans day sailers. With delivery of the 400th Alerion Express, Pearson may well have produced more of this style day sailer than all other builders combined. It seems only fitting that the Alerion is alive and well in Warren, R.I. not far from its Herreshoff roots in Bristol, R.I. The popularity of the boats (available in a range of lengths from 20 to 40 feet) comes from their ease of sailing in a wide range of conditions and their handsome

Robert Jack LeFort


Robert Jack LeFort, past vice president of the U.S. Sailing Association and founder of the U.S. Sailing Center of Martin County in Stuart, Fla. died. He was 82 years old. LeFort grew up in Germantown, Pa. and spent summers in Ocean City, N.J., where he learned to sail. As a student at the University of Pennsylvania he sailed as an undergraduate and later coached the team. LeFort graduated from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and joined his fathers design firm, Robert LeFort Design Associates, a furniture distributor. In 1972, he established Interspace Inc. and collaborated with Philadelphia architects to design interior office space, notably the Arco building in Philadelphia, the Hart Senate Office Building in Washington and Chryslers Word Headquarters in Michigan. LeFort was past commodore of the Ocean City Yacht Club

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OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

and founded the clubs Heart Cup racing event to benefit the Shore Memorial Hospital in Somers Point. According to his son, Jack LeForts greatest legacy was founding the U.S. Sailing Center of Martin County. With Jack at the helm, it became one of two Olympic trainings sites in the United States.

OCEAN ALMANAC

LOGBOOK 2008
classic looks. They maintain strict one-design standards and are easily handled by one person, thus eliminating the need to line up crew, etc. For more information on the Alerion Express 28 or other Alerion models visit www.alerionexp.com.

Helen C. Johnstone
Helen C. Johnstone, daughter of the Rev. Mary and Bob Johnstone of J Boats died on June 4, 2008 in Washington, D.C. Johnstone was born in Cali, Columbia in 1960 and was a graduate of Choate and the University of Rhode Island. An accomplished collegiate sailor she was first in the 1976 Interscholastics, third in 470s at the 1975 Youth Champs and sixth in the 1985 International Womens Keelboat Championships. She is survived by her parents and brothers Stuart, Drake and Peter.

Transpacific row
British rower Roz Savage arrived safely in Hawaii on Sept. 1, 2008, having completed the first leg of a three-year, three-leg ocean row across the Pacific to Australia. Savage set off from San Francisco in her 23-foot rowing boat, Brocade, on May 24, 2008. She arrived in Honolulu after 99 days, 8 hours, 55 minutes and a distance of nearly 2,600 nautical miles. When she finally reaches Australia she will have covered 7,600 nm of open ocean. Savage is no newcomer to ocean rowing. In 2005-06 she rowed across the Atlantic, making history as the only solo female competitor in the Atlantic Rowing Race from the Canary Islands to Antigua. In the race she covered a distance of 2,935 nm in 103 days. Despite the harsh conditions and equipment failures she encountered in the Atlantic, Savage quickly set her sights on a new goal of being the first woman to row from the U.S. to Australia. Her first attempt to cross the Pacific in 2007 failed 10 days into the voyage when her boat capsized several times in one day after losing its sea anchor. She decided to abort the row and was rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard. Weather considerations prevented her from relaunching that year. Her boat, Brocade, is named for her lead sponsor, Brocade Communications Systems of San Jose, Calif. The 23-foot-long, 6-foot-wide carbon fiber boat was originally built by Woodvale-Events for Simon Chalk, ocean rower and founder of the company that sponsors the Atlantic Ocean Challange. Dolphin Quay Boatyard, of Emsworth, U.K., fit out the boat for Savage. Through her voyages Savage hopes to raise awareness of environmental issues, especially those facing the worlds oceans. As a writer and motivational speaker, she works to inspire others to rise to their own challenges big or small. Savages blog from the voyage along with real-time route tracking can be found on her Web site www.rozsavage.com.
Courtesy Roz Savage

George Frederick Fritz Jewett, Jr. Fritz Jewett passed away in May 2008 at 81. Jewett, a successful San Francisco business man and philanthropist was born in Spokane, Wash. He learned to sail at his fathers family home on Cape Cod. A member of the St. Francis, Marin, San Diego, New York and Ida Lewis Yacht clubs Jewett chaired five Americas Cup syndicates for three yacht clubs from 1973 through 2000. His syndicate victories include Freedom who won the cup in 1980 and Stars & Stripes who won the cup in 1987. In 2000, he headed the St. Francis Yacht Clubs America One Challenge syndicate in New Zealand and was inducted into the Americas Cup Hall of Fame. Carl F. Swanson
Carl F. Swanson of Arundel, Maine, passed away on Nov. 11, 2008. Carl was born in New Bedford, Mass., in 1932. He graduated from Massachusetts Maritime Academy, Class of 53 and served in the U.S. Navy and as second mate and chief navigator aboard the S.S. United States. Swanson also served as Master on the R/V Lulu, R/V Atlantis II, R/V Knorr and R/V Oceanus for the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute between 1966 and 1997. He taught at Southern Maine Vocational and Technical Institute and taught celestial navigation aboard the S/V Westward in the 1990s. Carl is predeceased by his wife Patricia and survived by his sons Tobias and Ashley, daughter Heather and sister Barbara.

German couple completes second circumnavigation


A German couple, Wolfgang and Heidi Hass, recently completed their second circumnavigation aboard Kanaloa, a 46-foot Nordhavn trawler built in 1995. Completion of the second voyage (which began in California in 2003) establishes a new record for the first twin circumnavigation aboard a production powerboat. Named for a great Hawaiian deity, their Nordhavn 46 logged almost 5,000 engine hours and about 33,500 miles during the last five years. Kanaloas Lugger engine, well designed systems and rugged hull all stood up well to the rigorous ocean voyaging. The only breakdown that the couple encountered came when the boats starboard paravane boom broke, off the coast of Mozambique. After some jury repairs the boom held up, seeing the couple all the way to South Africa. Now, safely back in Dana Point, Calif., (coincidentally where P.A.E. Nordhavn is headquartered) the couple plans to spend several months laying over while Kanaloa receives maintenance and is readied for their next adventure. After revisiting the South Pacific the Hasss hope to continue on to Shanghai, China and visit single-handed sailor Zhai Mo, whom they befriended during their voyaging. A successful circumnavigation is a respectable accomplishment for any sailor, and two in a row is awe-inspiring, but the Hasss most recent voyage actually represents their third global orbit the first was completed aboard a 38-foot Van Dam sailboat that they owned prior to the Nordhavn.

Francis C. Stokes, Jr.


Trans-Atlantic solo sailor Francis C. Stokes made his final passage on Aug. 3, 2008. He was 82 years old. Stokes was born in Moorestown, N.J. in 1926. After serving in the U.S. Army Air Corps he graduated from Williams College and ran his familys food canning business. In 1952, he married Nancy Buffum Taylor and started a family on Rancocas Creek in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. Stokes bought his first cruising sailboat in 1968, and in 1970 made his first solo trans-Atlantic passage. Stokes went on to compete in the OSTAR trans-Atlantic solo races in 1976, 1980 and 1988. He also competed in Bermuda One-T wo

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OCEAN ALMANAC

LOGBOOK 2008

The year in review


Hybrid to use diesel and sun
Island Pilot, LLC of Miami, Fla., builder of the Island Pilot 435 Crossover Trawler plans to introduce a new breed of cruiser this year. The company, which builds its boats at Uni Shine Marine in Zhuhai, China, has dubbed the new boat the Pilot DSe Hybrid 12m (39 in length). As a true hybrid, the motoryacht will incorporate solar and diesel electric power and is built around a twin-hull structure for stability and to maximize living area as well as to provide space for the solar panel arrays. The new yacht was designed in conjunction with naval architect George Petrie and can travel at 7 knots in the zero emissions mode and/or up to 13 knots under diesel power. A 6-kW solar array and a 20 kW-hour battery bank eliminate any need for generator at anchor. In addition to being economical, the DSe Hybrid 12m will also feature many of the amenities found on conventional motoryachts such as a large, well appointed galley and spacious accommodations. According to Reuben Trane, president of Island Pilot, At a time with record high oil prices, we are bringing to market a product that will dramatically reduce the most visible expense of a recreational motorboat the cost of diesel. The company plans to introduce the boat at the 2008 Fort Lauderdale Boat Show in Florida. For more information visit www.dsehybrid.com.
Courtesy Island Pilot, LLC

races with his son Whitall. In 1982-83 he sailed in the first BOC Challenge Solo World Race and finished second on his class. He retired to South Thomaston, Maine, and published a memoir, The Moonshine Logs in 1994. He survived by his wife of 56 years, Nancy; sister Carol; daughters Clare, Agnes, Rachel; sons Arthur and Whitall; seven grandchildren and one great grandchild.

Olin J. Stephens II
Renowned yacht designer Olin J. Stephens II died in September 2008. He was 100 years old. In July he was honored by the New York Yacht Club at their sixth biennial Race Week and classic yacht regatta. Born in New York in 1908, Stephens spent his early summers on Cape Cod where he learned to sail. In 1926, he enrolled at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he studied naval architecture. He apprenticed at Henry Nevins boatyard at City Island in the Bronx, N.Y., where he designed where he designed his own version of a 6-meter. By age 23, he had designed the yacht Dorade. In 1929, Stephens and yacht broker Drake Sparkman established the naval architecture firm Sparkman & Stephens in New York. Included among his legendary designs was Stars & Stripes which won the Americas Cup in 1987. Olin Stephens is survived by his sons Olin III and Samuel; sister Marite Sheridan; and grandson Olin J. Stephens IV .

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Classifieds
Text-only classifieds are priced at $1.40 per word. Include name, address and number of words. Email/website addresses count as two (2) words. $56/40-word minimum. Black & white photos, line drawings or display classifieds are $76/per inch billed in 1/2-inch increments. Add 50% for color artwork. Check or money order (US funds only) payable to Ocean Navigator must accompany order except if using MasterCard or Visa (please include name, card number and expiration date). Eight-time 20% discount if contract is paid in full in advance. Deadline is the 7th of the month, 2 months preceding cover date. Copy received after deadline will be inserted on a space-available basis or held for next issue. Send copy, photo and payment to: Ocean Navigator Classifieds PO Box 569 Portland, ME 04112-0569 207-236-7014 207-772-2466 or Fax 207-772-2879

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Hamilton Marine 100 Fore St, Portland, ME 04101 (207) 774-1772 / 800-548-6352 www.hamiltonmarine.com Hamilton Marine 20 Park Drive Rockland, ME 04841 (207) 594-8181 www.hamiltonmarine.com Hamilton Marine 155 E Main St, Seaport, ME 04974 800-639-2715 / 800-548-6352 www.hamiltonmarine.com Landing Boat Supply 106 Lafayette St. Yarmouth, ME 04096

(207) 846-3777 / (207) 846-4791 www.landingboatsupply.com landingboat@aol.com Portland Yacht Services 58 Fore Street Portland, ME 04107 (207) 774-1067 / (207) 774-7035 www.portlandyacht.com Joanna@portlandyacht.com

North Carolina
Marine Electronics of the Outer Banks 4711 Croaton Highway Nags Head, NC 27959 P: (252) 441-1360 / F: 252-441-7322 rocketman@beachlink.com

Colorado
GeoMart 516 Villanova Ct, Ft. Collins, CO 80527 P: 800-248-6277 / F: 800-321-6277 www.geomart.com

Pennsylvania
Pilot House Tupper Barrett 1600 South Columbus, Philadelphia, PA 19148 (215) 336-6414 / (215) 336-6415

Maryland
Fawcett Boat Supplies 110 Compromise St. Annapolis, MD 21401 (410) 267-8681 / (410) 268-6528 www.fawcettboat.com info@fawcettboat.com

Connecticut
Rex Marine Center 144 Water Street, South Norwalk, CT 06854 (203) 831-5234 / (203) 866-2518 store@rexmarine.com www.rexmarine.com

From the Taffrail

From landsman to sailor


The transition to full-fledged ocean voyager can have its speed bumps, but the rewards are great

by Twain Braden

hey say you never forget the first time. This can be true of many wonderful things: love, flying through clouds at sunset, catching a wave on a surfboard, the weight of a newborn child in your arms. Unfortunately, this is also true of seasickness. The circumstances of the first time I was seasick, while smashing along in the Anegada Passage off the coast of the British Virgin Islands, almost 20 years ago, are as clear to me today as the letters on this page. I was an assistant galley steward, arguably the lowest life form known to ships crews the world over, and I had been given orders that I should clean out the day reefer. The steward was a large man with a greasy shock of hair that

was perpetually smeared across his broad forehead. He had wet fleshy lips, which he was constantly licking. He was disgusting and I hated him. The day reefer on this sailing school vessel was about the size of an ordinary refrigerator, set on its
64

side with a hinged lid for easy access. But it was deep and spacious so you couldnt reach the bottom easily. In rough weather, the food containers had a way of sloshing around inside the reefer, so any lids that were not fully secured would yield their dribbling contents to the bottom of the reefer. These ingredients would commingle into a grayish slurry whose sickening smell would fly upward in a fermented whoosh when you opened the lid. The stewards parting words to me, after emphatically licking his lips in the doorway, were that he would be up on deck catching some air, in case I had questions. He scurried up the companionway like a fleeing troll, and I would not see him again for several hours. I had only joined the ship the day before and wed immediately encountered rough weather. I was a landsman previously, so when the galley started spinning and rocking I didnt have the sense the steward did. I gripped the edge of the counter, took a deep breath, and lifted the lid. Whoosh, from the reefer. Urp, from me. I first emptied the reefer by piling the food containers onto the counters and galley sole. This wasnt so bad, though, since I could hold my breath when going deep, grabbing a container or two in the process. But when the reefer was finally empty I realized I had to lean into the bowels of the box to sponge out the slurry. The weight of my body was concentrated on my gut, and I had to breathe, upside down, one toxic lungful after another, the pungent fumes

that swirled inside. I would heave myself into position, lean over, and then sponge up a gallon or two, and then claw my way out to dump the bucket and try to catch my wind in the fetid galley. Over and over. I lasted about 10 minutes before I realized I was so sick that I was going to lengthen my cleaning job by being ill. I clawed my way on deck and was greeted by a scene of carnage. Seasick bodies of my crewmates littered the scuppers deck meat the professional crew called them. The sky was gray, the turbulent sea molten pewter and ragged with streaks of foam. I staggered to the leeward rail urped a few more times before finally releasing myself to the sea in a rush. It was pure joy. Where moments before I had been the most miserable of men, I was now experiencing rapture like a saved man. After a minute of this I felt wholly refreshed and returned to the galley to finish the job, a spring in my step. Days later, in calmer weather, I would climb to the top of the main mast, more than 100 feet above the deck, and read an inscription, from Richard Henry Dana Jr.s T Years Before the wo Mast, that would remind me henceforth of that time in the galley: There is not so helpless and pitiable an object in the world as a landsman beginning a sailors life. Contributing editor T wain Braden lives in New Hampshire and is the author of In Peril and Ghosts of the Pioneers.
OCEAN VOYAGER 2009

Onne Van Der Wal

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