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  #11  
Old 02-05-2014
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

Quote:
Originally Posted by aeventyr60 View Post
Good info. However, Singapore waters are really small. We sail just outside the Singapore Harbor limits and most often test the line, Patrol boats every kilometer or so, keep all transgressors out. AIS not required for us to Enter either. The Mallaca strait and Singapore Straitts s have a VTS-Vessel Traffic sepration zone, so all the big boys keep to the lanes...however, out of Port Klang (Malaysia water) Tugs with tows and no lights seem to operate with impunity and without AIS. Most of the trawlers, squid boats and other fishing boats/craft don't use it either. This we found to be the case in Thailand, Malaysia, Borneo and the Philippines. So, a lot of work here to do in getting AIS adopted by the Maritime/fishing industry. Proper watch ON Deck still the best way to stay out of trouble. Sharpen up those MKII eyeballs....
It is an old story. Get fancy electronics. Depend on fancy electronics. Don't realize that fancy electronics have limitations. One major limitation: not everyone has fancy electronics.

My major objective is to stay alive. I think having a transmit AIS helps. Is it a panacea? Heck no. Do I feel I have better information as a result? Heck yes. Is it enough? No. That is why I am in great desire of the release of the MK III eyeball. In the meantime I try to get young pups to crew in crowded areas. They seem to be able to see much better than this old salt.
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  #12  
Old 02-05-2014
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

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Originally Posted by Don0190 View Post
A true $500/mo sailor doesn't have radar or AIS! If a $500/mo guy does have them then the $500/mo part is just a section of the total amount being spent and playing the "it depends" game of cruise budgeting.
Not really out of budget the initial cost is well under a grand and there are units that slave to the vhf for as low as two hundred bucks for receive only and both ways under 600 so save ten bucks a month for less than a year ( that's a pack and a half of smokes here) and you got your ais .
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  #13  
Old 02-05-2014
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

On the question of AIS, I offer this personal observation. I live overlooking a rather busy shipping port here in Thunder Bay. We see all manner of cargo ships, from pure lakers to ocean salties, as well as lots of service (tugs, CG, SAR, etc.) and plenty of recreational and commercial shipping.

From land I can see much of this traffic go by, and often go to online AIS services to check the vessels out. None of the fishing vessels ever turn up. Most of the time the service vessels show up, but not always. But even more interesting, I'd say that ~2% of the big ships show no AIS signal -- at least not one that is available to me.

I've not conducted a formal study here, and perhaps there are other issues I'm unaware of going on, but from my observations I would never solely rely on AIS for collision avoidance. Personally, if I had to choose only one, I would go with RADAR. At least with RADAR things are within your control as to what you can see. AIS depends on someone else doing the right thing.

Of course, the best answer is to have both, and rely on neither .
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  #14  
Old 02-05-2014
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

AIS is for 1st world heavy traffic shipping lanes

absolutely 100 percent useless for any cruiser who wants to go island hopping and discover places that are still "unknown" were this stuff doesnt exist

dangers to cruisers are mostly unlit fishing pangas and small industrial type fishing boats like shrimpers, longliners, debris, floating crap...etc...

nets, buoys, unmaned or abandoned lines, etc...

all of which dont have a nice control pod shooting a nice ais signal

for example down here ais would not be useful....

my half cent
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  #15  
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeOReilly View Post

From land I can see much of this traffic go by, and often go to online AIS services to check the vessels out. None of the fishing vessels ever turn up. Most of the time the service vessels show up, but not always. But even more interesting, I'd say that ~2% of the big ships show no AIS signal -- at least not one that is available to me.
Online AIS reporting services are not necessarily an accurate or reliable indication of who is transmitting AIS, and who is not... I've been in ports with a fair amount of commercial traffic, and there can be considerable discrepancies between what vessels show up on my onboard AIS, and which are being reported on an online site...

Some folks out there appear to believe that a smartphone with an AIS reporting app is an inexpensive 'substitute' for AIS... While such information is better than nothing, perhaps, little of the online AIS information is in real time, and treating this sort of information as the equivalent of having an AIS receiver aboard can be a very poor, and dangerous, practice...

From MarineTraffic's User Agreement:

" Reliance upon AIS Data

The User acknowledges and agrees that the AIS Data provided by MarineTraffic may be inaccurate or incomplete and are subject to error, delay or change. Reliance upon or use of such AIS Data shall be at User's risk. "
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Old 02-05-2014
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

I don't have an AIS on my boat... would these two units fulfill the need to sail in heavy traffic?

Chartplotter:

HDS-5m Gen2 - LOWRANCE | Marine Electronics

AIS/VHF unit:

Link-8 DSC/ VHF Marine Radio - LOWRANCE | Marine Electronics

They seem pretty inexpensive...
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

Quote:
Originally Posted by guitarguy56 View Post
I don't have an AIS on my boat... would these two units fulfill the need to sail in heavy traffic?

Chartplotter:

HDS-5m Gen2 - LOWRANCE | Marine Electronics

AIS/VHF unit:

Link-8 DSC/ VHF Marine Radio - LOWRANCE | Marine Electronics

They seem pretty inexpensive...
It is not going to get you transmit - in my humble opinion the most important feature. But a quick scan says yes it will work.
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  #18  
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
Online AIS reporting services are not necessarily an accurate or reliable indication of who is transmitting AIS, and who is not... I've been in ports with a fair amount of commercial traffic, and there can be considerable discrepancies between what vessels show up on my onboard AIS, and which are being reported on an online site...
Yes, I agree Jon. This is why I specified where I was getting the info. But I have no way of knowing if what I'm observing is due to this technological disconnect or due to an absolute lack of AIS signal. And yes, I would never try and rely on an Internet AIS service. No way...

I'm always inclined to get real live data as opposed to secondary or tertiary information. I trust my eyes more than my depth sounder, which I trust more than my chartplotter. RADAR is data I can directly measure. AIS is at least two steps removed from my control, which lowers my confidence in it.

As I said, personally I would choose to have both if I could. But in the hypothetical either-or discussion, if I could only pick one, I'd choose RADAR.
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

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Originally Posted by svzephyr44 View Post
It is not going to get you transmit - in my humble opinion the most important feature. But a quick scan says yes it will work.
So I need to install a transponder to transmit my location to others?

Similar to this...

Lowrance NAIS-400 Class B AIS System - LOWRANCE | Marine Electronics

That would be close to $1500 total for the AIS radio, chartplotter, transponder... it's pricey but doable... if crusing in heavy traffic... I think being on watch in heavy traffic might be prudent though...
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Re: Voyaging on $500 per month

Quote:
Originally Posted by guitarguy56 View Post
So I need to install a transponder to transmit my location to others?

Similar to this...

Lowrance NAIS-400 Class B AIS System - LOWRANCE | Marine Electronics

That would be close to $1500 total for the AIS radio, chartplotter, transponder... it's pricey but doable... if crusing in heavy traffic... I think being on watch in heavy traffic might be prudent though...
I guess that like the cost of cruising "it depends." Mostly it depends on where you cruise. As pointed out there are areas where AIS is of very limited use - primary because few other boats are equipped. In those areas where there is high usage a receive only unit can help you scope out what is going on - helpful when approaching ports like New York or Miami or transiting areas with a lot of ship traffic like the Delaware Bay. As I pointed out in my previous post my experience is that larger ships have difficulty figuring out exactly where you are from a Lat/Long. I doubt they calculate CPA and time to CPA. The advantage of a transmit AIS is that their chart plotter gives them all of that information. It also gives them the name of your vessel so they don't have to call the boat at "approximately Lat/Long whatever."

With a receive only AIS you know that other ships are out there, their name, course, speed, CPA and time to CPA. This helps the Mark II eyeball locate them. With a transmit AIS they know you are there and they have the same information about you. It makes communication easier.

If you have a reasonably reliable full time watch in the cockpit or you are operating where there are not many AIS equipped ships one might take a pass. Or choose to invest in something else.

Risking the ire of newhaul and MikeORilley et al let me point out two items:

1. You used the term prudent. What is prudent for some may be overkill/inadequate for others - depending on budget, cruising style, cruising location, appetite for risk, etc. I am fortunate that I had enough money before I retired to have a pretty complete electronics suite - not everyone needs one or desires to own one. Over the course of some 15,000+ NM of cruising I have been relieved at some time that I had each element of the system on board. Did I need radar in the Caribbean? No. Did I need it in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland? Yes. My AIS came in handy when crossing the shipping lanes on my approach to Portugal. Watching 25 ships alter their course to give me 1 NM CPA was a great relief. I was coming off 8 days of 24/7 single handing in the Atlantic Ocean and I was tired. It was nice to not have to call each ship and say "do you see me?"

2. If you look at modern marine electronics the core of any system is the chart plotter - now properly renamed a "multi-function" display. Most modern multi-function displays are not only the core unit but the most expensive single item in the budget. Once you have the multi-function display the peripherals are less expensive e.g.
Transmit/Receive AIS $500
Radar $900
Depth Sounder - a transducer alone maybe $150
and so on.

Usually integration will cost a bit more - my VHF radio integrates with my multi-function display. It lets me push a button to call a ship that is displayed as an AIS target. Is it necessary? No. Is it kind of cool? Yes. I think the added integration cost was about $50.

For those on a limited budget - and we all are, our budgets just vary - the order and need for various electronic devices varies a great deal. The single most important instrument on my boat when I crossed the Atlantic was an MF/HF radio (OK, after the GPS.) I could get weather, report my position on a daily basis, and chat - important when you are at sea for 15 or 20 days alone. Useful in the ICW? Not at all.

We could assist you in your purchasing plans a bit better if you told us a bit more about how you intend to use your boat.

Fair winds and following seas.
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