Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck - Page 3 - SailNet Community
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post #21 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

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Originally Posted by MarioG View Post
Most of the tugs and barges monitor channel 13
Radio channels: There are actually 5 different organizations that regulate the use of marine radios. They have recognized three radio channels for safety purposes:

Channel 16: Distress, safety and calling
Channel 13: Intership navigation (bridge to bridge)
Channel 70: Digital Selective Calling (DSC)

1. In general everywhere in the world some regulatory agency has mandated that everything that floats with a VHF radio continuously monitor channel 16 when not actively using the radio. Yes, most big ships monitor multiple channels but they all monitor channel 16! By international convention 16 is the channel to use to call them.

2. The procedure after making initial contact is to shift to another channel to talk. There are "commercial channels" and "recreational channels." See U.S. VHF Channels Most ships will ask you to shift to a "commercial channel." Being very anally retentive it used to bother me since I was not a commercial vessel. Then I realized they weren't recreational vessels. I learned to go with the flow.

3. Frequently ships will pick either channel 6 or 10. I speculate this is because lots of people monitor 13. By using 6 or 10 they don't wake up the watch standers on all the other ships (lol.)

4. Frequently you will hear recreational boats suggesting you go "up one" - in other words to channel 17 from 16. Please note that it is illegal for a recreational boater in the United States to transmit on channel 17 unless talking to a state or local government entity. Channel 17 is a common ship to ship channel in international waters. If asked to go "up one" I suggest that you suggest a different channel - e.g. 68.

The US Coast Guard as a nice web page at Radio Information For Boaters with lots of marine radio information.

Fair winds and following seas.
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Last edited by svzephyr44; 03-23-2014 at 11:00 AM.
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post #22 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

What Roger said. Also, large ships often fail to respond to radio contact. You just need to stay out of their way. Almost all of the areas around the channel up the Delaware are plenty deep. You don't need to stay in the channel. If you're in 15' of water 200 yds outside a shipping channel, you don't need to worry about large ships. You'll also be out of the swiftest current.

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post #23 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

congrats op!
keep doing it! practice practice...if you can find a friendly old salt with more experience it really helps you be more at ease and enjoy your boat more...if not just go little by little

cheers

my only advice is this

do one NEW thing every time you go on the boat and perfect it...be that going in and out slip by motor or rasing and lower sails efficiently or hailing boats effiiciently or how to start your engine efficiently whatever it may be

Islander 36 now FOR SALE!
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Last edited by christian.hess; 03-23-2014 at 11:34 AM.
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post #24 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

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Good Evening Sailnetters,

I had memorized the proper mayday call and even new how to communicate with oncoming ships.. "got you on my one (or two)"


Beej
I'm gonna show my lack of knowledge here but I'm not familiar with any special language to use in communication with ships. If there is some lingo to know I'd love to get a breakdown of it. I sail in San Francisco Bay which is really busy with the big vessels. ~LL
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post #25 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

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Originally Posted by Lateen Luffer View Post
I'm gonna show my lack of knowledge here but I'm not familiar with any special language to use in communication with ships. If there is some lingo to know I'd love to get a breakdown of it. I sail in San Francisco Bay which is really busy with the big vessels. ~LL
Maybe we need a marine version of this:



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post #26 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

First off - Congratulations on completing your first sail, making it back to your slip, WITH NO DAMAGE!!! Not many here could make that claim...

Second - with all due respect to the prior posters, I gotta disagree with the value of a handheld VHF with DSC, or a RAM mike. Personally, I think that your dollars are better spent on a fixed VHF with DSC, and a handheld floating VHF without DSC for the cockpit. I suspect that you may also spend some bucks connecting the fixed VHF to a GPS (so that the DSC works), ensuring that the fixed VHF works well (this may require a new antenna cable, connectors, and new antenna). I like carrying a handheld VHF (sans DSC) that floats, for redundancy and near shore communications.

I outline the procedure to follow in case of emergency to all my crew, and it involves pushing the red button on the fixed VHF which is always in the same place, and then searching for the handheld (which is usually in the cockpit, or recharging at the nav station, but may also be used if someone is out in the dinghy). I use the fixed unit for emergency use, and, frankly, as a backup to the handheld.

There is no right or wrong answer to this, and you need to work out the best value for your circumstance for yourself.


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post #27 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

Ah, the results of that first "what the heck was I thinking" sail. Congratulations on getting out there and living your dream, however harrowing that may have felt at the time. The good thing about it as pointed out earlier you and the boat came out unscathed. Great part was even after going through everything you still had the composure to put her int he slip with no problems. Well done.

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post #28 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

Have to say, most folks wouldn't admit to a totally "newb" day like you did in detail. That says something for your honesty. Sounds like you have a good "mate", hold onto her! Continue to learn your boat (both of you do that) and plan each new day with lessons in mind from the previous outing.

Welcome to the forum, lots of help and encouragement here.

Dave

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post #29 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

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Originally Posted by eherlihy View Post
...with all due respect to the prior posters, I gotta disagree with the value of a handheld VHF with DSC, or a RAM mike. Personally, I think that your dollars are better spent on a fixed VHF with DSC, and a handheld floating VHF without DSC for the cockpit... I like carrying a handheld VHF (sans DSC) that floats, for redundancy and near shore communications...
I have no issues with the philosophy of using the handheld as primary cockpit radio, and the fixed radio for high-power emergency communications. But why is it so important that the handheld not have DSC? If you can get one with DSC/GPS for and additional $25-50 above the typical $100 floating handheld, why not just get it?

I second your concerns about the antenna/wiring/connectors possibly being shot. That needs to be addressed before spending any money on a new fixed VHF. In the meantime, if you want to sail while you're planning a larger project to address the antenna/fixed VHF issues, just buy a handheld to get yourself going.


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post #30 of 78 Old 03-23-2014
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Re: Maiden Voyage Newbie Trainwreck

You did fine. There is inherent risk in everything we do and I think some people forget that you can die on the freeway, or on a plane or in your bed.

Here you have a story now and real experience in a situation where you pushed beyond your comfort level. Dont be afraid to push, keep learning and trust your gut instinct.
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