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  #41  
Old 08-12-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

Quote:
Originally Posted by pilotman View Post
If you're operating in the vicinity of naval vessels on a regular basis, I'd suggest an inexpensive rangefinder.

Check eBay, a cursory search there turned up a few units in the $100-$150 range.

$150 isn't bad for a device that could potentially prevent you from committing a felony...
I've thought about this as well as a way to tell if you (or the other guy) are too close in an anchorage.

On the other hand, even though you are going way above and beyond the norm in order to NOT commit a felony I wonder if you might get a lengthy detainment and questioning as to why you were painting a warship with a laser rangefinder.

The other way to get a quick and accurage range-find is to turn on your radar. That'll give you accurage information as to how close you are. Each 1/4 mile ring is 440 yards. Keep the big "blip" on the other side of the 1/4 mile ring (or 1/2 mile ring) and you'll be good to go.

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  #42  
Old 08-12-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

As an "old Navy salt" a couple of things:

1. If the sub has an escort (and on the surface they usually do - a Coast Guard vessel) try to talk to them. They will usually respond.
Without being offensive - but if it is true that it was only you and the sub out there your request was a "dumb ****" message. They had already told you that you were too close.
2. The newer Navy ships are difficult to locate. They don't run AIS in transmit mode, they are very radar invisible, and they are painted to be hard to see. Sailboats are terrible radar targets - that is why everyone should have a transmit AIS. Upgrades to navigation equipment for the Navy take a very long path, I would not be astonished to find that most of the Navy ships don't have AIS integrated into their CIC suites. They will also never tell you their name. Try hailing "Navy Warship Number xxx." Unless you have a specific and relevant question they will most likely not respond. They will almost always respond to "Thank you for your service." That is usually how I get them to talk to me.
3. It is not that they are not friendly, it is that friendly is not in the military dictionary.
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  #43  
Old 08-12-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by svzephyr44:908609
As an "old Navy salt" a couple of things:

1. If the sub has an escort (and on the surface they usually do - a Coast Guard vessel) try to talk to them. They will usually respond.
Without being offensive - but if it is true that it was only you and the sub out there your request was a "dumb ****" message. They had already told you that you were too close.
2. The newer Navy ships are difficult to locate. They don't run AIS in transmit mode, they are very radar invisible, and they are painted to be hard to see. Sailboats are terrible radar targets - that is why everyone should have a transmit AIS. Upgrades to navigation equipment for the Navy take a very long path, I would not be astonished to find that most of the Navy ships don't have AIS integrated into their CIC suites. They will also never tell you their name. Try hailing "Navy Warship Number xxx." Unless you have a specific and relevant question they will most likely not respond. They will almost always respond to "Thank you for your service." That is usually how I get them to talk to me.
3. It is not that they are not friendly, it is that friendly is not in the military dictionary.
In Groton the USCG doesn't do this task. They Navy have their own patrol boats and they are trained not to respond. You have to make visible contact with them so as they pick up the mike. Locals here know the score as many jobs depend on local participation.
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  #44  
Old 08-12-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

Coming in at St Mary's Inlet, I encountered a sub on the way out from King's Island. There were four CG RIB's, 2 tugs and a third boat, plus a helicopter. The CG was broadcasting a warning for the area, and when I hailed them, they responding, saying I could proceed outside of the marked channel. They still though sent a RIB over to check me out, who politely reiterated their radio message.

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  #45  
Old 08-12-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

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Originally Posted by CalebD View Post
Those CG RIB boats with the 50 caliber guns mounted on the bow seem to be all over the NYC waterways.
Not .50 caliber machine guns. The Coasties use the M240B machine gun which uses a 7.62mm round.

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  #46  
Old 08-12-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

Yes I had the same experience coming out out St MAry's in 2008ish. The boat called herself a 'special navy unit' on channel 16 as she entered the channel from sea. We responded with our position and intentions of heading to sea and will stay outside the greens. They responded saying ok no problem. She passed by. That channel isnt more 300 yards or so...there was a dude w/a 40cal on the tower and 2 large ribs running cover w/40cals on the bow as pictured before.
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  #47  
Old 08-12-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

Funny how the the US Air Force has no problem talking with recreational pilots who are violating their air space. Also they post NOTAMs. (Notice to Airmen) Telling everybody where and when they are flying their exercises. They also detail live firings etc. Easily accessed public knowledge and real time information.....US Navy is full of arrogance....say, anybody read about a collision between a tanker and a frigate in the Strait? Yes, perhaps a LACK of communication is the problem. Try not to defend stupidity.
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  #48  
Old 08-12-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

AK:
Nobody on this post has tried to defend stupidity.

USN liberally uses Notices to Mariners not only for hazardous exercises but to broadcast navigation information of interest to all mariners. Do you routinely access them and use them? Most don't but simply rely on the good fairy. When she doesn't show up it's a little more forgiving at sea than when you're at 30K feet.

The collision between the tanker and the destroyer (USN hasn't had frigates for years) is inexcusable. Generally when an incident like this occurs it is a result of a chain of errors that didn't get broken by an alert and knowledgeable watch stander. Comms are almost always one of the links in that chain...internal and external most likely. The facts will come out and we may find out that visibility was impaired by storm or fog or both. We may find out that the tanker was totally at fault. We just don't know yet. What we do know is that destroyer is a marvelously nimble ship and a skipper or officer of the deck that would allow a tanker to put him in a position that "cornered" him so that he could be hit is derelict in his duties.

Some years ago I was closing Perth on a bright clear October morning with a Japanese freighter broad on my port beam at about 2Kyds. We paralleled each other for over two hours as we made our way landward. My speed was a shade higher than his and over the course of the two hours I slowly moved from off his starboard quarter to off his starboard bow. As we cleared Rottnest Island to the south where the channel into Cockburn Sound requires a turn to the SSE I queried him on VHF as to whether he would be entering port in Cockburn Sound or continuing to the east. His response was to loudly yell into his VHF "Your rudder is port aye...your rudder is port aye!" and he put his rudder hard to port and began turning circles north of Rottnest. I continued on. He was still turning circles long after I had made my turn into Cockburn Sound. LACK of communications means failure to understand comms as well.

But incidents like the one in the Straits of Hormuz are not indicative of a problem with the culture of the Navy nor its guiding principles and the procedures that support them. A well run ship trains in support of those principles almost all day every day when operations allow. Sometimes the training is not as effective as it should have been. Sometimes the skills of the watch section and their experience level is a bit low. Sometimes equipment malfunctions (perhaps not even noticed) bite you in the a**.

But the men and women on the destroyer aren't stupid. Most are bright and most are eager to learn and most are highly motivated. Those that aren't move on rather quickly and don't get put in positions of high responsibility. Those that make mistakes have responsibility taken away.

Yeah. I'll defend 'em but I am not defending stupidity when I do...I defending them against those that are omniscient and know exactly why something they weren't involved in halfway around the world happened. Because thinking you're omniscient IS stupid.
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  #49  
Old 08-13-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

It's my preference that Navy vessels in civilian waters treat me with the same respect and civility that any other agent of the government would, such as a police officer or government clerk. At least in the US, we're not at war right now (excluding this strange "War on Terror"). While I appreciate the service of military people, I don't think it is good for anyone if they feel they're too important to engage civilians with respect to navigation in peacetime.

I don't really understand the recent trend for a more hostile, more intimidating military, and even moreso, I don't understand the unconditional hawkish furor about supporting everything military, even those things which aren't very nice. I've seen military men throw around their weight once or twice, and it really doesn't leave me feeling very good about things afterwards. In my mind, I'd think everyone would be disturbed to see military intimidation in domestic waters, yet even in this thread, some people seem to support it.
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  #50  
Old 08-13-2012
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Re: Nuclear s(n)ubs

I haven't looked at what coasties were pointing in years, but have n fact seen fifty caliber guns in the East River, where they could conveniently shoot most of the way to the Hudson if they didn't hit something first. It is a wonderful thing to see that someone has either realized with fifty caliber ammunition costs, or that standard 30 caliber (the standard NATO 7.62mm x 51mm round essentially is the Winchester .308 which is thirty caliber) is more than enough to fight most enemies in home waters.

"USN warship XXX we have found your strawberry ice cream, do you wish to send a launch to pick it up, or should we bring it alongside?"

Hey, if they got no sense a humor...They'd damn well better deny it is THEIR ice cream.
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