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  #41  
Old 07-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdamLein View Post
VHF: do you have a DSC radio hooked up to your GPS? If not, get one and set it up. Then John doesn't need to know how to operate the radio; he just needs to know how to hold a button down for five seconds in an emergency. Yes it would be good if he could tell the coast guard what's wrong, but I'm guessing that in a pinch he would figure out how to push the PTT button (the radio should automatically go to 16 after he pushes distress anyway).
We don't have the radio connected to GPS. We still use the old, non-DSC radio that came with the boat when we bought it. Since it broadcasts and receives, it isn't at the top of my list to replace. But you make a good argument for possibly updating it and making that this year's boat show purchase.

I had a DSC radio for the 22-footer but when I gave the boat away, I let them have the radio, too.

Besides the fixed radio, I keep two hand held radios on board.

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Originally Posted by AdamLein View Post
Charts. These are also intimidating, but for different reasons. Working with charts is, to me, one of the fun things about boating. It's fun for the same reason that puzzles are fun; it just works a certain part of my brain. If John doesn't see it that way, it might be hard to get him motivated about charts.

Unfortunately, while you can probably teach him to use the chartplotter in an emergency ("Stay on the blue part. This is what the numbers mean.") if he doesn't practice it, he won't have a good feel for it.
At the risk of starting an entirely new war, we don't use a traditional chartplotter. We use a netbook with a GPS puck. John knows how to get the navigation software to talk to the GPS and knows what I mean when I tell him to follow the dark blue line (the course I plotted) and to give me a heads up when he approaches the blue area.

Where we differ is that I can navigate using the electronic chart without the pre-loaded course as well as with only the paper chart. John sees having the plotted course as something of a safety net and there have been times when I have quickly plotted a course for him to follow (he looked extremely uncomfortable without it) when I would have been fine.

Since baseball doesn't start back up until tomorrow night (Go Phils!), after dinner tonight might be a good time to talk about learning how to use the radio. I'll save the charts for another day.

I made a tropical-themed dinner to soften him up to agree to go on a BVI charter next year (as it turned out he was all for it). What food goes with "Honey, I'd really like you to learn how to use the marine radio?"
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  #42  
Old 07-15-2011
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Okay, so, I would definitely recommend going with the new radio as a safety feature.

If we're still talking only minimum safety requirements, then I would suggest that John should know how to set the anchor, including reading the depth sounder. Since you're talking about sailing in inland waters, if something should happen to you, there's really no need for John to navigate to any set point. He should be able to call for help and to get the boat stopped. Help can get to you a lot faster than you can get to it, anyway.

Being able to read a chart would be super helpful in this case, but fundamentally not necessary.
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  #43  
Old 07-15-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdamLein View Post
Okay, so, I would definitely recommend going with the new radio as a safety feature.

If we're still talking only minimum safety requirements, then I would suggest that John should know how to set the anchor, including reading the depth sounder.
Oh, he definitely knows how to do all that. He isn't a complete beginner, it's just that he has never used the radio or paid much attention to the charts other than getting the big picture of where we'll be sailing on any given trip. He relies on me to use the radio and tell him where to point the boat. Situational awareness is also something I'm working on with him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AdamLein View Post
Being able to read a chart would be super helpful in this case, but fundamentally not necessary.
Except to be able to tell rescuers our location if we aren't near a buoy that he can see.

We talked about it last night. I showed him the posts in this thread (which he got a kick out of). Then he yelled across the room "CG BALTIMORE! CG BALTIMORE! MAYDAY! MAYDAY! RADIO CHECK!" (I had told him about last week's radio check thread) and said to me "See? I know how to use the radio!"

It was a funny moment, but I did share my concerns and he agreed with me. That's all I can do.
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  #44  
Old 07-15-2011
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Sounds like it isn't *quite* as bad as it seemed at first. You might consider writing a basic "******" for some of the common radio situations if you suspect the embarassment factor, and not the hearing loss factor, is motivating his discomfort. (Besides, writing up a couple of scripts is much cheaper than buying a new DSC radio if the old one is working. )
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  #45  
Old 07-15-2011
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"and he agreed with me. That's all I can do. "

Well, if it goes no further....One day send him below for a beer and whatever will occupy him for five minutes. While he's below, slip into the lazerette and out of sight.

When he comes back topside to an empty boat....Hopefully the point will be made and you'll be forgien for making it so forcefully. Of course, if you hear "Whooppee!" before you climb out, that's quite another issue.
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  #46  
Old 07-15-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingNwing View Post
(Besides, writing up a couple of scripts is much cheaper than buying a new DSC radio if the old one is working. )
Yep. I have the CG radio stickers that have the scripts on them. We hand them out in our classes. Next time we're at the boat I'll have to make sure John knows where I keep it in the nav station. I assumed he knew.

Thanks!
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  #47  
Old 07-15-2011
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<*amazed*> The CG has these pre-printed? I had to work 'em out for myself! NOW you tell me!
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  #48  
Old 07-15-2011
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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
"and he agreed with me. That's all I can do. "
Of course, if you hear "Whooppee!" before you climb out, that's quite another issue.
"quite another issue" indeed.
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  #49  
Old 07-15-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRFerron View Post
Where we differ is that I can navigate using the electronic chart without the pre-loaded course as well as with only the paper chart. John sees having the plotted course as something of a safety net and there have been times when I have quickly plotted a course for him to follow (he looked extremely uncomfortable without it) when I would have been fine.
How would it sit on you to have him skipper the entire trip, or just parts of, some days? (In the back of my mind, my question is whether the problem is entirely just him, or whether you or your role aboard plays some part.)

Charts and trip planning are simple enough that I think that isn't the issue. Same with the radio. It's the skipper's boat when (s)he's on deck.
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  #50  
Old 07-15-2011
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There are some funny posts in this thread!

I'm kind of young and unmarried, so I know my situation isn't exactly the same, but I started dating my boyfriend six years ago after meeting at the University of TN. Naturally, growing up in Knoxville, he didn't have any sailing experience and only some experience on motor boats with friends. For our second date, I took him out on one of the UT Sailing Team's JY15's. Of course, the wind died when we hit the farthest point from the yacht club and we ended up sculling the boat for 45 minutes back to the docks. Needless to say, he hasn't expressed much interest in going out with me.
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