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post #1 of 11 Old 11-19-2006 Thread Starter
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Day Shapes

What are the requirements for exhibiting day shapes? I've been reading the USCG rules, and I'm mystified.
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post #2 of 11 Old 11-19-2006
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If you're anchored, and not in a desginated anchorage...you need to have a ball dayshape up. If you're motoring, and have the sails up...you need to hoist an inverted cone dayshape.

What is so complicated...

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post #3 of 11 Old 11-19-2006
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Maybe the reason you are confused is that dayshapes are so rarely seen on sailboats. This is not because they are not important but because the owners don't have them, don't think it is important to use them, or are ignorant of the regs. and the shapes purpose.
The last thing any mariner wants to be saying is, "what's he doing over there?" For instance, you really don't want a freighter changing course, possibly moving out of the shipping lane, for a sail-boat under power with her sails up as this can create new crossing situations for other vessels. The sailboat becomes a power-boat the minute she starts her engine and loses her right-of-way status. The only way other vessels know this is by her flying the black martini glass (inverted cone).
Anchoring presents much the same situation. You throw the hook over the side, in an area vessels rarely anchor, to deal with an emergency below decks and, by flying a black ball, other vessels know that you are made fast to the ground and not manoeuverable.
Displaying proper lights and shapes, and knowing their meaning is essential for safety; your safety.
That freighter heading towards you, flying two black balls or showing red over red at night, is not going to change course! Even for your sail-boat. She can't change course-she's not under command. Probably lost the engine or the steering gear went out and you'd best be movin'.
Dayshapes come in collapsable canvas and mesh configurations for easy stowage.
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post #4 of 11 Old 11-20-2006
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Correct me if I'm wrong, but day shapes are not required of all small boats??? What size vessel is required to display day shapes?
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post #5 of 11 Old 11-20-2006
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Sorry, I'm out of town and don't have Chapmans close at hand.
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post #6 of 11 Old 11-20-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailaway21
For instance, you really don't want a freighter changing course, possibly moving out of the shipping lane.
You've seen them actually change course for a small boat!?
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post #7 of 11 Old 11-20-2006
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Displaying the cone is not required for vessels less than 12 meters (39.4 feet) according to Chapman.
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post #8 of 11 Old 12-02-2006
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I think the 12 meter rule applies to all day shapes, which would probably explain why we don't see them used much.

I like it when they say, "what's he doing over there", at least then they see you!
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post #9 of 11 Old 12-02-2006
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YES SIR! And that's why radar reflectors, while not required, are essential. Most merchant ships, if they see you, will give you a wide berth and seeing you on radar is "seeing" you. Topless female crew may affect the amount of course alteration made.
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post #10 of 11 Old 12-02-2006
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Sailaway21,

I don't think you care, but radar reflectors are required by law in my country, on any registered (which all are, another requirement) boat, sail or "smoky".
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