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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation
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Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


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  #1  
Old 12-14-2009
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Starpath home study

Can anyone comment on the value of Starpath's Coastal Navigation home study course or any other home coastal nav course you'd recommend?

FWIW, I have a fair background in land navigation (Backpacker as a kid, Army Infantry, Ground Search and Rescue as an adult). I also am a commercially rated pilot, so have a fair amount of navigation experience in another type of fluid environement. I'd like to do a classroom course but finding time to do so is not likely so it'll have to be a home study or as a distant second choice an online course. The reason I prefer a printed version is so I can hand it off to my Admiral when I'm done so she can improve her skills as well.

I know I could read Bowditch or other resources to learn these skills but I want to work some practical excercises and be able to check my work.
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I would highly recommend Mike Pyzels Navigation book.

It used to be the ASA ( American Sailing Association's ) textbook for their nav course. They switched to Tom Tursi's.

I Understand Pyzel's book is back in print with a companion CD/DVD...
And ASA is using it again.

I Used Pyzels book years ago to study for both my ASA certs and for the Coast Guard exam. It's very well written and intuitive, and has practice test questions at the end of the book ( with the answers)

I Believe Starpath would probably produce a good product, I have their Weather and Radar courses. I just haven't seen their nav.
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Old 12-14-2009
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Took the ASA cert course in November, still using Pyzels book. Or at least my instructor did. Great class and information in the book. My school does correspondance also, could check in to that.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cb32863 View Post
Took the ASA cert course in November, still using Pyzels book. Or at least my instructor did. Great class and information in the book. My school does correspondance also, could check in to that.
Thanks for pointing out that the materials for the ASA classes were available for sale. Both Pyzel's and Tursi's books and CD courses are available for about 30% of the cost of the Starpath course.

Looking at what the courses say they cover, it seems the Starpath includes GPS navigation using a GPS simulator in addition to visual and manual techniques. The Tursi package includes a workbook, text and CD and Pyzel is just a text book and CD.

I wonder if Starpath could possibly be worth 3 times the ASA courses and if I should choose the Pyzel course over Tursi?
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I have both, Tursi's book and cd and the older pyzel book...

With apologizes to Mr Tursi, I much preferred Pyzels.

probably because Pyzels was more closely aligned with the way I had originally learned to navigate. Tom introduced a method of using the compass rose that was new to me. (old dog). I'm not saying that it has no merit...it just required me to learn some new methods, at a time that I was studying to pass tests...

At some point, I may return to Tursi's book, to learn his methodology, but at the time..it wasn't working for me.....I should know all methods..

With your experience in navigation, I don't think the expense of starpath course is necessary.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempest View Post
I have both, Tursi's book and cd and the older pyzel book...

With apologizes to Mr Tursi, I much preferred Pyzels.

probably because Pyzels was more closely aligned with the way I had originally learned to navigate. Tom introduced a method of using the compass rose that was new to me. (old dog). I'm not saying that it has no merit...it just required me to learn some new methods, at a time that I was studying to pass tests...

At some point, I may return to Tursi's book, to learn his methodology, but at the time..it wasn't working for me.....I should know all methods..

With your experience in navigation, I don't think the expense of starpath course is necessary.
Thanks for the input.

I think I'm going to ask Santa for one of the ASA courses. Guess I'll have to flip a coin on which one.
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Old 12-15-2009
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I am an ASA sailing instructor. I have seen both Pyzel's and Tursi's book. No offense to Tursi but I prefer Pyzel. Pyzel has a new book out and is currently offered by the ASA (as is Tursi's.)
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I think the tribe has spoken and Tursi has been voted off the island.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by midlifesailor View Post
I think the tribe has spoken and Tursi has been voted off the island.


You can also use Duttons--that is a great book.
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Old 12-15-2009
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midlifesailor---you can go on line & see if there are there any United States Power Squadron local branches in your area. courses are taught by members for the cost of materials only. they are seamanship, piloting, advanced piloting, and junior& senior navigation, which are celestial nav. also electronics, weather, engine maintenance and others.
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