Good discussion to have.
For those that don't know already I do a lot of deliveries. In the past year I've been doing more and more owner-aboard along with brokerage clients as crew so I get some unknowns.
Are you supposed to stay in the cockpit at all times.
On most things I'm open to discussion. Not this. No one leaves the cockpit without another person on deck. With people forward someone is always in the cockpit. That means if crew wakes me for an issue that requires someone to go forward (usually me but not always) and the person forward needs help that means bringing another person up.
This "rule" is problematic with only two aboard. So much decision-making is situational. I've brought everyone back to the cockpit for a discussion before dealing with a problem. In other circumstances I've had ALL crew on deck.
Boy do I have some stories. *grin*
Is it OK to use the head
If their is a dodger can you lookout from behind the dodger.
I've been offshore without a dodger once. I'll suck it up again if I have to, but all my crew get transportation and per diem if you want us to head offshore like that. It might be cheaper to add a dodger.
What if it is raining?
You get wet. I had one crew (who was in other ways a problem child that I ultimately put on a plane home) volunteer for an extended watch - she said "I'm already wet - why should anyone else get wet?" She stood for six hours, the last three in the rain.
Can you close your eyes?
Are their any logging duties
Yes - position and conditions at change of watch.
What about the engine.
Depending on pre-departure assessment I check the engine once or twice a day under power. Depending on crew this may be delegated but there is ONE person who is the engineer.
What about sail trim
No major changes without me. Minor trim is okay. My go-to crew have more flexibility and they know it, and so does everyone else. Most major changes ("It's Tuesday, time to tack") happen at watch change with three on deck (off-going crew, on-coming crew, and me).
In standing orders. Avoiding collision is an exception but should never be a surprise and plenty of time to wake me.
What about sighted ships
Watch for CPA and TCPA. Wake me only if there is a problem. Wake me if you're worried. Wake me if you're lonely.
Every five minutes or so is encouraged. Certainly less than ten minutes.
Do you actually give detailed directions or just turn over the helm?
All in our pre-departure discussion.
Things you didn't ask about
- I expect (and am awake for) watch handover that includes a summary of current conditions, any actions taken, traffic observed, and anything else that might help the relief do a better job.
- Understand the amount of time your relief wants to get up and get ready - some people need five minutes and some need 30.
- If your relief wants coffee, tea, or whatever get that set up for them. That may mean getting the percolator going 20 minutes before watch change and waking your relief at 10 minutes before watch change.
- Never hesitate to wake the skipper.
- Light discipline is paramount. This is a real pet peeve for me. I truly DESPISE headlamps, even though I use them. The problem is that the person wearing one looks at anyone (often me) coming up the companionway and ruins night vision. Bad. We talk about this pre-departure. You blind me once you get a discussion. You do it twice and I hold your headlamp for the rest of the voyage. I HAVE TO BE ABLE TO SEE WHEN I COME ON DECK. There are implications: if your next watch is scheduled to start in the dark you should have your gear laid out where you can find it in the dark to get ready. If you have to use the head there should be a source of low light that 1. doesn't ruin your night vision and 2. doesn't spill out on deck to reduce the on-watch night vision. Smartphones with the backlight turned way down work great. The little LED candles are okay although a little bright for my taste. You do turn the backlights on nav instruments down to the lowest level at night don't you? Way offshore you can cover depth and probably boat speed.
- I expect concern and respect for the off-watch. Circumstances allowing I expect no conversation that might wake someone sleeping. Take it to the cockpit. If you're clipped into jacklines (again circumstances permitting) hold the shackle off the deck so you don't wake anyone below dragging metal bits along the deck.
- I expect participation in boat chores. This may be a little unique to me. I do most or all the cooking but I'll hand up potatoes or carrots to the watch to peel. I may hand up shrimp or hard-cooked eggs to shell. You're going to get asked to dump the garbage bowl over the side. Depending on interests I may send up grating. Some people want to learn about cooking offshore so I may take a portion of a watch so crew can practice mise en place.
- I don't delegate the ugly stuff on Auspicious or on delivery. If someone gets sick I clean it up. If the head needs to be cleaned and certainly on arrival I do it. I may ask for help emptying fridge and freezer on arrival but I'll do the head down cleaning.
I'm sure there are other things that will occur to me.