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Thread: Fleet check-in idea

  1. #21
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    Since I sidetracked this anyway . . .

    How is your AP head mounted? The newer ST-60 "Plus" instruments came with gaskets to go between the instruments and the bulkhead. I got an extra one and installed it under the older AP head (a 6001). The instruments are not flush mounted but still protrude inside the cabin (so they are protected but can ventilate).

    Sailing home from the SHTP in 2006, there were times when a regular stream of water was running over the instrument heads but they didn't seem to be affected. Maybe this is something that Raymarine has improved?

  2. #22
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    Default Pacific Seafarers Net

    The Pacific Seafarers Net operates on Ham channels, so, if the SSS wanted to use them for check-in, Ham licences would be required.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alchera View Post
    ...perhaps during the boat inspection the skipper should be required to demonstrate the use of the SSB...
    Yep, that's typically part of the equipment inspection:

    1. do you have an SSB?
    2. can you bring up WWV?

    If the skipper can do that then it is demonstrated that the radio works and the skipper has at least a limited knowledge of how the radio is operated.

    - rob/beetle

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiger beetle View Post
    Yep, that's typically part of the equipment inspection:

    1. do you have an SSB?
    2. can you bring up WWV?

    If the skipper can do that then it is demonstrated that the radio works and the skipper has at least a limited knowledge of how the radio is operated.

    - rob/beetle
    Unfortunately, that's not enough knowledge to actually successfully operate the radio at checkin. I would go a little further, make them dial in one of the SSS frequencies and show that it is operating as a simplex channel on upper sideband. If there was an easy way to actually make them contact a remote station, I would require that as well, but I don't know how to make that practical. Unless anyone else has any ideas.

    - Mark/Alchera

  5. #25
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    I'll be sending you guys an e-mail so we can get together about this.

    My main concern about knowing that a boat's SSB works is that any backup means of making roll-call remains a backup, thus keeping the Comm boat's job manageable.

    Is it possible to borrow one of those SW(?) meters so the inspector could see what was reaching the SSB antenna?

    Contacting a remote station would be great but would probably require getting the boat away from shore. Perhaps that could be combined with an e-rudder test, but it's putting quite a burden on the inspectors.
    Last edited by BobJ; 08-14-2009 at 06:30 PM. Reason: Beer wore off

  6. #26
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    Default Pacific check in from shore

    Quote Originally Posted by Hesperus View Post
    The Pacific Seafarers Net operates on Ham channels, so, if the SSS wanted to use them for check-in, Ham licences would be required.

    Correct. I was using a very successful network as an example of working communication from ship to shore with the pacific basin ringed in shore stations all manned with volunteers. SSB marine could accomplish the same thing.

    The club might give this consideration, as a trial maybe. A hybrid approach could be used. If shore stations are successful in copying positions the comm boat need not take the full burden.

    Brian

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by BobJ View Post
    I'll be sending you guys an e-mail so we can get together about this.

    My main concern about knowing that a boat's SSB works is that any backup means of making roll-call remains a backup, thus keeping the Comm boat's job manageable.

    Is it possible to borrow one of those SW(?) meters so the inspector could see what was reaching the SSB antenna?

    Contacting a remote station would be great but would probably require getting the boat away from shore. Perhaps that could be combined with an e-rudder test, but it's putting quite a burden on the inspectors.
    How many inspectors do you have ? A simple detector could be made to assure energy is getting to the antenna. It could be used with a cheap digital volt meter to measure antenna current.

    Actually one antenna tuner brand recommends testing their tuner with a 100 watt light bulb clipped to the antenna. And I have to say it works every time.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianb View Post
    How many inspectors do you have?
    None, but then we don't have any entries either.

    Now that LongPac is "in the books" things are happening behind the scenes for SH TransPac. Maybe it's time for an early-interest poll to see how many of you are seriously thinking about it.

    The first poll will be anonymous but the next one will include contracts to sign.

  9. #29
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    Oct 2007
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    Default Check ins and Tracking

    Please have people prove they can use the SSB and run some simple tests. Time and again people neglect to get to know their new gear. Rob had to show me how to use my radio at my inspection, luckily it worked well! On Tracking, its simple and actually cheap, we just did a week long race with ION Earth, worked great good service, and Hundreds of Thousands of page hits. Granted as a racing participant I never looked at it, but all the friends and family do. These are the people who actually cut one the slack and mow the lawn while we are gone sailing. You have to do something for the fans!

  10. #30
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    Sep 2007
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    Hi All,

    As to checking SSB operation and knowledge, I can offer a possible solution. I have a shore station in the mountains south of Livermore and we could set a schedule as we get close to departure time and stations could check in/chat with me from their boats and I could keep a record of who checked in/signal strength/etc. and pass it along to the inspectors as proof of SSB operation. This would also allow for some stations that have no familiarity with talking on the radio to practice and they could try changing settings/adding grounds/etc. and see it that made their signal better or worse. This is something that would not be appropriate during the race. Stations would be required to be disconnected from shore power when checking in to make this test realistic.

    Also, I was comm boat for about half of the last race and might be for some of this race, and I think if the comm boat needs to check email before the check in's it doesn't matter if there is one email from the race committee or 5 from individual boats. You get the email(s) and enter them in the log and read them back during the SSB check in period. It seems that boats emailing their position directly to the comm boat eliminates any shoreside participation at specific times twice a day which might make getting shoreside volunteers easier.

    For Rob, My SSB crapped out day 2 on the way home and I used the sat phone with the AirMail software to email from then on. It is *very* fast, even compared to a Pactor 3 modem with a good signal. I will have 2 SSB's this trip in addition to the sat phone though as I really enjoy talking to the other boats on the way and missed it on the way home.

    John
    Dream Chaser

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