Go Back   Cruiser Log World Cruising & Sailing Forums > Cruising Forums > General Cruising Forum
Cruiser Wiki

Join Cruiser Log Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 01-02-2010, 11:02 AM   #15
Retired Mod
 
Lighthouse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Home Port: Durban
Posts: 2,984
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank View Post
Call me old fashioned if you must but I reckon that if you can't find your way around ( coastal or deepsea ) without GPS then you shouldn't be leaving the dock.
I absolutely agree!
__________________

__________________


The World Cruising & Sailing Wiki

Help to build this free, online World Cruising Guide.

"Built by cruisers, for cruisers''

I've Contributed to the Cruisers Wiki: Most sections
Lighthouse is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2010, 03:01 PM   #16
Lieutenant
 
saxon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 50
Default

It's nice to read that there are people who are still intending to learn celestial navigation, as like many old skills, both maritime and land based it seems to be slipping away into history. I have an elderly fixed GPS from which I take Latitude and Longitude and lay them off on a paper chart, I don't have a chart plotter or computer navigation, but I do use a sextant. I use it very often for ascertaining distance off but less often for celestial position fixing. Just enough to stay in practice and retain respectable accuracy really, as I find I quickly "go rusty" otherwise.

I'm happy to admit that the GPS is my prime method of navigation. I don't have radar, and the relative accuracy of the GPS under certain conditions is a real comfort.

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk136/h...runacopy024.jpg

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk136/h...runacopy005.jpg

These photos were taken outward bound this voyage, three days without sight of the sky, day or night, fast tides and ocean currents so dead reckoning is questionable and after a week at sea you're closing a rocky, unforgiving coast.

Visibility at times where I could just see my own forestay but hear the thump of a big fishing trawlers' diesel which is an event which shall we say tends to concentrate one's mind..

At times like that I love my GPS.. (and my depth sounder)

Just out of interest: A seamanlike solution would be to stand off until visibility improved I agree, but in this particular area, the coast of Galicia of North-West Spain, the summer fogs can last for weeks. This one lasted 9 days and as you can see in the photo, even in the harbour conditions were not ideal.
__________________

__________________
saxon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2010, 12:19 AM   #17
Ensign
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 5
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by karenmmc View Post
Have you seen this website? Bumfuzzle

Young couple with little experience sailed around the world. Start in 2003 and work backwards for the entire story.
Hey karenmc

whether these guys are a good role model or not their trip is fascinating. I looked it up last night out of interest and spent 5 hours reading it, it appears they were not to impressed with Sydney, Australia. They paid too much for everything, that is where local knowledge comes in. Anyhow, it is raining again here in SYdney, becoming the habit on weekends, so I am going to finsih their story off.

IF you know of any more travel diaries like this please advise.

Regards

Manni
__________________
Mannib is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2010, 03:22 AM   #18
Ensign
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 8
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank View Post
Lots of things can bring your electronic navigation to a grinding halt.

Call me old fashioned if you must but I reckon that if you can't find your way around ( coastal or deepsea ) without GPS then you shouldn't be leaving the dock.
I was talking about the risk that the entire GPS system is taken off line which is very low. We have several handheld GPS units and plenty of batteries. We will be plotting our path on charts so if the plotter system went down for whatever reason I would know where I was at that time and could continue navigating with our handheld GPS's. We have learned some coastal navigation with compass bearings but find our GPS tends to be more accurate. I just disagree that I need to be able to read the night sky in the middle of the ocean before leaving the dock. I have talked to long-time bluewater sailors who claim they've completely forgotten how to navigate by sextant and would have to re-learn it but no longer see a need.

It would be interesting to know how many currently out there learned it, but now don't use it and probably couldn't do it accurately anymore; I'm told you'd have to be using it all the time to keep your skills up. And of course in any case the sextant/chronometer mechanisms are potentially more fallible than electronic navigation systems.
__________________
GOBKJA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2010, 01:20 PM   #19
Lieutenant
 
saxon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 50
Default

As I stated in an earlier post, I personally find that I make silly mistakes using a sextant for celestial navigation. I know about and do use the pro forma for the process but not being the sharpest tool in the toolbox when it comes to things even remotely academic, I still make mistakes due to lack of practice and carelessness. That's not the physical use of the sextant, which I use very often for simple 'distance off' of a charted object of known height, but the working of the sight with pencil and paper afterwards. On a TransAtlantic crossing from the Canary Islands to the West Indies in 2007, I got back into the routine of sun sights and I'm happy to say that the island of Martinique was exactly where I hoped it would be (according to my navigation) when I made landfall.

But, on this voyage on a rare clear day at the beginning crossing the Bay of Biscay, my first celestial navigation attempt placed me neatly somewhere in the Black Forest in Germany.. Thereafter it was back to the GPS! I'm confident that there are quite a few like me sailing around though, under the heading "capable but sorely needs more practice" and using their GPS' as their prime navigation aid.
__________________
saxon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2010, 07:39 PM   #20
Commander
 
Frank's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Home Port: Puerto Montt
Vessel Name: Westerly Serenade
Posts: 112
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by GOBKJA View Post
We have learned some coastal navigation with compass bearings but find our GPS tends to be more accurate.
Unfortunately that belief could bring you well and truly unstuck one dark and stormy night when relying on GPS - whether or not you are putting the position on a paper chart. Where I sail the longitudes are invariably a mile or so adrift ...on both the electronic and paper charts... you are stuck with eyeball regardless of how many GPS you have ( I have four ). Same can hold true in many of the 'less traveled' parts of the world. Lots of wrecks on reefs in the Pacific bear testament to that.

I just disagree that I need to be able to read the night sky in the middle of the ocean before leaving the dock.

No need to be able to read the night sky even if you do decide to do 'stars'.. only requires an ability to find a few major stars. All you need to able to do is take a simple sun sight to keep out of trouble. That and knowing how to do a running fix.

" And of course in any case the sextant/chronometer mechanisms are potentially more fallible than electronic navigation systems."

Sextants aren't prone to failure... unless dropped. Chronometer? Any wristwatch is good enough these days... while accuracy to the nearest second is a wonderful thing accuracy to within a few minutes will still keep you out of trouble.

If you can find a copy 'Emergency Navigation' by David Burch ( ISBN 0-87742-204-4) it would be worth having on any yacht. Predating GPS - published in 1986 - it tells you how to find your way around without sextant, compass or electronics....

Cheers

Frank
__________________
= Chile,
I've Contributed to the Cruisers Wiki: Chile
Frank is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2010, 10:49 PM   #21
Ensign
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 8
Default

If you can find a copy 'Emergency Navigation' by David Burch ( ISBN 0-87742-204-4) it would be worth having on any yacht. Predating GPS - published in 1986 - it tells you how to find your way around without sextant, compass or electronics....

Cheers

Frank

[/quote]

Thanks Frank, I'll get that and as I have a few months before we depart I'll make an effort to learn.
__________________
GOBKJA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2010, 02:40 AM   #22
Moderator
 
JeanneP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,098
Default

I remember shortly after GPS was first available to recreational vessels back in the late 80s or early 90s (shrug, hard to remember nowadays), we got one (Peter was so interested in anything to make navigating easier). Old habits die hard, and for passages we continued to maintain an hourly log, updated position on our paper charts (no chartplotters back then, except for military), and updated rhumb line. Not too long after that, we were sailing down the Pacific coasts of Costa Rica and Panama, and heard a couple boats talking on the VHF about losing a GPS signal. One or two of them sounded very upset, almost panicky. It turned out that the US military was fiddling with the satellites, and (memory is foggy here) shutting down the system in order to reprogram the various satellites. It could have been more than that, but that was the explanation given to the general public. The US didn't leave people completely in the lurch - there was a published schedule of when a signal would be available (sent to the GPS receiver when the signal came back up). I hopped on the VHF to tell the boats how to find the notice, and what the schedule was (once I figured it out). The second or third day I was politely thanked, but they weren't going anywhere until the GPS was back up reliably.

I was puzzled - GPS had not been available for very long, I couldn't understand how these people had gotten so far without learning the basics of navigation. I still don't. Maybe they bought the first ones, at the impossibly exhorbitant prices they asked back then, and rather than learn navigation basics, they learned only GPS navigation. or whatever.

I'm not sure of the moral of this story is. Peter and I were a tad too smug, joking between ourselves about their panic over such a minor glitch, though I hope that I didn't convey our bad attitude over the radio. It frightened us then, and it frightens us now, that some people substitute gadgets for knowledge and experience.

Most of us don't bring lots of years of experience to our first years of cruising. Some of us compensate by working very hard to learn as much as possible about the hard parts of cruising. Some of us put our trust into gadgets and gewgaws to keep us safe. And when we get it right we might be just a bit too impressed with ourselves. Fortunately (some might say unfortunately) we haven't gone too long feeling self-satisfied when something happens to shake us up before we become insufferable. Doing something stupid, or even just careless, that could cost us our boat helps keep us humble. But not too humble .

I've been fiddling with computers and many other electronic gadgets for all my adult life, and one thing I know. There is not yet any device that is as smart, inventive, adaptive, or creative, as the human brain. It only needs a little education and information and it can do wondrous things. I'm not sure I want to try to take a sight on a heaving deck, but ZI'm not sure that I want to put my faith in just one gadget, either.

It's late.

Fair winds

J
__________________
In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

SY WATERMELON |
MV WATERMELON (New) | Cruiser's Dictionary, free ebook

= Cruiser's Dictionary, North America,
JeanneP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2010, 09:52 AM   #23
Commander
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 151
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mannib View Post
IF you know of any more travel diaries like this please advise.
Try this: http://blog.mailasail.com/

There are some rather interesting stories, and also some blogs which only note position.

One of the circumnavigators is Hollinsclough. It is happening right now. Much better than Onedin Line
__________________
magwas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2010, 11:09 AM   #24
Retired Mod
 
Lighthouse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Home Port: Durban
Posts: 2,984
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mannib View Post
IF you know of any more travel diaries like this please advise.
The collection of good Cruising Blogs and Narratives on the World Cruising Wiki will keep you busy reading for months - HERE.
__________________


The World Cruising & Sailing Wiki

Help to build this free, online World Cruising Guide.

"Built by cruisers, for cruisers''

I've Contributed to the Cruisers Wiki: Most sections
Lighthouse is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 10:40 PM   #25
Ensign
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 15
Default

I'm beginning to see two types of sailors that set off on a blue water adventure. Ones that prepare and learn and ramp up over the years, and ones that just throw caution to the wind and just go ahead, make a lot of mistakes, and (hopefully) come out the other end with lots of good stories.

Some good stories:

Mike Harker interview with Furled Sail (podcast) http://www.furledsails.com/article.php3?article=767

Mike learns to sail by himself (not knowing how to tack until he reaches Mexico), does a trans-atlantic crossing by himself because there was no crew to be found, they had all left it was the start of hurricane season. Mike's on his second circumnavigation now.

Paul Lotus' "Confessions of a long distance sailor" (free downloaded book) http://www.arachnoid.com/lutusp/sailbook.html

Paul buys a little PS31 Mariah, kits it out and learns to sail in the first year, then sails it around the world.

...not that I'm recommending the "hell, just do it" approach. Just saying it's possible, and as the sailor in the boat across from me says "your boat is never ready".

-Will
__________________
danger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2010, 08:11 PM   #26
Ensign
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 4
Default

That's about 10 times the amount of replies I was expecting for such a short amount of time. I m impressed to see that there's a real active community existing in the domain of advising people on sailing.

First, thank you for your advices. I read them all, and if I correctly understood them, the general facts are:

1) Sailing isn't like learning to drive a bicycle, you need skills that are not quickly acquired.

How long does one need to practice sailing before being ready for major weather situations and the kind of stuff you'd face out there around the globe?

2) 1 year is considered racing competition more than a cruise. Then I guess I can extend to 1,5 years, maybe 2 top.

The thing is that part of the reason for this journey is to unplug myself from everyday life, from the society, to have time to open books in something else than what I study at university, to stop thinking about a career, and to force myself to stop taking onto projects while thinking " after this one, I stop " which never happens and educate myself into fields I've tackled and liked, but never had time to turn my attention to with the pressure of everyday life ( cinema, litterature & languages, philosophy, etc. ).

I would like to sail to the most interesting parts of the world, and not inspect the globe with a magnifying glass. The longest stop would probably be europe, and will probably not top two months. Then just peeks of the most famous places of the world, stops here and there for a week, then move on.

In this way I will be able to " see " some of the world, but leave some for next time ( because I do not believe that if I find a way to do this once, I will not repeat it later, may it be when I m 65 ).

3) 100 000$ for two years worth of spending including boat purchase must be available ( I have a Canadian passport, I believe that health insurance is supplied for free. Any Canadians in the room that could confirm that? )

From Project Blue Sphere, there was the interesting idea of picking small jobs at your various destinations. That will however probably seriously limit freedom of travel, but it's an alternative to having the necessary money from end to end for the travel. A question to the experienced sailors in the room:

If I carry all necessary tools with me, could car fixing bring some money, and if so, where? ( I m sure you can't start fixing cars this way in Germany, or whole Europe probably, but perhaps it could be a honest way to earn a few bucks in the Latin America countries without working at a McDo's. Have you ever seen someone else do anything of the sort? By car fixing, I mean any sort, from basic repairs to engine tuning. Could this earn at least on par of let's say, work at the local fast-food? )

4) I found a good ( mind you, from the point of view of someone who has never had any sort of education in the field of sailing and boats ) beginner's book on the Iphone / Itouch. It covers from basics of what a boat is ( construction materials, hull designs, types of boats, advantages and disadvantages of each choice, some basic formulas of velocity, sailing techniques, rules and regulations in major parts of the world, and much more. It's almost 2000 pages in total, and from what I've seen so far, it's worth the 5$ by far and large, especially if you're always on the run. It's called Boater's Pocket Reference.

5) It's a good idea to learn to sail with the stars. That's a great idea, plus I've always liked to learn the ways of the past. You're always surprised to see how complicated the world used to be before technology solved all our brain efforts for us, and much you're actually capable of achieving without technology. Plus just the saying " Sailing With The Stars sounds so... romantic... " Yap, I'll deffinitly learn that.

6) Weapons are useless. Do not carry them. Alright. I'm still not comfortable with that idea, but I suppose you're right.

Does anyone know anything about sponsorship? So far the money requierment is the steepest hill, it shoots the possibility of the travel at least a few years into the future, with a grain of optimism.
__________________
AlexSander is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2010, 09:12 PM   #27
Ensign
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 15
Default

Alex,

I commend you on the reasons to sail. Some things came to me while reading your post.

You could start off, quite immediately and without much stress, by crewing a passage for a boat, many of the larger boats need a decent crew (for insurance reason amongst others). I started off from zero in 2008, absolute zero. While I was travelling (as well as looking at boats) in Thailand, I joined a sailing school, and ended up crewing for the school boat for 2 weeks of racing a big budget boat regatta. Then before I got home I was asked to crew for a captain I had met back home, he wanted crew for a long open ended trip from NZ to Europe. I crew with the boat for 1 month from NZ and on to cruising the southern archipelago of Vanuatu. I nearly bought a PSC 31 Mariah from an American in Port Vila but it fell through, then with a friend I met, we decided to sail back via New Caledonia on a gaff rigged tall ship. When I got home, I bought the captain's old boat, and am learning lots, and am planning my own blue water passage.

If you are unattached and willing to rough it without the psychological net of knowing your floating home is always there, I think you could start off in a similar fashion, even to travel the world, and be open about buying a boat along the way as the random world of possibilities presents you with options. Flights back home to pack the rest of your essentials to live on your new boat, or alternatively escape the horror reality of the sailing life is a great modern luxury we have.

On (1), I don't think you'll be ready until you ride out your first storm. I've never been in one, but I get the feel you wont be prepped till you experience it. Just make sure you're in a solid seaworthy boat when it happens.

(6) I'm out to court on weapons, I doubt I'd carry one myself, but in Confessions of a Long Distance Sailor, Paul writes about being nearly boarded by fishermen/pirates. He pointed his shotgun at them as they were about to board and shook his head at them, and concluded without the gun, they would have come onboard and thrown him overboard to take his boat. Then there's the story of Sir Peter Blake in his environmental expedition, who when below and started exchanging fire with bandits in South America and got himself killed.
__________________
danger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2010, 12:36 AM   #28
Moderator
 
JeanneP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,098
Default

Pirates who are going to throw him off his boat? In his dreams. One more story. He had no reason to believe the guys were pirates. If they were, and were armed, they would have shot him.

Nuts.
__________________

__________________
In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

SY WATERMELON |
MV WATERMELON (New) | Cruiser's Dictionary, free ebook

= Cruiser's Dictionary, North America,
JeanneP is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Looking For Joining/creating Team To Sail Around The World cal General Cruising Forum 9 08-13-2011 11:17 PM
Sail Around World Record magwas The Poop Deck 8 07-19-2010 08:37 PM
Sail Around The World Easward Or Westward? Deniz The Poop Deck 14 11-12-2009 04:38 AM
Sail Around The World - No Contribution Required - 51' Catamaran Alasdair Crewfinder Archives 17 06-05-2009 08:23 PM
I Want To Sail Around The World! imagine2frolic General Cruising Forum 21 10-17-2008 02:37 PM

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

RV & Travel Trailer Communities

Our RV & Travel Trailer sites encompasses virtually all types of Recreational Vehicles, from brand-specific to general RV communities.

» More about our RV Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


All times are GMT. The time now is 06:41 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0