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Old 07-22-2015, 02:18 PM   #1
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AIS in dead zone

We cruise offshore from the West Florida "Forgotten coast, Carrabelle, to be exact. I just installed an AIS transmit/receive system in preparation for a Bahamas/Caribbean trip in January. Problem is that there are no AIS ground stations or apparently AIS boats in range. How do I determine that my system actually is working? --Tim
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Old 07-22-2015, 03:28 PM   #2
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Go out to live ship and see if you boat shows up and then add a pic and other information. All commercial traffic must have Class A AIS, so you should be able to pick them up. Remember AIS is a "collision avoidance system."
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Old 07-22-2015, 04:00 PM   #3
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Or look yourself up on something like Vessel Tracker
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Old 07-22-2015, 05:49 PM   #4
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Or check the area in marinetraffic.com. You could see you, several ships, tugs, whatever.


It's not foolproof, since they rely on volunteer receiver stations that forward VHF data to the Internet site...


But if necessary, you can also look up volunteer stations in the area, too, to see if that's an issue.


-Chris
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Old 07-22-2015, 06:20 PM   #5
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With Carrabelle being s prime jump off spot for loopers and others doing the crossing and with some commercial fishing vessels this time of year you're bound to see another ais boat. When you do give them a shout on the vhf and ask them if they have you too. We crossed coming north around the 1st of June and had a few ais targets off and on all the way up. Look for any research vessel as well. They usually have it. You will love it as an addition.
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Old 07-22-2015, 09:15 PM   #6
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Thanks, guys. It appears that there are no ground stations nearby - Marinetraffic and Vesseltracker don't show any. If anyone comes to Carrabelle with an AIS, do call me at 931 636-1122 and I'll turn mine on. I'm docked about three miles from the entrance, and half a mile from the marinas.
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Old 07-22-2015, 10:00 PM   #7
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Maybe try Siltech AIS.........
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Old 07-23-2015, 07:10 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkeithlu View Post
Thanks, guys. It appears that there are no ground stations nearby - Marinetraffic and Vesseltracker don't show any. If anyone comes to Carrabelle with an AIS, do call me at 931 636-1122 and I'll turn mine on. I'm docked about three miles from the entrance, and half a mile from the marinas.

I'd have thought you'd be able to pick up the VHF signals direct, if you're that close to open water. Or maybe you're antenna is blocked -- by buildings or whatever?

We can see targets up to about 20 NM.... and that's a setting in our system (can choose to ignore transmitters over X, Y, Z miles, etc. and 20 NM is our max).


Take a ride, go find some AIS targets, have a yak with 'em while you're at it!

-Chris
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