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Old 04-26-2016, 07:00 AM   #141
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Originally Posted by markpierce View Post
I've noted that some boaters don't always use their AIS when underway. So, why have it and not use it? Is it perceived as an invasion of privacy?
Are you taking into account that most boaters don't have AIS and many who do have receive only? I suspect that if every boat on the water was transmitting an AIS signal, it would be so cluttered and confusing that many would just ignore their screens or turn them off.

I suspect also that since many sailboaters don't turn on their VHF, they would be pretty unlikely to run an AIS transmitter.
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Old 04-26-2016, 07:10 AM   #142
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.............................. I question why so many boaters don't seem to be able, or know how to turn their AIS transmitters off. I went into Baltimore a couple of weeks ago and had over a dozen AIS collision warnings on my plotter. All from docked boats.
Although it's not its intended purpose, many people leave their AIS in transmitting mode so their friends and relatives can track their progress on cruises.
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Old 04-26-2016, 07:12 AM   #143
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Some AIS units cannot be turned off.
Anything that runs on electricity can be shut off.
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Old 04-26-2016, 07:27 AM   #144
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........................... we were cruising back from south Fl. and on the ICW the unit alarmed with a notice of collision in 6 min as I was being overtaken by a 47' boat doing 35knts. With the name of the boat right there it was easy to call him and ask for a slow pass using the boat name and mentioning his overtake speed and letting him know just how far I was ahead of him i was, he responded immediately and gave a nice, well coordinated slow pass..
A very good reason to have AIS even if only a receiver. The only problem is, the boat approaching you may nor either or may have turned it off as in some of the posts above.

I have been severely waked by these large, fast boats on the ICW (I'm sure I'm not the only one). Knowing who is coming and how fast and how big would be great.
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Old 04-26-2016, 07:43 AM   #145
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That's true. I saw yours the other day docked at Salmon Bay. That doesn't mean you are on board. But if someone sees on AIS that you are on the move, sees your blog is updated, and your facebook status says what a good time you are having wherever, then someone can be reasonably sure you aren't home. Finding an address on the internet is easy. Using google street view shows someone what it looks like. For me, not broadcasting my AIS position is part of an overall personal risk management plan. Just like not updating a blog in real time, not showing my SPOT location on a blog, not updating social media while away from home, and having a home security system. Maybe I'm paranoid or giving criminals more credit than they deserve, or both. Burglary rings use facebook status to target victims. AIS is similar location based information. They may never catch on, but if or when they do, I won't be a target.
I agree that we have to be careful, but if your boat is federally documented, your home address is available on-line so if your boat is seen docked in Beaufort, NC, a potential thief can look it up and see that you live in Georgetown, SC and deduce that you're not home and won't be home for a few days.

I have a neighbor mow my lawn, bring in my mail and move the cars around. I have lights on timers and I have a security system. And insurance.

I note my progress in real time on Facebook, but only to a select group of friends and relatives. Once we're back home I make it available to whoever wants to read it.
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Old 04-26-2016, 09:04 AM   #146
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I agree that we have to be careful, but if your boat is federally documented, your home address is available on-line so if your boat is seen docked in Beaufort, NC, a potential thief can look it up and see that you live in Georgetown, SC and deduce that you're not home and won't be home for a few days.

.
Not true in all cases. For instance, boats owned by LLC's or Corporations.
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Old 04-26-2016, 09:16 AM   #147
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Get it.

Although for your example of when it would be really useful I suggest finding out how many of those tugs have it. When in BC I noticed that the tugs with log booms more often than not did not have AIS. In my view it should be mandatory for all commercial vessels, but I don't think that's the case at this point of time.
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Old 04-26-2016, 09:19 AM   #148
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I'm thinking about getting an AIS receiver/transponder thingamajig. Read this whole post and think I want it. I travel the ICWG a lot and find that the tug traffic can get hairy sometimes-like this past weekend heading East into a 35 mph wind and a tugs with a 6 pack tows coming at you around a bend, getting crossways in the channel. Avoided trouble by reducing speed from 7knts to 0 knts. Also, would like the other vessels to know who and where, etc., I am. It's also easier to communicate by vhf if I know the vessel's name, heading,etc. Unfortunately, I'm ignorant about this technology and do not want to buy the wrong thing or over spend for a new gadget that I can really do without. I want it but I don't need it type of thing. If you know what I mean. Any suggestions?
Having cruised the ICWW with and without AIS, i would never be without it again. Barge traffic is a fact of life here. It's not unusual to meet three or four lined up close to each other, and it's helpful to be able to contact them by name, not location. Also, with blind curves, I can see a boat on AIS long before I have visual contact. If I'm overtaking, I know what his speed is so I don't have to guess whether I have time to pass before the next boat / lock / bridge / etc. If I'm meeting another boat close to a bridge with a narrow channel, it's nice to know whether one of us will get there ahead of the other, of if I need to change speed to avoid meeting under the bridge.

At night, it's good to be able to immediately identify another boat as a 100' pleasure boat going 14 kts as opposed to a 600' barge going 6 kts.

My suggestion: get it if you can.
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Old 04-26-2016, 09:52 AM   #149
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Doug, if you decide on just a receiver, I will give you one when I come through La.

ALL commercial traffic on the gulf ICW, in my experience, (and most of the locks/bridges) have it.
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Old 04-26-2016, 09:53 AM   #150
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Not true in all cases. For instance, boats owned by LLC's or Corporations.
Or if you use a PO Box as the address...
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Old 04-26-2016, 11:41 AM   #151
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Get it.

Although for your example of when it would be really useful I suggest finding out how many of those tugs have it. When in BC I noticed that the tugs with log booms more often than not did not have AIS. In my view it should be mandatory for all commercial vessels, but I don't think that's the case at this point of time.
In the US I believe it is mandatory for commercial vessels. At least here in Puget Sound.

Get it. I have a receiver but no transponder. I not only want to see them, but even more I want them to see me. I am looking at adding one.
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Old 04-26-2016, 11:48 AM   #152
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I have done a lot of GICW cruising with and a lot without AIS. AIS is a wonderful resource. I got it somewhat on accident. I needed a new VHF and it just so happens there was one on sale with an AIS receiver in it. So I bought it and hooked it up. I am receive only but it sure is nice. The barge traffic appreciates the coordination when you call them on the radio.
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Old 04-26-2016, 12:02 PM   #153
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In the US I believe it is mandatory for commercial vessels. At least here in Puget Sound.

Get it. I have a receiver but no transponder. I not only want to see them, but even more I want them to see me. I am looking at adding one.
Not all commercial vessels are required....have to check specific caregories till you get to a certain tonnage.

Maybe to use certain services but in general, I doubt the whole sound would be exclusive legislation.

It sure is a great idea...but has so many issues both in implementation and tech so far...that it still requires absolute trust in you radar in limited vis over AIS, and in good vis....a good set of eyes, situational awareness and decent radio skills offset it's importance.

Luxurious in some situations, just electronic eye candy in most.
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Old 04-26-2016, 12:12 PM   #154
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Are you taking into account that most boaters don't have AIS and many who do have receive only? I suspect that if every boat on the water was transmitting an AIS signal, it would be so cluttered and confusing that many would just ignore their screens or turn them off.

I suspect also that since many sailboaters don't turn on their VHF, they would be pretty unlikely to run an AIS transmitter.
Yes, I knew most pleasure boats don't have AIS. I'm one of the most.

Whenever widespread use becomes a reality, boats and ships will make more use of screening to reduce the number of contacts in busy areas. Sort of defeats the purpose.

In my local waters, ships are required to check-in with the USCG on channel 14 when leaving port and passing by certain landmarks. Monitoring the channel gives one heads-ups.
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Old 04-26-2016, 12:51 PM   #155
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Digital Yacht from Parks at Hopkins Carter, $579, I also added a dual antenna, I think about $150.

I don't like the use of using a splitter.

Also, the reality is, having a transceiver, you do not know the close calls you missed because you are sending.

I would NOT travel anywhere without it. If the engine is running, it's on.
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Old 04-26-2016, 01:09 PM   #156
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I have it. It's well worth it. Comes in VERY handy in the barge heavy TX/LA ICW.

Shrimp boats don't seem to have AIS. I met up with one in the middle of the Gulf of Mex in the middle of the night. Glad the radar was working.
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Old 04-26-2016, 01:14 PM   #157
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Whenever widespread use becomes a reality, boats and ships will make more use of screening to reduce the number of contacts in busy areas. Sort of defeats the purpose.

That seems to be a common assumption, but I don't know that it would be true... nor why.

At ranges where AIS is particularly useful around here, I seldom have enough boats nearby (even if I counted all the fishboats without it) that zooming in wouldn't solve. IOW, the screen wouldn't be cluttered any more than the radar is.

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Old 04-26-2016, 01:19 PM   #158
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Chalk up another convert to having an AIS transmitter/receiver. While crossing the Gulf of Mexico from Isla Muheres to Clear Lake Texas this past week, we had one on my friends motorsailer. It was very useful in tracking ships we passed in the night and being able to see the closest point of approach. A couple of times we adjusted course to put more space between us. It can be very difficult to see the exact course some boats are taking at night. When passing through the oil rigs at night we would be able to tell what were rigs and what were boats and how close we would come to them even when we had to close up the cockpit due to some rain squalls that came through making it harder to see. Also, as we were coming into Bolivar roads a tanker was able to identify us and call us by name to tell us he intended to turn and cross in front of us in order to get to the anchorage. Without AIS he probably would have just turned and given us quite a fright. Instead, the pros will call you by name and treat you with courtesy. I will be putting one on my boat but will probably not have it on in all circumstances.

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Old 04-26-2016, 01:24 PM   #159
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I have it. It's well worth it. Comes in VERY handy in the barge heavy TX/LA ICW.

Shrimp boats don't seem to have AIS. I met up with one in the middle of the Gulf of Mex in the middle of the night. Glad the radar was working.
Exactly my point, shrimper, tug/barge, or freighter.....you never know what you might hit or be hit by with just AIS.....So vigilance is required with or with out it.

Handy yes, but for a smaller recreational boat not normally in heavy shipping (including barge traffic)..... it is basically not providing info on 90% of the targets.

I just spent the last 4 days northbound on the Chesapeake.....99% of the near passes I encountered were with all vessels with no AIS. Just by listening to the VHS, I pretty well knew all the names f the traffic that DID have AIS because they were calling each other and making security calls.

I have and use the receive only AIS in my radio, but it is such a tiny part of what is going on....if it wasn't there 99 percent of the time, I wouldn't miss it. That 1% of the time, like radar....I would probably run out and buy it.....

I more definitely would if I was in a really hairy area or traveled more at night or bad weather....but my experience with it is based on the last 10,000 miles of the Delaware River, Chesapeake, Norfolk Naval, ACIW between Norfolk and Ft Pierce, Fl. Some would think those areas as busy...but they really aren't unless you are in the bad areas every day.

So if it sounds like I have mixed feelings about it.....you are right on track.
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Old 04-26-2016, 01:34 PM   #160
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That seems to be a common assumption, but I don't know that it would be true... nor why.

At ranges where AIS is particularly useful around here, I seldom have enough boats nearby (even if I counted all the fishboats without it) that zooming in wouldn't solve. IOW, the screen wouldn't be cluttered any more than the radar is.

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Get back to us tommorrow, maybe then, ...
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