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Old 06-21-2013, 12:58 PM   #101
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Originally Posted by rochepoint View Post
I was disappointed yesterday that the AIS stopped north of Eureka last info Received: 0d 17h 20min ago. Are you experiencing a problem with it or just poor service? Love following your journeys on the google satellite photos. To many of us this is the only way we be able to make this trip.

Have FUN and be SAFE.
Thanks for sharing all the info.
Mike -- see this:

"We need to remember that AIS is primarialy a vessle to vessle safety system. The shore based component does not generally have a real time safety implication.

Ship to ship you can look at other vessles within VHF range, and use that data to determine a best course to work your way through them. It is a addition to RADAR. The vessels will show up on your chart plotter (and or your radar) even if they are not dicernable on RADAR due to land contours, etc... You can see a target, and instantly know its speed, bearing, etc...

So, is AIS reliable? yes it is ship to ship. The land based component is only as reliable as the link to a shore station. No link, no land based AIS. "
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Most of the land based reports in that area appear to come from a radio amateur (ham) station located in Brookings, OR (KF7JCA). I'm guessing that there are not any land based receivers in the Eureka vicinity with internet access once you get out of range of the Brookings station.

(I'm also on the learning curve regarding AIS!)

-Vic
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Old 06-21-2013, 02:28 PM   #102
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Originally Posted by rochepoint View Post
I was disappointed yesterday that the AIS stopped north of Eureka last info Received: 0d 17h 20min ago. Are you experiencing a problem with it or just poor service? Love following your journeys on the google satellite photos. To many of us this is the only way we be able to make this trip.

Have FUN and be SAFE.
Thanks for sharing all the info.
Try This:

SPOT Shared Page
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Old 06-21-2013, 02:29 PM   #103
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They're probably illegal in Europe because of all the chemicals in those things...
Hey wait a minute! Only good tasting chemicals!!
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Old 06-21-2013, 03:43 PM   #104
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Kevin, one thing I've noticed is that when a nearby boat is relatively close (>20 miles) we pick up their AIS signal just fine. At times it blanks out and the boat disappears but it's there most of the time. As the distances get longer the boat disappears more and more, not only from the AIS but from the radar.

When we were headed into Ilwaco there was an AIS fishing vessel several miles ahead of us, also headed in. I set up the Nobletec to show his track into the bar, figuring we could count on his local knowledge as to where to turn in rather than going way out to the furthest approach buoy. We got to his track but then stayed on our original course so we'd have the rollers on our stern rather than on our beam as they would have been if we'd followed his course. It's nice to have that ability to pick from the other skipper's local knowledge.
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Old 06-21-2013, 11:43 PM   #105
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We're going to spend another night here in Eureka, but that's OK because it's REALLY nasty out on the water. The plan at this time is to pull out of here around 0530 Sunday morning and make a run down the coast. That certainly is subject to change as weather conditions change. We need to cross back over the bar as we go out of here so we'll have to be aware of that in addition to the weather out there.

Doug and I walked about 3/4 mile to Costco this afternoon. I picked up a 1.75L jug of Cuervo and some coffee so we wouldn't run out on the rest of the trip. Cuervo is $20 here and ~$52 at home. I wish I could have carried back a dozen or so bottles. We got back to the boat and I took a little snooze while Doug walked downtown. He called me about 4:30 and told me about this neat brew pub he found (we'd heard about it earlier) so I hiked up there and joined him for dinner. Good fish & chips, great oysters and good beer. Life is good.

No pictures today and no videos. Probably none tomorrow but I'll sign back in and respond to any comments.

Smiling GFC (loved those oysters!)
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Old 06-22-2013, 04:10 AM   #106
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It was a beautiful, mild day here in Mare Island and Carquinez Straits. Lots of boats for a Friday, more than even the typical weekend (is it because it's the longest day?). ... Regardless, Monday's forecast calls for cooler temperatures (cooler than the cool seventies experienced today along "the waters") and the possibility of rain (so out of character in our dry, Mediterranean climate). A cool summer so far. Not the typical climate here. Take heed.
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Old 06-22-2013, 07:57 AM   #107
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Kevin, one thing I've noticed is that when a nearby boat is relatively close (>20 miles) we pick up their AIS signal just fine. At times it blanks out and the boat disappears but it's there most of the time. As the distances get longer the boat disappears more and more, not only from the AIS but from the radar.
AIS works on a VHF radio frequency just like your VHF voice radio and radar. VHF signals normally travel in "line of sight" which means once a stations is over the horizon and no reflector (ship - mountain) is between the stations, the signal will be lost.

Except in a bunch of fascinating conditions which are of more interest to amateur radio operators.
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Old 06-22-2013, 10:09 AM   #108
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I have relatives in WA. They are amazed at our liquor prices here compared to what they have to spend.

I wish you would tell what fuel prices you are finding down the coast.
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Old 06-22-2013, 11:09 AM   #109
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I have relatives in WA. They are amazed at our liquor prices here compared to what they have to spend.

I wish you would tell what fuel prices you are finding down the coast.
Fuel Prices

Neah Bay: 3.46
Coos Bay: 3.80
Eureka: 3.79

Total gallons burned so far since Seattle: Approximately 987
Estimated additional gallons to reach Stockton: 565 gal
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Old 06-22-2013, 12:04 PM   #110
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If you're using marinetraffic.com, try vesselfinder.com also. It works better in many areas. shipfinder.com also works, but not as well as the others.

At any rate, you won't find them much until they get south of Ft. Bragg. After that, you should be able to follow them all the way in.
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Old 06-22-2013, 03:02 PM   #111
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AIS works on a VHF radio frequency just like your VHF voice radio and radar. VHF signals normally travel in "line of sight" which means once a stations is over the horizon and no reflector (ship - mountain) is between the stations, the signal will be lost.

Except in a bunch of fascinating conditions which are of more interest to amateur radio operators.
If you figure the antenna on following Seas at 20 ft above the water, and the antenna on a big cargo vessel at 100 ft, that gives a theoretical line of sight range of approx. 17 miles. As I understand the system, the Class A units on the commercial vessels can relay "piggyback" signals from Class B units, but the basic range limitation still applies and you still need nearby shore stations. And, Class B units only transmit at 2W through the VHF. A little signal bending or knife edge refraction can increase the range sometimes, but it's usually minimal.

Spot Messenger doesn't have these limitations, but you don't get a lot of the "cool" stuff that you see with AIS.

Regarding the liquor prices in Washington, lots of voters bought into the "cheaper booze" ads from the big chains that are now making a killing after getting rid of the State liquor stores. The basic prices are sometimes lower, but the taxes are a killer when you get to the checkout stand. Big wake-up for the "something for nothing" set.

Hope the 3 Musketeers are having another nice (i.e., relaxing) day in port before the final big push!
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Old 06-22-2013, 07:29 PM   #112
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Well the 3 Musketeers are having a relaxing day, but it's been frustrating because we want to get underway and can't because of the winds south of here. It looks at this time like we may try to sneak across the bar early tomorrow a.m. and head out and play it by ear to see how far we can make it before we decide to pull in somewhere.

In the meanwhile, much of what we've done today could be considered twiddling our thumbs. The three of us walked up to Englund Marine and poked around in there for awhile. It's interesting to see the difference between a marine store in a fishing town and a marine store in a downtown area. Much more "big boat" stuff here....chain big enough to tow a building with, ball fenders I couldn't fit on my boat, harpoons, gaff hooks with a 5'-6' handle on them, etc.

After that we came back and Stuart changed the fuel filters on the Mans and I gave him a hand.





Check out these bad boys and how clean the engine room is.....




I did take one short video to show you what this area of the harbor looks like.



So that's about all we've done today. We're going to hike back up to the Lost Coast Brew Pub again for dinner.

Bored GFC
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Old 06-22-2013, 09:51 PM   #113
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We just got back from dinner at Gallagher's Irish Pub where I had the best fish & chips I've had in quite awhile. Good place to go if you're ever in Eureka.

Yesterday I had an opportunity to use something I'd read about but never used....fender boards. We had gone to the fuel dock to top off tanks but when we got there they didn't have the typical dock recreational boaters are used to, it was just pilings. The pilings were about 2' diameter and some were broken off just above the water line. There's no way we were going to take this beautiful boat up against wooden pilings so we went back to our original side-tie at the marina to see if they had any fender boards.

They did so we borrowed them and they worked just fine. For those of you who haven't used them before, they can be as simple as a 2x4 about 8' long with some holes drilled through near each end and some lines to tie them to the fenders. We got them rigged as we were heading back to the fuel dock and they worked just fine. Obviously they spread the load of being up against the piling between two fenders.

We had to position the boat so the fender boards were next to one of the pilings but that proved to be easy enough to do. Then we just had to adjust the height of the fender boards on the fenders but that also was a no brainer.

Here's what they look like....
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Old 06-23-2013, 01:37 AM   #114
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Thanks for the videos. After watching her slide along I can see why folks burn the fuel to cruise a little faster. The engines sound wonderful. They just purr and never miss a beat.
Here's wishing you a safe and smooth passage today
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Old 06-23-2013, 03:00 AM   #115
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Stuart, love your MAN's worked a lot with them and togheter with VOLVO the best on the market in this segment. My experiences with IVECO and MERCEDES are a lot less.

Nice ride........

Cees
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Old 06-23-2013, 07:14 AM   #116
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If you use fenderboards....size appropriate to the vessel. 2x4s for up to about 25 feet....then go up in size based on displacement.

A friend gave me one as a spare for my Hurricane Sandy rideout and it was a 2x4...snapped in the middle of the night under pretty mild conditions...I may use 2x4s with the premade rubber ends but screw an on edge 2x4 to the vertical 2x4 to give extra strength AND a little more standoff.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:21 AM   #117
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Looks like the intrepid crew got an early start and are making good time, per Spot Messenger, in fairly mild seas. There is a ham station (KE6WC) in Gualala, a little south of Ft. Bragg, that has an AIS receiver feeding the Internet, so we should start seeing Following Seas on the AIS page, as well.
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Old 06-23-2013, 03:27 PM   #118
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Just showed up on AIS, looks like the home stretch to SF.
Thanks for allowing us to come along.
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Old 06-23-2013, 03:44 PM   #119
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Our pleasure Mike.

Left Eureka at 4:40am and after picking our way down the Humboldt River in the dark, we crossed the bar in fog and darkness, with all eyes on watch, on a 3 knot ebb (after being briefed by locals) and moved out into open ocean without event. Notorious Cape Mendocino, 25 miles our south, allowed us to pass in relatively smooth water and rain.

Off Point Arena now, over 1/2 way, and we have actually had to slow down a knot so as to arrive San Francisco at or after 7:15pm, slack turning to flood on the Golden Gate. Good ride for the most part, little rough here and there, but mostly light chop on a WNW 4' swell. Could take this all day long, and probably will.

Once under the Golden Gate we will hook around to Sausalito and anchor for the night in Richardson Bay.
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Old 06-23-2013, 07:12 PM   #120
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Looks like you're about to pass Pt. Reyes presently. I suppose you know the fishing boat Running Late is heading in your direction.
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