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Old 01-23-2013, 03:48 PM   #61
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................... I really like the way a vessel shows up with this system and instantly marks your position with emergency services if you have an incident. This would enable faster response which may save your life if your sinking etc.
If your VHF has the DSC emergency feature and if you've connected it to your chartplotter, you already have that available.

A guy at my marina installed a new VHF and decided to test the DSC button. A USCG boat with ten officers on board showed up in about ten minutes. And went right to his slip.
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Old 01-23-2013, 03:54 PM   #62
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AIS intergrates with chart plotters, radar, or both, and is keyed into your radio. With the pricier systems you can have other ship ID's on screen, and delete the tags for boats that are not of interest to you, ie: moving away from you. Smaller "zoomer" boats driven by weekenders won't have AIS most likely, and those are the ones to be leery of in my mind.

If you typically run where there isn't any traffic, or very little of it, then it's an expensive toy to have. But if you're putting in new electronics, it's probably worth it to get it in the package than try to add it later.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:11 PM   #63
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For those using a pc or laptop here is a cool usb gadget. Reciever only for 99. Pretty cool.

Radar Gadgets - AIS Marine radio receiver
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Old 01-23-2013, 06:55 PM   #64
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Marin, you and i have one thing in common and that is we can talk for hours about nothing....chuckle, did you ever hold an elected office?
anyway, you got me thinking and here is a link to a $450 box that does what i suggested i think AIS does and what other posters also indicated.

AMEC CAMINO-101 Class B AIS transponder
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Old 01-23-2013, 06:58 PM   #65
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If your VHF has the DSC emergency feature and if you've connected it to your chartplotter, you already have that available.

A guy at my marina installed a new VHF and decided to test the DSC button. A USCG boat with ten officers on board showed up in about ten minutes. And went right to his slip.
gee golly wow, I'll bet that was a surprise.
But with AIS isnt the information alwayts there so you don't have to even press a button? Seems to me circumstances could arise making it impossible for the button to be activated
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:10 PM   #66
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gee golly wow, I'll bet that was a surprise.
But with AIS isnt the information alwayts there so you don't have to even press a button? Seems to me circumstances could arise making it impossible for the button to be activated
What alerts the SAR resources with AIS when you have a problem?????...they don't give a hoot because your AIS signature from a 40 foot or so trawler stops.

I'm not familiar with the SAR portion of AIS...what triggers SAR on AIS????
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:26 PM   #67
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What alerts the SAR resources with AIS when you have a problem?????...they don't give a hoot because your AIS signature from a 40 foot or so trawler stops.

I'm not familiar with the SAR portion of AIS...what triggers SAR on AIS????
good point. From reading the description of this class b transponder

AMEC CAMINO-101 Class B AIS transponder

it does transmit position identifier but how often or even how i don't know. Dosent really do any good unless one calls requesting assistance i guess. I noticed this box can be used with a chart plotter or a laptop. I found a free application that will do noaa charts on a laptop that could be used with this box and gps to make a laptop into a chart plotter. I like this idea a lot. I can have a large 19 inch screen plotter for only a small investment. Can radar be displayed on a computer screen?....hummmmnn
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:28 PM   #68
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good thread

This discussion is great. I think I may be learning something thanks to you

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Old 01-23-2013, 07:38 PM   #69
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I have had my AIS Class B unit for a few years now and really like the fact that it shows up the ships with name and specifics. The fact that it overlays with heading etc on the Nobeltec is a big bonus.
As I cruise up and down the Coast in and out of the shipping lanes it is very handy to be able to call a ship by vessel name, this will ensure a response.
Being in the Merch I know what little (if any) targets we show and most of the time a lot of the turkeys on the bridge are not keeping a good watch.
VHF chn 16 calls, vessel specific soon gets their head up from the majohng game or head out of the mobile phone.
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:39 PM   #70
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Britt--- In looking at the unit at the link you posted, it doesn't seem to do anything but receive AIS signals and transmit one. There is no mention of any sort of alerting or SAR function.

Also, read the equipment requirements carefully. It looks like you need to buy a number of their "accessories" to make the thing work. So I expect that by the time you get the thing operational on a boat you'd be spending some $600 to $700.
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:55 PM   #71
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Britt--- In looking at the unit at the link you posted, it doesn't seem to do anything but receive AIS signals and transmit one. There is no mention of any sort of alerting or SAR function.

Also, read the equipment requirements carefully. It looks like you need to buy a number of their "accessories" to make the thing work. So I expect that by the time you get the thing operational on a boat you'd be spending some $600 to $700.
Marin, this is all new to me so i could make a mistake but if you look lower down on the page it says this:

<<With the CAMINO-101 you not only

receive AIS broadcasts from surrounding vessels, but can transmit AIS information to be "seen" by surrounding traffic. This puts you in direct communication with other AIS vessels so you can avoid situations that might endanger your vessel and crew>>

Doesn't that say it transmits and recieves?
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:06 PM   #72
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Marin, this is all new to me so i could make a mistake but if you look lower down on the page it says this:

<<With the CAMINO-101 you not only

receive AIS broadcasts from surrounding vessels, but can transmit AIS information to be "seen" by surrounding traffic. This puts you in direct communication with other AIS vessels so you can avoid situations that might endanger your vessel and crew>>

Doesn't that say it transmits and recieves?
I didn't say it doesn't transmit. But it's a "passive transmission." It will transmit a signal so that your boat shows up on another vessel's AIS display in the same way other boats with AIS transponders show up on your display.

Their use of the term "direct communication" is very misleading I think. You are in "direct communication" only in that your boat's symbol, name, and (I assume) course and speed information is displayed on their screen. But you are not "communicating" in any sort of active way. You aren't talking to them, you aren't transmitting any sort of emergency or SAR signal. You're just another dot with data on their screen.

Now, your target on their screen will give them the name of your boat so they can call you on VHF channel 16 if they want to. Or if you buy the right bells and whistles with the thing, it will display your MMSI number if you have one, but they will still have to call you on the radio. The MMSI number just eliminates the preliminary call on 16.

Same thing for you. You see a target on your AIS display, it will give you at least the target's name if you want to call them on your radio.

But that's all this unit will do for you. And it may be all that ANY AIS unit will do for you, I don't know.

The big fancy ones let the operator screen out certain types of targets, they can be set to automatically sound an alarm if a target gets within a certain distance (our radar will do that, too), and so on. But unless I misunderstand the system, AIS is NOT a communication system. It is a target sensing and display system.

It is basically the same thing that's been used in aviation for decades, since at least the 1970s, and the whole concept dates back to the IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) system that was developed and employed in WWII.
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:12 PM   #73
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me neither but i am learning. So far as a result of this discussion i have found free software for charting, ais, gps, for a computer and located the free charts to go with it. Now all i need is to see if i cant overlay radar and weather information on it as well and i will have a nifty little system for a fraction of what the packaged marine systems cost...and all on a nice 19inch screen!

check out this application a sailor turned me on to http://Opencpn.org
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:39 PM   #74
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The Camino 101 AIS unit mentioned above can send a SRM (Safety Related Message) from the software or from a dedicated 'red button'.
The 'red button' and a transmit 'off switch' can be added for an extra $79. I don't know how the message is programmed, but I suspect it is done in the software on a computer. A Google search on AIS SRM will find lots of info.

AIS transponders transmit the vessel's data every 2 to 10 seconds if underway, and every 3 min if docked or anchored. Class B transponders have a longer cycle time than Class A transponders.
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:45 PM   #75
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Thanks for the clarification, Larry.
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:10 PM   #76
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The Camino 101 AIS unit mentioned above can send a SRM (Safety Related Message) from the software or from a dedicated 'red button'.
The 'red button' and a transmit 'off switch' can be added for an extra $79. I don't know how the message is programmed, but I suspect it is done in the software on a computer. A Google search on AIS SRM will find lots of info.

AIS transponders transmit the vessel's data every 2 to 10 seconds if underway, and every 3 min if docked or anchored. Class B transponders have a longer cycle time than Class A transponders.
Looking over information at marinetraffic.com

Cover your Area on the Live Ships Map

looks to me like you can even use a smart phone to send and recieve data.

Seems like more and more marine electronics are beginning to be available for use on a pc which will cerainly make them less expensive.
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:17 PM   #77
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That what Daddyo is using, see post #114 at http://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/s...ay-8298-6.html to allow us to follow his travels.
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:31 PM   #78
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That what Daddyo is using, see post #114 at http://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/s...ay-8298-6.html to allow us to follow his travels.
so we can now do everything with our smart phones......gee whiz, if verizon finds out they will slap another charge on my bill for sure....hummmn...maybe soon we can use a phone via bluetooth to even run the autopilot. Aint technology magical?
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Old 01-23-2013, 11:19 PM   #79
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marinetraffic.com is great, but I would not rely on it for navigation. marinetraffic.com relies on volunteers for for their receiving stations. And ... as they state on their site, the data can be up to an hour old. As I interpret that, there is no guarantee vessels reporting AIS are actually where they appear to be at any point in time.

As to actual use of AIS, I find it a great additional source of information. Just one more tool to aid in navigation. Is it right for everyone, or in all cases, based on the responses here, no. But, I am firmly in the "I like it" camp.

We were headed south from Salt Spring Island in dense fog. AIS allows the chartplotter to track the courses of the ferries and other commercial vessels easily. We could "see" the ferries coming through Active Passage and leaving Swartz Bay before we could see them on radar. The chartplotter displayed names of the vessels and speeds as well as plotting their course and reporting how close we would pass each other based on current course and speed. Radar showed us all the other boats, but not with this level of information.

We left Friday Harbor headed for Port Townsend. It was a beautiful clear day. The closer we got to Port Townsend, the foggier it got. By the time we were approaching the traffic lanes, I could barely see the bow. AIS allows us to see the commercial traffic in the area and stay out of the way. Just to be sure and mention it, we also contact Vessel Traffic to be sure everyone knows we are there and what we are doing when we around the traffic lanes in reduced visibility.

When we are crossing the Puget Sound traffic lanes on the way back to the locks, we can easily determine the speed and distance of all commercial traffic near us. This makes it easier for us to be sure we cross easily and stay out of the way of everybody else. AIS just adds more information and allows us to make more informed decisions.

We originally installed a Comar AIS receiver but replaced it with an Garmin AIS transponder (when we got a good deal). I figure if we are going to benefit from receiving AIS information, we might as well go ahead and transmit too.
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Old 01-24-2013, 08:45 AM   #80
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I guess it's just one of those tools that until you have them and start getting to use them in real-life situations, you can't appreciate.

I watch the ferries closely while at the docks. They will reverse their arrow when they start moving away from the dolphins. If you're passing across their bow, it's nice to know they're headed out. It's also handy like you mention, to see that they'll be coming around a corner towards you shortly and then seeing them overlay on radar.

Well worth it to me.
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