Home' Afloat : AFLOAT June 2015 Contents Take monthly with water June 2015 7
Letter of the month
The Editor ’s choice for letter of the month will
receive a 28" Yachtsman’s Waterproof Bag.
Made from tough double
coated PVC fabric with
seams sewn and tape
welded the Burke bag is
This month’s prize goes to
from Chain Valley Bay NSW.
Got Something to Say?
PO BOX 709 WILLOUGHBY 2068
web forum: www.afloat.com.au
Please keep your letters short. Letters longer than 250 words are
liable to sub-editing at the Editor ’s discretion.
Brisbane: 07 3880 0633
Sydney: 02 9969 2144
Go to our web site yachtsalesaustralia.com for more detailed
information on each yacht –
Bavaria 36’ – $125,000
Bavaria 38’ – $127,500
Bavaria 34’ – $123,500
Bavaria 34’ – $111,900
We’re excited to have just listed
4 quality Bavaria yachts! Call us for
details or an inspection today!
(...what’s more the owners are keen to sell)
AIS – greatest innovation for
shipping since radar
After 50 years of yacht racing I have decided to ramp up the
program a couple of notches and go cruising (a decision heavily
influenced by the deplorable way our sport is being administered,
but that’s a story for another day ...)
This has led to my recently completing a single-handed
voyage from Mackay to Newcastle (if I never see a Sou’easter
again it will be too soon ...) . The voyage actually started in
Darwin and because I work in the shipping industry and have
been a professional or amateur seaman nearly all my life, almost
the first thing I did when preparing the boat was to fit an AIS
transceiver, linked to the plotter.
There were multiple reasons for this – collision avoidance being
only one. Others are it allows family and friends to see where I
am (via websites such as marientraffic.com), plus it allows me to
track friends on other boats to see where we could meet up etc.
All in all, a fabulous little gizmo.
Just how fabulous was brought home to me very strongly
just before I arrived into Newcastle, when we struck heavy fog
in the section just north of Seal Rocks. There is a lot of shipping
traffic through here, with all the bulkies heading north out of
Newcastle so it is quite unpleasant not to be able to see much
beyond the bow!
Fortunately the AIS did a wonderful job, putting all the passing
ships up on the plotter – I had numerous ships going past not
much more than a mile away and all totally unseen. There would
have been zero chance of keeping any useful lookout and without
AIS anything could have happened.
At one point I had two large ships heading straight for me
doing about 12kts, with a CPA (closest point of approach) under
0.3nm, in 15 minutes. Way too close!
I could have gotten on the VHF and squawked at them but as
my Chinese is rusty that would just have caused confusion, so a
90 degree change of course was called for, and it all ended safely.
My point is this: AIS is the greatest thing to happen to
shipping since radar so take my advice and fit it to your boat NOW.
Anybody who knows me will tell you of my complete aversion to
rules (don’t get me started on life jackets ...!).
If I could pass one law, it would be to make AIS compulsory
on all boats over say 5m. It really is that good (and, no, I have
nothing to do with any business that sells or installs AIS).
To copy an old saying “Don’t leave home without it!”
Chris Rabbidge, Yacht Sundowner,
Chain Valley Bay.
Where have all the trees gone?
I attended the Wooden Boat Festival in Hobart and had a
wonderful time looking at all manner of watercraft and marvelling
at the beauty and craftsmanship that was on display. I took in the
talks on boat building, exploration and the bullocks carrying the
logs to be split by the axemen with enough liquid refreshment to
cope with the warm weather and fine music on offer.
You could buy all manner of things made from the beautiful
native timbers that Tasmania has to offer ... and then came the
realisation that it is the very act of building boats that has lead
to the removal of the trees that we all love.
I may have missed it, but I did not see any effort being put
into planting these trees so that future generations can appreciate
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