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      Abbreviated rules   07/28/2017

      Underdawg did an excellent job of explaining the rules.  Here's the simplified version: Don't insinuate Pedo.  Warning and or timeout for a first offense.  PermaFlick for any subsequent offenses Don't out members.  See above for penalties.  Caveat:  if you have ever used your own real name or personal information here on the forums since, like, ever - it doesn't count and you are fair game. If you see spam posts, report it to the mods.  We do not hang out in every thread 24/7 If you see any of the above, report it to the mods by hitting the Report button in the offending post.   We do not take action for foul language, off-subject content, or abusive behavior unless it escalates to persistent stalking.  There may be times that we might warn someone or flick someone for something particularly egregious.  There is no standard, we will know it when we see it.  If you continually report things that do not fall into rules #1 or 2 above, you may very well get a timeout yourself for annoying the Mods with repeated whining.  Use your best judgement. Warnings, timeouts, suspensions and flicks are arbitrary and capricious.  Deal with it.  Welcome to anarchy.   If you are a newbie, there are unwritten rules to adhere to.  They will be explained to you soon enough.  


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  1. Don't impede the regatta (rowers)

    If anyone here holds a 'different opinion' from what I posted above - then they should take it up and argue/debate it with the maritime authorities (because that is what I posted, NOT my opinion but the consensus judgement of 3 authorities). . . . . or take a (large fast agile) sail boat on a near miss of a row boat and take them to court claiming they should have given way because they are a power boat and see how you do. The USCG is easy to contact. The RYA said they would be happy to discuss it with any member, but not with a non-member. And DMA will discuss it with either a citizen or someone 'known' (that was their language - meaning someone they know is serious and involved). I see no reason to either defend or debate the maritime authorities judgement - it is what it is, which is a clear and straight forward reading of the colregs without making assumptions or reading 'between the lines'.
  2. Don't impede the regatta (rowers)

    To close the loop on this . . . . The USCG, RYA and DMA (3 maritime authorities I have contacts with) have gotten back to me. TL:DR They all three agreed that: (1) Oar driven vessels are neither power vessels nor RAM. (2) It would be a mistake to assume that rule 18 is an exhaustive listing of all possible crossings. It is nowhere stated that is intended to be an exhaustive list and there are both part C specified light configurations, and fundamental vessel types, not mentioned/listed in 18. (3) The simple language general practical advice suggested, for general recreational vessels, when encountering an oar driven vessel, is that you should assume that (a) you should avoid (both vessels are technically give way) and (b) that the oar driven vessel is “less able than most other vessels”. Local regulations, specific colreg situations (like overtaking) and specific vessel interactions (very fast and able oar vessels crossing very slow and unable sail just for instance) would affect #3. As the USCG wrote “Ultimately, the issue would fall to what would be required by the ordinary practice of seamen, or by the special circumstances of the case (Rule 2), and, the notion that they are less able than most other vessels.” I asked about court cases, and there have ofc been several related to collisions involving oar vessels. In all cases (that anyone I spoke to was aware of) the court took the direct language of the colregs and applied it directly . . . . and did not try or have to make 'ungrounded assumptions' (like oars must be power because they have to be somewhere on the 18 list). It was mentioned to me that the above situation is not an ‘accident’, nor were ‘oars forgotten’. Instead it was actively arrived at as the best solution. Apparently, prior to 1972, oars were specifically mentioned (separate from power driven – eg just for example “any boat designed to be propelled by machinery, oars, paddles or wind action upon a sail for navigation on the water”.
  3. Don't impede the regatta (rowers)

    ^^ The USCG really think they have answered this in their FAQ "Ultimately, the issue of whether a vessel under oars is the give way or stand-on vessel would fall to what would be required by the ordinary practice of seamen, or by the special circumstances of the case (Rule 2), and, the notion that they are less able than most other vessels." Basically you exercise sensible seamanship caution (and any special local authority rules), and all the other colregs apply as normal. Given you were overtaking - yea, you keep clear. If row boats were in fact categorized as power boats (as LB is trying to claim) they would have said so in the FAQ - they confirmed that to me (verbally) today. That is the answer. I asked them to provide me with (written) excruciatingly clear guidance on the issue. Given it is holiday time, it will probably be a while before I get it because they have to pass anything written thru a quite formal review process. I will post it when I get it.
  4. Don't impede the regatta (rowers)

    lol - LB has a decent 'Reader's Digest level" understanding of the rules. I guess that's better than many boaters, and lol perhaps good enough for a few unimportant Australian court cases. But he gets totally lost when at the edges or details of the rules - in here he is 0 for 3 on the last three such topics. Then he tends to make shit up and when he is called on that he gets personal and flails around. It was sort of entertaining seeing him melt down the first time, but it gets boring and a bit sad after that. I mostly have him on ignore, unless I see people quoting him giving bad information.
  5. Don't impede the regatta (rowers)

    sure . . . . https://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName=navRulesFAQ#0.3_13 (FAQ 13 on the USCG navcenter page) It is pretty much a simple straightforward answer to the (apparently common) question of where paddle/rowing craft fit. BTW they guys in the USCG navcenter are a terrific resource. If you e-mail them a question they will usually (perhaps not at Christmas) get back to you with a detailed authoritative answer in a day or two. I had a terrific discussion with them this past year about when it was allowed/desired to make a port turn in a collision situation .
  6. Don't impede the regatta (rowers)

    I might note that the USCG have in fact explicitly addressed the rowing question, and they agree with me, and disagree with your opinion - they state "Ultimately, the issue of whether a vessel under oars is the give way or stand-on vessel would fall to what would be required by the ordinary practice of seamen, or by the special circumstances of the case (Rule 2),"
  7. Don't impede the regatta (rowers)

    mmm, what? The colregs say (in fact the section you reference) "Nothing in these Rules shall interfere with the operation of special rules made by an appropriate authority for roadsteads, harbors, rivers, lakes or inland waterways connected with the high seas and navigable by seagoing vessels. " In plain language that says that local authority rules trumps the colregs. You have cited no report or findings for this collision you keep mentioning . . . . however if you are referring to the 2005 woman's 8 incident - my memory is that was all about negligence on the part of the ferry - not making required sound signals, failing to maneuver after it became obvious the 8 could not avoid, going too fast for the conditions. I do not remember findings about the colreg classification of the 8, but it was quite a while ago; and I would be interested to see you post actual documentation (court summary or official incident investigation report perhaps) on your claims about that case. as an aside, rule 18 clearly does not cover (or intend to cover) all possible interactions on the water. Just for instance swimers are (also) not covered in rule 18. rule 2 is the 'cover it all rule'.
  8. Don't impede the regatta (rowers)

    Actually, in Australia . . . rowing Australia (here is their RA code of conduct) has worked with various harbor authorities (here for example is Brisbane river authority code) and have done exactly that - created a new category for row boats which is not in the colregs - and which are explicitly stated to be 'not power driven'. The definition given is "Recreational passive craft аге non-power driven vessels (for example, rowing boats, kayaks)", and elsewhere "Rowing boats includes апу single, double oг quad scull, pair, four oг eight sweep oаг boat. Sometimes referred to as 'passive craft' in local rules and regulations. Then various specific navigational rules are stated with respect to this new category - many of which look to have been copied from the Port of London authority regulations. And these local harbor rules trump the colregs. These specific rules do include: "а rowing boat to 'keep out of the way' of а sailing boat if there is а risk of collision" . . . . but it is more complicated than a simple order of priority, and there are several specific conditions around docks, and at river crossing points, and about various 'lanes' in rivers.
  9. Paris (Kiwi Spirit) calls it quits

    hmmm . . . . what can we surmise now: 1. Paris certainly has some tenacity (aka stubbornness) but that also seems to be hindering him from learning from his experiences. He still does not get his root problem. 2. I am not sure why his project manager/owners rep is not fired at this point. 3. yea, the reliability and quality of boat systems is generally/often crap when you take them offshore. It is pretty often impossible to fix that with dock/yard time - you need sea time, lots of it, and incremental improvement thru that sea time. 4. the boating industry overall is taking this guy for an expensive ride. 5. Paris is fixated on making acknowledged records, rather than "living the journey" - each to his own, if that is what motivates him so be it, but imho the records he is going for are like 'the fastest one-legged dwarf'
  10. GPS

    Get an ipad (or other good tablet), or short of that a good smart phone. They have better screens and better processors and better software available (apps) than any handheld garmin - by far. The r&D and manufacturing scale of tablets and smart phones is way way way higher than handheld gps and it shows.
  11. Blue water performance cruiser - do they exist?

    Regarding boat size . . . . as mentioned above I personally feel there is a bad zone between mid 50s to about 70 - too big for most cruising couples and too small for decent pro help. Now, ofc there are exceptional people who do make boats in that range work. Both Steve Dashew and Jim Corenman (mentioned above) are exceptional seamen (we know and have sailed with both) . . . . however neither of them actually had personal boats in my bad zone. Steve's were 80' and more like small ships with proper engine rooms, and Jim's absolutely superb Heart of Gold was 50'. Regarding Dashew, I might also note that Linda told Beth that the (last one) power boat was the first of their 'big' vessels which did not scare her. So, this is obviously owner dependent . . . . but I would caution anyone thinking about the say 53' to 70' range to think three times really hard. Second about boat size . . . . . damn they get expensive as they get bigger. If you are at all budget concerned look into that seriously and with cold eyes. It should sort of go up with the cube of length but given the 'big boat premium' probably increases even more rapidly. And 'light' big boats can be even more expensive that heavy ones to properly keep going. If you have bottomless pockets, all well and good, but if the pockets have bottoms then again think three times really hard. Recreational boats (and their equipment) really really suck in terms of QA. Alot of new buyers think they will be able to buy something and it will be reliable like say their car . . . . but it is nothing like that at all. The environment is really harsh, and the QA is much worse than any other I have ever run across (much worse than say scuba or bikes). So no matter how hard you try to get stuff right, there is shit breaking all the time (if you really use the boat). There are also a lot of people in the industry who think 'marine' is a license to charge exorbitant prices - which as I told several contractors I could stomach if the quality was proportionally high but almost inevitably it is not. Most blue water owners soon find they are better doing most of their own work because they know more and take more care than the 'pros'. Boat ownership is honestly very frustrating for someone like me who wants stuff right and working. Personally, in a very general sense, I think low 40's makes sense for a couple doing 'normal' blue water work and high 40's for more hard core (high latitudes and really long distances) work. 40' does in fact give you plenty of room and is more than capable of crossing oceans and a lot of freedom (slips and draft and costs). As to draft . . . . deeper helps (righting moment and leeway) and in our second boat we personally wanted the deepest we could felt would not limit us too much . . . and we decided that was 7'. We ofc know people with deeper (9' and in a few cases 12') but they do face more constraints (in haul out options and remote harbors and passes and bars). As to 'racy' and 'cruising' . . . . that is all a matter of personal preference, with a full range/spectrum of compromises . . . . . my only caution here is beware of those who say you can 'have it all' (AC & big genset and 'racy' is a very very difficult mix for instance - it can in fact be done but only in ways that introduce other compromises). You have to adapt your lifestyle to being a seaman no matter what you do. Our 2nd boat was much more performance oriented, because I found one of my joys in cruising was sailing on and off the hook, into and out of small tight harbors - I really enjoyed that skill and challenge - but few other cruisers do or care about that. Hawk was decently fast on passage, however fast passage times honestly did not really matter to me - you were out there and it did not really matter much if it took an extra 12 hours or not . . . and fast passages probably have generally more to do with lwl and the skipper/crew than the boat (other than lwl). Beth's offshore watches were usually faster than mine, while mine were faster coastal sailing - had to do with how we managed fatigue. As to buying a 'turn key' boat . . . . it is rare - almost no matter how complete the boat is you usually have to do significant work to upgrade and get the boat how you want it. But I will note that the guy who bought Hawk bought her in the fall and left the next spring to (successfully) go thru the northwest passage without doing much to the boat. But I sold her in full 'ready to go to Greenland' status with everything on board I had used that summer up in greenland & he was a professional commercial ship engineer who (I believe) shared many/much of our fit out philosophy. As a final note - blue water cruising almost always turns out to be not at all what people expected. The magazines and vblogs mostly completely mislead what it is like. And it is nothing like say a 10 day charter in the BVI either. It is very very hard to know if you will like it or not without actually giving it a go. You might hate it, or you might like it for reasons entirely different than you image now. So, just realize it is pretty much a crap shoot.
  12. Blue water cruising books

    I found 3 categories of books useful. #1 were how to references we used while actually cruising. the two bibles in this category (for me) were Cornell's cruising routes and Nigel's repair book. #2 Were 'inspirational' books. Honestly in this category the ones I found most useful were 'idiots who made it' . . . when we hit a hard patch they allowed me to say to myself "if that idiot could do this I damn well can'. Tania was my prime 'go to' in this category for our first trip, and Alvah for our second one. (to be clear, we know and like and respect both of these people . . . . its just that lets say I could imagine us betting better prepared than they were ). In the more classic definition of inspiration were David Henry Lewis and Griffiths and Jerome Poncet and Bernard Moitessier. And the #3 group were the 'what do we need to know to fit out the boat and be prepared before we take off' - Dashew and Pardey and Hiscock were the bibles, still extremely useful, but are all quite dated. Beth's book is more recent but still dated. You can get some very valuable 'philosophy about whats important' from them all though. I am not aware of anything really current on this - perhaps the best 'modern' sources are the racing OSR's and related documents - like various racing medical kit lists.
  13. Tanker hits Destoyer, how is this possible?

    What the Pentagon wants to avoid discussing is #1 report they are wasting (vs effective operations benchmarks) $25b/year in 'back office' operations (eg like property and inventory management), and #2 wasted like $22b on the Zumwalt class with hideously poor project management, etc (those are only the tip of the inefficiency iceberg) . . . . . they do NOT want congress and the tax payers to realize they could do vastly more/better with their current funding and don't need 'more' - in fact could do vastly better even with a cut if they shaped up.