sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Paper charts essential for the prudent sailor - or are they?
Paper charts essential for the prudent sailor - or are they?


'Maddalena Island on Admiralty chart'    .

Ocean Cruising Club Award winners Neil & Ley Langford are longtime, tech-savvy cruising sailors who install and manage most of the systems and technology onboard their New Zealand-designed Crystal Blues. They are currently in South East Asia. Recently Neil set about reviewing their collection of paper charts and disposing of some. But what he discovered instead was surprising in more ways than one:

With The Admiral away in Singapore on a visa run, I was tasked with reviewing our huge collection of paper charts, and disposing of those we don't need to carry. However, as I sorted through the first of many chart packs, I had a real panic attack - how could we get rid of these ? They're a treasure trove of information.

For me, they're also an instant connection to the past, rightfully carrying the names of often famous cartographers and navigators. Many of these charts are beautiful works of art - the land mass is carefully drawn, shaded and defined, not just filled with a color wash as we see on our modern electronic systems.

Onboard Crystal Blues we keep a paper log and an electronic log, so we have a trail of position fixes available if needed. For years we've told ourselves that if the electronics died we'd transfer those position fixes to paper charts and work from there with conventional navigation tools. But would we really ?

madallena on ipad -  .. .   Click Here to view large photo

Look at the images immediately above and below this paragraph, then compare them with the old paper chart image at the top - its the same area - there is so much more information readily available in the modern electronic systems.

madallena on ipad zoomed -  .. .   Click Here to view large photo

Fact is that we have four fully functional electronic chart systems on board - two computers that run Transas Navigator and Open CPN, plus two iPads running Navionics HD and various other charting or mapping programs. How much redundancy do we need ? What could cause all four of those systems to fail at the same time ? Nothing short of a nuclear holocaust or perhaps a meteor strike I think.

So, should we continue to carry around hundreds and hundreds of paper charts, most of which are inevitably out of date and not corrected ?

How Do They Compare ?

To dig a little deeper, I selected one of our stored paper charts for the Fiji group, an early black & white original print with beautiful hand corrections running through to (gulp) 1988. We probably obtained this from a merchant ship that was clearing old charts - we have some that came from military vessels as well.

Of course the first deficiency is the updates - no cruising sailor I've ever met has carried properly updated paper charts for their entire collection. The second deficiency is accuracy. That Fiji chart that I selected was first published in 1878, with large corrections in 1915, 1939 and 1962.

Then we had small corrections published through to 1988, when my copy was originally purchased.

However when I compare it to the information available on Transas Navigator or Open CPN there is simply no way that I would want to work with those paper charts.

Astrolabe on Admiralty chart -  .. .   Click Here to view large photo

Astrolabe Transas -  .. .   Click Here to view large photo

I found the same issues with almost every chart I reviewed. They are beautiful works of art, but too much information is simply missing, unless you carry every detailed chart on issue.

Another Comparison:
Ascension Island -  .. .   Click Here to view large photo

Here above is Ascension Island, a tiny dot in the South Atlantic. In the North west corner is Clarence Bay, the subject of this comparison.

Ascension Island detailed Admiralty -  .. .   Click Here to view large photo

When I look at the detail of Clarence Bay on the paper chart there is a multitude of sounding right into shallow water, clearly intended to support small boat handling in the harbour. This chart was properly updated and notated through to 1985, but is clearly well out of date now, being based on a 1909 engraving. Lovely work though !

Ascension Island Transas detail -  .. .  

Here is the same area from our Transas Navigator charts. Very few soundings in the harbour, though it has enough detail to support prudent navigation. I think the Transas chart is showing its 'big ship' heritage here.

Ascension Island detail HD Navionics iPad -  .. .  

The real surprise is the data found in the Navionics HD package on iPad. Good detail on the harbour right into shallow water, mooring buoys shown. lead lines etc. Here is Navionics showing they understand the needs of small boat operators.

So some paper charts have more shore line detail and sounding density than any of our electronic versions, but that detail is usually beyond what we need.

Our Decision:
For years we've lived by the policy that we would always have detailed paper chart coverage, to backup the electronic systems onboard. That policy has now changed. We've decided to carry only large scale paper charts that provide oceanic coverage over perhaps several sheets, for use in passage planning and as emergency plotting aids. The result is that we've been able to remove a stack of charts almost eight inches high ! Most of course have gone to good homes on other boats.

No GPS - How About Glonass Then ?
Sensors -  .. .  
It is a frequent topic of conversation among cruising sailors, but I'm guessing 99% of us would be in serious trouble if the GPS satellite system failed (or was turned off) during an ocean passage. How good are your sextant skills ? Possibly better than mine I'd say.

However the latest electronic position sensors for the yachting market (from B&G / Simrad / Lowrance) will provide a position fix from the the GPS system, but also from the Russian Glonass system, and from the European Galileo system, providing a large degree of redundancy. Others will surely follow. I was also impressed to see that the latest iPad and iPad Mini also feature Glonass sensors to supplement the standard GPS positioning system.


BadElfGPS -  .. .   Click Here to view large photo
Bad Elf GPS for wifi-only iPad:
Finally, a word of caution for sailors who are contemplating an iPad purchase. Over the past few weeks I've run a number of iPad training sessions for cruising folk here at Yacht Haven Marina. Unfortunately more than one has purchased the wi-fi only version of the iPad, which has no GPS positioning system - it cannot work properly with any navigation system.

If you want to use the iPad for navigation, you must buy the model that has 3G/4G network capability. Only those models have the necessary position sensors. If you do unfortunately have the wi-fi only version, you can add GPS capability to the unit by using the excellent Bad Elf external GPS module. Two versions are available, one with a cable connection and the other using Bluetooth.

To follow the travels and experiences of Ley and Neil Langford on their cruising yacht Crystal Blues, go to their Blogspot where they first published this insightful article.


by Neil Langford, SV Crystal Blues/Sail-World

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=107909

11:00 PM Thu 28 Mar 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
Practical

Related News Stories:

29 Mar 2013  Sail clear of these three dangerous wreck symbols!
16 Mar 2013  Getting your boat to shine in all weathers
12 Mar 2013  Secure attachment innovation iPad/iPhone for sailing boats
11 Mar 2013  T200 thermal camera - ideal for smaller sailing boats
10 Mar 2013  Use the Magic of S.T.O.P. for Safer Sailing Navigation
09 Mar 2013  Product of the Week: Shipstik - solving your berthing problems
08 Mar 2013  After Hurricane Sandy: How to get around the 'new' waterways
06 Mar 2013  Stop shouting and get headsets - that work!
24 Feb 2013  Product of the Week: Removable sailing pouches
24 Feb 2013  Product of the Week: Removable sailing pouches
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World

Catch the live coverage of the Leg 4 Finish in Auckland. Check the video timer for a countdown to the start of coverage and the expected race finish time. Sail-World is updating the on the water action and weather - which has compressed the lead four boats ... [more]  

Mapfre took the gun, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing was second and Dongfeng third. Photographer Ainhoa Sanchez was in the air over Auckland for 2014 – 2015 Volvo Ocean Race, and provided these images. ... [more]  

Photographer Ainhoa Sanchez was in the air as the fleet approached Auckland for the end of leg 4 for the 2014 – 2015 Volvo Ocean Race, and provided this gallery of images. ... [more]  

The wind has switched half turn and boats are now beating upwind to the finish, MAPFRE has held their lead and with the change in direction look quite safe. Team Alvimedica who was catching up at speed has slowed right up, caught in light winds behind Tiritiri Matangi island. With less than 10nm to go to finish and a fair 10kt wind holding, the slow patch looks to have been removed from equation ... [more]  

Racing in second place in the Barcelona World Race, the Barcelona sailor Guillermo Altadill and Chilean José Muñoz passed Cape Horn (67° 17' 35 W) this morning at 2h12 UTC (3h12 am in Barcelona, 11h12 pm of the 27th of February in Chile), after 58 days, 14 hours and 12 minutes of racing since their start from the Catalan capital on 31 December 2014. ... [more]  

On Sunday March 8th 2015, the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta will close out the final night of music with one of the most distinctive performances to date. DJ Natty Rico will be the final act to grace the regatta stage during the 'Legendary Party' following Kool and the Gang. His unique blend of saxophone playing and DJ skills will have your jaw dropping in amazement. ... [more]  

Barcelona World Race - Cape Horn beckons for second and third placed Neutrogena and GAES Centros Auditivos. While the two IMOCA 60s are expected to pass at speed with around six hours of separation, in what might be considered favourable conditions for one of the most inhospitable and complicated corners of the Barcelona World Race, amidst the long hours of stress and fatigue ... [more]  

SCYA Manning Regatta – The youth-heavy event is the fourth and last stop of the Shadden Series for teenagers under 19 not yet in college and is also a move-up regatta under the advancement guidelines of the International Naples Sabot Association. ... [more]  

US Sailing’s Rolex Yachtsman & Yachtswoman of the Year Awards 2015 ceremony celebrated the sailing accomplishments of Terry Hutchinson (Annapolis, Md.) and Stephanie Roble (East Troy, Wisc.) as it returned to the iconic Model Room at the New York Yacht Club in Manhattan after having moved to the west coast for the past three years. ... [more]  

For the Finn World Masters in Kavala, Greece pre-registration is open. So far 130 Masters have entered. 2015 will be the first time the Worlds Masters have been held in Greece. ... [more]  

The website for the 2015 Finn Open and Junior Europeans in Split, Croatia, is now live, with online entry open. The last time the Finns had an event there the wind did not cooperate and the fleet ended up sailing some races as the sun set. ... [more]  

RORC Caribbean 600 – Four Figaro II teams, all from the Guadeloupe Grand Large sailing academy, are racing in this year's event. 18 sailors from the offshore racing academy are racing on four identical yachts and have high aspirations for the future; the Solitaire du Figaro, Route du Rhum or the Everest of offshore solo-sailing, the Vendée Globe. ... [more]  

After having moved to the west coast for the past three years, US Sailing’s Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year Awards ceremony returned to the iconic Model Room at the New York Yacht Club in Manhattan to celebrate the sailing accomplishments of Terry Hutchinson (Annapolis, Md.) and Stephanie Roble (East Troy, Wisc.). ... [more]  

If, in the end, the Pacific gave up race leaders Cheminées Poujoulat without too much of a fight and since Wednesday morning the Atlantic, in turn, has opened its fastest toll-free lane north east to Bernard Stamm and Jean Le Cam, the Pacific seems rather more keen to hold on to second and third placed Neutrogena and GAES Centros Auditivos. ... [more]  

America's Cup Defender Oracle Team USA and Challenger, Artemis Racing lined up for a series of try-outs on San Francisco Bay. Videographer John Navas was shoreside with a new high resolution video camera and provided these videos of the training sessions and hook-ups. ... [more]  

The HPYD conference is jointly organised by The Royal Institution of Naval Architects (NZ) and The University of Auckland and will be held at the Marine Event Centre in Auckland to coincide with the Volvo Ocean Race stopover. It attracts some of the world’s most preeminent yacht designers and is recognised as one of the top three conferences in this area internationally. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Ryan Houston - How Alvimedica's chemistry works *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com NZL
Ryan Houston is a watch captain aboard Team Alvimedica. He sailed in two previous editions of the Volvo Ocean Race – in 2008-09 aboard Delta Lloyd and 2011-12 on the incident plagued Volvo 70, Sanya. With the switch to the one design, ruggedly constructed Volvo 65 for this race many of the issues that bedevilled the competitors and organisers in the previous races appear to have been resolved. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Dave Swete - Alvimedica's race so far *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com NZL
The Volvo Ocean Race and its forerunner, the Whitbread Round the World Race, used to be dominated by Kiwi crews. In the current edition, there are just three New Zealanders competing. Two of those are on Team Alvimedica, the US and Turkish flagged entry. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2015 – Victory in the fourth leg was so close that Dongfeng Race Team skipper Charles Caudrelier (FRA) could almost taste it on Thursday, but with just over 500 nautical miles (nm) to go, he was taking nothing for granted ... [more]  

The 2014-15 Etchells North American Midwinter East Series wraps up in Miami this weekend with the three-day Jaguar Southeastern Midwinter Regatta for the Schoonmaker Cup. The Jag, as the series has become better known, attracted over 50 boats for the four regatta series. ... [more]  

RORC Caribbean 600 – By the morning of day four, 19 yachts had completed the race and 43 yachts were still racing. Last night the lighter southerly wind had switched back to an easterly direction with substantial cloud activity providing changeable conditions for the competitors ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Team Alvimedica hopes to use Coastal Classic tricks *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com NZL
Sail-World’s NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell spoke with David Swete one of three New Zealand crew in the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race Swete was reporting in from Team Alvimedica the US and Turkish flagged entry, currently lying in fourth place on leg 4 of the race from Sanya China to Auckand. ... [more]  

Oracle Team USA AC45 Turbo Feb 25 Training images provided by pressure-drop.us. Flat flood conditions and winds 12-18 and then picking up late in the day. Boat is matching the olars established with the AC 72's. ... [more]  

America's Cup: Emirates Team New Zealand gears up on less money *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com NZL
Emirates Team New Zealand has pushed the start button on their campaign for the 35th America's Cup, with a budget that has been reduced by an estimated 20% from the San Francisco campaign. The decision to relocate the Venue for the Match to the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda has resulted in reduced attractiveness to sponsors, which in turn has led to cuts in the program ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2015 – Dongfeng has pulled another mile from Abu Dhabi, and MAPFRE looks like they have been making some good gains on the two leading boats. ... [more]  

AWT Goya Pro Cabo Verde kicks off in style! by American Windsurfing Tour
Last night saw the Opening Party for the Goya Cabo Verde Pro contest here on the beautiful island of Sal. In attendance were some of the biggest names in windsurfing along with local watermen, business men and dignitaries. The true spirit of the American Windsurfing Tour came out in force which was both mirrored and complimented by the spirit of this island ... [more]  

With Cheminées Poujoulat making good progress up the Atlantic, making close to 18kts, 120 miles SW of the Falklands, Cape Horn marks the frontier between the two different worlds inhabited by skippers on the Barcelona World Race. ... [more]  

Emirates Team New Zealand has announced a team restructuring ahead on next week's expected announcement that the Qualifier for the 2017 America's Cup will be held in Auckland. The statement issued by the team early this afternoon, indicates the team has secured substantial funding and sponsorship for its 2017 campaign. ... [more]  

2015 CYC Midwinters Race – Pictures by pressure-drop.us ... [more]  

CYC Midwinters Racing – 'Mid Winter racing is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are gonna get' ~Forrest Gump~Skipper of SS Jenny ... [more]  

Laser Standard Men’s World Championships (June 29-July 8), the Laser Masters World Championships (July 10-18), and the Laser Radial Youth World Championships (August 14-20) are being hosted by the CORK. ... [more]  

Kaenon's Steve Rosenberg talks with Team SCA crew members Sally Barkow and Annie Lush before the start of Leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race. Both are former Olympic match racers, who have switched to ocean racing. Both are wearing the new prescription Kaenon sunglasses in the 40,000nm race around the world. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2015 – Overnight Ian Walker reported getting ahead of Charles Caudrelier’s Dongfeng only to have Mother Nature take it all back again, getting caught under a rain cloud in light winds ... [more]  

Barcelona World Race - A time for extra care and caution
2015 RORC Caribbean 600 - Phaedo3 breaks record
Barcelona World Race - Cheminées Poujoulat pass Cape Horn
2015 RORC Caribbean 600 - Records predicted to tumble + Video
2015 ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship - NOR released
Asher Otto and Itchy Feet to open up the Caribbean Jam night
RS Sailing and BIC Sport North America team up for sailing programs
RORC Caribbean 600 – Record pace on Day 2
Port of Los Angeles Harbor Cup - About to begin
10 tips from BoatUS for owners and renters
Aquece Rio International Sailing Regatta – Notice of Race online
2015 CYC Mid Winters images by h20shots
Adventures of a Sailor Girl: News and interviews from February 23 show
Volvo Ocean Race: Ryan Houston looking forward to his Kiwi home
Volvo Ocean Race: Wislang expected to lead Kiwis home after fast ride
Volvo Ocean Race – Now the race to Auckland is truly on
America's Cup: Spooner fails in attempt to have Oracle AC45 arrested
2015 505 Midwinter Championship - Final race
Barcelona World Race – Renault Captur resume, Spirit of Hungary stuck
2015 ISAF Youth Sailing World – Emerging Nations Programme announced
Barcelona World Race - Spirit of Hungary to make surprise pit-stop   
US Sailing Match Racing Committee launches The Dial Up Newsletter   
JJ Giltinan Trophy: Michael Chittenden's images from Race 7   
Volvo Ocean Race – The Doldrums outside the Doldrums   
Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 4 Winner expected in Auckland on Saturday   
Volvo Ocean Race 2015 – Biggest challenges are around the corner   
86th SCYA Midwinter Regatta - Day 2 overall   
SCYA Midwinter Regatta - Farr 40 and Cal 25 class winners announced   
Barcelona World Race - The Bountiful Horn Beckons for Stamm and Le Cam   
Geelong boat Phoenix wins Sydney 38 National Title   
JJ Giltinan 18 foot Skiff Championship 2015 images by Bruce Kerridge   
Volvo Ocean Race - Leg 4 restart from the Doldrums   
Melges 24 U.S. Championship is enjoying early success   
JJ Giltinan Trophy: Records set as rookie Kiwi crew second in Race 7   
Around Antigua Island Race - Unofficial record   
Miami International Boat Show Innovation Award winners honored   
86th SCYA Midwinter Regatta - Day 1   
St. Maarten Heineken Regatta crew forum - place to find crew or a ride   
J/24 Midwinter Championship - Will Welles’ Cougar hanging on by a claw   
JJ Giltinan Trophy: Watch Race 7 here - Live and then in Replay!   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT