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Old 05 May 2006, 14:12   #1
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Night Driving

Last night me and the missus went to the Isles de Chaussee for supper (about 30miles SE of Jersey). Beautiful place. We came back in the dark, on a cloudy night, could barely see 5 yds off the bow.

This is a common trip for ribbers here, and was great fun, but spotting pots was a bit of pot luck. Wondered if anyone had any practical tips or experience with night vision goggles?
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Old 05 May 2006, 19:20   #2
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You are better off with a pair of 7x50 binocs - unless you can afford some gen2 NVGs at 3,000. I used to have a pair and they were amazing but we had to give them back when our "evaluation" period ended....

I have a cheap night vision scope - great in dark conditions but light from a town as you are approaching totally swamps it. Out at sea it's great though but you can't drive looking through it.
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Old 06 May 2006, 07:07   #3
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No matter how careful you are at night, at some point you are bound to pick up a pot if it's not clearly marked
Last weekend during the day on my way back from the Tenby area on a 9m Humber, I had to make a few turns to avoid pots that were being held submerged by the strong currents around the St Govans Head area. Despite the console being on top of the engine bay with a superb vantage position, you sometimes can only see these things when they're a few boat lengths in front of you.
Last year, on the way back from Skomer, woot managed to get one snagged round the leg on his hard boat - in this case though, the pot was highly visible so he avoided it, but what wasn't apparent at the time was the floating rope coming 20metres away from it that he didn't avoid cos he couldn't see it.

It is difficult driving at night, but it's just a case of going at a speed that you are happy with.... fast enough to make headway, but slow enough to react should anything crop up (could be even as low as 2 or 3 knots!!). It is surprising how much you do see at night once your eyes have become acustomed to the darkness however.
When I travelled upto Liverpool on a tallship a few years back as we left the Haven, we went head on into a force 5 to 6, with maybe 3 or 4metre swell and it was overcast too. Despite this, you could still make things out around with the minimal amount of light there was.

Sometimes however, having something like the moon a few degrees off where you are heading can make things very hard, since the light it produces makes it almost impossible to make stuff out in the darkness to each side of it. On the other hand though, lots of light, like what comes off the ferry terminal at night, can help you lots as long as there is enough of it. Those pics taken at silly o'clock (0120hrs) last June whilst on the water.

-Alex
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Old 07 May 2006, 03:31   #4
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Thanks for tips. One mate looks about 20 degrees off to port or starboard, because you can see more in your peripheral vision.

I take your point, Alex, about hitting pots. I hit one in broad daylight last week, even after leaving a 20 yard gap, but again it had a long trailing rope.

I'm planning on carry a spare prop and bush, and spanner - is there anything else I should include?
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Old 07 May 2006, 05:03   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeTrader
Thanks for tips. One mate looks about 20 degrees off to port or starboard, because you can see more in your peripheral vision.

I take your point, Alex, about hitting pots. I hit one in broad daylight last week, even after leaving a 20 yard gap, but again it had a long trailing rope.

I'm planning on carry a spare prop and bush, and spanner - is there anything else I should include?
A good knife, and if possible change the colour of the gauges from white to red (you can usually get red bulbs from a good auto electrical place).
Andy
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Old 07 May 2006, 06:15   #6
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I take your point, Alex, about hitting pots. I hit one in broad daylight last week, even after leaving a 20 yard gap, but again it had a long trailing rope.

I'm planning on carry a spare prop and bush, and spanner - is there anything else I should include?
There's an aussie company making rope-cutters for outboards. I've only seen the demo vid but it looks quite effective. Found a UK supplier as well while googling.

http://www.h4marine.com/Rope%20Cutter.htm
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