5 Tips for Buying a Boat

Buying a boat is a big investment, so you have to be sure of your decision. This month, we list the 5 most important things to consider before buying a boat.

• Your navigational requirements

The first thing is to make sure that the boat will suit the owner’s plans, and the plans of the owner’s family, if they’ll be aboard too. It is very important to define the boat’s sailing program. What will you actually be doing with the boat – Running, cruising etc.? You must also assess the skills of the crew.

Depending on the size of the boat, an annual budget should be prepared to cover maintenance, handling, antifouling, deck hardware costs, berths, etc. The annual budget is approximately 8% of the purchase value.

buying a boat

• The rigging status

Some insurance companies will only ensure a boat if the invoice of the rigging is less than 10 years old. Changing the rigging is a costly job. The state of the sails should also be considered: changing them is a big expense, especially if the goal is high- performance sailing.

• Osmosis

This is a natural aging process of polyester: you should base your buying decision on the progress of the osmotic state. If the hull has too many blisters, you will need to set aside budget of around €600 per meter for repairs. Also, the boat must be hauled between 6 and 12 months for drying and peeling.

The Ultimate Guide to Boat Rentals

• The state of the boat’s motor

It is important to check the number of hours that the engine has on the clock. An analysis of the oil and a compression plug will be needed if the engine has more than 3,000 hours. A good engine check is essential. Again, changing the engine would incur considerable costs so it’s best to avoid this.

• The berth

Availability is not the same across all geographic areas. In general, the English Channel / Atlantic sector is more accessible with waiting periods of 2 to 3 years, as is the case in Lorient for example.

During the waiting time, interim solutions exist such as temporary contracts, moorings or dry ports.

If you have any tips of your own for what to look out for when purchasing a boat, simply leave a comment below!


We would like to thank our partners Team Jolokia, for writing this article. Team Jolokia is a truly unique racing team that promotes diversity. The team is made up of 25 men and women from different walks of life: seniors, young people, disabled or able-bodied.

Learn more about Team Jolokia.


Version 2 of the MaxSea TimeZero App Features AIS and Radar Compatibility!

We are very excited to announce the release of a new version of the MaxSea TimeZero App for iPad: v2.0.0! This updated version includes lots of useful new features, designed to make boating easier, safer and more enjoyable.

Release of v2.0.0
Here is a summary of the most important new features:

  • Free chart updates

If you already own a chart zones for the MaxSea TimeZero App in any previous version of the App, you can take advantage of free-of-charge chart updates! This one-time free chart update is offered to all of our valued customers that purchased any chart zones in version 1. Whatever chart area(s) you previously owned will be updated once you install V2 of the MaxSea TimeZero App.

  • AIS compatibility

The MaxSea TimeZero App can now integrate AIS data, as long as you add on the “AIS Module” which is an In-App purchase. This module allows you to connect any NMEA 0183 AIS receiver through the Wireless Network, and display AIS targets on the App’s charts.

Detailed AIS target information is available by touching any target on your screen. This displays Name, MMSI, CPA, TCPA, Vessel Type, Size, etc.

AIS Module Price: 8,99€

MaxSea TimeZero App: AIS compatibility

  • External instrument connections (NMEA)

Now it is possible to use external instruments that have been connected to a NMEA 0183 WiFi multiplexer through the Wireless Network. The Maxsea TimeZero App can now display additional data such as Depth, Heading, Sea Surface Temperature and use a dedicated external GPS.

  • Share feature

The Maxsea TimeZero App for iPad has launched a new (Beta) service that lets users share their position with friends and in turn, see their friends’ positions on their chart.
Positions are only shared after an invitation has been sent and accepted. You can manage your friends directly from the app or from the dedicated website.

Your position can be viewed on devices other than an iPad. In this case, the friend must create a My TimeZero account. The user then shares their position with this account, which can be viewed as a regular web page.

  • FURUNO DRS4W Radar compatibility

Now you can integrate the MaxSea TimeZero App with the FURUNO 1st Watch Radar! To do so, the Radar Module must be added as an In-App purchase. This module allows you to connect the FURUNO 1st Watch Wireless Radar to the MaxSea App.

You can then overlay the radar image across the navigation chart in the MaxSea TimeZero App, ensuring heightened security onboard.

Radar Module Price: 49,99€

MaxSea TimeZero App: Radar compatibility


Download the MaxSea TimeZero App v2.0.0

Boat Equipment: Is Cheaper Always Better?

When buying boat equipment, sometimes it’s hard to know when you should splash out and when there’s no need to pay more for quality. This week, we ask some of the MaxSea partners for their advice on when to spend big and when you can be frugal.

Splurge or save

Team Jolokia

In our experience, there are certain items that must be of high quality. Don’t try to use cheaper items as you will most likely need to re-buy them again! Here are some examples of these types of products:

  • Torch
  • Blunder
  • Bucket
  • Pumps

Isabelle Joschke

There is some boat equipment that costs less but is not any lower in terms of quality. In this case, we should take advantage of the cheaper product! But sometimes I prefer to choose quality even though it is more expensive. In this way, I will not need to repurchase new equipment every year. This is certainly the case for tools, which can deteriorate rapidly.

Sail boat

IMERPOL

In general we always try to buy the best item we can afford. Otherwise we wait until we can afford it. Here are some tips to follow:

  • It is not necessary to have absolutely every tool related to your boat, just the items that match your real needs.
  • Equipment wears away on a boat than at home due to movements, saline air, sunlight etc.
  • Yachting stuff is sometimes calculated for an occasional use and don’t last long.
  • It is sometimes better (and cheaper) to buy home equipment than products from a ship chandlers’.
  • It is not necessary nowadays to dress in old clothes and full of paint stains and I prefer comfortable and smart ones, especially shoes and oilskins which are part of security.

Do you have any examples you’d like to share? If so, leave us a comment below!

Learn more about the activities of each of these MaxSea partners:

Team Jolokia

Isabelle Joschke

IMERPOL

 


 

Racing vs Cruise Boat CTA

In Search of Fish with Maxsea TimeZero

This week, MaxSea partner Olivier Journaux, A.K.A. Cpt. OJ, gives his advice on how to find the best fishing spots. He does this both by using the right onboard equiment, and by understanding the types of areas that certain fish like to be found. Cpt. OJ is an accomplished athlete who now provides sport fishing lessons in France. 

When fishing with a line, jigging or vertical bait fishing, it has become essential to be extremely precise. In my line of work, I coach recreational sport fishing.

For this, it is important for me to position the boat as close as possible to the fish so that my customers can enjoy close contact with the beautiful fish.

It is also essential to constantly discover new fishing areas, which allow me to manage the amount of fishing in each spot. In this way, I take one or two fish per area out of the water and practice the “catch and release” technique that I described in this earlier MaxSea blog post here.

Then I move on to another area before returning again several days later.

cpt oj

Finding predator fish

To catch a predator fish, first we must find the place it is most likely to be. This is obviously the biggest job, the hardest and longest one to master.

Where are the fish

95% of the time, bars, shade-fish and saithe can generally be found near the water surface. They position themselves above their prey and upstream of the current. The pout, their main food source, usually hides in hollows. As a result, it is very common to catch bars and lean on rock surfaces as this is where the pouts can be found.

Onboard equipment

To be able to localise the fish, it is essential to have a sounder and GPS system with nautical charts. Unfortunately electronic charts are never 100% accurate. Maxsea TimeZero PLOT or MaxSea TimeZero SportFishing are perfectly suited to fishing as it allows the user to record the sea floor and generate their own, extremely accurate chart of their favourite fishing grounds.

Useful features within MaxSea TimeZero

A computer with MaxSea TimeZero connected to the GPS and sounder can store unlimited depth points, and adjusts for the current water level depending on the time and date (integrated tide information).

This means that by simply navigating in your fishing spot, you are simultaneously saving thousands of contour lines and the precision of your seabed data becomes increasingly sharp.

Thus, in places where all charts tell you that the bottom is flat, you discover hidden contours, sometimes more than 10m high over distances of 500m long. All you need to do is to explore the area with your sounder.

MaxSea offers the ability to create whatever you want, ideal routes, specific marks that can represent fish, rocky peaks , buoys, wrecks etc.

Then you can also add comments to each mark. In TimeZero software, you can consult classic hydrographic office charts, and add your own bathy data, and even record a bottom classification to view the type of sediment in each area

two fish

Types of spots favoured by fish 

Depending on the direction of the current, we can have a good idea of where fish are most likely to be found.

They are usually

  • upstream of the current and
  • above the rocks (the highest point)
  • just below the first step of a rocky “staircase” if there is one in the area. They like these spots because it means that they are high up yet sheltered from the current. It is often a favourite spot for saithe when the current exceeds 1.5 knots.

By following these steps, I personally found wonderful fishing areas in the rocky waters of Antioch and Breton in France where I came across beautiful fish that had never previously been disturbed by humans.

Read more about Cpt. OJ on his website (in French) by clicking here.

You can email him at olivierjournaux@neuf.fr or call him on +33 (0) 6 50 58 56 59.

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MaxSea TimeZero SportFishing

A Doctor’s Advice on Sleep Onboard

Last November, the well-known French doctor Jean-Yves Chauve gave us advice on how to combat seasickness onboard. This week, he is back with more useful advice about the importance of adequate sleep, especially for racers.

Jean yves chauvre

Dr. Chauve is a doctor who specialises in providing remote medical assistance to sailors and boat racers. He was involved in several high-profile cases in which he aided racers via telephone to avoid dangerous health situations.

A doctor’s advice about sleeping onboard

Offshore racers know this from experience: Sleep is a necessity to maintain vigilance. It is imperative for assuring good security and your own physical performance. Tests have proven that after 16 hours without sleep, your level of drowsiness is equivalent to a BAC of 0.5 g. This means that your level of concentration is substantially impaired.

It is therefore very important to have regular periods of sleep when navigating. To sleep effectively, you must be aware that throughout the day, there are times when one is predisposed to sleep. Yawning is a sign that the body sends to indicate that it is ready to sleep. This is the moment when you should try to sleep or take a nap.

eat sleep boat

How Long should I Sleep?

Sleep duration depends on the constraints of navigation. The ideal length would be to sleep for one a complete sleep cycle, which is from 30 minutes to 2 hours.

Otherwise, it can be useful to take short naps for 20 to 30 minutes. Napping regularly can be very effective for a few days. If napping is not possible, then there is the final option of “flash” naps, consisiting of just a few seconds of sleep.

When “real” sleep is impossible, this brief disconnection can allow the brain to de-stress, which is very important when engaging in such a physically demanding activity as navigating.

No matter what, make it a priority to get at least some sleep while onboard. Otherwise your judgement and physical ability will be significantly impaired.

The Ultimate Guide to Boat Rentals

“Stuck in the Doldrums” – the Intertropical Convergence Zone

Being stuck in the doldrums is now used in everyday speech to mean being in a state of inactivity, mild depression, listlessness or stagnation. However, ‘the Doldrums’ is originally a name given to the Intertropical Convergence Zone, or ITCZ.

The Intertropical Convergence Zone, is the region that circles the Earth, near the equator, where the trade winds of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres come together. The  water in the equator is warmed by the intense sun which in turn heats the air in the ITCZ, raising its humidity and making it buoyant.

ICTZ

Aided by the convergence of the trade winds, the buoyant air rises. As the air rises it expands and cools, releasing the accumulated moisture in an almost perpetual series of thunderstorms.

The Dreaded Belt of Calm

Early sailors named this belt of calm “the Doldrums” because of the inactivity and stagnation they found themselves in after days of no wind. In an era when wind was the only effective way to propel ships across the ocean, finding yourself in the Doldrums could mean death.

Today, we often hear about the ITCZ or Doldrums in relation to sailing and races such as the Transat Jacques Vabre. Sailing through this belt greatly impacts the racers – as it is more difficult to move quickly through the water, and frequent thunderstorms make the conditions even more difficult.

The 2013 route for the Transat Jacques Vabre passes through the ITCZ. This area is known as the “pot au noir” in French

Location of the ITCZ

The Doldrums are generally located between 5 degrees latitude north and south, but they can extend as far as 18, depending on the season.

The location of the intertropical convergence zone varies over time. Over land, it moves back and forth across the equator following the sun’s zenith point. Over the oceans, where the convergence zone is better defined, the seasonal cycle is more subtle, as the convection is constrained by the distribution of ocean temperatures.

Sometimes, a double ITCZ forms, with one located north and another south of the equator. When this occurs, a narrow ridge of high pressure forms between the two convergence zones, one of which is usually stronger than the other.

When was it identified?

The ITCZ was originally identified from the 1920s to the 1940s as the “Intertropical Front” (ITF), but after the recognition in the 1940s and 1950s of the significance of wind field convergence in tropical weather production, the term “ITCZ” was then applied.