YM Offshore practical - Need help!

0keanos

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Hi all,

I will be for tree weeks in Cowes (UKSA)
taking a preparation course for YM offshore
and at the end of the week the RYA exam.

I have a german equivalent of the YM offshore
and I have worked for 2 years as a skipper
for a greek company (about 8000 sm logged).

It will be the first time in UK and the first time in
the Solent, so I am feeling unsure and I need help.

Could someone give me some information or tips about
subjects which I would be asked and tasks which are likely
to be set in the exam? Any web-links would be also helpfull.


many thanks in advance
0keanos
 

Boatman

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It will go to rats, so go back to basics it always works.

They try to make it work without electrics.. so what is the boat speed without a log, so where are we without GPS etc

No engine (well you are on a sail boat............)


Have fun and pass
 

jh001ace

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Did mine there last year, it's ok but I would suggest you study a chart of the solent and try and make yourself familiar with the area, obvious points plus additional local stumbling points like direction of buoyage south of Bramble bank where the east and west channels merge, light characteristics of the likes of Prince Consort and Gurnard which are both north Cardinals' off Cowes.

Basically study the chart well as you would do if you were entering a port you are not familiar with.

Good luck
 

mcframe

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For your first time in the Solent, I'd suggest getting an Imray 2200.1 chart to get a vague overview of the area - along with an almanac for tides - even an out-of-date one from eBay might be worth a read for local info - like Southampton VTS on VHF 12, but Portsmouth harboutmaster (QHM) on 11 - some examiners like those kind of details.

At least have a good look throught the charts & almanac on the UKSA boats beforehand, and remember that in the Solent, high tide at noon ~= springs, low tide at noon ~= neaps.

http://www.troppo.co.uk/tightwad/tightwad.htm has background info - just in case the examiner asks how you'd take a 2.2m draught fin keel boat into Bembridge at neaps...

Good Luck!
 

peterb

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You will certainly be asked to carry out a man-overboard exercise. Unless the examiner has said otherwise, do it under power. In a real case, would you be able to explain to the coroner why you didn't start the engine?

You should be tested on both electronic and pencil-and-paper navigation. On the latter, have your tides worked out in advance, don't wait for the question and then start looking up tide times. A bit of prior passage planning!

Make sure that you know your Colregs, particularly the steering and sailing rules and the lights and shapes.

Right at the start, find out whether the examiner likes tea or coffee, with or without milk or sugar, and keep him well supplied with the right beverage.

Make sure you have all the necessary paperwork, particularly first aid certificate and VHF operator's certificate.
 

Steve_R

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I concur with the above especially the Colregs, lights and shapes. The Solent is a very busy area with plenty of yachts and shipping so it will all be well tested.
Enjoy your week.
 

Jamesuk

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colregs learn them shapes lights and OF COURSE the IALA buoyage system - lights colours and shapes. Pilotage I went in with no prep a friend prepared all his and nailed his pilotage from ondeck, I shot from the hip, with 10 years of solent sailing.

I gave some advice to friends taking there YM (the night before) to go and get the following things and if you dont feck up sailing u will pass.

Tesco Finest cookies (chocolate)
Orange Squash diluted into 2 lites bottles (a hydrated crew are a happy crew)
Fresh Milk Christ why have longlife its 2 days not 2 months.
Tell UKSA that you WANT to buy and prepare your own food instead of the shite they give out. Having spoken to so many skippers TABASCO seems to be there god send to give the "slop in a pot" flavour, You want a happy stomach and so does your skipper and if the crews cooking is in some serious need of a roasting then buy some tabasco.

The best feeling you will have besides the point when he says Congrads you have passed is at the begining when he/she says "as far as i am concerned you are ALL Yacht masters" so its your job not to feck it up.

Oh and dont crash gybe /forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif
 
A

Anonymous

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You might check whether you can take and use your own nav gear (protractors, etc.), binoculars and hand bearing compass, because you will be more comfortable with it if that's allowed.
 

Richard10002

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I am currently doing YM theory, and then a prep. week at the end of May with the exam on 8 June, (in Portugal).

From what has been suggested by my instructor, apart from what you find out here, during your weeks prep., you should be drilled and redrilled on everything that could happen during the exam, and you may even run through a mock exam.
 

Topcat47

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UKSA ought to have a copy of "Solent Hazards", read it during your prep weeks.

You will be asked for a passage plan for somewhere you'll never sail to, then be thrown a major change some time later. They usually involve unusual tidal gates (mine was Falmouth-St Malo with an Alderney stop thrown in, just one of an infinite range of possibilities.

Don't forget the double HW at Southampton/Cowes
 

graham

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I did my exam in the Solent which I am not familiar with .In someways its better as it makes you check everything instead of using local knowledge and past experience.

Every exam is different but all require you to be very conversant with colregs lights shapes buoyage etc etc. Calkculating height of tide for different secondary ports seems to feature often.All include a MOB practice.

I have also crewed on a number of exams and found that the weaker candidates spend too much time at the chart table.If you can see a harbour two miles away a quick check on the chart that there are no hazards to be avoided may be all thats neccesary.I have seen candidates spend 10 minutes at the chart table working out course to steer for somewhere clearly visible then getting it wrong and sending the helmsman in the wrong direction but not realizing as they remained at the chart table farting arouind with more bullshit. /forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif
 

AngusMcDoon

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When I did mine two of us were examined on the same weekend. Neither of us got examined on everything, instead the examiner concentrated on some aspects on each of us. For example, the other examined person did a blind navigation exercise, which I did not.

The subject area I was thoroughly tested on was safety. I had to do a safety brief to everyone on board assuming that they were inexperienced crew, pointing out where all the safety equipment was and basics of how to use it. I had to show how to send various types of distress messages, when they could be sent and by whom. I had to explain how to keep crew safe when sailing in the dark and how to move about the boat safely in rough conditions.

Then when we were sailing the examiner pretended a few accident situations had happened and I had to act out an appropriate response, for example a head injury with a crew pretending to lie unconscious on the cockpit floor, and a scalding injury from spilt hot water.

Nothing exceptional was expected from the examiner in these situations - just common sense, for example

1) get the boat safe so no further injury/accident happens
2) administer simple appropriate first aid
3) get help

I'm sure you will be fine. If it starts off badly, don't be too concerned, the examiner expects that. There's plenty of time for it to get better.
 

dt4134

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Hi Okeanos,

I found the examiner for my YM exam highly-experienced and very professional. He put a lot of effort into making us feel as ease, yet he was sussing us out the whole time. He had an uncanny knack of working out what I was absolutely confident I could do and asking me to do something else.

Make sure you do a good passage plan, because that not only shows your general level of experience, but it is probably the first thing you'll cover in depth. It was a bit of a blur, but I think the questioning on mine took about 60 minutes. The questions were all sensible ones from someone who'd done it all before, but he checked out how much I really knew very thoroughly.

As others have said, make sure you know the ColRegs so well that you just know you've got the right answer to every question. There's a tendency to put yourself under pressure and if you have doubts about what you know you're more likely to make mistakes.

Crew management was a big item. I overheard him ask one crew member what tasks had been allocated to him. Make sure you delegate.

Make absolutely sure you can do the MoB. There apparently will always be one. We had a few problems with gear failure during mine, but it was the confidence that I knew I could get the boat back to the MoB regardless that stopped me getting worried when things started to go wrong.

Other than that, safety is a big thing. Make sure the crew clip on at night. Don't crash gybe accidentally.

Other than that, it could be anything on the syllabus, but if you've got the experience you should find it easy.

Hope this helps.
 
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