Tracking Ravenswing

If you’d like to follow along these adventures, come to this page regularly to get the boat’s  up to date position. If we’re out sailing, anyway.

Ravenswing puts out two types of location signals: [1] Iridium Go! satellite pings. [2] AIS-B over the VHF radio waves.  When we’re underway, each system should be putting out a position report every hour or so. When we stop, and want to conserve battery power, we shut the units down and these sites will keep displaying our last reported position.

Method 1:  We ping straight up to the heavens every hour to the iridium global satellite system, and the good people at PredictWind plot our track on this fabulous map:

Sometimes the Iridium tracking will show us on land… that’s because the satellite transponder doesn’t always live on the boat – it serves for land adventures too.

This is the best way to keep up with the boat. You can see where we’ve gone each hour simply by coming back to this page.  Enjoy!


Method 2:  Ravenswing emits a commercial-style AIS signal via VHF that is usually picked up by a satellite network, then fed in to numerous world-wide databases. So you can use any of the ship-tracking websites to see where we are and what other boats/ships are nearby. Do a web search on AIS ship tracking, pick out a website, and enter the name S/V (sailing vessel) Ravenswing, and our MMSI # 368065160.

Here’s one example (but sometimes they want you to pay for their service :(

Family members of our crew – DO NOT FREAK OUT if the AIS system does not show us. It’s all based on whether the satellites can pick up our signal which is intended to go ship to ship, not towards space. So it doesn’t always work, but we’re still fine. You’ll get a call from the Coast Guard if we’re actually in trouble.




Recent Posts

Wet Paint!

“Hey, careful where you touch!”

That’s a good thing, finally getting some topcoat paint down.

Boom is looking good. A bit of the carbon fabric upgrades are slightly showing through so this will get a second coat.

I think the cleanups on the mast won’t need it though.

Here’s the masthead standoff for the windvane (yes, Keith, I made sure it stands clear of the elevated sail head ;)

Many hours over the past few days went in to stripping, repairing and prepping the under-beam support braces. The ten removable bars went through the Cabrales sandblasting station. On the hull, there was a bit of cracking in the rigid fairing; ground all that out and replaced with 5200 flexible but permanent adhesive caulk. These areas were painted today and the braces are ready for install.

Lots of parts continue on the paint path.

Do you guys remember what that disc piece is?

The daggerboard is ready for trial fit tomorrow, pending its paint drying. Might wait until Wednesday now that I think about it. Stood it up on the sharp trailing edge and painted both sides at once.

Light grey is the finish paint. Dark grey is the portion that remains wet when the board is retracted but this section rests below the water level. That’s a second primer coat and it will get bottom paint once it’s re-installed.

Anton asks about why the daggerboard needs a trial fit. Recall that coming down the coast there were sea states that made the board bang around in the trunk. We temporarily (for over a year) handled it by shoving sticks with wedges on the ends down between the deployed board’s head and the trunk walls. Today we’re filling that gap with the 1/8” ply shims discussed last time. Plus we added a 1/2” thick plate on the front of the head rectangle, the section that deploys against the front of the inside of the trunk. These are a lot of precise-fit changes, hence the new 65” deep hole under the boat so we can test deploying the board. I need to get it exactly right this time, which is impossible from the water. Once it fits well, I might take the time here to reshape the exit slot at the bottom of the trunk. Because the board was modified in 2018, that opening is too big now and not efficient.

The engine was permanently installed. It fits and looks good back there. Spent Sunday morning mocking up a connection between tiller and motor so the prop will track with the rudder when motoring. This should make a major improvement to our low speed, close quarters maneuverability. Ravenswing gets sideways quickly in a windy, crowded harbor and we will take any handling upgrades we can get.

Didn’t photograph the solution, but for Carlos and Rick… we’re starting with simple strings, like a 40’s lake runabout ‘wire cable and pulley’ steering. No need to get fancier yet until we try out the new motor position.

Long hours, and I’m grateful the daylight is letting us work outside until 7pm now. gotta get done. Tomorrow is grey paint, coat 2. Orange paint prep. Install under-beam braces. Finish motor steering mounts. Maybe tackle the needs-a-repair windlass. Or rig the engine – yikes, both very important!

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