Handover:  Wednesday 20  - Thursday 21 February 2002

Sparkes' Marina, Chichester Harbour, to Port Hamble Marina, Hamble

(Click on any of the photographs below to see a larger image)

Delivery Trip from Chichester Harbour to the Hamble

After handover, we, the owners, had to take Bagadeus to Port Hamble Marina, Hamble, for final fitting out and charter coding.  This relatively short (20 mile) trip was planned originally for handover day, Wednesday 20th February 2002.

However the weather was not good on 20th February.  High winds were forecast and experienced all day - we saw gusts of up to 40 knots on bagadeus' anemometer for most of the day and evening.  The reported sea state was 'rough to very rough'.  Conditions over the Chichester Harbour bar would be dangerous; it was, all in all, weather in which yachts like Bagadeus stayed in port and waited for better weather.

At Sparkes'  Marina

Sparkes', approach channel

Final Adjustments at Sparkes'

A small high pressure ridge was forecast to form early on Thursday and was expected to last into the afternoon, during which the wind would drop to F3/4 and veer to north/northwest, before another depression arrived with the wind backing and increasing again to F8/9.  North/northwest would mean that there was no fetch to the waves, and the sea should quieten considerably.  Consistent with the this, the sea state during the weather window was forecast to be "slight to moderate" - perfectly satisfactory for the short trip round to the Hamble.

The weather forecasts were watched keenly using the Navtex receiver on Bagadeus.  At one stage on Wednesday evening the forecast weather window dropped out of the forecasts, causing some concern.  However by midnight the temporary high pressure ridge was back in the forecasts.  The inshore waters forecast at 00:48 predicted that the ridge would form during the morning and last until the afternoon.

And so it transpired.  From around 04:00 hrs. on Thursday morning the wind dropped and turned northerly; a few hours of this wind would almost certainly mean a quiet sea with no problems over the bar.

After some final checks Bagadeus departed Sparkes' Marina at 10:30 at low water, albeit neaps.  Over the hump in the approach channel to the marina the echo sounder was indicating 0.1/0.2 m, and at one point dropped to zero (the echo sounder had been set with a 2m offset and Bagadeus draws 1.85m, so at that point she had 15 cm or less below her keel).

There was about 0.5m at the lowest over the bar.  The new chartplotter was a great help in crossing the bar; using the plotter display in front of the helmsman it was relatively easy to steer so as to keep the little boat symbol which marked our position over the deepest part of the channel.  We had already entered a route into the chartplotter (West Pole - Winner  - Horse Sand Fort - Browndown - North Channel eastern entrance - Reach - Hamble Point).   Having passed West Pole beacon we turned onto course for the Winner buoy.  It was important not to drift north of the track because of the Winner Bank shallows, so we engaged the autopilot's 'track' function to ensure we maintained the planned track over the ground direct to the buoy.  This worked well - the "rolling road" GPS display confirmed we were keeping exactly on track.

The sea was calm as anticipated, but the wind, although only F3, was heading us so we continued on engine.  the Winner buoy duly appeared ahead and we turned onto the track for Horse Sand Fort.  Around this, and on to Browndown.  By this stage we had switched on the radar.  We encountered, as frequently in the Solent, a ferry which presented a possible collision risk so we invoked the radar's MARPA (Mini Automatic Radar Plotting Aid) capability, now standard in the Plus range of Raymarine radars.  The results were impressive - see the box below for details.

As we entered the North Channel into Southampton Water, the wind began to back and increase.  The weather window was clearly coming to an end, but no matter - we were now in relatively sheltered waters.  We briefly tried the sails and were impressed.  The main went up easily, and the single line reefing system is extremely easy to use; it is operated entirely from the cockpit - no need to go on deck to reef.

Finally to Hamble Point buoy for the turn into the Hamble river, and to Port Hamble Marina.  Bagadeus was left in the care of her Charter Agents for charter coding work.  She is currently available for charter from Hamble Point Yacht Charters at Hamble Point Marina.

Arrived and moored at Port Hamble Marina in the Hamble River

horizontal rule

MARPA Tracking - an illustration

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The radar display
on the left was photographed during bagadeus' delivery trip to the Hamble and shows the Solent, with bagadeus' position and heading indicated by the black boat-shaped icon; she is heading for the North Channel into Southampton Water with Gilkicker Point on her starboard bow.  Two targets which have been tracked using the Radar's MARPA capability are on the screen.  The first (a ferry) had been considered a collision risk and is now in the Swashway heading into Portsmouth (note the predicted vector extending ahead of the target) with another vessel ahead of her clearly visible on the radar.  The second (a motor yacht) has just passed Bagadeus at a minimum separation of about a third of a mile, starboard to starboard.  As for the first target, the predicted vector is shown.  The MARPA box shows the second target's bearing, distance, course, speed, CPA (Closest Point of Approach) and TCPA (Time to ....... -  now passed).

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The chart display
shows the same situation about 30 seconds later (note the log which indicates a further 0.1nm).  The second target has altered course to starboard and slowed a little and presumably intends to pass south of Horse Sand Fort.

The binnacle compass was due to be swung and corrected after delivery to the charter agents - note the 10 degrees deviation compared with the autopilot's fluxgate compass.


Click to see larger picture.

Bagadeus passed south of the Horse Sand Fort about 20 minutes previously; the fort can be seen astern of Bagadeus in the photograph on the left, taken shortly before the photographs of the radar and chart displays.

Note the wake which illustrates the steering accuracy of the autopilot.


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Last modified: January 15, 2013