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AFLOAT SKILLS - Advanced Cruising Standard

To be completed in a boat of 8-15 metres with any modern rig and inboard engine. The minimum time for evaluation of this standard is 48 consecutive hours. It is envisioned that the program will be taught in six days to adequately cover all the performance objectives.

You must be able to:

  1. Check out a given boat for extended passage to include:
    a) soundness of hull, spars, rigging, deck hardware, sails, engine, internal systems, head, galley, stowage, safety equipment, spare parts
    b) suggest needed improvements, repairs and additions to make the boat totally seaworthy and sound;
  2. Apply Rules 1 through 36, 40 and 45 of the Collision Regulations in practical on-water situations;
  3. Manoeuvre under power in simulated tight conditions with high winds and/or tidal currents and dock the boat under same conditions;
  4. Determine deviation of the ship's compass using a transit;
  5. Determine accuracy of knotmeter and depthsounder and make adjustments, if possible;
  6. Sail a boat of the given size at an advanced level of skill, on the helm and as crew, on all points of sail;
  7. Set and weigh anchor under sail;
  8. Take appropriate action in the event an engine fails in various conditions (to be simulated);
  9. Check the tune of a mast;
  10. Rescue a swamped dinghy and, if possible, stow it on deck while underway;
  11. Perform the following Crew Overboard return procedures by day and night:
    a) Triangle method,
    b) Alternate method under sail,
    c) Williamson and Anderson turns under power;
  12. Simulate at least two different methods of recovering a Crew Overboard;
  13. Prepare and serve a hot meal while underway;
  14. Stand a navigation watch of 20 miles by day and 20 miles by night, keeping a full navigation log including the following:
    a) Danger bearings
    b) Clearing bearings
    c) Advancing a line of position
    d) Distance off
    e) Plot course upwind including 3 tacks and the resulting Dead Reckoning (DR) position
    f) Fix position using electronic navigation equipment
    g) Plot leeway or current set and drift on 3-5 mile leg and compensate to arrive within a 1/4 mile of estimated position
  15. Set an anchor from a dinghy;
  16. Set a Bahamian moor;
  17. Act as skipper and responsible crew on a live-aboard cruise, including a continuous passage of at least 48 consecutive hours;
  18. Satisfactorily demonstrate the ability to assume total command of all operations of the boat and its crew.


  1. Make an eye splice in braided line;
  2. Dock and leave dock under sail;
  3. Pack, hoist, set, fly, gybe and douse a spinnaker;
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Bruce Stott
Bruce Stott
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