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Orange Flags on Start Boats

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Granite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Orange Flags on Start Boats
    Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 2:05pm
I have been to a few events where the RC boat puts up an orange flag as a sort of pre-warning signal. This seems to be specified in the sailing instructions, as I can't find anything in the RRS about it.

I am looking at our club racing Sailing Instructions for next year and was wondering about introducing an orange flag to give a bit more warning that racing was about to start.

What do people think about this, and is there a standard text to use in the sailing instructions?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 2:26pm
Orange flag = com boat on station for start and marks the com boat end of the start line.
Blue flag = com boat on station for finish and marks the com boat end of the finish line.
 
 thats how we use them anyway. If you google "committee boat orange blue flag" you should be able to see how it fits into other clubs  SI's.


Edited by GK.LaserII - 12 Jan 12 at 2:28pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Ian29937 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 2:47pm
Interestingly the blue flag is in the signals section at the beginning of the RRS but not the orange.  I always assumed they were both there.
 
Doh!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote A Seabadger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 3:52pm
At our club the orange Flag on the committee boat signals that the boat is on station ready to start. However we have Race Officers of varying standards, and even those who should know better, either forget to fly the flag or have it streaming as the committee boat heads off down the lake to lay a start line. When it works it's great. A warning signal that things are ready to go.

Edited by A Seabadger - 12 Jan 12 at 3:53pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Contender443 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 4:07pm
I guess part of the reason for flying an orange flag is to make the committee boat visible as such. This very useful in a busy harbour where there may be several moored boats in the area and you can also tell the difference between the committee boat and a spectator boat.
 
It is also used to say it is on station and this is where the start will be. If the wind changes the orange flag may come down to allow the boat to move.
 
We don't use for club racing as our start line is always in the same place (we have not managed to find a way to move our clubhouse on a need by basis).
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Post Options Post Options   Quote marky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 4:44pm
I have used the Orange Flag as a 'warning' to competitors quite a bit at large events (Laser Worlds, Sail4 Gold, Youth Nationals etc). It basically goes back to the 10,5,1 days....  However, I would only use it at a large National or International event as it gives the sailors (and media) a chance to wake up, get rid of their excess clothing into the coach boats, have a pee and give them a chance to do a short beat. The following wording is what goes into the SI's:
 
"When there has been a long postponement or when more than one race (or sequence of races for two or more classes) will be held on the same day, the warning signal for the first race and each succeeding race will be made as soon as practicable.  To alert boats that a race or sequence of races will begin soon, an orange flag will be displayed with one sound for at least four minutes before a warning signal is displayed."
 
Personally I wouldn't recommend using this for Club Racing or small Open Meetings (use the AP).


Edited by marky - 12 Jan 12 at 4:45pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote AlexM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 5:25pm
At both the clubs I've been a member at there has been a rigging signal/horn. At one of the clubs it read something like " a rigging signal will be sounded no less than 5 min before the class flag" ie a 10 min warning before the start. It worked because you were on the line as you launched. At my current club it's 20min before the first start which has been programmed into the automated start sequence

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Rupert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 5:42pm
We brought in a bell ringing at about 10 minutes before the start to allow tea to be gulped and the like before the 5 min - I guess a flag of some sort would do the same off shore.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Presuming Ed Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 8:03pm
If you want a pre-warning warning signal, one common thing is to use code flag F (foxtrot) - a red diamond on a white background. Up at 5 mins to the warning signal (with a sound signal), down at 1 minute (no sound signal). 

Comes from match racing, where it's used before each flight. A common variation is to use 2 minutes rather than 5. 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Andymac Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 12 at 9:44pm
Here's some extracts from our SI's;
11 The Start

11.1 An Orange Flag displayed on a mast on either the Committee Boat or the Race Control Box

signifies that the Race Officer is in position at the Start Line.

 

11.4 The Starting Line will be:For Committee Boat Start

between a mast displaying an Orange Flag on the Committee Boat and an Outer Distance

Mark (start) (as defined in Sailing Instruction 10). An Inner Limit Mark may also be used.

For Race Control Box Start

between an Orange Mast in front of the Race Control Box and an Outer Distance Mark

(start) (as defined in Sailing Instruction 10). An Inner Limit Mark may also be used.

 
 
 
I think it is important to note that the Orange flag is flown from the point where the line transit is taken from!

 



Edited by Andymac - 12 Jan 12 at 9:46pm
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