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Board » Technical Support » "newby" doing Newport Bermuda Race - Expedition & Wx advice

Hi,
I'm planning on using Expedition Navigation Software to route/assist me in playing my first sailonline.org game and I watched one tutorial organized by the event and have a few questions.

1) will the gulf stream current be applied in the game - or only wind?
2) Am I correct in understanding the AWIPS NAM will be the weather model used by the game?
3) What GRID resolution will the game use?
4) When will the game "update" the weather model its using?
5) where is the best place to get the Grib of the model used by the the game?
6) If the NAM is being used - Any idea if either the hi res or conus models available in Expedition's NOAA download module are the "correct" model.
thank you
1) SOL doesn't model any currents.
2, 3 & 4) The html5 client will show this info under misc tab (the update times are also available in the race listing on the homepage). When WX update times are from the 04:30, ... series, the wx source is GFS (in some races indirectly as high-res WRF WX may be in use but not relevant for this particular race). 02:45, ... series indicates NAM WX is used. From my experience, GFS WX datafile in SOL usually updates around xx:10-xx:25 (so slightly before the announced time) and is only rarely late.
5) Two places I know of. One is Java program known as AGL (Auto Grib Loaded, it's also known as "DC checker" which tends to be easier for finding it with web search). AGL will automatically download the gribs for you. In addition, AGL can plot the course considering all DCs you've set. The other way to get gribs is brainaid, you can find a link to that from the links section. Using "normal" NOAA gribs directly does not match to SOL WX for the first two weather data frames (around 1.5h differs per wx update period).

--
i.
Hi,
Thanks for your help. Unfortunately I'm not much code guy... just a sailor - so I'm going to try and play the game with sailor tools (Expedition Software) and no java script or other tools you online pros use that probably are a lot better for the application. A few follow up q's

1) what is the "html5 client" you refer to?
2) I saw a youtube presentation where an expert seemed to know that the NAMAWIPS model would be used for the game - but in your answer it looks like the game uses a bunch of different models and might mix them around - so you have to look at the "update time" and follow your hints about which model comes out at what time - to know what model to "play" with. Is tht correct? And then if I use the "normal" NOAA gribs - they won't be the same as the gribs the game uses for the first 1.5h or so after every model becomes available?)

Thanks, sorry to be such a newby.
Also a follow up - best source for polar files of the four boats in this Bermuda Race?
Hi, I'll try to keep the answer simple so you can participate in the sailonline Bermuda simulation and route using Expedition. You can get your polar and the latest grib for the Sailonline Bermuda race from http://sol.brainaid.de/sailonline/toolbox

Here you will find the latest weather updates (they come at approximately 16:30, 22:30, 04:30 and 10:30 UTC, and are always available from Brainaids under the Weather tab.

You can also downlaod the Expediton polar for your chosen boat from the same site, using the Polar button. You can also get the waypoint co-ords from there, and also you can enter your steering commands there using the DC Editor button.

You don't have to make any changes to the grib you download from Brainaids - it's ready to use without scaling etc.

There are no currents in the simulator.

If you want extra, you can also look at http://solfans.org/wxinspector/ where, if you log on using your boatname and password, you will find under the Optimal Angles button, your max upwind and downwind vmg angles for the current wind, for those times when Expedition gives you dotted routing solutions (outside max vmg values).

Hope that helps and fair winds.
Some further notes: we're using effectively NOAA .25 gfs not nam wips as the latter does not extend far enough east. However, my notes above referring you to Brainaids site is the best source for your grib updates to use in Expedition. These Brainaid gribs already contain the smoothing which is applied by the simulator so that there are not jumps between one grib update and the next.

Re the html5, the simulator used flash, and now we are developing an html5 version so that we are ready when flash is no longer supported. If you press the Go To Race button, you will get the old flash-based simulator, and if you press the html5 button you will get the newer version. They both are suitable for use and give the same results, performance, etc.
Minor correction to what Dingo said. Current GFS grid can go down to 0.5x0.5, not below that despite NOAA providing also 0.25 GFS. This may change in the future though. In some races, the weather data size is reduced by using larger wx grid cells such as 1x1 or even beyond that in some long ocean races.

--
i.

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