South Pacific Weather Collection via SSB
Here is what I ask for on pretty nearly a daily basis, while in French Polynesia trying to figure out the weather.
The 'send' are
the commands to get each product via Saildocs. See link at the bottom
for getting the same information via the internet. To request these
forecasts, use any email client and create an email with addressee request
att saildocs.com with Subject line beginning 'Saildocs Request' and with the
commands below in the body, one per line. You can request multiple
products in one email, but you will receive the responses back in separate
Each is about 2K in size.
In PhysPlot, you can grab the slider bar and easily reveal the text describing the major weather features.
The second product is basically the same information, but is text. You have to
plot out the fronts and troughs yourself. Useful if you don't have the
viewer, but redundant, I think, once you get the fleet code viewer.
This is for the area covering Fr Poly
NOAA's Hawaii office. Coverage is EQUATOR TO 25S BETWEEN 120W AND 160E. Similar but sometimes different and sometimes
conflicting info for the same area. (about 2K in size)
NOAA Hawaii Weather Fax Products
SW Pacific Satellite Photo
I use Airmail's Getfax program with a PTC-2 modem to get weather fax. It already has the stations and frequencies coded in the program, and is pretty easy to use once you figure it out.
To receive fax well, you need to eliminate
all 'noise' onboard and connect to the proper frequency for the time of day
you are trying to get weather. A little experimentation before you
leave is useful! The worst noisemakers aboard are: 12v motors
(refrigeration!, fans), fluorescent lights, solar controllers, inverters &
It talks about French Polynesia in quadrants like A35. A is 5-10 degrees S latitude, B is 10-15 degrees, C is 15-20 degrees, etc. The 35 is the area of longitude from 135-140, 40 is 140-145, etc. Most of the Tuamotus are in C40 and C45. Heres an example of the C40 forecast.
C40 - CENTRE TUAMOTU
SUR LA MOITIE NORD DE LA ZONE, VENT DE SECTEUR EST 07/10KT REVENANT A MI-ECHEANCE AU NORD-EST PUIS NORD A TERME.
SUR LA MOITIE SUD DE LA ZONE, SECTEUR NORD 07/10KT FRAICHISSANT A TERME 11/16KT. MER PEU AGITEE DEVENANT AGITEE A TERME SUR LA MOITIE SUD DE LA ZONE.
Obviously you need a translator. Download one here.
A picture of the French Poly weather zones can be downloaded from here.
Local detailed GRIB file (of course, this varies by location, about 15K)
If you have this and aren't
moving, you can skip the first GRIB, about 2K. The lat/longs are in decimal degrees. This is extracted right out of the GRIB file, so has the same
errors that GRIB info can have
Freqs: 3247.4, 5807, 9459, 13550.5, 16340.1
I used Getfax (download from the Airmail
site), and it has the freq's programmed in. Otherwise, use USB and subtract 1.9 off each
frequency to get the actual dial frequency. In French Poly, 5807 works best in the mornings,
higher frequencies in the afternoons (16 Mhz usually best for the afternoon
Click on the little box in the Airmail
toolbar just to the left of the GRIB request button with the blue center.
This should give you the list of available text forecasts. Expand the list
and look under Pacific and under that South, and there are a lot of other
forecasts you can request.
Plus I also get Bob McDavitt's weathergram on Sunday (you can request this thru Saildocs or get a subscription sent to your Sailmail address through yotreps, on the Pangolin website). This is a weekly preview of the major weather systems between NZ and French Polynesia.