Industry News

How to Become a Yacht Captain

Posted by Chris Savage on Wednesday, June 22, 2016 at 7:05:00 am

If you have dreams of spending your days at sea, commanding your own vessel those dreams can definitely become a reality. No matter what type of vessel you are looking to captain, there are certain criteria that you must meet. In your endeavors to become a yacht captain, there are five steps that you must take.

1. Get an Education No matter what type of vessel you seek to captain, you must obtain a high school education, and it is suggested that you also seek your bachelor’s from a Coastal Guard approved academy or college. There are several skills that you should look to obtain in your studies, including:

  • mathematics
  • mechanical drawing
  • engineering systems
  • maritime operations and technology
  • ship/facility management
  • communications
  • and more

Though many of these skills can be sharpened during your time on a ship, having a firm knowledge base can help you to advance quickly.

2. Gain Experience

In order to obtain your license you must log at least 360 days at sea within the course of five consecutive years. A day at sea is defined as four consecutive hours. Even if you are not directly captaining or assisting the captain, the hours can still count towards your credentialing. If you are captaining a ship under the watch of another yacht captain, you will be required to have the captain sign your application.

3. Submit an Application With Required Material A captain’s license is formally known as a Merchant Mariner Credential (MMC). Along with completing the actual application form, there are a few other pieces of documentation that you must submit to complete your packet.

• log of time at sea

• three notarized letters of recommendation from licensed boat operators

Once you have collected all of these documents you can submit them in person or through the mail to the Regional Exam Center (REC). After your paperwork is received and processed, you will have to undergo a physical exam and background check. Upon successful completion, you then take the written test and pay the application and testing fees. The National Maritime Center will receive and review all of your documents, after which your license will be sent to you.

4. Look for a Job As with many different careers, you will have to work your way up the ladder. One of the best ways to obtain a job on a ship is through personal connections. You may also search online or contact maritime companies.

5. Continue Your Education

Even after you have secured a position it is critical that you continue your education. It takes a combination of knowledge and skill to become an excellent yacht captain. Also, as new technologies and best practices emerge, it is in your best interest to be abreast of them. Constantly pursuing knowledge through continued education courses and various maritime magazines can help you to stay in the know.

By following these steps you can be well on your way to becoming a captain. As you embark on your pursuits, be sure to make connections that will help you along the way, not only with other captains, but also with ship providers and servicers. Such relationships can help you to not only become but to succeed as a yacht captain.

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6 Reasons Why Fosters Yacht Repair Services Are the Best in Florida

Posted by Chris Savage on Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at 7:00:00 am

The crystal blue seas are calling, but your yacht is in need of repair. There are a number of yacht repair servicers in the area, however not all of them provide exceptional repairs like Foster’s Yacht Services. In fact, here are six reasons why Foster’s provides the best service in Florida.

1. Tailored services Foster’s Yacht Services specializes in a few different areas, including:

  • yacht painting
  • bottom painting
  • fiberglass repair and construction
  • marine carpentry
  • and more

Not only do we have expert craftsmen handling each project, but we also tailor each service to the specific needs of the client. If at any time you have any questions or concerns, you may contact the project manager that is overseeing your repair. We make sure that you have a direct point of contact to ensure the repairs are completed to your expectations.

2. Track progress With Foster’s you can monitor the progress of your service through your personal website. This site allows you to literally see the progress of your project. You can find pictures and reports on what has been done, any modifications and what is left to do. We find that many customers love this feature because they can see how their project is coming along, which gives them peace of mind, as well as provides an opportunity for them to address any concerns they may have with the project before it becomes a greater issue. Therefore, these websites allow us to ensure customer satisfaction.

3. One-year guarantee We stand behind the quality of the work we do, and to prove it we offer a warrantee on all work that we invoice. We call it our Master Warrantee, and it is good for a full year. Should you have any issues with any yacht repair or other work that we provide, we will fix it and have you back on your maritime way in no time. Though this guarantee is provided it is not often needed due to the caliber of work that we provide. From the beginning we fully detail the plan and our master craftsmen follow it to the letter. This way, our clients always gets exactly what they are expecting.

4. Strong reputation Our reputation precedes us. We are proud to say that we are affiliated with some of the most respected maritime associations, such as: • Marine Industries Association • US Superyacht Association • Florida Yacht Brokers Association, Inc We also have strong relationships with material providers who are at the top of their industries. These relationships show our commitment to excellent yacht repair and service. But you do not have to take our word for it. You can find favorable reviews from our clients on respected customer review sites.

5. Highly skilled team There are intricacies in each type of service, and it takes time, dedication and skill to truly master each part. That is why we have specialist that focus on specific types of repairs and that is all that we have them to focus on. Collectively, our team provides truly expert service, which shows in the exceptional craftsmanship.

6. Competitive Pricing We maintain average rates while providing outstanding service. These factors make us one of the best choices for your yacht repair needs.

As you can see, at Foster’s Yacht Services we work diligently to earn and maintain your business. To learn more, contact us today.

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6 Insane (But True) Things About Yachts & Boats

Posted by Chris Savage on Wednesday, June 1, 2016 at 8:11:00 am

Yachts and boats have a long history around the world. Here are six strange things you may not know about them.

Camouflage Saved a Dutch Navy Vessel

During World War II, the HNLMS Abraham Crijnssen, a Jan van Amstel-class minesweeper, survived the war by appearing as a tropical island, covered in palm branches and leaves. It was the only ship of its class to survive the war. Extensive yacht and boat detailing in Fort Lauderdale can give you the look you want.

One of the Most Famous Pirates in China Is a Woman

During the 19th century, Ching Shih commanded more than 20,000 men and women in a fleet of pirates. She married into a family of pirates, but after her husband died, she moved into a place of leadership. She unified the fleet with a code of laws that governed all the pirates on her ships. Later, when the Chinese government offered amnesty to pirates in an attempt to make the waters safer, Ching Shih accepted and retired. She is one of the few pirates who retired, and she allegedly was able to keep her wealth.

Don’t Whistle on a Ship

Whistling is thought to conjure up strong winds when you’re on a boat. This is an old Royal Navy superstition. However, there is one person who can whistle on a boat. The chef is allowed to whistle as it’s an indication that he’s not eating all the food.

Retirement on a Cruise Ship

Strangely enough, not only was it proposed that a cruise ship make an alternative to a nursing home for elderly patients, in 2004, a study was proposed and carried out about the feasibility of retiring on a cruise ship. Researchers found that “cruises were priced similarly to assisted living centers and were more efficacious.” See the world and enjoy a better quality of life when you get older.

Quarantined Boats and Ships

The word quarantine comes from the Latin for 40. In the 1600s, a royal decree went out in England mandating that all London-bound ships, foreign and domestic, had to pause for 40 days at the mouth of the Thames River. The quarantine didn’t work, but quarantines continue to be implemented at major ports around the world in time of sickness.

Sailors Have Many More Superstitions

If you grew up around water, you’ve probably heard the old saying, “Red sky at night, sailor’s delight. Red sky at morning, sailor take warning.” Although there’s probably some truth to the adage, there are some even stranger superstitions that many sailors still believe. Bananas on board are thought to bring bad luck on ships. Oddly enough, although women are considered bad luck, it’s considered good luck for a woman to give birth to a male child on board. Redheads are also thought to be bad luck.

Get Yacht and Boat Repair in Miami

Foster’s Yacht Services offers high quality yacht and boat repair in Miami for all types of boats and yachts. We get your boat ready for any type of trip, whether you’re out for a weekend cruise or on a pirating adventure. Call us for unique yacht and boat painting in Fort Lauderdale. We want to keep your boat in good repair.

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6 Boat Repair Ideas That Can Bring Your Vessel Back to Life

Posted by Chris Savage on Wednesday, May 25, 2016 at 8:07:00 am

Water and sun are two of the elements that make Miami great. If you own a yacht, you were probably drawn to the ocean to experience both. However, these two forces of nature are also very damaging to your boat. When it starts to look worn, you need to bring your vessel back to its original glory.

1. Yacht paint job - Over time the finish of your yacht can become battered and dull. One of the best ways to restore its shine and sparkle is a fresh coat of paint. While you have it out of the water, you can clear the boat and clean up its hardware. Because you’ll be washing it and de-waxing the boat, you’ll remove all the contaminants and see any damage to the hull that might need repairs.

2. Boat detailing - the sun and salt water are very corrosive to all the parts of your boat. Instead of waiting to need full boat repair in Miami, you should have your boat detailed and deep cleaned regularly. This can include, cleaning, waxing, buffing, and more. Like a car wash, boat detailing is one thing you can do to maintain your yacht for the long haul.

3. Yacht retrofit - a yacht remodel can update your vessel to give it a more modern feel. Just like you might renovate your kitchen as your children grow up, you can improve your yacht by adding electronics or design updates to fit the way you want to live on the water. At Foster’s Yacht Services, we take care of it all, from design to completion, to give you the experience you desire.

4. Fiberglass repairs - Taking care of the fiberglass when it’s damaged keeps your watercraft at the ready. Get yacht repair in Fort Lauderdale when you see even small damages. Don’t wait for bad things to happen when you’re out on the water. Fiberglass repairs can be made in just a few days when the area is smaller, so it pays to take care of this issue quickly.

5. Carpentry services - Marine carpentry is much different than general carpentry on land. When your deck or flooring begins to wear, you need to have a specialty carpenter who understands wood on a boat. These type of boat repairs in Miami can easily give your vessel new life and make it feel warmer and more inviting. You might want to upgrade the cabinetry to add storage to your yacht. We can take care of all of these problems.

6. Prop Speed application - It’s easy to forget to take care of the underside of your yacht, simply because it is unseen. Prop Speed is an application that goes on the underside of your vessel to prevent marine growth. It should be applied annually to keep all types of marine life from attaching itself to your yacht.

We want to help you keep your yacht in good repair in Fort Lauderdale and Miami. Contact us for boat repair and enjoy your yacht all season long.

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5 Benefits of Yacht & Boat Detailing

Posted by Chris Savage on Wednesday, May 18, 2016 at 8:09:00 am

Being out on the ocean is a great feeling, but coming back to land can be a letdown. Your yacht or boat can easily be contaminated by salt water and the sun’s UV rays, which wear away the beautiful finish on the exterior of your vessel. Over time, this can really devalue your yacht or boat. We offer professional boat detailing in Miami, which provides many benefits to you.

5 Advantages of Professional Yacht Detailing

There are probably many more reasons to keep your boat in tip-top shape, but here are five great benefits of boat detailing in Fort Lauderdale:

1. Keeps it looking great

2. Maintains its value

3. Find small damage before it gets worse

4. Frees up your time

5. Makes you want to get out on the water more often

What Does Boat Detailing Include?

Even if your boat is new, you should have it detailed regularly. It’s easy to underestimate the importance of this process. At Foster’s Yacht Services in Fort Lauderdale, we offer boat detailing to keep your yacht looking its best. Although you can take care of some of the regular care, you may want to call in professionals to handle more extensive work:

Cleaning and rinsing is the easiest part. Using a pressure hose, you wash the first layer of grime and salt off the exterior of the yacht. This should be done at least once a month.

Deep cleaning takes care of the stubborn stains that happen over time. Don’t use normal detergent because it could harm the coating. We wash one section at a time, rinsing the soap as we go. If the soap dries on the surface, it damages the coating.

Buffing is done by hand or a rotary buffer. After a deep cleaning, if you still see grime on the surface, the way to remove it is to use a buffer.

The shiny coat on the exterior of the yacht is wax. This coating comes off during buffing, so it needs to be replaced. Many people don’t enjoy this step in detailing because it takes a lot of elbow grease to apply wax to your yacht. • Interior cleaning is also important to the detailing process. You might be surprised at the grime that builds up over time after exposure to the sea air.

When You Need More Than Detailing

During the detailing process, you may find other damage to your yacht’s hull or see small things that need repair. By taking advantage of our yacht detailing services in Miami, we can take care of small hairline cracks or heavy oxidation if it’s discovered during cleaning. Having a clean yacht not only gives you more pride when you take it out, it also encourages you to go out on your boat and enjoy the sea life. You’ll want to take your friends and family on the water every chance you get. Once you’ve invested in a beautiful watercraft, whether it’s a boat or yacht, you need to take care of it so that it lasts for generations and is always there when you’re ready to take a cruise.

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