Made Simple for Cruisers

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Cruising Books by Commander TL Sparks, Retired Navy   

Training Schedule! New Training posted 31May2016

Volume I - Cruising Starting from Scratch

3rd Edition:  What you need to know about Cruising.  The book identifies everything else you need to know about cruising besides the basic sailing or boat driving.   There is a lot more to Cruising than boat driving.

Volume II - Communications Made Simple for Cruisers 

2nd Edition: What you need to know about Cruising Communications.  Cruising Communications includes: Telephone; VHF radio, HF SSB communications and email; DSC; International Telephones; Sat Phone; EPIRB; and even SPOT.  (Updates are available under "Communications" Tab on lower right side of the page.)


Also World Group ID information.

Volume III - Icom IC M802 Made Simple for Cruisers

2nd Edition: This book provides step by step procedures that anyone can follow to program and use the 802 radio's many functions.  It includes pictures and charts to help simplify the process.  Even if you cannot program your VCR or your cell phone, this book will guide you through each procedure and make you an 802 pro.  If you are just now buying a new SSB, you only need Volume V below.  (Updates are available under "Icom IC M802" Tab on lower right side of the page. )


And now it is in Spanish!


Also World Group ID information

Volume IV - Radar Made Simple for Cruisers 

 2nd Edition: 

Volume V - Icom IC M802 Starting from Scratch

This book is for anyone that is planning to buy and install HF SSB radio on their boat.  It includes planning, licensing, buying, installing, setup, email, and testing.   This book also includes enhanced procedures from my popular “Icom IC M802 Made Simple for Cruisers”  The only book you need for the Icom IC M802 HF SSB radio to help you with the purchase, installation, and ultimate daily use this great Icom radio.   

This book also contains $120.00 of coupons to help reduce the cost of your new Icom IC M802 System.  That in effect makes this book more than free when you use the coupons.   (Updates are available for HF SSB under "Icom IC M802" Tab on lower right side of the page. )

Volume VI - *A New Ham I Am!* Made Simple for Cruisers

Now Available 

An New Ham I Am - Made Simple for Cruisers bridges the gap between getting a license and using the license.  

There are two different types of Hams.  There are “Hams who go Cruising and Cruisers who become Hams.”  

A frequent comment by cruisers who become Hams is:  “Now that I have a Ham License, I don’t know what to do with it.   The (course, books, or questions on line) did not teach me anything about operating my radio.”


HF SSB communications nets provides excellent practice in using and understanding the anomalies of HF SSB radio and meet other cruisers. 


Cruisers are frequently in foreign countries, may not speak the local language, understand the culture, or laws.  If you need help getting to know other cruisers in your area can be really important.   If you are cruising you will need help at some time. 


When you have a Ham License, you become the “resident radio expert”.   As a result, this book also contains some of the basics for using the Marine Band frequencies including methods of calling for help in an emergency.

Volume VII - Global Maritime Distress and Safety System Made Simple for Cruisers

This book is for anyone that is boating, fishing or Cruising in the ocean.   The book explains the changes to world with respect to communications and most importantly how to get help at sea.   Find out why commercial vessels never answer and how to change that.

Cruising Log Made Simple for Cruisers

Cruising Log Made Simple for Cruisers can help you keep track of your cruising voyages.  You need to keep track of your travels and this is a simple way.  The book is set up so that you can have many volumes.

The book also has some valuable tables and a maintenance log.  All your boat activity in one place.