Master OSV 3000 upgrade to 6000 or 10000


Anybody sailing as Master on a large ship in normal international trade can go their whole life without ever actually berthing or unberthing a vessel. At most they get to drop anchor on their own.


Fair enough… and being on an OSB… err V now, I’ll definitely grant you that. Honestly have had pilots beg to “drive” because there’s no real opportunity for hands on the controls time on the big ships… and these things really can be a hoot to maneuver if they built them right.

But… there are some good things to learn in that class, and it would be one less thing for guys to take if they wanted to cross over to the unrestricted service path. Of course, having just said that, I suspect there may have been some industry influence to keep the opportunity to cross over from being too easy also. Don’t know how many times I told guys in my crew, if they can get the “real” license, then don’t go for the OSV one. Always got a “but ____ said an OSV is all I need.” :facepalm:

That’s actually a big part of why I shifted to the OSV’s… Always liked the actual boat handling in school, and knew those opportunities weren’t going to happen much on the tanker I was on.


“V” is good. You might notice that in all of the assessments that are common to the unlimited endorsement, “ship” was changed to “vessel” (except when quoting from STCW).

There wasn’t any on that issue. The “crossover” stuff (i.e. the “Notes” in the assessments and the discussion of removing the limitation, was done sua sponte.


ACTUAL ship handling skills is to berth a single screw ship with reversible engine in a tight spot.
You just pray that the Engineers manage to start it when you need to go astern. It can get some loooong seconds when you hear that first attempt fizzle out.


Huh… that surprises me. I know a LOT of the OSV companies in the gulf were very unwilling to fork over the vaunted training course assistance grants/loans for anything useful for unlimited licenses due to hemorrhaging those guys when they got the “big licenses.” I figured they’d have had at least a little to say to prevent making the transition too easy.


Note that we say some of the courses for OSV endorsements can be tailored to OSVs (e.g. stability). That means another course, either the full original or some sort of gap-closer is needed to remove the OSV limitation.

CORRECTION: The NVIC does not state that courses can be tailored to OSVs. Oops.


OOOOOOOOOOOO… No, I missed that. Thanks for that clarification.


46CFR11.493(e) The Coast Guard may exempt an applicant from meeting any requirement under STCW Regulation II/2 (incorporated by reference, see §11.102 of this part) that the Coast Guard determines to be inappropriate or unnecessary for service on an OSV, or that the applicant meets under the equivalency provisions of Article IX of STCW.

46CFR11.305© The Coast Guard may exempt an applicant from meeting any individual knowledge, understanding, and proficiency required in Section A-II/2 of the STCW Code. These exemptions must be approved by the Coast Guard based upon vessel type. Under these circumstances, the credential may include a corresponding limitation.


See my correction. You missed it because it’s not there, I thought it was.


The Island Venture is far and above the the 10,000 GT tonnage limitation for Subchapter L. It would never be an OSV. Regardless of where it was constructed, or it’s nature of work.


To my knowledge no other nations issue them. They are “accepted” on US Flag vessels, with US Officers Internationally, because the
Flag State(US) recognizes them.


Yes the Island Venture is actually over 20000 GT, so maybe not the best example.

Most OSVs owned by American companies working overseas are under Vanuatu registry, which is operated from USA by a US owned company, thus very US friendly (especially towards be Bayou boys?)

I have inspected literally hundreds such vessels over the years and a few of them have had Americans among the crew, mostly Master. All have been with the required Vanuatu endorsement but I can’t remember if any had national licenses stating OSV only,or anything to that effect as basis for their CeC.
Anybody know how this work?


If the vessels were less than 1,600 GRT or 3,000 GT, they probably held certificates that were not limited to OSVs. The OSV only certificate is more prevalent with OSVs of 3,000 GT or more, this is the so-called “Large OSV” discussed here. U.SA. flag OSVs did not broach 3,000 GT until around 2000.


How long have the trade restricted OSV licenses been around?


The OSV specific licenses in the CFR are from June 26, 1997. The “Large OSV” endorsements were from November 14, 2000.


Forever…not literally but practically. See fishing specific licenses or Master of Uninspected Towing Vessels. As far Subchapter L? Ask Anchorman, he received the first. Before that the licenses were vessel specific.

Whoops! Sorry Mr Cavo, you beat me to it.


I would get, “Why? I never plan to go anywhere else.” Me: “What if there’s a layoff?” Them: “Chouest never does layoffs…”


A pretty poor answer even if it were true.

Many folks are content with the minimum, but the bill always comes due.


In the late 70’s and early 80’s there were licenses restricted to “oil & mineral” vessels. I had one.


Yes I have seen those on US flag vessels back then.
There were also something called a “300 ton License” I believe. Could’t have been too difficult to obtain, since some of the holders couldn’t read and write.

I also remember in 1970 being presented with a license that was valid only for charter boasts of a specific size operating between two specific point and not more then 20 miles offshore. The only problem was that he was Master on a towing vessel in S.E.Asia.

Singapore Marine Department, (as it was then) refused to accept him, even though on an American flag boat, clearing out to leave from Singapore as part of a rig tow. (I was Navigator for the tow. My fist involvement with the Oil & Gas Industry)