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View Poll Results: Keeping celestial nav skills alive
Never learned, too many sight reduction books to haul around 18 8.22%
Plan to learn, on the "to do list" 80 36.53%
Learned, but no longer practice 56 25.57%
Learned, but only practice to keep the skills 50 22.83%
The hubby/wife does it 1 0.46%
Learned, practice every chance for that perfect pin wheel 14 6.39%
Voters: 219. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-04-2012, 17:53   #241
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

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I wonder if and when they drop flashing light? That was the number one cause of missed graduation when I was at CMA. I'm a HAM, which only helped a bit because I learned by sound. Taking the test, my mind was converting the light to sound.
Are you talking about Morse Lamp?
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Old 03-04-2012, 18:05   #242
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

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Are you talking about Morse Lamp?
Yep. A large percentage of midshipmen that didn't pass the CMA given test would go to a private flashing light school and magically pass.
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Old 03-04-2012, 19:36   #243
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

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Originally Posted by Ex-Calif View Post
National News Briefs; Annapolis Drops Course In Celestial Navigation - New York Times

I think the article states they dropped celestial navigation as a course but later they recant and say that taking sightings is taught but the reductions are done by computer.
Celestial Nav, in it's entirety, is still a requirement here in Australia...no pass, no ticket....

We also have a cadet on board who keeps bugging me about it....
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Old 03-04-2012, 20:00   #244
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IslandHopper

Celestial Nav, in it's entirety, is still a requirement here in Australia...no pass, no ticket....

We also have a cadet on board who keeps bugging me about it....
Do they also have to learn electronic navigation?

What about loading blackpowder canon?

I am being a little facetious but in the accumulation of global "knowledge" at some point we have to specialize or leave some things unlearned. I pity young folk that have to learn "old" stuff and in addition learn all the new stuff. The hill is getting bigger and the climbing faces steeper.

I look at the things my 14 y/o has learned and what he is expected to learn in the next 4 years and it is daunting.

We used to teach the math behind statistical analysis. Now we teach the software.

Aviation used to rely on celestial nav. With the advent of electronic nav (ground based DF and inertial nav) it was eventually dropped from the curriculum.

The biggest question is what we have to drop in order to make room for all the new knowledge...
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Old 03-04-2012, 20:05   #245
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

This is my old Cel-Nav instructor. Been at CMA for awhile now. We are the same age, I entered CMA in my mid 40's.
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Old 03-04-2012, 23:47   #246
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

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Originally Posted by Ex-Calif View Post
Do they also have to learn electronic navigation?

What about loading blackpowder canon?

I am being a little facetious but in the accumulation of global "knowledge" at some point we have to specialize or leave some things unlearned. I pity young folk that have to learn "old" stuff and in addition learn all the new stuff. The hill is getting bigger and the climbing faces steeper.

I look at the things my 14 y/o has learned and what he is expected to learn in the next 4 years and it is daunting.

We used to teach the math behind statistical analysis. Now we teach the software.

Aviation used to rely on celestial nav. With the advent of electronic nav (ground based DF and inertial nav) it was eventually dropped from the curriculum.

The biggest question is what we have to drop in order to make room for all the new knowledge...
Yep to the electronic, Basic GPS to full ECDIS systems....

As to CN........Australia is a signatory to the IMO and governed by the STCW Code which still requires ships officers to be competent in CN.....

The relevant bits of the STCW Code (latest edition)

Page 99

Table A-ll/1 (Navigation at the operational level)

Specification of minimum standard of competence for officers in charge a navigational watch on ships of 500 gross tonnage or more.

Must have a Knowledge, understanding and proficiency in....

Celestial Navigation (with the) ability to use celestial bodies to determine the ships position.

Terrestrial and coastal navigation.

Blah blah blah.....


Page 112

Table A-ll/2 (Navigation at a management level).....

Specification of minimum standard of competence for Masters and Chief Mates on ships of 500 gross tonnage or more.

Determine position and the accuracy of resultant position fix by any means....

1. by celestial observations
2. by terrestrial observations.....
3. using modern electronic navigational aids......

.....and on and on it goes....

PS: By the way Ex-Calif i am heading over your way on the 15th April, Loyang to be precise. The company i work for have a training centre there with a anchor handling ship simulator, i'm doing a "Deep water anchor handling" refresher....

Swire Group

....any good boat brokers you know off over that way ??....
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Old 04-04-2012, 00:49   #247
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

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Yep. A large percentage of midshipmen that didn't pass the CMA given test would go to a private flashing light school and magically pass.
Hi Bob,

Yes they still do the flashy light thing here, although i don't know why, if some one was trying to send me a message by an aldis lamp i am just as likely to call him up and let him know he has a faulty light and he should change the bulb....

The last time i used it was at maritime school, and if i remember correctly i only just made the pass.....
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Old 04-04-2012, 01:12   #248
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

Used during war for merchant convoys, communicate without RF emissions.
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Old 04-04-2012, 01:18   #249
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

Also used infra-red signal lamps for night so as not to show a white light to a lurking submarine.
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Old 04-04-2012, 04:39   #250
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So what we saying here is we need and hand cranking GPS, kinda like Africa's best selling radio. 10 cranks gets you x amount of minutes...
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Old 04-04-2012, 04:39   #251
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...need a hand cranking GPS...
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Old 04-04-2012, 04:40   #252
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Also used infra-red signal lamps for night so as not to show a white light to a lurking submarine.
The selection process to select cadets that could see that light must of been interesting. Any of them have long teeth or speak funny .

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Old 04-04-2012, 05:16   #253
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

I think the issue with sextant as backup is that gps is inoperative, therefore so is its accurate clock, and epirb.
Sail, oars, chart, compass, sextant would be useful in that order.
Captain Blie completed that amazing feat of navigation without a sextant...

I would do what a teacher/instructor instructs to get a captains ticket. But I'll rely on myself to sail/navigate and be safe.

After I sold my last boat - having done over 30,000 ocean miles. I returned to Australia. Thought I may get a captains ticket and do deliveries or charters etc. Called the local authority and asked. They said my time was useless, must have commercial time. I said so a guy that collects tickets on a car ferry is accumulating time? "yes".
awesome...
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Old 04-04-2012, 05:56   #254
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

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The other issue is the time.
I read Sobels work on Harrisons clock - and Cook's use of it.
I have an 8 day wind up guy but hardly accurate.
Maybe a cheap sport watch - with backup little batteries?
Buy a $12 quartz K-mart special with a good readout, remove wrist strap, apply velcro to back and also some on the arm of the sextant. Set it to GMT by WWV. Take the sight, turn the sextant, read the watch. Subtract a second or so for that process.
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Old 04-04-2012, 06:09   #255
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Re: The New and Improved Celestial Navigation Poll

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One of the most common WRONG answers to a question at maritime collage was......"When abandoning ship to a life raft, what other equipment could you take with you??" all those that answered "a Sextant" got it wrong.....

Think about it....

Tend to have sharp edges-
LifeBOATS and sextant OK though (if someone knows where it is)
Many years ago, well, not that many, I have been on ships which had lifeboat charts and sextant etc
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