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“The International Code of Signals for the use of all Nations." He must know how to moor and unmoor, and to keep a clear anchor; to carry out an anchor. He will also be questioned as to his knowledge of the use and management of the mortar and rocket lines in the case of the stranding of a vessel ; as to managing a ship in stormy weather, taking in and making sail ; casting a ship on a lee shore ; and securing the mast in the event of accident to the bowsprit. He will be examined as to his competency to construct jury
rudders and rafts; and as to his resources for the preservation of the ship’s crew in the event of wreck. In cases where an applicant has only served in a fore-and-aft rigged vessel, he will only obtain a certificate on which the words “foreand-aft rigged vessel " will be written. This
certificate does not entitle FIG. 32. COMPASS CARD.
him to command a square
rigged ship. The best elementary work for teachi ng navigation, with which we are acquainted, is “Rosser's Yachtsman's Handy Book," published by O. Wilson, 157, Leadenhall-street, price 3s. 6d., and to this we would refer the reader who seeks to be insensed into the mysteries of navigation.
Every boat which goes outside a harbour mouth should possess a compass, as even when close ashore a fog may come on and utterly puzzle you to tell where you are.
The principle of the compass is that a magnetised needle will point one end to the north and the other to the south. The needle is fixed across a compass card and the whole pivoted so that it will turn freely. The compass card (Fig. 32) is divided first into the four chief quarters, north, south, east, and west, and then these are subdivided, making altogether thirty-two points of the compass. These should be learned off so that starting from any one you could repeat them all in either direction. This is called boxing the compass.
In yachts the compass is carried on a stand opposite the tiller, called the binnacle, and fitted with a lamp at night. The compass card of course always remains with the needle pointing to the north, and the angle the midship line of the yacht makes with the north and south line of the compass shows the course the vessel is in.
The log line is an instrument for ascertaining the rate at which you are moving through the water, and is of great importance in ascertaining your position on the chart, for if you have run, say fifty miles on the north-east course, you can prick off your position on the chart from the last mark with approximate
FIG. 33. correctness. The old fashioned way of taking the
LOG. speed was to throw a board overboard, which would float upright, and then by checking the number of marks on the log line as it rolled out, with a sand glass which ran out in a certain time, the speed was arrived at. Now, however, the patent logs are superseding the old system. Fig. 33 shows Massey's patent, adapted for small yachts. It is 15in. long, and the price is £2 15s. It is towed behind, and the revolutions of the fans indicate on the dials the number of miles run.
Of course when miles at sea are spoken of, nautical miles are meant, and a nautical mile being the 21,600th part of the circumference of the earth, its length is about 2029 yards,
To find the depth of the water, which even in small yachts is a very important thing, upon occasions a lead line is used. The hand lead, which is sufficient for our purposes, is a plummet of lead, weighing 7lb. or 9lb., and having a hollow at the bottom (a capital one may be made by using a small wine bottle as a mould wrapped in several thicknesses of brown paper to prevent danger from the glass flying). The hollow is filled with a lump of tallow, which picks up a bit of the mud or sand where you are sounding, and shows you its nature, which, and the depth, you can compare with your chart. The hand lead line, 25 fathoms in length (a fathom being 6ft.), is marked as follows:
Marks. 2. Leather with two ends. 13. Blue serge. 3. Leather with three ends. 15. White calico. 5. White calico.
17. Red bunting. 7. Red bunting.
20. Strand, with two knots in it. 10. Leather with hole through.
The marks are made of these odd materials in order that you may be able to distinguish them in the dark by the feel. Of course, the counting begins from the lead. The mode of using is to stand as far forward as you can, and swing the lead in advance of the boat as far as you can, so that it may reach the bottom with a straight line when the yacht is over it. The thud of the lead upon the bottom can be distinctly felt along the line if a slight tension is kept upon it.
For coasting purposes the lead is of great use. In entering estuaries and harbours where there are sandbanks and bars, and the channel is strange to you, the lead should be kept going, and a reference to the chart on which the depths of water are marked will show you whether you are going right or wrong.
Never sail anywhere along a strange coast without a chart. These are not at all expensive, and may be obtained of Wilson, or any shop on the quay of a seaport town where nautical things
Also procure a tide table, for it is often of importance to know the times of high and low water. Also ascertain the set or direction of the tide while flowing or ebbing, and any particulars you can pick up from the watermen of any place you may visit. A chat with some of the men who are always lounging over the sea walls or piers, and the gift of a little “ baccy,” will often provide you with useful information. All round the coast there are tide races, rips, or whirls which may cause you inconvenience or danger, unless you are acquainted with their peculiarities, which, of course, vary with the state of the tide and the wind.
This is a convenient place to give a table of the different forces of winds as they are usually classified : Pressure in
Pressure in No. Description.
No. Description. square foot.
square foot. 0067
7. Moderate gale...... 1. Light air •27
4.51 •107 8. Fresh gale
5.23 2. Light wind •167
6.83 3. Light breeze .327 9. Strong gale
8.64 4. Moderate breeze...... •540
r 9.63 10. Heavy gale •667
| 10:7 .807
11. Storm 5. Fresh breeze .960
30 to a (1.50
never 12. Hurricane 1.73
accu6. Strong breeze 1.93
tained. 2.67 An open or half-decked boat had better make tracks before
No. 6 grows into No. 7. No. 9 will try the seagoing abilities of a five-tonner to the utmost, and a ten-tonner would be proud if she came well out of No. 10. When boating men talk of the gales they have been out in in their small craft, allow the necessary discount for the colouring given by their enthusiasm.