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  #11  
Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

We use our bell for fog soundings, although maybe I'll institute a noon-time BONG, just for fun .
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Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

I have a ships bell, but have not used it for time. I hated them in the Navy.

I don't think any bell or alarm should be sounded on a 'normal' basis on a boat, it's like crying wolf.

My attention is grabbed by changes - and any alarm/bell seriously grabs it.
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Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

We have a very very old 25 hour ship-strike clock that must be re-round every 24 hours (the extra hour or running time is a margin of safety). It sounds regular bells, softly, but loud enough to be heard throughout the boat. It also tick-tock's mightily. In short order aboard, one has to make a conscious effort to hear either the tick-tock or the bells although visitors sometimes asked how we could stand the "noise". I liked hearing it aboard but at my wife's insistance, we finally removed it to the mantel in our house in favor of a more accurate, and enduring, battery powered ship's clock without bells. Now, at home, when the clock rings it's bells, the sound is close enough to the sound of the door-bell that our nutty dog also goes off mightily and runs to the door. 'Kind of gives a new meaning to "Dog Watch" at o'dark:30.
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Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

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Originally Posted by davidpm View Post
Do you have it set for straight 4 hour watches or set for the dog watch?
Given that there's no one correct answer to your question, that right there is where the confusion steps in.

I guess, with a set crew, a Navy ship doesn't have this problem but on the Tall Ship I was on (and common to most, I hear), the permanent crew work a port/starboard watch (6-on/6-off) whilst the voyage crew work the traditional 4-on/8-off with or without the dog watches depending on the number of people on board and how the captain wants to run things.

I must admit there is something very nautical about the chime of ship's bells on land..
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

I did a Transatlantic race almost fifty years ago on a boat that had one of those bell clocks. The problem was that the gears had slipped and it rang the bells one hour off, that is, two bells when it was supposed to ring four. In addition we were running a different watch system, two 6 hour watches during daylight and three 4 hour watches at night. I loved that watch system but if the bells woke me when I was off watch and I tried to figure out how much more sack time I had before going on watch it would drive me crazy. Let's see, one hour due to the slippage then factor in the different watch times, all this while I was groggy with sleep. Usually I just decided that the on watch would get me when it was time, turned over and went back to sleep.

But I do love the bells from my time in the Navy.
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Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

Quote:
Originally Posted by davidpm View Post
Do you have it set for straight 4 hour watches or set for the dog watch?
Straight 4 hour watches.
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

Ring the bell when dinner is ready, otherwise, I hate routine chimes.

Our bell is stuffed in a locker, under the spare anchor.
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Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

We didn't. Then the Admiral asked that we add one. Actually like it since we don't wear watches much. Once you get used to the pattern, it's easy to tell the time without looking at a clock. Especially at night.
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Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

I always liked the bells. Seldom noticed them after a day or two on the ship but pretty much always knew what time it was.
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Re: Anyone use ships bells for time

Our "ship's clock" has been ringing bells by the standard 8 bells at 4, 8, & 12 and each half hour adding a bell to the count from one bell at 4:30, 8:30 & 12:30 since 1985. I'm so accustomed to the bells that I often don't notice them and they never disturb my sleep. I was never in the Navy, but I easily identify the time by the bells. I don't set watches by these bells specifically. Even when we use a four hour watch plan, we never feel compelled to start a four hour watch series at 4, 8, or 12.
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