Sextant and finding out where you aren't - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 69 Old 01-03-2016 Thread Starter
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Sextant and finding out where you aren't

Its old fashioned and archaic and allegedly unseaman like.
Is anyone interested in learning how to use one.?
It's not hard.
There are books, on line courses, and schools who teach celestial navigation. I am not an instructor or a teacher. Just an old fart in an armchair with a computer.
If there are a few people out there who are interested, I can try and explain it. Answer questions and help you to figure it out.
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post #2 of 69 Old 01-03-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

Maybe the correct spelling might be a start. Sorry, couldn't resist.

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post #3 of 69 Old 01-03-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

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post #4 of 69 Old 01-04-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

There are lots of people here that know how and have learned on their own already. I think someone posted a link to an online course even. Either here or over on SBO I think. There is also a forum dedicated to it. Of course I don't have that link handy either. I went through a class, have a sextant and found it interesting to learn. Hopefully this thread will not deteriorate as others have in regards to celestial nav, in to the argument that you HAVE to know it cause those new fangled satellite thingys are gunna fall out the sky or some hax0r is going to bring it all down. Be nice if we could keep it to people that are interested in the art of it and just want to do it because they want to..... a guy can hope I guess.

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post #5 of 69 Old 01-04-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

Just learned from a techie friend that "There's App's for that", probably be able to ditch the sextant soon and take a sight with your phone, which phone already knows where it is. Irony ?

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post #6 of 69 Old 01-04-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

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Just learned from a techie friend that "There's App's for that", probably be able to ditch the sextant soon and take a sight with your phone, which phone already knows where it is. Irony ?
Yes there is probably an app for it and there is also GPS, radar, DSC, etc but, that is not the point. The point is doing something for fun the "old way". There are people that do all sorts of things "for fun" that way or just because they believe it is better.

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post #7 of 69 Old 01-04-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

Sadly in this day using a sextant for navigation is pretty much the same as commuting to work on a horse.
Amazingly, everybody seems to think the extent of use for a sextant begins and ends with LOP's. It doesn't.
If you know the height of a lighthouse or a cliff, you can work out distance off. Every navigator could double the angle on the bow to find speed and distance. And so many more cool things.
If I didn't have to sleep once in a while I might be tempted to give up my 10" chartplotter and go back to those much more difficult and unreliable days of yore.
Of course, even with the most modern and expensive gear, a professional navigator can still find a tiny reef in the whole huge south Indian Ocean to drive his boat onto at full speed, so for some I guess it doesn't matter what you are using if you don't bother look at it.
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post #8 of 69 Old 01-04-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

I'm learning how to use one, it's a cool skill that I'll never probably use 'in anger' but it's fun
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post #9 of 69 Old 01-04-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

And here I thought he meant the usual sextent, where camp followers set up and entertained railroad workers at the end of the line.
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post #10 of 69 Old 01-04-2016
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re: Sextant and finding out where you aren't

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Originally Posted by capttb View Post
Just learned from a techie friend that "There's App's for that", probably be able to ditch the sextant soon and take a sight with your phone, which phone already knows where it is. Irony ?
The app I have uses the North star, which did not help in my South Atlantic crossing.

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