What sextant ?

paul culver

Member III
I dug through the archives for the data I got when learning celestial with the Davis Mark 3 plastic sextant. Though two sights were quite close to my actual position, marked with an "X", the rest were within about 18 NM. And these were taken from solid land and not a pitching boat deck. Still, I think you could find Hawaii.

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1911tex

Member III
Wynkoop said: "You all have at least one shortwave set on board to get time ticks right?

I have a 1950's Zenith Trans Oceanic tube short wave radio that my dad gave me eons ago. Still works great after it warms up. Sits on my reading table. Changing stations on that old tube radio, besides getting BBC, Voice of America, lots of wavy static, languages I don't recognize and preachers quoting the gospel, I can easily get the the accurate time ticks...like tick, tick, tick, tick, BONG (on the hour), tick, tick...etc. I think the signal comes from Denver, but maybe not? Are those the ticks you are referencing?
Once in a while during a power nap, I do open one eye and compare the BONG to our windup Italian 46 year old wall clock with heavy weights for keeping time...its always within 3-5 minutes a week...good enough for me. Nighty night........
 
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1911tex

Member III
Woke up at 0200 this morning...no lights in the house. Electricity is off which is a very rare event every 12 years or so. Got my bedside flashlight...went to the utility closet, got my ancient 2 mantle Coleman lantern which had not been used in many years since our last hurricane when we lived in Corpus, over 18 years ago. Lighted it up. Went outside..pitch black in the neighborhood. Neighbor sailor friend came outside also and admired my lantern. Mutual emergency wakeup society?

While sitting out front I told him about our forums interest in sextants. We decided to look for the North Star. I said we needed to find Ursula Minor (Little Dipper) and follow its handle to Polaris. Neighbor said no, it was Ursula Major (Big Dipper)..he knows astronomy! We discussed it gentlemanly like. I pulled out my trusty (so far) cell phone and punched the Skyview ap. I pointed at the sky and saw both big and little dippers, then followed the handles and there was Polaris...off the handle of the Little Dipper. If all else fail, we could head North! 3 hours later, lights came on and here I am. Good morning sky watchers!
 

toddster

Curator of Broken Parts
Blogs Author
Good grief... now it's stuck in my head. I'm prolly gonna be calling it "Ursula" for weeks now...

BTW, the handle of the big dipper arcs to Arcturus, of course.
 

1911tex

Member III
Good grief... now it's stuck in my head. I'm prolly gonna be calling it "Ursula" for weeks now...

BTW, the handle of the big dipper arcs to Arcturus, of course.
Ah, Yes Toddster, our Springtime star! I guess my neighbor and I were both correct: (Quoting)"You can use the Big Dipper to find Polaris, which is also known as the North Star. Notice that a line from the two outermost stars in the bowl of the Big Dipper points to Polaris. And notice that Polaris marks the tip of the handle of the Little Dipper. The northern sky is a large clock, with Polaris at its center."
 
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