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Hog  A craft that sags downward at her bow and stern

Hooker  A term describing any older vessel - also a small two-masted craft such as an Irish Galway Hooker

Horns  Protrusions on the sides of a rudder to prevent it turning beyond an allowable angle

In Irons  A sailing craft caught dead to wind and unable to fill her sails on a new tack

Isobar  A line of equal barometric pressure on a weather map

Jack   A small flag flown at the bow, correctly flown  only when not underway

Jackass   A plug for a hawsepipe

Jacobs Ladder  The type of ladder used as a "Pilot's Ladder"

Jews Harp  A shaped shackle for stock anchors

Jigger  The name of a fore-aft sail rigged aft on the mizzen mast

Jumbo  Name of the heavy lift derricks of 100 tonnes or more seen on breakbulk cargo ships

Jury  A temporary or makeshift arrangement repairing damage

Keckling  Old line served around the rope anchor cable before chain cables

Kenning   Term for the distance (about 20 miles) from which high land could be sighted at sea.  Kennen sketches were common on the British Admiralty (BA) coastal charts.

Kentledge  Inboard ballast (¡¡does not include useless crewmembers!!)

Kevel   A large cleat or pair of bitts in sailing vessels

Killick  A simple anchor - also the nickname of a British Royal Navy Leading Rate as it is his rating insignia

Kippage  All the apparel and personnel of a vessel

Knock Off  Stop all work or whatever task is at hand

Good timing - lets knock off for now.

Good Watch

Some 400 of our fellow seafarers are still being held captive by pirates off the coast of Somalia.  Let us work to bring them home.


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It sometimes happens that one is going to write a Post on a subject when lo and behold there is already an excellent one.  Such is the case today; so rather than repeat everything let me refer you to the source of that Post

At present we are experiencing Perigean Spring Tides which occur when the Moon is at perigee on its oval path that is the closest point to Earth.  One of the principal results are higher than usual Spring Tides as against the Neap Tides.

Should you be interested in the full explanation of this phenomenon then you might like to reference "Old Salt Blog" which has an excellent explanation of this event and uses all the correct terms - quite unlike our Media here in South Florida.

Good Watch.


In recent years there has been a steady decline in the professionalism, accuracy and quality of the various Media outlets and the social media.  In the rush to get there first with a story the shoddy Media - lets call it the really shoddy social media - have resorted to making up stories.  When growing up in the late 30's and 40's this was called lying and got one punished in our house.

Fake news includes inaccurate and unsupported stories all of which in the last year have been published without correction or apology.  Now it seems this attitude has spread to the maritime blogs.  One blog which was generally pretty good about its posts has slipped in accuracy lately including quoting from European tabloids.  A recent post was about H.M.S. Vengeance and its missile launches off the coast of Florida part of its programme to Certify boat and crew  The story was an ill advised, inaccurate choice in subject matter as to what happened and how the incident was reported to a Foreign N…


NAUTICAL LOG has published Posts about this tragic ship sinking since the very first report of her loss.  Today the NTSB has released her VDR data in particular the Navigation Bridge voice recorder - it is not good.  This Post is compiled from multiple Media sources.

On October 01, 2015 the SS El Faro a freighter sank with all hands, 33 crewmembers lost their lives and no bodies were ever recovered though one was sighted by the USCG in a survival suit but not picked-up.  By an extraordinary search, resumed at the insistence of a U.S. Senator from the State of Florida, the VDR was found  and now after months of investigation some results have been released. 

The ship left Jacksonville, Fl. bound for San Juan, PR and sailed directly into the eye of a Category 4 hurricane named Joaquin.  Why the ship was where it was in the first place is a question yet to be fully answered but it seems that the Master was more focused on fuel consumption than plotting the path of the hurricane Joaquin an…