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Old 04-28-2014, 06:02 AM   #1
FF's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 14,908
NON lectric radar!

Lifted from another board , its a great story.

I ran one in my fathers fishing boat for years. We called these boats motorboats ( and normally were schooner shaped caravel planked displacement hulls but also included big motor dorys)--the two stroke (20 to 1 gas oil mix)engine were named after the sound it's exhaust made "puck au puck 's". The most common brands sold in Newfoundland and the Maratimes were Atlantic and Acadian. The engines were bolted solid to their bedding's and when they fired over time shook the oakum out of the seams. Common boat lengths 20 to 35 ft. Most common operators injury, broken wrists and ankles from kick backs and that dam flywheel pin. Neatest navigational trick using the engines exhaust as a sonar radar. Operation: Most of the exhaust pipes were equipped with a union and a 90 elbow in that order where it exited the motor house roof. Operation: when running up the coast in the fog say up to 1/2 mile off, the exhaust was turned toward land. As long as there was a continious unbroken coastline you received a very strong constant delay echo from the low frequency puck au puck exhaust note. This relayed two pieces of info --Your distance off land and that there was no harbour opening in the coast line. A harbour opening resulted in no echo or an indication of an immediate change in distance off due a longer delay time in the echo. The old fisherman got so good at this they could literally name the harbours as they motored past them in dense fog. My first motorsailer build was a converted big NFLD. motor dory. Just loved the sound of these old craft motoring out the bay but like Hollywood mufflers on a 56Ford tis seldom heard these days.

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Old 04-28-2014, 01:10 PM   #2
bligh's Avatar
City: Santa Cruz, CA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Frisky
Vessel Model: 99 Nordic Tug
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,083
Potato Navigation

Down East
Which to those who do not live there is
Up North
Old fishermen in coveralls and heavy boots
Delight in telling about heading home to shore
In densest fog, in deep of night
In wind and rain without
A light or GPS
By using

Potato navigation.

And what is that, you say?
Should you find yourself at sea
At nightfall, in the fog
And haven't got the wherewithal to find your way
Here's what you do:

Assuming your entire stock
Of spuds - the vegetable of state
Did not comprise the meal that you just ate
You drag the bag up to the bow
And when you sense your boat is getting
Dangerously close
To the jagged, bottom-tearing rocky coast
You take a Maine potato in firm in hand
And throw.

If you hear a splash, then all is good.
You're in the deep.
You may be heading where you should, or not
Of course, you do not know; there's all that fog.
You could be anywhere.
But knowing that you're not upon a rock
You can go on.

But if you hear a thud...
You grab the wheel and steer like mad.

I don't do much sailing now
And never chose to fish
But I know well enough the sense
Of being lost at sea in fog so dense
I put aside the finer instruments
And toss my soundings, like potatoes, to the wind.
So far, so good, but
It's a system I don't recommend.
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