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World Yachting Asia - Nautical terms
Category: General technical and industrial > Nautical terms
Date & country: 27/01/2011, CH
Words: 246

Behind, toward a vessel's stern.

Off the side, amidships, at right angles to the fore and aft line.

Side by side; by the side of.

Not made fast, floating loose, at mercy of wind and current.

At, near, or toward the stern.

Touching or stuck on the bottom.

In front of the vessel, forward; opposite of astern.

Aids To Navigation
Artificial objects to supplement natural landmarks indicating safe and unsafe waters.

System where vessel information (location, course, speed, etc.) is broadcast by VHF radio, for use by other vessels in navigation and collision avoidance. See also article - How is AIS works

Away from the direction of the wind. Opposite of windward.

Above deck, usually in the rigging.

In or toward a boat's middle part, between the sides or between bow and stern.

A place suitable for anchoring in relation to the wind, seas and bottom.

Apparent Wind
The speed and direction from which the wind appears to blow with reference to the bow when the boat is moving (also called relative wind).

Arrival Alarm
An alarm signal issued by a GPS/chart plotter that indicates arrival at or at a predetermined distance from a waypoint (see arrival circle).

Arrival Circle
An artificial boundary placed around the destination waypoint of the present navigation leg, the entering of which will signal an arrival alarm.

At any point behind the boat, backward.

At right angles to the fore-and-aft line of a vessel.

The position of anchor as it is raised clear of the bottom.

Bathymetric Line
A depth contour line on the chart

Stiffening strip placed in leech of sail. Also, a wooden strip fastened over seam to stop leakage.

Batten Down
Secure hatches and loose objects both within the hull and on deck.

A marked post located on a shoal or bank to warn vessels of danger or to mark a channel. A signal mark on land; a light or radio signal.

The greatest width of the boat.

Bear Off
Steer away from the wind, shore or any object.

The direction of an object expressed either as a true bearing as shown on the chart, or as a bearing relative to the heading of the boat.

Bearing Away
Turning away from the wind.

The lowest part of the ship's interior.

Bitter End
The inboard (free) end of a line or rope.

A pole running at a right angle from the mast.

Boot Top
A painted line that indicates the designed waterline.

Varnished woodwork and/or polished metal.

The turning of a boat broadside to the wind or waves, subjecting it to possible capsizing.

A vertical partition separating compartments.

Extension of topsides above deck.

Burdened Vessel
That vessel which, according to the applicable Navigation Rules, must give way to the privileged vessel. The term has been superseded by the term "give-way".

Cast Off
To let go a line, as to cast off a bow line.

Chafing Gear
Tubing or cloth wrapping used to protect a line from chafing on a rough surface.

Intersection of sidesand bottom of a boat.

A deck fitting to guide aline where it leaves the boat. Also a wedge or bracket to keep articles from shifting.

Clear Astern And Clear Ahead
One yacht is clear astern of another when her hull and equipment in normal position are behind a line abeam from the aft most point of the other boat's hull and equipment in normal position. The other yacht is clear ahead.

A fitting to which lines are made fast. The classic cleat to which lines are belayed is approximately anvil-shaped.

Aft, lower corner of a sail.

Close Hauled
Sailing as directly into the wind as possible, also, on the wind.

A vertical piece around the edge of a cockpit, hatch, etc. to prevent water on deck from running below.

Come About
Significant course change in sailing to bring the bow through the wind or tack.

Compass Error
Combined effect of variation and deviation.

Cpa - Closest Point Of Approach
The closest distance two vessels will come to each other based on their current course and speed.

Cunningham (Also Called A Downhaul)
Adjusting the tension of a sail's luff.

Dead Ahead
Directly ahead.

Dead Astern
Directly aft.

A permanent covering over a compartment, hull or any part thereof.

Disturbing effect of boat's magnetic field upon its compass.

differential data is received from external DGPS Receiver

Displacement Hull
A type of hull that plows through the water, displacing a weight of water equal to its own weight, even when more power is added.

Distance to the next position the NX40/45 is navigating to, either a waypoint or the cursor.

A protected water area in which vessels are moored.The term is often used to denote a pier or a wharf.

A group of piles driven close together and bound with wire cables into a single structure.

The depth a vessel sinks when afloat, as measured vertically from the waterline to the lowest point.

Object streamed from boat to decrease speed, sea anchor.

A receding current.

EVC – Electronic Vessel Control
enables boat`s engine, transmission, instruments and control systems to communicate and exchange information via a common bus network. Through proper interface to EVC, an autopilot can get sensor data from the EVC, do steering calculations and send rudder commands back to the EVC which brings rudder to commanded angle.

Fitting to route control lines or cables.

A unit of length used in measuring water depth.One fathom is 6 feet.

Feet Ft
1 foot is 0.3048 meter

A cushion, placed between boats, or between a boat and a pier, to prevent damage.

Fish Forecaster
An estimate of the likelihood of catching fish based on barometric pressure. The more fishes that show the higher the likelihood (requires Simrad 721 VHF radio).

A fish-finder is an echo sounder (sonar) specifically designed to detect the presence of fish in the underwater environs of the host boat, in addition to measuring the overall depth of the water. A fish-finder uses echo-location to reflect electronic pulses off fish and other underwater features and converts this information into a graphic rendition, nowadays a full-colour high-definition screen o...

The outward curve of a vessel's sides near the bow. A distress signal.

A incoming current.

The palm of an anchor.

Following Sea
An overtaking sea that comes from astern.

Prefix denoting at, near, or towards the bow.

In a line parallel to the keel.

A compartment in the bow of a small boat.

Toward the bow of the boat.

Not clear, jammed.

Foul Ground
A place not suitable for anchoring.

Any piece of equipment that is jammed or entangled, or dirtied.

The minimum vertical distance from the surface of the water to the gunwale.

Spar which supports the upper side sofa fore-and-aft four-sided sail. Also, long-handed hook to bring fish aboard.

Gaff Rigged
A sailboat whose principal sail is supported by a gaff.

The kitchen area of a boat.

The area of a ship's side where people board and disembark.

A general term for ropes, blocks, tackle and other equipment.

Give-Way Boat
One that does not have the right-of-way and should avoid the stand-on boat.

A simple way of navigating straight to a waypoint or to the cursor position.

Global Positioning System. A satellite based navigation tool. This system is based on satellites in fixed orbits, circling the earth at an altitude of approximately 20,200 km. The system will provide the user with 24 hour a day all weather position coverage, with an accuracy of 5 to 30 meters.

Grab Rails
Hand-hold fittings mounted on cabin tops and sides for personal safety when moving around the boat.

Ground Tackle
A collective term for the anchor and its associated gear.

Ground tackle
An anchor and anchoring gear.

The part of a vessel where hull and deck meet. (Pronounced "gun'l")

Line for hoisting sails or flags.


Hard Chine
An abrupt intersection between the hull side and the hull bottom of a boat so constructed.

An opening in a boat's deck fitted with a watertight cover.

A boat's toilet. Also the upper corner of a triangular sail. The foremost part of a vessel.

Head Up
Sailing closer to the wind.

The direction in which a vessel's bow points at any given time.

The forward motion of a boat. Opposite of sternway.