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Navigation boom and pointer Utica
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   Author  Topic: Navigation boom and pointer Utica  (Read 163 times)
waterlevel
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Navigation boom and pointer Utica
  Utica125.jpg - 86094 Bytes
« on: Feb 1st, 2013, 10:21pm »
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Just outside the row of windows on the ferry was a long wooden boom with a gold pointer on the end of it for the pilot to keep his heading while crossing the Hudson  
River.  This one is from the New York Central Ferry Utica. Just behind the pointer
is part of the large gold pilot house finial and it is not part of the pointer.


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/NYCSMarine/Utica125.jpg
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« Last Edit: Feb 1st, 2013, 10:22pm by waterlevel » Logged
CHESSIEMIKE
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Re: Navigation boom and pointer Utica
 
« Reply #1 on: Feb 2nd, 2013, 6:14am »
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Nice detail shot.
Mike C.


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SouthBendModel34
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Re: Navigation boom and pointer Utica
 
« Reply #2 on: Mar 14th, 2013, 9:53pm »
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Waterlevel:
 
This is the first time I've seen that spar referred to as a "navigation boom", and I'm wondering if this term is specific to ferryboat parlance.
 
Those spars are known to me as a "steering jackstaff".  (I wish I could cite an authoritive source, but alas I cannot)   You will agree that, being the foremost spar on the boat, it is certainly a "jackstaff", and rather than being used to display a "jack" or "ensign", it's used as a steering reference.
 
Did you ever hear of a ferryman refer to that staff as a "navigation boom"?
 
A very nice photo, BTW.


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waterlevel
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Re: Navigation boom and pointer Utica
 
« Reply #3 on: Mar 16th, 2013, 4:07pm »
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A jack staff is a small vertical spar (pole) in the bow of a ship, on which a particular type of flag, known as a jack, is flown.The jack staff was introduced in the 1700s.
 
A boom is usually fitted to a vessel on an angle which is most often used for loading and unloading cargo.  
 
Since the purpose of the pole was not to be used for flying a Jack i.e. flag
the boom would be the more correct way to describe it.  
 
I am old enough to remember being escorted by my father who was a marine engineer to the pilot house where the ferry pilot (captain if you prefer) let me  
steer the ferry by using the boom outside the window. With his hand on my shoulder his instruction was to sight the pointed end of it to made the ferry go where I wanted it to go.  I can still remember the golden tone of the well varnished wooden & brass helm on the way over to Manhattan from Weehawken.


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