Happy to be here, I regularly take practice sights from the beach near the old pirate city of Port Royal, Jamaica.
I grew up sailing with my dad here, working foredeck in the 1980’s racing a J-30 then on an Oyster Lightwave 395 in the 1990’s. I was also serving as a reserve officer in our Coast Guard, and developed an interest in celestial navigation in the 1990’s, taking my first practice sights (Evening Stars) with my Davis Mark 20 on a patrol boat in the Gulf of Mexico!
While I grew up in an environment of DR in small boats, through early SatNav to fixing by gyro and radar ranges, etc. I was able to see the introduction and gradual shift to wholesale reliance on electronic systems, and grew concerned that our current navigators are not practicing traditional methods.
After retiring from reserve service in 2012, I was encouraged by my former “boss” to develop an “Astro Club” to preserve the art and have been working on this small project since 2019. In addition to the Davis sextant, I have a 1975 International Nautical “Tamaya-Like” and a 1939 Heath Bell-Frame all in working condition, and have been sharing the art with several persons here.
I look forward to learning and sharing with you all here, and am also active as a moderator on Facebook group “Practical Celestial Navigation”.