What is it?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by scifan57, May 21, 2012.

  1. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    How about a map wheel.
  2. Richard Brown
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    Richard Brown Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Sort of, but there is a specific name.

    What do you use to take measurements such as speed, or mileage? That will give the last 5 letters of the name - the class of instrument.

    Sent from my iPad 1 using iPF - Greetings
  3. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    You do realize that the original challenge didn't ask for the exact name of the instrument,don't you.

    Richard Brown said:

    "OK, I was hoping to answer a challenge before posting. The challenges have proved well. Very challenging!

    Here's mine.

    What is this part of?

    What is it used for?

    As a bonus, but not an essential question, how is it used?



    image-1231768316.jpg



    The original image is definitely out of copyright.

    Sent from my iPad 1 using iPF - Greetings"
    Last edited: May 24, 2012
  4. Richard Brown
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    Richard Brown Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Fair enough, Scifan. You have the challenge now. The instrument is called an opisometer.

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  5. AdmiralAdama
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    AdmiralAdama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Need to reattach the pic scifan. I can't read it.
    AA
  6. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I've looked and I discovered that the terms map wheel,map meter and opisometer are used interchangeably for the same device.
  7. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Here's one for everyone.
    What are we looking at?What was it used for?Who is credited with the invention of the first of these devices?

    image-1742991968.jpg

    image-1614027579.jpgWhat is the cone shaped piece in the second photo and what is it's purpose?
    Last edited: May 24, 2012
  8. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Here's another photo.

    image-3632262419.jpg
  9. twerppoet
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    twerppoet iPad Legend

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    It looks like the mechanism for an early marine chronometer. These chronometers had to be certified, for accuracy, and were used for naval navigation. Knowing the exact time is crucial for determining longitude in when navigating using a sextant in celestial navigation. It was the invention, a lifetime of work, by John Harrison that allowed an era of exploration and navigation to begin.

    I'm less sure of the first, since I haven't found any good sources. The cone shaped pice is called the 'schnecke' in German, which translates to 'snail'. I've no idea if that is what it's actually called in English.

    In the diagram I saw there is a chain that wraps around the snail and the geared drum (shown in the last picture). Both the gear and the snail are a continuous spiral (thus the snail) rather than distinct rings. My guess is that it is used to compensate for variable strength (torque) of the spring as it unwinds.

    File:L-Cronometer.png - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


    Note: I'm out of the house for a bit, maybe an hour. Be back soon to see if I need to post a challenge.
  10. scifan57
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    You've solved the mystery.The photos are of an antique Marine Chronometer.
    The chronometer in the pictures is about 120 years old,but virtually identical Chronometers are still made today,mainly for the collectors market.
    The "cone" shaped piece is called the Fusee.
    Here are more pictures.
    An excellent resource to read is "The Marine Chronometer" by Rupert Gould,who restored the Harrison Chronometers,H-1 to H-4.
    There is an excellent TV miniseries about the problem of finding longitude at sea.It's called"longitude".


    image-4216761849.jpg



    image-2459068737.jpg



    image-3594587539.jpg



    image-2989596789.jpgThe hands are made of gold and the end stones of the balance wheel are diamond.
    Your turn to post the next challenge.
    Last edited: May 24, 2012
  11. twerppoet
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    twerppoet iPad Legend

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    Beautiful. I believe I caught part of that mini-series. He had built an accurate clock out of wood in his barn.
  12. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    He also invented the Grasshopper clock escapement.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 23, 2014
  13. twerppoet
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    What is this?

    What its it used for (part of).

    Where would you find it (or one like it); in a general sort of way?

    DSC00468.jpg
  14. scifan57
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    It looks like an ocean data buoy,used to collect data on the water and air where it is floating.They are used to gather data for weather prediction,the study of ocean currents and water temperature.They come in moored and free floating versions.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weather_buoy
    Last edited: May 24, 2012
  15. twerppoet
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    Close. This one is more specific, and not science or weather related; at least not directly. The squarish part to the left is the sensor platform, and rests on the ocean floor.
  16. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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  17. twerppoet
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    That's it. The picture shows the USCSG Healy servicing one of buoys off the North American north west coast. I was asked to take pictures and video, documenting the task for later analysis.

    Your turn.
  18. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Here's an easy one.
    What are we looking at here?What is it used for?Tell me something about the manufacturer.

    image-2548011613.jpg



    image-570284424.jpg



    image-3730485423.jpg



    image-2671662930.jpg
  19. AdmiralAdama
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    Is it a caulking tool made by the Christopher Prince Drew Co., Kingston Mass., USA?
    AA
  20. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    No,Admiral,it has nothing to do with caulking,although you do have the correct manufacturer.

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