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    Re: "A Star To Steer Her BY"????
    From: Ken Gebhart
    Date: 2005 Jan 31, 21:58 -0600

    on 1/31/05 9:20 PM, Joe Shields at jshields@POST-GAZETTE.COM wrote:
    > As one who has enjoyed practicing celestial navigation and collecting and
    > reading everything I can find on the subject, the book "A Star To Steer Her
    > By" has eluded me.  I think it was out of print when I first looked for it,
    > but it is available now, used and new, so I bought a copy.
    > Now I wish I hadn't.  Chapter 2 has several diagrams that are most
    > upsetting.  They show a FLAT earth with a celestial object so close to the
    > earth surface as to suggest the difference in measured angle with the
    > horizon (Ho) is due to the fact that the object's rays are approaching at a
    > different angle instead of the object's parallel rays hitting different
    > spots on the earth at different angles due to curved surface of the earth
    > (ignoring horizontal parallax for the moon).  While on the surface (no pun
    > intended) it may not make that much difference (in both cases, the further
    > one is from directly under the object the less the angle with the horizon
    > [Ho]), to me it is so essential an understanding that I feel the author does
    > more harm then good with his book, regardless of the merit of his later
    > chapters.
    > I bought a used 4th printing edition (1994)... somebody please tell me these
    > diagrams have been fixed in a more current edition.
    > -- Joe Shields
    Thank you for the "heads-up".  This book has had a good following over a
    number of years, but we have not carefully analyzed it as you have. it's
    error is one which I frequently caution beginners to beware of. We will
    phase it out of our catalog.
    Ken Gebhart/ Celestaire

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