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    Re: Chronometer testing, was: Reliable Index Correction to a Tenth Minute of Arc
    From: George Huxtable
    Date: 2010 Mar 4, 12:12 -0000

    Chronometers for the Admiralty were tested and certificated at the Royal
    Observatory, Greenwich, rather than at Kew Obsevatory. I don't know whether
    those facilities at Greenwich were also available to merchant navigators.
    
    The aim was to be able to transfer the instrument by a smooth conveyance
    (ship's boat, then carry by hand) and Kew was well out of reach of vessels
    using the Thames.
    
    George.
    
    contact George Huxtable, at  george@hux.me.uk
    or at +44 1865 820222 (from UK, 01865 820222)
    or at 1 Sandy Lane, Southmoor, Abingdon, Oxon OX13 5HX, UK.
    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Douglas Denny" 
    To: 
    Sent: Thursday, March 04, 2010 11:12 AM
    Subject: [NavList] Re: Chronometer testing, was: Reliable Index Correction
    to a Tenth Minute of Arc
    
    
    Bill,
    
    The question of chronometer testing is an interesting point regarding
    somewhere like Kew Observatory, which, as I mentioned, I was fairly sure was
    an Admiralty testing/repair facility. I find it difficult however to
    consider your idea/suggestion that only pocket watches were checked - i.e.
    so-called 'deck watches' is correct.
    
    The procedure might well have been different for checking between a
    deck-watch and a pukka marine chronometer with spring detent movement, but
    surely with the hundreds of chronometers the Royal Navy would have had in
    use, if Kew was the facility for repair/testing then they must have been
    'geared-up' for both. It is highly unlikely the Admiralty would have a
    separate place for marine chronometers and another for deck-watches; - they
    don't like spending too much money on anything - let alone separate
    facilities for the same task.
    
    This kind of question is what I would like to have found out definitively
    about the Kew Observatory but is not, it seems,  readily available in any
    handy historical text.
    
    I do know the in the past I have come across Kew Observatory being mentioned
    on a number of occasions regarding Admiralty marine chronometers, compasses
    and sextants.
    
    Any further information is to be welcomed. I suppose the only way to find
    out is to do sme research at The National Maritime Museum, or call Johnathan
    Betts the curator of the Greenwich horological section.
    
    Douglas Denny.
    Chichester. England.
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