A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Paul Saffo
Date: 2017 Feb 5, 17:36 -0800
Thanks frank -- being left-handed and having to suffer the indignities of being in the southpaw minority my entire life (just imagine trying to scissors, or use a circular power saw when left handed), I just assumed that the dominant sextant layout was created for the convenience of spoiled righties. But you are right -- I much prefer the dominant layout to that of the Plath Coutinho. But... darn it... I guess I can't blame my poor sights on being a leftie any more!
But seriously, that Plath coutinhu is a puzzle. It had to have been produced in the 1930s, long after the left-hand version became a standard. The other coutinhu sextant (presumably made in Portugal) on display is left-handed, and the Tamaya from 1940 is left-handed. Why in the world would Plath have gone to the trouble of making their Coutinhu right-handed? Maybe something to do with being in an aircraft and countering the effect of engine-induced spin? Countering the Coriolis Effect? ;-) -p