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    From: Roger Puttman
    Date: 2006 May 14, 18:41 +0800

    I'm brand new to this site so thanks for having me!
    As a bit of an amateur I am keen to learn the more basic aspects of 
    astro navigation.  I was lucky enough to serve as an assistant officer 
    of the watch on a Frigate and although I didn't get my ocean nav ticket 
    (a long story how I came to be there etc etc)  I did get a good 
    grounding in astro.  I recently bought a Hezzanith vernier sextant from 
    e bay and I have a couple of nav manuals, (1784 Mariners Compass 
    Rectified and 1842  Navigation by Raper and some modern ones too!)  the 
    second is a complete course in the subject, starting at how to do the 
    maths and moving on to the instruments and tables for 1842 to 1845.
    The first question I have is:  I live on a hill overlooking the ocean 
    but dont know my elevation to set the dip.  Given I know where I am and 
    can see some islands offshore is there a way I can determine my 
    altitude?  I have a chart and can accurately place my house and the 
    islands so there must be a way....I just cant figure it out.  I can get 
    off my bum and go down the beach and take sights but it is kind of fun 
    to be able to do it from the backyard...
    Secondly, a number of you managed to extract Margetts tables from  a 
    site but it seems to have been shut down.  Is there anyway we can still 
    get access to that site?   It sounds excellent for a whole pile of 
    stuff so it is a shame we get it now.  As an aside, there was comment 
    on whether Margetts  would have been used contemporaneously.  I found 
    this from Mathew Flinders which given his abilty as a navigator might 
    be indicative:
      I am not able to give you precise information of the books and 
    instruments you wish to purchase, but think they may come to near £80 
    sterling. I do not know much of Heather's charts: we reckon those of 
    Arrowsmith of Faden to be the best. Of  the use of Margetts' tables I 
    have no great opinion, but Mendoza's are excellent. I would recommend 
    you to apply to Mottley, bookseller in High Street Portsmouth for both 
    books, charts, and instruments; believing that he will procure for you 
    what may not be kept in the shop; but I rather think you will not stay 
    long enough to receive what may be required from London.
    Matthew Flinders - Private letter books, Nov. 1810 - May 1814 (Vol. 3)
      To Mr Antony Roux, Sept. 26, 1811
    Roger Puttman
    32.46 S 115.75 E  (decimal lat and long, my god what a dogs breakfast)
    > T

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