USNA Going Old School and Low Tech

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by Padre101, Feb 18, 2016.

  1. Padre101

    Padre101 Parent

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    kinnem, Skegs and TexasSailMom like this.
  2. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    CGA, to my knowledge, never stopped. Cel. Nav sucked.
     
  3. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    Agree it sucked. No wonder I went Marine Corps!
     
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  4. Navy92

    Navy92 Member

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    Aw c'mon guys! It wasn't that bad! I actually enjoyed it. Maybe that's why I went SWO! Lol!
     
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  5. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    For a Navigation final, one of my classmates made one of the most spectacular "F's" possible. The way the test was run was you were given a big nautical chart, a listing of courses and speeds to follow and a booklet of celestial observations and times to draw from. By the end of the test you would end at a certain point. The way it was graded, the instructors dropped a clear plastic overlay of a bull's eye over the correct spot and depending on how far away your ending point was, determined your grade. This guy screwed up a celestial fix at the very beginning which, of course, screwed up the whole test as his track was totally off. He did not realize it until his track took him right through a big island. By this time it was way too late to go back and re-do the whole test so in a burst of inspiration, he took a razor blade and very carefully cut out the island and moved it over about 10 miles and cut out a matching piece of ocean. He then reversed both the island and the ocean patch and attached them in place with tape on the back of the chart, tidied things up with his pencil and eraser and turned in his chart.

    Of course he got a F but the instructors posted the thing on the wall with the big red F and added comments from the whole staff like: "Brilliant tactical solution", "This man is headed for flag rank", "My god, why did I not think of this when I was navigator on my last tour", "This changes sea warfare as we know it", "It's better to be lucky than good---this guy missed both"..........

    He became famous. The other equally stunning test was done by a guy who wanted to flunk out. He was past the point of resigning and the only way you could be kicked out and NOT be sent to the fleet as an E-3 was for academic failure (this was during Vietnam and rules were different). He wanted to go to art school and wanted to only fail the courses he would never need and wouldn't transfer which, of course, included Navigation. So he brought in a pack of colored pencils and for the hours of the exam he sketched the most beautiful clipper sailing ship crashing through the waves on a huge blank spot of the chart. It was really good with flapping sails, billowing clouds, waves, men in the rigging, colors, the texture of the ship, sky and birds.......this kid was very, very good. He too got an solid F but the chart was framed and hung for months in the department halls. I heard that finally the instructors got to fighting over who would take it home and it soon disappeared after that.

    I wish the future Midshipmen luck in that course, in any case. Thanks for the article and knowing the Navy's penchant for manual backups (think After Steering), I am surprised it ever got dropped.
     
  6. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ Member

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    I admit to being one of the ones who enjoyed Nav courses, including Celestial. I grew up on the water and around boats, so that was a "comfort course" to me.
    At OCS, the instructor was an ancient mariner (to us) type, a Navy Quartermaster Master Chief who had a disconcerting habit of walking around during Nav quizzes, looking over your shoulder and saying "mm..mm..mm" under his breath. This, of course, put in mind that horrible feeling you messed up a fix at the start of the problem, and your plot would end in a landmass or on a reef. To his credit, during lectures, he would kick the side of the podium during certain topics, and the astute OC would later recognize that point on a quiz or exam.

    Loved the Spud stories above.
     
  7. DH2015

    DH2015 Member

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    All of the Maritime Academies as well as Coast Guard have never stopped teaching Celestial Navigation...core course.
     
  8. Letsdothis

    Letsdothis Member

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