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Letter: Why knot?

After reading the review of Voyages in the January/February 2016 issue of WindCheck (thank you very much!), I settled down to read much of the rest of the issue. Specifically, I was reading the article “On the Bus with Joe Harris” on pages 54 & 55.

It is a great story, but near the middle of page 55 I quote: “To set a new record (albeit unofficially), Harris will need to maintain an average speed of 195 nautical miles per day, or roughly 8.2 knots per hour.” As one who used to teach celestial navigation for many years, I always stressed to students that a knot was already a unit of speed – specifically, one knot is defined as one nautical mile per hour, and that “knots per hour” would actually correspond to a unit of acceleration. I hate to be picky, but someone at WindCheck needs to catch that sort of thing.

All the best,

Paul Jacobs, Saunderstown, RI

Paul – You’re absolutely right – we shouldn’t have let that one slip through. Thank you for the correction, and for sharing a great anchoring tip with us “Springing the Rode”. It’s surprising that such a simple and effective technique remains largely unknown, and we look forward to trying it this season.


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