First Sight

I wrote before I bought an Astra IIIb from Ebay for £120. When lockdown started I said I had to accomplish something and it was either lose weight or learn (or at least the basics) celestial navigation. Well that’s an easy choice… I think?

There’s a great two part tutorial on YouTube but it’s not short, but it’s explained so well a total newbie can understand it. If you want to “get it” then it’s worth investing the time in it.

Well I watch it all, some parts twice. I’ll probably have to watch it all again at some point but I “got” the theory, enough anyway to take my first sights.

Now it wasn’t great, I took one just after noon and one later in the afternoon using used engine oil in a tub. I was about 20 miles out but I have to say having the sun in the West for both sights doesn’t help with crossing Line of Posistions, nore did the ripples on the oil from the slight breeze. Still the maths worked out all be it not quite on the dot.

Next is to take some more sights using a proper artificial horizon and plot them properly on some plotting sheets rather than my home drawn efforts. I really want to be able to identify stars and planets so that’s also on the list.

Watch this space, or that space?

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