How about boat design definitions

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by JonathanCole, Aug 23, 2005.

  1. JonathanCole
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    JonathanCole imagineer

  2. VinceS
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    VinceS Junior Member

    - cant find the website, but heres the text.

    General info - About Boats - Boating Lingo

    As you get more into boating, talking on the message boards and into the general hobby, we thought it might be nice if you knew what some of the terms are.

    Below are some of the typical boating terms in use today. There are more, but this list has been compiled from older sources.

    A special thanks to Ken Faulkner for providing this information and taking the time to round it up.


    A - K:
    Abaft - Toward the rear. Astern. Aft.

    Abeam - Directly to one side.

    Adrift - Floating with the wind or current. Not moored. Without Power.

    Adrift Hull - A design in which two or more hulls trap a mixture of air and spray beneath the planing surface at planing speed. Thus boat is partially supported on air, giving a softer ride.

    Afloat - Clear of the bottom. Carried by the water.

    Afoul - Tangled or snarled.

    Aft - Toward the rear, or stern of a boat.

    Afterplane - An elevating device attached to rear of boat transom to extend planing surface of boat.

    Aground - In contact with the bottom.

    Ahead - In front. Toward the front.

    Amidships - In or toward center of boat.

    Anchor - A carried device which is attached to a line or chain and used to secure or moor a boat by attachment to the bottom. Also to use an anchor.

    Angle of Attack - Angle at which planing surface of boat meets surface of water. A 3"-5" angle of attack is usually approximately correct for most planing hulls.

    Anticavitation Plate - A flat horizontal plate located just above the propeller at water line to prevent caviation at propeller.

    Astern - Toward rear of boat. Aft.

    Athwart - Across from side to side. Traveling or lying at right angles to direction of travel.

    Aweigh - Clear of bottom.

    Backwash - Water thrown back, as by a propeller or oar.

    Bail - To remove water from a boat by using a pail or similar container.

    Ballast - Weight carried to improve stability or balance.

    Batten Down - To make seaworthy or watertight.

    Beam - Distance across boat at widest part as distinguished from lengthwise. Also the side of boat at or near widest part.

    Beaufort Scale - A numbered code used in seamanship to denote the wind force.

    Belay - To make fast, or secure a boat, by wrapping line around mooring post, etc.

    Below - Downstairs. Below deck as on a cabin cruiser.

    Bend - A mooring knot.

    Berth - A mooring place for a boat. A bunk bed on a cabin cruiser.

    Bilge - Inside the hull in bottom of boat, especially the area enclosed below the lower deck.

    Bilge Pump - A pump used to remove bilge water.

    Bilge Water - Water accumulating in a bilge from leakage, spray, etc.

    Boat Hook - A sturdy pole with a hook built on one end for fending off or holding on to dock, or for fishing objects out of water.

    Bow - The forward, or front end of boat. Prow.

    Bracket Mount - A method of attaching outboard moto in which motor is suspended from a bracket aft of transom.

    Breaker - A wave breaking on a shore or reef.

    Breeze - Light to moderate air movement. See Beaufort Scale.

    Bridge - A raised platform or cockpit, to be occupied by the person controlling the boat.

    Broach - Turn crosswise to direction of travel with danger of capsizing.

    Bulkhead - A partition or wall located inside the hull.

    Buoy - A floating marker.

    Canoe - A long, narrow boat, usually sharp at both ends and usually propelled by paddles.

    Capsize - To upset.

    Cast Off - To unfasten mooring preparatory to leaving the dock or pier.

    Catamaran - A twin-hulled boat design.

    Caulk - The act of plugging seams in hull to make it watertight.

    Cavitation - The sharp bend or angle formed where sides or transom join the bottom of a boat.

    Chart - A map of a body of water showing landmarks, distances, depths, etc.

    Chine - The sharp bend or angle formed where sides or transom join the bottom of a boat.

    Clinker - A form of hull construction in which each external plank overlaps the preceding plank. Also called lapstrake.

    Compass - A navigational instrument to indicate direction.

    Cornering - The ability of a boat to perform a sharp turn without loss of control or danger of capsizing.

    Course - A planned direction or route.

    Crest - The highest peak of a wave.

    Cruiser - A power boat with facilities for living aboard, usually with a cabin.

    Current - The continuous flow or movement of the water.

    Dead Ahead - Directly ahead.

    Deck - A floor or platform aboard a boat.

    Dinghy - A small rowboat with sharp bow and wide stern.

    Displacement - The theory of flotation which designates that any object will float at the level at which it displaces its own weight in water.

    Displacement Hull - Type of boat design in which the entire weight of boat is supported by displacement when in motion. See planing hull.

    Dock - A landing pier. The act of tying to a landing pier.

    Draft - Operating depth from water line to lowest point of hull or motor.

    Drift - Deviation from a planned course caused by water or wind currents.

    Eddy - A circular flow of water running contrary to the main current.

    Fathom - A measure of depth equal to six feet.

    Fender - A guard to protect a boat hull from contact damage with pier or other object.

    Flare - A side extension at the bow of the boat, designed to deflect spray from the passenger compartment

    Flipping - Rolling outward and capsizing on a sharp, fast turn.

    Fore - Toward the front or bow of the boat.

    Fore & Aft - Parallel to normal direction of boat travel. Opposite to abeam.

    Forward - In the direction of the front of a boat.

    Fouled - Entangled, ensnarled or damaged by collision.

    Freeboard - Distance between waterline and top of gunwale.

    Gale - A strong wind, See Beaufort Scale.

    Galley - Ship's kitchen

    Gear - Equipment of any type.

    Gunwale - Side of the boat, or railing on the side.

    Head - Ships Toilet.

    Headway - Forward motion.

    Heave - To pull or throw line.

    Helm - Steering mechanism or control mechanism.

    Helmsman - Steersman.

    Hitch - Temporary knot.

    Hook - A defect of the bottom of a boat where a portion of the keel is higher than the bow or stern.

    Houseboat - A house-like structure built on a hull or pontoons and capable of navigation.

    Hull - Main body of vessel as distinguished from fixtures or propulsion mechanism.

    Hurricane - The strongest air movement, See Beaufort Scale.

    Hydrofoil - Small wing-like projections which carry the weight of a vessel in movement by planing through the water much like an aero plane wing supports a plane into the air. The main body of a hydrofoil equipped craft is suspended in the air above the surface and is capable of much higher speed and stability.

    Hydroplane - A flat bottomed, light boat designed for racing.

    Inboard - Located inside the hull.

    Inboard - Outboard - A type of propulsion unit using and inboard motor and outdrive. See Outdrive.

    Jet Drive - A means of boat propulsion utilizing a high speed jet of water as the propellant.

    John Boat - A long narrow, flat-bottomed boat, square at both ends.

    Keel - Main center frame member at bottom of the hull. Also used to refer to a shallow steering ridge on the bottom of the boat.

    Knot - Speed measurement. Equal to one nautical mile (6,080) ft. per hour. (as a comparason, 35 knots = approximately 40 mph) L - Z:
    Lapline - A series of small longitudinal projections on aluminum or fiberglass hulls which break up the wetted surface and provide lift and directional stability. Similar to lapstrake construction in a wooden hull.

    Lapstrake - Type of hull construction composed of a series of planks in which each overlaps the preceding plank. The longitudinal ridges provide lift and direction stability similar to lapline hull. Also called clinker built.

    Lee - The side of an island, boat, etc., which is protected from the wind.

    Leeward - On the lee side, or side away from the wind.

    Line - Nautical term for any rope.

    List - To lean to one side, or side because of damage or improper loading.

    Midship - In center of boat.

    Mooring - A berth of pier for securing a boat.

    Navigate - To select and steer a course.

    Neap Tide - Tide at time of moon when tidal movement is least. See Spring Tide.

    Oar - A device used for propelling or steering a boat by hand. Usually used in pairs. Differs from a paddle in that center of oar is attached or pivoted to a swiveling fulcrum on the gunwale.

    Outboard - Located outside the hull but attached as part of the boat.

    Outboard Motor - Small boat propulsion unit consisting of an engine, drive mechanism and steering mechanism combined in a unit which attaches to a boat but usually is carried mostly outside of the hull.

    Outdrive - Combined propulsion and steering mechanism which extends through boat transom and is powered by an inboard engine. Similar in appearance and construction to lower unit of an outboard motor.

    Paddle - A short, hand-held device used for propelling and steering a boat or canoe. Differs from an oar in that a paddle is used singly and held with both hands.

    Pier - A passenger or cargo platform floating on or suspended above the water, with one end attached to the shore and the other extending out into navigable water.

    Pitching - The act of being tossed up and down as by rough water.

    Planing - Rising partly out of the water when underway.

    Planing Hull - A type of hull design which rises partly out of the water when under way, the weight of the boat being supported on a small, flat planing surface of the hull and thus capable of much higher speed than the displacement hull.

    Plimsol Mark - A load-line on the side of a craft which designates the highest safe water line when loaded.

    Plowing - Moving through the water by pushing the water aside, as a displacement hull; rather than riding on top as a planing hull. Typical of the planing hull at slow speeds.

    Pontoon - A boat-like floating structure used as a support for a dock or a platform.

    Pontoon Boat - A boat design consisting of a deck or platform attached to two or more parallel pontoons and capable of mobility.

    Port - The side of a boat which is on the left when facing forward.

    Rake - The angle of the bow or stern of a boat with relation to the water.

    Reef - A sandbar or shelf of rock lying just below or even with the water surface.

    Ribs - Vertical frame members of a boat hull.

    Rocker - A defect in the bottom of a boat in which a portion of the keel is lower than the bow or stern.

    Roosertail - A high, curving spray extending out behind the stern of a speeding motorboat.

    Rolling - Rocking sideways caused by rough water.

    Round Bottom - A type of hull construction where a cross-section of the bottom has a rounded outline.

    Rowboat - A small boat usually propelled by oars.

    Rudder - A steering device consisting of a vertical flat piece of wood or metal affixed to the stern of a boat by a hinge.

    Runabout - A small, fast pleasure boat.

    Screw - A propeller.

    Scull - An oar used singly at the stern of a boat; or to propel a boat with such an oar.

    Sea Anchor - A canvas container or pail on a frame which is attached with a line to the bow or stern of a boat and dropped overboard to keep the boat heading into or away from the current.

    Seagoing - Suitable or capable of being used in the open sea.

    Seam - The joint between two plans in wooden hull construction.

    Semi-V Hull - Type of hull construction in which a cross-section of the bottom has the outline of a very flat vee.

    Seaworthy - Safe for use in the open sea.

    Sextant - A portable instrument used in navigation to determine location or time from the apparent position of the sun, moon or stars.

    Sheer - The upward slope of the gunwale of a boat toward the bow and stern.

    Shingle - A small, wedge-shaped projection added in pairs to the planing surface of a boat bottom to improve speed and control.

    Skeg - The downward projectiong fin on the keel of a sailboat. Also, the lower projection fin on the lower unit of an outboard.

    Skiff - A small, light boat for rowing or sailing.

    Spray - A driven misture of air and water droplets caused by the wind, a boat, or other moving object.

    Spray Rails - Projections from the sides of a hull, used at forward part to deflect spray; or aft to increase lift of the planing surface.

    Sponson - A part projection from the side of a boat for protection or support.

    Spring Tide - Tide at time of moon when tidal movement is greatest. See Neap Tide.

    Starboard - The side of a boat which is on the right when facing forward.

    Stem - The upright at forward end of hull at which the two sides meet. Also, forward part of boat.

    Stepped Hull - A hull design consisting of a series of steps upon which the boat rises with each increase in planing speed.

    Stern - The rear or after part of a boat.

    Strake - A continuous like of planks extending from stern to stern along sides and bottom of a boat. Also a hull so constructed.

    Surfing - The condition of forward travel midway between planing and plowing. Attained by planing hull just before reaching planing speed and characterized by maximum wake.

    Swamp - To fill or become filled with water.

    Swell - A continuous wave of water which is above the normal water level. The crest of a wave. See Trough.

    Three-Point Hull - A planing hull in which the weight of the boat is carried on three separated points when in planing position.

    Thwarts - Seats placed crosswise in rowboats or other small boats.

    Tide - The periodic rise and fall of the ocean caused by gravity attraction of the sun and moon. See Neap Tide, Spring Tide.

    Tiller - A lever for turning the rudder of a boat.

    Tilt Angle - The difference between the vertical swivelpoint of the outboard motor lower unit and the transom angle to which the mounting brackets are attached.

    Transom - The vertical portion of the rear of the hull to which the outboard motor is attached.

    Transom Chine - The line of juncture between the transom and planing surface of a hull.

    Tredronic Hull - A type of hull design characterized by a single bow and divided planing surface.

    Trim - The balance of a boat, or the way it floats in the water.

    Trough - The depression between the crests of two waves. See Crest, Swell.

    Tumble Home - Inward curve of boat's side above waterline.

    Under Way - Moving, as a boat under it's own power.

    Vee Bottom - A hull design in which a cross-section of the bottom is in the shape of a shallow vee.

    Wake - The track or trail left by a boat or other object in moving through the water.

    Water Line - The position on the sides of the hull which is even with the surface of the water.

    Waterplane - The area or surface of the boat bottom which supports the weight of the boat. In a planing hull, this area diminishes as speed increases and the pressure or load per sq. ft. of area increases in direct relation to the decrease in area.

    Wedge - A wedge-shaped downward projection at the bottom of the transom resulting in a built-in hook. Designed to lift the stern of a semi-planing hull and reduce power requirements.

    Wetted Surface - The area of the boat hull in contact with the water. See Waterplane.

    Wharf - A pier or dock.

    Windward - On the side towards the wind or from which the wind blows. See Leeward.

    Yacht - Any type of pleasure boat, especially in the luxury class.

    Yaw - A deviation from a straight course.
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    D'ARTOIS Senior Member

    Yes, it would be a good idea. But what about an international one, adding Spanish, German and French, being the languages of the international community.
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    RANCHI OTTO Naval Architect

  5. Sander Rave
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    Sander Rave Senior Member

    Don't push your luck ;-) Ranchi
    Can't we make a chapter in the Wikipedia? maybe we can open this up for a larer group of interrested people.
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    RANCHI OTTO Naval Architect

    Perhaps there are more shipyards and naval architects in Italy than in Germany concerning pleasure craft :confused: ...
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    D'ARTOIS Senior Member

    That might be so, Otto, but there are more German yachtowners then there are in Italy - but of course an international yachtcompendium with the major european languages could be a good idea - if taken on by Wikipaedia, is maybe an outright solution.
    I have done some translations for Boatshop24; especially some French nautical terms were difficult to determine.
    Specifically if you have multiple terms for the same subject and where it concerns parts not anymore used in ships/yachts, but that are still important for historical reasons.
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    RANCHI OTTO Naval Architect

    You're right. The idea seams to be very interestuing
  9. masrapido
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    masrapido Junior forever

    E Lui come lo fa a sapere che ci sono di piu tedeschi che Italiani che hanno la barca?
  10. yipster
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    yipster designer

    i might have missed it in THE LIST, whats the name on a round stern?
    plusminus round 180 in vertical view and round 90 degree seeing it from the side, you know the comon ocean liners stern...
  11. D'ARTOIS
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    D'ARTOIS Senior Member

    You mean the stern of the clippers like Thermopylae, Cutty Sark, etc?
  12. yipster
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    yipster designer

    [​IMG]sort of like the Cutty Sark, more like the plain old fashioned ocean liners, say a quarter of a sphere, what is the name for such a stern?
  13. yipster
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    yipster designer

    it was discussed and thought there must be a word for it, so i'll check if there is an expression for such a above the waterline stern, than again, maybe its simply called a rounded stern?
  14. KFB
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    KFB Junior Member

    That would be refered to as a "fantail" stern.

  15. Bergalia
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    Bergalia Senior Member

    Come now gentlemen. The definition is obvious once you understand the 'lallans' (lowland Scots dialect) name: 'Cutty Sark' - 'Short Shirt'. So it can rightly be described as a 'Bare Bum' :D
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