are sextants still of any use in the 21st century?

or have they gone the way of the slide rule?

11 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Me, I look over the side. If I see water then I know I am not on dry land.  It can't hurt to know it. It has been accurate since its invention and does not need a battery.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    I met a guy who made one of an old car odometer. They still  work.  I'd  love to get one and a Naval Almanac just to try it.  I also use my old slide rule from '71, just to keep in practice.. Batteries go dead, you know.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    When all the satellites and computers fall apart, the sextant, a world map, and a good chronometer watch will still tell you where you are. Harbor Freight Tools has a sextant for 20 bucks.

  • 1 month ago

    What would happen if the Russians or Chinese or ISIS hacked the GPS satellites? You best know how to use a sextant.

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  • 1 month ago

    Last ship I was on had a computer virus- every watch, every other hour, the mate had to check to make sure the GPS was correct.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    I still use both, so yes.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Hint, they don't have electronics to fail. Good backup to have.

  • 1 month ago

    I took classes in navigation and they still use sextants.  GPS is fine, but they still teach you how to do it the old-fashioned way.  Just like every boat and airplane has a compass.  Actually, airplanes have TWO compasses--magnetic and gyroscopic.

  • Nancy
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    They still exist on a lot of boats in case the GPS becomes defunct somehow. To become a licensed captain, most countries require knowing how to use one by making those wanting captains' licenses pass a test on how to use one before issuing the license.

  • 1 month ago

    Obsolete. Even compasses are obsolete, as we have GPS now.

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