||William Falconer's Dictionary of the Marine
Table of Contents
CABIN to To CALK, or CAULK
CALL to CANNON
CANNON to CANOE
CANOE to To rig the CAPSTERN
CAPSTERN, or CAPSTAN
To rig the CAPSTERN
Surge the CAPSTERN to CARPENTER of a ship
CARTEL to CATS-PAW
CAULKING to CHANNEL
CHANNELS to CHEARLY
CHEEKS of the mast to CLINCH
CLINCHER-WORK to COASTING-PILOT
COAT to COLLIERS
COLOURS to COMPASS
COMPASSING to COVE
COUNTER to CRAWL
CREEPER to CROW-FOOT
CROWNING to CUT-WATER
CAPSTERN, or CAPSTAN (continued)The pawls, f, fig. 10. are situated on each side of the capstern, being two short bars of iron, bolted at one end through the deck to the beams close to the lower part of the whelps; the other end, which occasionally turns round on the deck, being placed in the intervals of the whelps, as the capstern turns, prevents it from recoiling or turning back by any sudden jerk of the cable as the ship rises on the sea, which might greatly endanger the men who heave. There are also hanging pawls g, g, fig.. 12. used for the same purposes, reaching from the deck above to the drum-head immediately beneath it.
The swifter is a rope passed horizontally through holes in the outer ends of the bars, and drawn very tight: the intent of this is to keep the men heady as they walk round, when the ship rolls, and to give room for a greater number to assist by pulling upon the swifter itself.
The most frequent use of the capstern is to heave in the cable, and thereby remove the ship, or draw up the anchor. It is also used to wind up any weighty body, as the masts, artillery, &c. In merchant-ships it is likewise frequently employed to discharge or take in the cargo, particularly when consisting of weighty materials that require a great exertion of mechanical powers to be removed.
There are commonly two capsterns in a ship of war, the main and the gear capstern; the former of which has two drum-heads, and may be called a double one. This is represented by fig. 12. of plate II. The latter is exhibited in fig. II.
Formerly the bars of the capstern went intirely through the head of it, and consequently were more than twice the length of the present ones; the holes were therefore formed at different heighths, as represented in fig. 10. plate II. But this machine had several inconveniences, such as the persons who heaved at the higher bars incommoding those at the lower ones the bars being lifted or lowered by the persons who heaved at their opposite ends; some of the bars being too high, and others too low, &c. It has therefore been long intirely disused in the navy. Some of these sort of capsterns, however, are still retained in merchant-ships, and are usually denominated crabs. The situation of the bars in a crab, as ready for heaving, is represented in fig. 13. plate II.
© Derived from Thomas Cadell's new corrected edition, London: 1780, page 75, 2004
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