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  • Writing variation

    What is the proper way of writing variation? As a decimal or a fraction.

    For example is it 3.5 degrees West or 3 1/2 degrees West.

    If it is as fraction, would you write 3.72 as 3 18/25 degrees West

  • #2
    I've always , and only ever seen it written as a Decimal... Like 3.7? W

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    • #3
      Aye decimal would be my preference. To one significant figure.

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      • #4
        It is charted as a decimal, but for calculations I have habitually converted it into a fraction, rounded to the nearest ?, as I'd only report a compass error to the nearest ??. After all, you can't read a compass bearing to greater accuracy than that.

        I probably shouldn't round it until reporting the final error. Oh well!

        Originally posted by EH75 View Post
        Aye decimal would be my preference. To one significant figure.
        You surely mean one decimal place?

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        • #5
          It's surely charted in Degree's and Minutes?? Anyway I'd make it a decimal too, saves ont he messyness, and I've sailed on a ship (which I hated!) which instead of using E/W it used +/-, I think it's the Danish log books. I also agree with rounding it up to the nearest half a degree, the seafarer is a simple beast, we only work in half degrees :P

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Martyboy View Post
            It's surely charted in Degree's and Minutes??
            So it is! I must have been thinking of the variation reported by the GPS receiver, which I've just discovered is from an internal model and not part of the almanac data as I had always thought.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Steve View Post
              So it is! I must have been thinking of the variation reported by the GPS receiver, which I've just discovered is from an internal model and not part of the almanac data as I had always thought.
              Truth be told I done a google image search of a compass rose before I posted..... if only the MCA examiner could see me now :P

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Steve View Post
                You surely mean one decimal place?
                Yeah

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                • #9
                  The Warsash way is a fraction to the nearest half degree for courses/bearings/deviation/variation, 1 d.p. on distances (i.e. to the nearest cable). The SQA seemed to be happy with it and it's realistic too.
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                  • #10
                    Yeah for distances I would put 27.4' NM. But for Degrees I would always use a decimal also... Like 314.6?(t) ? how would you write that?

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                    • #11
                      Would be 314 1/2?T. But only when presented as a final answer. If you were using it for calculations (i.e. course in sailings calculations) you would continue to use the unrounded number.
                      sigpic
                      Hello! I'm Chris. I'm away a lot so I'm sorry if it takes me a while to reply to messages, but I promise I'll get back to everyone. If it's urgent, please email me directly at [email protected].

                      Need books, Flip Cards or chartwork instruments? Visit SailorShop.co.uk!

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                      • #12
                        Agreeing with above posts, one decimal place for a calculation in college etc. half a degree as 1/2 when doing them in reality on board. You can't really be more accurate. Or need to be!!
                        If you can't laugh, you shouldn't have joined!!

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