Sailing in Greece SAILING IN GREECE

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A lot of the terms you see on a specification or inventory list for a yacht will be self-explanatory.  However, there are specific nautical terms which you may not be familiar with...

Boat Specification  
Length Overall (LOA) This is the total length of the boat as is usually quoted as a boat's "length" by manufactures and charter companies etc.

Length of Waterline (LWL)

Not normally quoted except on detailed specifications.
Hull Beam or Beam The width of a boat at the widest part.
Draft The distance from the waterline to the bottom of a boat.
Sail Area The area of the sails when fully deployed.
Engine Engine power is normally quotes in horsepower.
Water Fresh water tank capacity.
Fuel Fuel tank capacity.
Cabins Number of sleeping cabins, excludes the saloon (or main cabin).  That said on most yachts there are sleeping berths in the saloon.
Heads Toilet / shower cubicle.
Berth Bed
Speed / log / depth The standard instruments  on nearly all yachts.  The give the boat speed through the water, the distance travelled and the (all important) depth of water under the boat.
GPS A satellite navigation system.
Chart Plotter A satellite navigation system with built in maps (charts).
DSC VHF VHF radios are used communicate between vessels and with marinas, etc. ashore.  DSC (Digital Selective Calling) VHF radios are the latest type of radio.
EPIRB A satellite distress system - "Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon"
Electric anchor windlass Used to pull up the bow (front) anchor.
Deck shower on transom To rinse off after a swim - the transom is the back of the boat.


A sun shade that can be left up while sailing.
Holding Tank A holding tank is used when in harbour to store "black" water from the toilet until the boat is out to sea again where it can be emptied.
Electronic Bilge Pump Used to pump water out of the bottom of a boat.
On Deck  
Horseshoe buoy A horseshoe shaped float thrown to somebody who has fallen overboard.
Horseshoe light An automatic light that is tided to the Horseshoe Buoy at night.
Boat hook A long pole with a hook at the end.
Deck brush Basically a long handled brush.
Bow anchor and chain Used for anchoring bays and harbours.
Kedge anchor and chain A reserve or second anchor normally used of the stern or back of the boat.
Fenders Cushioning device (like an inflated ball) hung over the side of a boat to protect from impacts.
Winches A drum used to haul ropes.
Winch handles The handle fits into the top of a winch and turns it.
Radar reflector Radar reflectors make the yachts more visible on radar when there is poor visibility.
Cockpit lockers  
Dinghy Usually a small inflatable boat that used to get ashore when your yacht is at anchor.
Dinghy pump and oars Used to inflate the dinghy and row it.
Bucket with line  
Mooring warps Ropes to tie up the boat.
Manual bilge pump and handle Used to pump water out of the bottom of a boat.
Gas bottle Cooker on most boats are gas cookers.
Chart table area The chart table is a desk primarily used for navigation.
Charts Maps
Pilot book Guide to the sailing area and harbours.
Chart plotter  Use to plot courses on charts.
Dividers Used measure distances on charts.
Hand bearing compass Used to measure compass bearings for navigation.
Wooden bungs Use in an emergency to stop leaks!
Boatswain's chair A seat used to pull a crew member us a mast.
Anchor balls A black ball put up to show a boat is at anchor.
Motoring cone A black cone used to show a boat is using its engine while the sails are up.
Fog horn To signal a boat's position in fog.


Solas Lifejackets

Lifejackets are flotation aids which are warn in bad weather, fog, etc.  SOLAS (International Convention for the Safety of Life At Sea) is the lifejacket specification.
Flare pack Flares are used to attract attention in an emergency.

If there other terms on our web site you think should be included above please let us know, click here to send us an email.


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Copyright: Poros Yachting Academy Ltd & Greek Sails Ltd 2008                                               E&OE