Welcome to the Wheel House!
Image of the bridge showing the ship's wheel, captain's chair, compases and radar
Image of the bridge showing the engine room telegraph, binacle, and radar set
Image of the chartroom
wheel house (commonly known as the bridge) is where the ship is
navigated and piloted from. There are numerous aids to
navigation. There are two
DECCA radar systems one is ARPA capable with a 48 mile scan and a 20
mile ARPA. There is
one binnacle with
a magnetic compass normally
used to steer the vessel in emergencies - such as power failures which
also has degaussing capabilities
which were used during WWII for magnetic mines. There
one gyro repeater steering compass that the ship is steered by, and
numerous repeaters in different locations aboard ship that receive
signals from the master gyro. The master gyro sends "true" courses to
There is a rudder indicator which allows the bridge to know what angle the rudder is set at. There is a clinometer which indicates the degree of roll the ship may be experiencing, especially in rough weather. The ship's wheel is hydraulically controlled, and manned by an able-bodied (A.B.) seaman. There is one R.P.M. (Revolutions Per Minute) indicator, which indicates the number of screw revolutions when underway. There is a fathometer which indicates the depth of the water beneath the keel of the ship.
Aft of the wheel house is the chart room. The chart room is a integral part of the ship. It is there where the course is plotted and charts of many oceans, harbors, etc. are kept. In addition to the ship's charts, you'll find many navigational aides including a radio direction finder, a global positioning system and a Loran-C positioning. There is a case to keep the chronometers in, as well as a locker to keep the navigation books in.
Close up of the ship's primary gyro compass