Wednesday, June 6, 2012


When you are waiting for Sunset, if you extend your arm out toward the Sun, make a fist and extend your thumb up, from the top of your thumb to the bottom of the fist is 15 degrees.  If you have big hand then your arm is longer and it all works out.

15 degrees is the amount the earth rotates in an hour.  The Sun don't really set, we just roll away from it at 15 degrees an hour at about 300 or 4000 miles an hour.  Measure the Sun from the horizon.  Just the thumb is 5 degrees or 20 minutes.  Just the fist is 40 minutes.   That helps tell you when to head for home or when you turn on the Laser running lights.

It will also work horizontally,  If you are sailing on little lake without your compass,  A header of 5 degrees (the thumb) means if you tack you gain or loose 12 %  of your separation from boats on the same line of equal position.  The fist or 10 degrees is 25 % of the separation.

While your sitting there watching the Sun, say "thank you Sun for all the wind I enjoy".  Remember the Sun makes the wind, but that is  another story..

And THANK YOU Tillerman for the nice Sunset picture.


  1. After 7 years of stealing photos off Google Images to illustrate my blog posts, I feel as if I've finally "arrived." Someone has copied one of my photos to illustrate their blog post! Woo hoo!

  2. I liked this picture best--- maybe move the sun over to a third of the way in from the right, but leave the trees on the far left.. Can you do that??

  3. I could do that for you Sam one evening, if you wish. But isn't there some rule about a grid of thirds and placing your main subject on that grid? I hate following rules.