What navigational equipment is this?

Most Dutch ships had this equipment as for instance the one seen here in the wheelhouse of the Shell tanker Capulonix.

That’s where they store the magic 8 ball

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I think it is where the helmsman keeps his cigarettes


I just want to cozy up to one of those windows and bask in the simplicity of it all. Not a computer or automated alarm in sight. I’m in love…


Coffee cup stand

VERY familiar, except for that particular instrument and the engine Telegraph next to the helm. Something Dutch??
Usually the Telegraph was to one (or both) sides and handled by the Third,Officer when berthing/unberthing. (Near the doors so he could hear orders shouted from the bridge wings)

Here is another old bridge picture;

On this ship Orient Explorer, ex Sognefjord, ex HMS Kilham, ex PCE 833. Built in Chicago 1943;(Converted in Norway 1950)

It was said that the box had a special lock and that only the captain had the key. Every morning when he comes to the bridge, he opens that box, looks a moment, then nods thoughtfully and closes it again. Few know that in that box is a gold plate engraved with: “Starboard is right, port is left!”


It is not a punch clock for the mates either as was sometimes suggested but a Kelvin Hughes stand alone off course alarm based on a magnetic compass and with heading setting that gave an alarm when the gyro got too much off course. The dead zone setting is adapted if for instance the weather worsens.

A clue was the forward position on the bracket to keep the magnetic compass as much as possible away from the steel bulkhead.

A modern off course alarm with a Heading Sensor Coil on the magnetic compass.


Thanks. That make sense.
But you didn’t address my curiosity about the position of the Engine Telegraph next to the helm position. (??)

I also noticed that the Magnetic Steering Compass is not directly in front of the helm, which is/was normal on older ships.Why??

I don’t have pix, but the US Coast Guard cutter I served on had the helm and telegraph close together like that. It was so the two manning that station could back-up the other if need arose.
The cutter was originally a 1944 USN salvage ship (ARS)

I sailed on the Ondina where we had two telegraphs which was necessary because of the large bridge wings, always one within shouting distance!

Don’t really know about the telegraph’s position. On the other hand, why not? What’s against it? It’s a bit arbitrary. The Capulonix was built by the Bethelhem Steel Corp. Quincy U.S.A. (new build 1672). The lowest in rank on the bridge was responsible for the operation of the telegraph, usually the apprentice or 4th mate.

This is the wheelhouse of the 18.000 ton product tanker Kelletia PFIQ. I sailed for two years, yes that was normal in those days, on the sister ship Kermia PFIY. Dutch design/layout and built at a local yard, same as the Ondina. Capulonix was foreign built.

It MAY be something adopted from the USN (??)
I also see that the other ships you mentioned has a “periscope” from the Standard Compass in place of a Steering compass, which was common on ships that had gyro. On older ships w/o gyro a separate magnetic Steering Compass was common.

Yes, that’s what I more or less suggested, foreign bridge layout.

In the case of two EOTs then they are each near the doors so orders can be heard from the wing. So it makes sense if there is only one it should be near the centerline.