SHOT-A length of anchor chain, when joined with
others, which makes up the anchor cable. A standard
shot is 15 fathoms long.
SHOT LINE-A light nylon line used in a line-throwing
SIDE LIGHT-Any one of the colored lights, red (port)
and green (starboard), required by the Rules of the
Road to be shown by a vessel underway.
SILENCE-The command given by any member of a
weapons crew who observes a serious casualty or
situation that requires immediate attention.
SINGLE UP-The command given before unmooring a
ship from a pier or wharf. To take in all double
sections of line between the ship and the pier,
leaving the vessel moored only by a single line to
SLACK-(1) To ease out a line. (2) The loose part of a
line that takes no strain.
SLUSH-(1) The act of applying preservative to a line
or wire. (2) The preservative substance so applied.
SMALL STUFF-A general term for any fiber line less
than 1 3/4 inches in circumference.
SNAKING -Netting rigged between the housing line or
footrope and the waterway bar to prevent objects on
deck from going overboard.
SNATCH BLOCK-A single-sheaved block with a
hinged strap, which can be quickly opened to take
the bight of a line, making it unnecessary to reeve
the end of the line through the block. A great
convenience for handling line on deck.
SNUB-To stop the payout of a running line, allowing
only enough movement so it will not part.
SOPA-Abbreviation for senior officer present afloat.
SPAN-(1) A line made fast at both ends with a tackle,
line, or fitting made fast to its bight. (2) Wire rope
stretched between davit heads to which lifelines are
SPAN WIRE-The steel cables between ships during
underway replenishment that supports the fuel hose,
or by which cargo is transferred.
SPAR BUOY-Type of buoy tapered at one end, floating
SPECIAL SEA AND ANCHOR DETAIL-Those
personnel assigned duties in connection with
getting underway, mooring, or anchoring-normally
when entering or leaving port.
SPRING LINE-Any mooring line that does not lead at
right angles with the ship or pier to which moored.
SQUALL-A short intense windstorm, often
accompanied by rain or snow.
SQUARE AWAY-(1) To straighten out, make
shipshape, or to get settled in a new job. (2) To
inform someone in an abrupt manner.
STADIMETER -An instrument for measuring distance
to objects of known height by mechanical solution
of a right angle. Commonly used to measure
distance to other ships in formation.
STANCHION -(1) Any vertical metal post or column
supporting the overhead. (2) Any similar device
supporting handrails, manropes, or lifelines.
STAND BY-(1) To wait. (2) To substitute for someone
who has the duty. (3) A preparatory expression, e.g.,
stand by: take in all lines.
STANDING LIGHTS-The dim, red lights throughout
a ship's interior to enable the crew to move about
safely after lights out. They are red because that
color least impairs night vision.
STARBOARD -Directional term for right, as opposed
to port, which means left.
STATION -(1) To assign. (2) A post of duty, as a battle
station. (3) A position in formation of ships. (4) A
STAY-A wire supporting a mast fore and aft.
STEADY-An order to the helmsman, meaning to
steady the ship on whatever heading the ship comes
STERN FAST-A stern line used to secure a boat.
STERN HOOK-A member of a boat's crew who stands
aft and makes the boat's stern secure.
STOW-To put away or secure articles in a space aboard
SWAB-The Navy equivalent of a mop. (Never called a
TACKLE-The arrangement of line and blocks to gain
a mechanical advantage.
TAG LINE-A line used to steady a load being swung
in or out. Also called a steadying line.
TAKE A TURN-To pass a line around a cleat or bitts.
Usually followed by an order to hold it, check it, or