How Far South did the Titanic Reach?

Jim Currie

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You still seem to be mixing distance by log with distance made good.

From the daily mileage runs we were told, the vessel travelled 1549 miles to noon on the 14th. That leaves about 126 miles to the corner, consistent with a total travel distance from Daunts Rock LV to the corner of 1675 miles. (From Olympic data from 4 voyages commanded by EJ Smith over the same route of travel as Titanic, we find distances from Daunts Rock to the corner of: V1 1677 miles, V2 1674 miles,V3 1676 miles, and V8 1675 miles.) Lowe even said he calculated the ships course from noon to the corner that day. It's no secret that he would have known the ship was 126 miles before the corner at noon. Based on that little chit of paper he handed to Sen. Smith, and Smith's immediate response, what he showed Smith is how he got a speed of 21 knots by simply dividing 126 miles by the 6 hours that he mentioned. He then said it was really a little less than that, 20.95 knots, which would make the distance 125.7 miles if he cared to be more exact.

If we go with your belief that the log measured 122.2 miles at 5:50pm, then there is no way that Boxhall, or anyone else for that matter, could claim that the ship was to the south and west of the corner when she turned at 5:50pm. A run of 126 miles in six hours (or 122.2 in 5h 50m) yielding a speed through the water of 21 knots is inconsistent with an advance of nearly 45 miles in two hours seen at 10pm. In fact, it is inconsistent with Olympic making 21.5 knots carrying 74 revolutions which comes from Wilding. And Titanic was expected to make about 1/4 knot better than her sister ship according to an admission from Ismay. (At 75 revolutions Olympic would have ran about 21.8 knots.) And since the log "indicates the distance travelled through the water, not the distance made good," a run of only 126 miles by log in 6 hours, or 21 knots, is certainly inconsistent with Titanic carrying 75rpm; unless, of course, you want suggest that her revolutions had gone down to about 71 or 72rpm over that six hour period which goes against what was reported.
Not in the least 'mixed-up', Sam.

No problem with Lowe's thought processes either. I don't 'believe' that the log showed 122.2 miles at 5-50 pm; it must have done so if Lowe got a speed of 20.95 knots via a log reading for 6 pm.

There would not be a single officer on the bridge of Titanic who did not have a number in mind as to the distance to go from Noon to The Corner. All of them would have his own idea of what speed the ship would make over that distance.

Boxhall freely admitted that he did not rely on the patent log but used engine rpm. Whereas, Pitman and Lowe both stated that they used the patent log. It's all in the evidence, Sam.
One thing none of them, including Captain Smith would know for sure, was the conditions of wind and weather to be encountered.
You can be sure that Captain Smith would be on the lookout for his ship slowing down. It was and still is, a distinct possibility event in that area. However, his planned clock change of 47 minutes tells us that he hoped that Titanic would cover about 540.5 miles between Noon April 14 and Noon April 15.at the same rpm. That's 5.5 miles less than the previous day. so he was expecting to slow down at some point.

Consider this: if there was a partial clock change of 24 minutes then when Titanic hit the iceberg she would had been running for 12 hours and 4 minutes and covered a distance of 260 miles. At an average speed of 22 knots and under normal conditions; for the next 12 hours and 23 minutes, Titanic would have covered a distance of 272.4 miles, making a total of 532.4 miles...8 miles...less that Captain Smith anticipated and 13.6 miles less than the previous day's run at exactly the same rpm. During Noon 14/15, Titanic was running between 44-33'West and 56-18'West.
Is it shear coincidence that 10 months earlier, in June, 1911 and during her maiden voyage,Titanic's sister ship Olympic lost 17 miles of her expected speed while running between 43-52'West and 54-47'West?
On both occasions both vessels passed along exactly the same route in exactly the same area. Check it out for yourself.
Incidentally, has Titanic survived, and encountered SW'ly weather over the second half of the run after Midnight as did Olympic, she would have most certainly have lost more than 13.6 miles.... perhaps event that extra 3.4 miles?

Since Boxhall and Pitman believed Titanic had turned late, we can safely assume that they believed she had been allowed to run past The Corner. If both these men used the same speed and distance from Noon (I'm suspicious of Pitman) then both would have believed the ship had turned at the same time and consequently, the same distance beyond the planned turning point. They did not.
Pitman waffled-on about a turning time of 5 pm which was ludicrous, in particular if combined which his over-shoot of 10 miles. However therein may lie the cause of the mysterious extra 20 miles for the 8pm DR?
Boxhall obviously thought the ship had over-shot. Otherwise how could Titanic have been 'right on the track' at 7-30pm sights and make good a course up to then of 266 True? If anything, she should have been gradually making a course to the southward of the intended track as the local Magnetic Variation reduced.
If there had been no clock adjustment before impact, Titanic would have been at about 41-56.3'North, 47-56'West at 7-38 pm that evening. If, as claimed, she was right on the track at that moment then she was 42 miles on a bearing of 265 True from The Corner. If, as Boxhall claimed, she made 266 True from 5-50 pm when she turned, then she covered a distance of 38.2 miles at a speed of 21.5 knots...not 22 knots and was at about 41-59'North, 47-05'West.
On the other hand, had the clock been retarded 24 minutes before impact, then Titanic would have been 33 miles x 265 True from The Corner at 7-38 pm. If she had averaged 21.5 knots from when she turned, at 5-50 pm, she would have turned 5.8 miles on a bearing of 065 True from The Corner when she was at 41-59.9#North, 46=51'West.
Think about it! Boxhall 'fitted' his DR 5-50 pm turn position to the 7-30 pm fix position.
Not only did he use the wrong speed and time, but he also used the wrong course when calculating his distress position. here's where the 'fit' comes in:

15671. The effect would be she would have run a little bit further on the old course and then on the new course she is gradually making back to the line?
- That is my impression of the idea which Captain Smith had in altering that course and setting it to that time."

The he states:

"4976. How many degrees did you change ? A: - I can not remember. If I had a chart here I could tell you in a minute. South 84 or 86 west would be the true course we were making after 5.50; south 84 or 86, I am not quite certain which, was the true course."

T
he man was under pressure and waffling, Sam.

 
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Jim Currie

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What I said is that there is zero evidence of Capt. Smith seeing a 4pm log reading of 84 miles or expecting to see 86.4 miles. For all you or anyone else knows, the 4pm log reading could easily have been almost 90 miles, consistent with an average of 22.3 miles of advance per hour.

The reason is quite simple, Boxhall assumed the ship was still carrying 75 rpms, the same since Saturday noon. Sincehe simple assumed the ship would do as well then and she had done previous. You are trying to read at lot more into what he said.
Because there is zero evidence of something dos not mean it did not happen. All I, you or anyone else knows is that an officer (who, unlike any of us on this forum, was actually there on the bridge of Titanic) stated categorically that the ship was averaging 20.95 knots during the afternoon of April, 14, 1912.
You write:

"The reason is quite simple, Boxhall assumed the ship was still carrying 75 rpms, the same since Saturday noon."

To paraphrase The Bard : "Methinks thou reason too simply". Your answer is far too simple and makes no sense to a serious navigator. Use a little imagination and put yourself in Boxhall's shoes.

When he went to the chart room to work his distress position, Boxhall would use the most up to date information available to him. This would come from any notations on the QM's Book, the Movement Book, the Scrap Log and principally his own personal Work Book. From these, he would need four things: the most recent accurate position prior to impact, an accurate average speed up to that most recent position, a lapsed time from the most recent accurate position to the time of impact and the time when the ship moved no more. i.e. the last and final engine movement.
The position he would get from the 7-30 pm sights. He would also get the calculated average speed between Noon sights and 7-30 pm sights. In case you were unaware of it, when calculating a fix, a dedicated (other than on a three mate ship) navigator would calculate the whole kit and caboodle including present position and GMT thereof, distance from last sight, as well as course made good and average speed since then. He would also note the latest compass error at that time.
All of the foregoing might be required by his boss at any time. He would not, as you suggest, simply opt for the speed by engine rpm. That would, as they used to say, "spoil the ship for a ha'penny of tar" . No Sam, he would use the best calculated average speed he had and it had to have been less than 22.

We know that Titanic made 22.1 between Noon April, 13 an Noon April 14. Are you seriously expecting us to believe that Boxhall was unaware of that fact? He must have been, Sam, That being the case, why on earth would he revert to rpm speed for his distress position calculation if, as you say, and I quote "he simple assumed the ship would do as well then and she had done previous".
 
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Mar 12, 2011
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So, here are my objections so far. If Titanic slowed down and a corresponding clock setback was made that screws with the timing of the radio messages. Sure, I could believe that Titanic's first distress message went out at 12:03 ATS (not saying I do, but it's plausible I suppose), if there was a 24 minute setback but that pushes the last confirmed distress message back from 2:12 ATS to 1:48 ATS, which directly contradicts other testimony. If there was a full 47 minute clock setback, then Titanic was only 1 hour and 15 minutes ahead of New York Time, so the first distress message has to go out at 11:40pm ATS and the last at 1:25!
On the other hand, if there was no clock setback, a slowdown doesn't make sense because Titanic wouldn't have made it to the area the wreck is in if she never broke 21.5 knots during the day. She has to run pretty close to 260 miles in whatever time you give her in order to be where she was when she sank. I have to conclude that one or more of the witnesses was mistaken. It's the only answer that makes sense to me so far.
 

Jim Currie

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The key sentence in Lowe's testimony: Senator SMITH. What speed did you use in getting the 8 p. m. position?
Mr. LOWE. I used the speed for the position at 8 o'clock, and got it by dividing the distance from noon to the corner by the time that had elapsed from noon until the time we were at time Corner.
Later on he made the calculation, dividing 125,7 miles by 6 hours and found 21 knots.
The time to turn at the Corner was calculated out of estimated speed 21,5 knots. Time to reach the Corner: 5.52 pm, round to 5.50 pm.
If really we can assess Lowe's statement as misleading simplification without having bad conscience then I would be inclined to say, based on the discussion about speed there was no clock set back between noon and collision.

If we do so, then the inevitable necessary conclusion must be, that both Boxhall and Lightoller are wrong with the 1h 33 minutes conversion as they stated in the US enquiry.

I found this Statement from Lightoller in TIP | United States Senate Inquiry | Day 5 | Testimony of Charles H. Lightoller, cont.
Mr. LIGHTOLLER. I think it was Mr. Boxhall.
...
Senator SMITH. Was he on watch Sunday night, or at his post of duty?
Mr. LIGHTOLLER. At his post of duty.
Senator SMITH. On Sunday night?
Mr. LIGHTOLLER. Undoubtedly.
Senator SMITH. What time; do you know?
Mr. LIGHTOLLER. I believe he was on the 8 to 12 watch.
Senator SMITH. That would take him two hours beyond your watch?
Mr. LIGHTOLLER. More than two hours, considering what the clock went back.
Senator SMITH. The clock went back some at that time?
Mr. LIGHTOLLER. Yes.

So Lightoller was bearing in mind there was a clock set back intended at midnight (12.23 back to 12?)
If asked, how to convert the time of sinking 2.20 into GMT, he might have thought erronously, this was after the clock change, so the conversion must be 1 h 33 minutes. Lightoller was not on duty from 10 to 12. When he came on the bridge after the collison he could not know what had happened with the clocks.

But he was present while Pitman made his statement pointing out the clocks were not set back and that he got ship's time of Saturday! midnight and that his watch was correct. Despite hearing all this Lightoller said: 5.47 - 2.20 - 5.47 Greenwich mean time: 2.20 apparent time of ship.
I have to say I am a bit stumped. How to get out of this?
Marcus, Lowe was asked how he arrived at the 8 pm DR position. Do not be misled by all the smoke screen caused by the confusion caused by the questioning system used by Senator Smith. Basically, Lowe was asked about the speed he used to arrive at his 8 pm DR position and in a round about way he said "20.95" knots. That's all we need to know.

As to time on board the ship: again we have layers of smoke screen.

I have said this ad nauseum in the past. A passenger may or may not be interested in the finer points of the sharing of clock adjustments between crew members. However how and when the clocks were adjusted is of vital importance to all crew members. The following are the most relevant test questions regarding whether or not there was a clock adjustment before impact.

1. Were there crew members waiting to go on Watch at the time of impact?
2. Were there crew members relieved within 20 minutes of impact?
3. Were there crew members who went on Watch within 20 minutes of impact?
4. Were there crew members who had fully adjusted time on their clocks or watches at the time of impact?
5. Were there crew members who had partially adjusted time on their clocks and watches at time of impact?
6. Were there crew members who had un-adjusted time on their clocks and watches at time of impact?

You can check the answers to the above using the transcripts of the evidence. If the answer to all of these is YES then there is no doubt that a clock adjustment took place.

Add to the foregoing the irrevocable fact that unless the evidence of speed provided by both 5th Office Lowe and 4th Officer Boxhall is completely, not partially, rejected then there is absolute overwhelming proof that a partial clock adjustment did most certainly take place.

When considering the Pitman puzzle keep in mind the following:

Pitman clearly stated at both Inquiries that when Boxhall called him about 15 minutes after impact, it was within 'a few minutes' of when he, Pitman, was due on Watch. Since he was to share the clock change with Boxhall, he was due on Watch at adjusted midnight, not midnight April 14 when the first clocks adjustment would have been made.
Pitman had unaltered time on his watch and since his first duty when he went on Watch at partly adjusted Midnight would have been to complete the planned clock change by making the final adjustment using the chronometer as a time-check; we can only assume that he intended putting his watch back the full amount at the same time. Thus, he could be sure of the accuracy of his watch.
 
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Jim Currie

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You really haven't proved a thing.
I have agreed with you that one source of evidence cannot be considered fact. Consequently I have presented you with evidence to support a source. The evidence is derived from careful consideration of relevant evidence from three separate sources: i.e. from the evidence supplied by the surviving 2nd.,3rd. and 4th bridge officers. I lay out the facts before you once more:

1. 5th Officer Lowe swore under oath evidence to the effect that Titanic averaged 20.95 knots during the 6 hours from Noon, April,14 until 6 pm that early evening.

2. 5th Officer Lowe swore under oath that if the ship's speed had been increased or decreased in the 2 hours he was off duty between 4 pm and 6 pm April 14., he would have been informed about it when he relieved the Watch.

3. At 6 pm, April 14, 5th officer Lowe could not have been advises by 6th Officer Moody that Titanic had averaged 22.06 knots during the previous 6 hours. Otherwise, Lowe would have used 22.06 knots to work the 8 pm DR position. He did not use that speed, he used 20.95 knots.

4. 3rd Officer Pitmanknew Titanic had averaged 22.1 knots between Noon April 13 and Noon April 14. He did not mention that speed but swore under oath that Titanic was making about 21.5 knots at the time the 7-30 pm sights were taken.

5. 4th Officer Boxhall relieved 3rd Officer Pitman at 8 pm. At that time, Pitman would advise Boxhall of ship course and speed. There is no record of what speed value passed between the two men.

6. From Noon April 14, Titanic was carrying 75 rpm on her engines. At no time during the period Noon until 6 pm did minimum slip conditions prevail.

7. Between 8 pm and 10 pm, the conditions were flat calm, smooth sea, no swell...ideal for minimum propeller slip. Titanic was carrying 75 rpm on her engines. Her speed over these two hours was 22.5 knots by Patent Log.

8. Before 10 pm, when he completed working the 7-30 pm sights, Boxhall reported the results to Lightoller.

9. 2nd Officer Lightoller swore under oath that Titanic was aking 'about' 21.5 knots.

10. When 4th officer Boxhall worked the distress position he needed a speed to do so. he used a speed of 22 knots because he thought the prevailing conditions would alloow Titanic to achieve an optimum speed of 22 knots with her engines running at 75 rpm.

Every single one of these men worked Titanic's bridge at some time between Noon April 14 and 10 pm that evening yet not one of them mentions a speed greater that 22 knot and even then qualifies that speed by referring to ideal conditions.

I can't do any more, Sam. if you do cannot arrive at logical conclusion from the foregoing list then it's not because you can't see it...it's because you do not want to see it. I can understand your reluctance. After all, to accept the truth would require a great deal of work to be re-written.
 
Mar 22, 2003
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Perhaps the following little sketch (not to scale) will better explain my thoughts.
What I take away from your little sketch is the following:
At your point B, at 5:50pm, the log (according to you) read 122.2 miles.
At your point D, at 7:30pm, the log (according to you) read 162 miles.
The difference in mileage is 39.8 miles in 1 hour 40 minutes (7:30-5:50), or 1.67 hours.
Therefore the vessel had to make 39.8 miles/1.67 hours = 23.88 knots after she altered course at 5:50pm.
Really???
 
Mar 22, 2003
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So Jim, when did all those people (I can cite over 27 not counting crew) who claimed that the collision happened about 11:35-11:45 set their clocks back by 24 minutes that day? Funny that most recovered watches showed the time of sinking around 2:20, or thereabouts. I guess those poor souls were carrying unadjusted time yet most everyone else carried partially adjusted time.
 

Jim Currie

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Don't know how often I have to point this out to you, Sam. The only people to whom time alterations mattered were those whose lives were regulated by ship time. It follows that no matter who had what on their personal time pieces, the only facts which define ship time at the moment of impact are as follows:

1. Day workers in bed. They would have either fully retarded time or unaltered time.

2. Those on watch who were waiting to be relieved. Waiting to be relieved means in a short space of time. They would not be waiting relieved for another 44 minutes if impact happened at 11-40 pm unaltered time. The Lookouts were relieved 20 minutes after impact.

3. Those who were waiting for 1 bell to relive or be relieved.

and your nemesis...

4. Those who, 15 minutes after impact were within a few minutes of going on duty.

A thing you might want to think about: Where did those whose duty it was to call the Midnight to 4 am Watch get their time from? Has it occurred to you that they got their time from public clocks like the one in the Barber's Shop? One that showed an impact time of 11-40 pm. Weikman the Barber had partially adjusted time on his personal time piece because his sinking time was about 1-56 am. Was he waiting for the second midnight when the full adjustment would be made and every clock on the ship would show April 15 time? Perhaps he wasn't the only one with partially adjusted time?

There is also another thing or three you should keep in mind.

a. Personal time pieces in 1912 and right up until the advent of the battery operated watch, varied widely in quality and accuracy. However they all had the same weakness. If the owner did not wind his or her watch as instructed by the maker. i.e. did not over or under wind, then the accuracy was very seriously effected.

b. Because of (a). and the differing times people entered the water, the times showing on personal time pieces and clocks alleged to have been recovered from the sea after the event must be viewed with suspicion... in particular all the ones that show exactly 11-40.

c. The sinking time of 11-40 pm was widely circulated in the press within 24 hours of the sinking.
 

Jim Currie

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Hello Marcus.

Your calculations work out much the same as doing it 'the hard way'.

We can play this game all day. In fact I've been playing it with Sam for years.

The charts and calculations you have made are fine, but for me, the only valid information and the way to use it it is to try and see it through the eyes of the witnesses.

In the case of speed between Noon and 6 PM...Lowe said the speed was " a 'fraction under 21 knots... Twenty-one knots or under; it was really 20.95". That was a definite statement, Marcus. No ambiguity whatsoever. It follows that using Lowe's evidence ,distance to where Titanic actually turned. was not 126 miles. It was 122.2 miles. Now let's look at Boxhall.
If, as he claimed, Boxhall used an engine rpm guesstimate of 75 rpm = 21.5 knots, and that Titanic should have turned much sooner than 5-50 pm then he was not using a distance of 126 miles from Noon to The Corner.
If, on the other hand, as Sam guesstimated, Boxhall was using average speed of 22 knots, and the distance to The Corner was 126 miles then Titanic should have turned at at 5-44 pm, 6 minutes earlier. Hardly a difference which would have resulting in him remarking to Murdoch "the course ought to have been altered some considerable time before 5.50 - that is, if it was meant to be altered at the corner, 42 N., 47 W."...and "- I do not remember what time it was but it was some considerable time" The only conclusion we can come to is that the distance from Noon to The Corner was calculated by Boxhall to have been much less than 126 nautical miles.

Notwithstanding the foregoing, if Boxhall used a speed of 22 knots to run from 7-30 pm sights to calculate his distress position, and the reason he gave for using that speed was "it was smooth water and that there ought to have been a minimum of slip" then without a doubt, he was upgrading from a known speed of less than 22 knots. Since he knew exactly where Titanic was at Noon that day and exactly where she was at 7-30 pm sights then he knew exactly what her average speed was between these times and it just had to be less than 22 knots because before dusk, the weather was not flat calm.
This being hard fact, then there is absolutely no doubt that Titanic's clocks were retarded before she hit the iceberg.
 

Jim Currie

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PS: At least one officer did not think there was any problem with visibility:

Mr. LIGHTOLLER.
We remarked on the weather, about its being calm, clear. We remarked the distance we could see. We seemed to be able to see a long distance. Everything was very clear. We could see the stars setting down to the horizon.|
 
Mar 22, 2003
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These facts raise and interesting question: How far south would the Titanic have had to go to have escaped the ice?
George, on the serious side, the answer comes from Rostron's April 15th 4pm NTY message to Haddock:
"South point pack ice 41.16 north. Don't attempt to go north until 49.30 west. Many bergs. large and small, amongst pack. Also for many miles to eastward."
 

Jim Currie

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So, here are my objections so far. If Titanic slowed down and a corresponding clock setback was made that screws with the timing of the radio messages. Sure, I could believe that Titanic's first distress message went out at 12:03 ATS (not saying I do, but it's plausible I suppose), if there was a 24 minute setback but that pushes the last confirmed distress message back from 2:12 ATS to 1:48 ATS, which directly contradicts other testimony. If there was a full 47 minute clock setback, then Titanic was only 1 hour and 15 minutes ahead of New York Time, so the first distress message has to go out at 11:40pm ATS and the last at 1:25!
On the other hand, if there was no clock setback, a slowdown doesn't make sense because Titanic wouldn't have made it to the area the wreck is in if she never broke 21.5 knots during the day. She has to run pretty close to 260 miles in whatever time you give her in order to be where she was when she sank. I have to conclude that one or more of the witnesses was mistaken. It's the only answer that makes sense to me so far.
Hello Michael. As you know, the times of the distress signals were obtained from the Log Books of Wireless Operators on other ships.. their Process's Verbal. These were almost exclusively expressed in Eastern Standard Time which is 5 hours SLOW of Greenwich Mean Time.
At 12 o' clock Noon on April 14, Titanic's clocks were set to be 2 hours 58 minutes SLOW of GMT and consequently, 2 hours 02 minutes FAST of EST. That would be the situation at the moment of impact, if the clocks had not been touched.
If, the ship had clocks had been set back by 24 minutes before the moment of impact, then at that moment, they would have been 3 hours 22 minutes SLOW of GMT and 1 hour 38 minutes FAST of EST. Not the 1 hour 33 minutes alluded to by Messrs. Lightoller and Boxhall. There is an explanation for that which I will not go into.

So now we have alternative clock differences between Titanic time and EST.

If the second distress signal was heard by Cape Race and Other stations at 10-25 pm EST then the first one was heard at 10-15 pm EST. The last signal was heard by the SS Virginian at 12-27 am EST.

This gives us alternative first and last ship time transmissions of :

First: 12-17 am or 11-53 pm.

Or....

Last: 02-29 am or 02-05 am.

The unaltered first transmission time of 12-17 am suggests that Captain Smith waited almost half an hour before he called for help and did so half an hour after he knew his ship was sinking and long after had ordered the lifeboats prepared.
The altered time of 11-53 pm suggests that Captain Smith wasted no time after he received the Carpenter's sounding report and although a little early, fits much better with the evidence of the surviving wireless operator.
The unaltered time of 02-29 pm for the last transmission is nonsense. According to Pitman, by that time, Titanic's wireless room was under water.

The stewardess Annie Robinson had fully altered time on her watch and said the ship sank at 1-40 am by her watch. A partly altered clock would have shown 02-04 am at that time and a fully altered one, 02-27 am.

You chose!

As for the run time from Noon? Here's a little straight-line picture which is to scale and explains the alternatives we are faced with. I hope it is clear:
times considered..png
 
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The Inquiry would say their safety measure was too little too late. They would also have admitted that they saw the ice ahead and did not slacken speed. It would lead a strong case of negligence against the company. Imagine the questions asked: Did you see the ice field ahead? Yes, sir. Did you stop? No, sir. Did you slacken your speed? No, sir. Did you turn the wheel hard over and get out of there? No,sir. What did you do then? We saw the ice was well to the northward and passed across our bows, so we changed course around seven bells and turned about 1 point across to port, and seeing the sea was open and clear, we maintained full speed ahead. - If they admitted that, it would have destroyed the company.

Looking at the key witnesses. Lookout Lee did not even attend the American Inquiry which is suspicious. Fleet said he had his back to the iceberg because he was waiting to get a reply on the telephone. He refused to give a clear answer to the most important questions e.g. When he was asked how soon he saw the iceberg before the collision and if he saw it 1 hour before or just 1 minute before. He just kept saying "I have no idea, sir". Boxhall was called but did not appear until the 3rd day due to poor health and needed time to recover (or be debriefed by White Star officials on exactly what to say after Lightoller gave his evidence so that his would match properly?). That only leaves Olliver and Hichens. Olliver gave damning evidence at the American Inquiry i.e. He heard the order hard a-Port and Half speed ahead. His evidence was naturally dismissed by the British Inquiry and he was not even called to give evidence in England. They clearly just didn't want to report officially what really happened. That leaves Hichens. He was in the same lifeboat with Fleet so one can guess they spoke to each other and backed up each other's story. i.e. Both said Moody answered the phone, yet Fleet told Peuchen in the lifeboat that nobody answered the phone, and Olliver and Boxhall saw nobody answer the phone and neither of them heard Moody tell (yell) iceberg right ahead sir to Murdoch. Only Hichens heard it. My guess is they were already passing icebergs before the collision. The idea of meeting one 'by surprise' would have saved the reputation and stopped the legal threats against the company because the official report cleared them of blame. Admitting they saw ice and the icefield before the collision and still maintained full speed would have cost all of those men their jobs.


.
 

Jim Currie

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The sketch was for illustrative purposes only. You know perfectly well that the time shown on the sketch is not the time that the sights were taken and that it was probably around 7-40 pm. That is a run of 1 hour 50 minutes from 5-50 pm and an average speed of 21.7 knots. 20 minutes later and she was making 22.5 knots and from then-on, kept -up that speed.

Again you make smoke screens, Sam.

If I had used the time of 7-44 pm equivalent to Lowe's 162 divided by 21 knots, you would have argued about that, claiming that I was making things 'fit'.
In reality what you cannot discount is the idea that when Lowe gave the distance of 162 from Noon to The Corner, his memory was playing tricks with him. Or that there was he and Pitman worked 2 DRs using an average speed of 21 knots...one for the time of sights and the one for 8 pm.
As for a typing error? How might that have come about? Surely it would be almost impossible for an experienced touch typist using the standard QWERTY key-board of an old fashioned mechanical typewriter to make such a mistake?
 
Mar 22, 2003
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The bosun piped "all hands on deck" at 11:50....Taking the total of the evidence, by about 12:12 a.m. Monday morning, the lifeboats had been cleared and lowered even with the boat deck, at which point Lightoller sought out the Captain and got the order to load the boats. 12:12 a.m. not 12:25.
There are estimates of time durations all over the place. What feels like 10 minutes to one person can easily feel like 20 to another, especially when there is a lot of confusion going on. However, two time points early on can be given greater validity. The first is the collision time, which was noted by the time on a clock such as in the wheelhouse, and can be confirmed by others who noted the time by reference to some time piece somewhere. That time was about 11:40. The other one happens to come from lookout Symons who, if what he said was actually true, said that they struck 8 bells in the nest as he and others were on their way to the boat deck to uncover the boats having been given the order by the Bosun. That means the order for "All hands on the boat deck" came about 20 minutes after the collision, about the same time that Boxhall called on the off duty officers. Then you start adding the time needed to uncover the boats, coil up the falls, swing them out, and lower them to the rail, you can easily need "15 or 20 minutes" more. Then you need to have your passengers on deck by the boats so they can be loaded.
 
Mar 22, 2003
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Sam. if you do cannot arrive at logical conclusion from the foregoing list then it's not because you can't see it...it's because you do not want to see it.
You know Jim, you remind me of another master mariner who used to participate here on this forum and always used to say, when someone did not see things his way, it was because that the person lacked the nautical knowledge needed to understand what really went on. As was once told to him, applying one's logic enables that person to be wrong with authority. We are now 19 pages into this thread and I'm sorry to say that you have not proved a thing. You blindly are taking what Lowe claimed was the speed of the ship between noon and 6pm as absolute truth, and then working with it and saying things that have no real support except by the application of your way of thinking to make it fit into your scheme of reality. I have already stated why I believe that the distance run by log over the 6 hour period from noon to 6pm would not have indicated a slow down without a corresponding decrease in revolutions carried. In fact, you even posted a warning from Nichols Seamanship about the patent log not showing distance made good but only distance through the water. You point to statements of speed made by Pitman who presented data that clearly showed that he was wrong. Did it ever occur to you that these officers were downplaying the speed of the vessel when questioned about it because it did not make WSL look very good knowing that their vessel was traveling at the fastest speed of her maiden voyage while headed into a region where ice was reported? Let me remind you,

Senator SMITH. Tell me, if you can, upon what ground you base your report of 21 1/2 knots speed? [when sights were taken]
Mr. PITMAN. By the log and the revolutions.
Senator SMITH. How many revolutions was the boat making at that time?
Mr. PITMAN. I think about 75.
Senator SMITH. And 75 revolutions would indicate that she was going about 21 1/2 knots?
Mr. PITMAN. Approximately, yes, sir.
Senator SMITH. Do you know whether she went any faster than that on that trip?
Mr. PITMAN. No; I do not think so. She never exceeded 76 revolutions at any part of the trip.
...
Senator SMITH. But you make your calculations in the manner you have described and give that as your best judgment?
Mr. PITMAN. Yes, sir; 21 1/2 knots and 75 revolutions; 75 or 76 revolutions
...
Senator FLETCHER. And you kept increasing up to 21 1/2, so that at the time the iceberg was struck you were traveling at the highest rate of speed at which you had been going during the trip?
Mr. PITMAN. Oh, no; the same speed we had been traveling for the last 24 hours.
Senator FLETCHER. The same speed?
Mr. PITMAN. The same speed.

He knew that was not true because he had the data to prove it.

Another falsehood that they wanted people to believe was that there was not enough coal on board to drive her across the Atlantic at full speed. Not only was there enough coal on board, but they had one or two day's to spare on that voyage.
 

Jim Currie

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Apr 16, 2008
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Sam,

If you are going to use the reference of 8 bells then there had to have been a time change. They would most certainly not sound 8 bells until the end of April 14th which was to be 24 hours and 46 minutes long. Or, until the 8 to Midnight Watch had served the full 4 hours 24 minutes or until the Lookouts Fleet and Lee had completed their total Watch time of 2 hours, 24 minutes.

The evidence clearly shows that the order to clear boats came some time between 11-50 pm and 11-55 pm.

AB Moore:
"About 10 minutes to 12 the boatswain came and piped all hands on the boat deck, and started to get out boats."

AB Poingdestre :
"2825. Now when the carpenter gave you that information how long do you think that was after the ship had struck the iceberg?
- I think about 10 minutes.... Stayed where I was.... A matter of a couple of minutes...[then] - The boatswain piped....- "All hands up and get the lifeboats ready."

Lookout Symonds:
"11354. "All hands stand by"? - Yes, "You may be wanted at any moment."
11356. What time was this? - By the time I got on deck it must have been about one bell, a quarter to twelve.
11357. That was after you had this order from the boatswain? - Yes... I came on deck and I went into the mess room in the course of ordinary events to see if there was any coffee. From there I heard the water coming in to No. 1 hold. I looked down No. 1 hold, and hardly had I looked down there when the order came for "All hands on the boat deck.".
 

Jim Currie

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Right Sam! Let's get this thing straight. if your intention was to raise my steam, them you have succeeded.

The Master Mariner you refer to is the "Ice Pilot". The fact that you caught him out on something doesn't not make you the 'expert' and him the novice.
Doubtless, like me, Captain Marmaduke Collins would afford you the respect and courtesy that your knowledge entitles you to. Doubtless, he. like me, would not read a few books on a subject then presume to be an expert on it.

I will not apologise to you or anyone else for having done exactly the same things as did all the officer in Titanic and all the other ships in this sad tale. I even did these things in passenger ships over exactly the same route between the same Ports. If you cannot accept or understand what I'm explaining to you, well that's your problem, not mine.
Incidentally, I remind you that as well as being an unlimited Master Mariner, I also have 25 years + experience as a Marine Surveyor and marine Accident Investigator. During which time, I carried out investigations for Lloyds Underwriters and the underwriters of Southern Marine & Aviation in the United State. You will, I hope, grant that such experience can be added to my credit?

No, Sam, I am not 'blindly' accepting the evidence of 5th Officer Lowe... far from it. I am doing what you cannot do, and that is don Lowe's sea-boots and put myself in his situation.
The man has told you through his evidence that he used the Patent Log to obtain an average speed to calculate the 8 pm DR. I would be very surprised if you ever used one of these in anger but that doesn't stop you lecturing us all on its use.

You indulge in the fantasy concerning the Officer's of Titanic hiding the truth about speed That is another indication that you have no idea what you are suggesting nor do not know anything about the pshyche of a British Merchant Navy Officer. Particularly one who held the King's Commission as a reserve in the RN.

Now your remarks about Pitman's evidence. You write: "He knew that was not true because he had the data to prove it"

Yes, he certainly did, but unlike you, he did not blindly believe in the mantra that since his ship averaged 22.06 knots up to Noon that day carrying, 75 rpm, it would continue to average that same speed carrying the same engine revolutions no matter what the conditions were. No, Sam he did what every practical navigator always did...he started afresh at Noon on April, 14 and assumed a speed of "about" 21.5 knots at 75 rpm. Lightoller did exactly the same.
Since the Slip Tables had yet to be completed, both men did what any navigato would have dome, they would assume a speed on the basis of a perceived idea of % slip due to the prevailing conditions. That is exactly what Boxhall did to.

I could easily reduce the level of debate and remind you of three of your own 'expert' deductions. Remember them?

Titanic speeded-up that evening of April 14 because the extra boilers had been put on line?

There was that south-setting Labrador Current that effected the sinking Titanic but had no effect on any other ship in the area. really?

Was it not you who, in order to align Californian with Titanic, claimed that somehow, 1st Officer Murdoch turned his ship hard right from had left into and through that same 1 + knot current to face north? And not only that, did it despite rapidly slowing engines. Not only that, Sam, but wonder of wonders; Titanic stopped swinging once she had Californian on her port bow.

As for the coal falsehood. Once again, you demonstrate the limit of your knowledge.

Every experienced master on the North Atlantic run knew that his ship could be delayed at any time. he also knew that his Chief Engineer was 'always running low' but in truth kept a couple of days 'up his sleeve'. This was a well known ploy which was played on that run but also ensured that there was reserve in the event of running into 2 days fog or worse still, a hurricane from the south west. But then you would know that too, Sam.


 
Mar 22, 2003
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b. Because of (a). and the differing times people entered the water, the times showing on personal time pieces and clocks alleged to have been recovered from the sea after the event must be viewed with suspicion... in particular all the ones that show exactly 11-40.
c. The sinking time of 11-40 pm was widely circulated in the press within 24 hours of the sinking.
I don't know of any recovered watch that showed 11:40. I do know of a couple of recovered watches that showed close to 1:35 which apparently were set back the expected amount before these people retired. Most recovered watches showed a time around 2:20, some a few minutes earlier, others a few minutes later, just what you would expect to see. Anyway, as I have pointed out before, if the collision happened at 12:04 unadjusted time, then I would expect to see many accounts stating the accident happened just after midnight. Other than Gracie's account, which he said was erroneous, almost all passenger accounts place the collision time about quarter to twelve, give or take a few. And none of these people talked about setting their watches back. In fact, Jack Thayer said his watch showed 11:45 when the ship struck as he was in the process of winding it while preparing to retire. He also claimed that this same watch had stopped at 2:22 when he had a chance to look at it while on board Carpathia. Elinor Cassebeer noted that her watch showed 11:44 at the time of collision and that it had been set to ship's time while she was at dinner that night by purser McElroy. And of course there is bosun's mate Albert Hainse who stated for the record that the right time of collision "without putting the clock back" was 11:40.

Well we have been through all these arguments many, many times before, so I see no reason for any further debate.