Destroyers OnLine
Glossary - F

USS Fieberling DE 640
Photo courtesy Bill Ackroyd

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  • Fanfare
    A double winch driven by an electric motor and brake to stream fanfare noisemakers aft of the screws to decoy acoustic torpedos away from the screws.
  • Fathometer
    Depth finding Sonar with the monitor unit usually mounted in the pilothouse. It is maintained by the sonarmen.
  • Fids
    Wooden marlinspikes.
  • Fife rail
    The horizontal plank/pipe next to the flag bag that was pierced with holes to hold belaying pins used to secure signal halyards.
  • Fighting Neckerchief
    The black silk neckerchief with four or five one ounce lead sinkers sown into it for use as a weapon in places of liberty such as New York.
  • Fish
    See "Torpedo"
  • Flags
    A signalman.
  • Flake Down
    As in to "flake down a line". To lay out a line flat on the deck in a coiled rectangular pattern to assure safety when paying out the line when it will be used so that no sailor's leg or foot gets caught in a loop.
  • Flat hat
    The brimless winter hat worn by sailors until it was abolished about 1960. Originally the hat had the name of the sailor’s ship printed on a silk headband. Later the silk headband just had “U.S. Navy” printed on it. A few old salts still use the expression “I hope to sh-t in your flat hat!” to express (emphatically) their agreement about something.
  • Flemish
    Coiling a line so that it lies flat on the deck in a spiral as opposed to being flaked/faked or coiled.
  • Fore
    Front. Not just a golfing term, "Arnie".
  • Foul Weather Gear Locker
    The best place in the ship to sleep undetected (under a pile of coats) by officers or higher ratings who are all looking for those with nothing to do to make them work.
  • Frap the lines
    To tie the mooring lines together with small line in order to prevent chaffing and to facilitate the placement of rat guards (and of course the navy would do it anyway just because it looks nice.)
  • Freshwater Navy
    US Coast Guard.
    Like SAFU, an acronym sigifying that something is “f…ed up beyond all recognition.”
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