scouts-l Mail Archive for March of 2000: Re: need help with semaphore
Murphy Peter (MurphyP@TCE.COM
Tue Mar 07 2000 - 10:50:12 CST
> Now that I am looking at books, I see that there are various positions for
> each flag, some where the diamond colors get turned backward.
Sounds like you may have your Morse code flags mixed with you semaphore
With Morse code you use a single flag at a time. Swing the flag to the left
and make a figure 8 motion for a dash and swing the flag to the right and
make a figure 8 motion for a dot (I think I have my dashes and dots
Use a white flag with a dark square in the middle when standing in front of
dark background like a forest. Use a dark flag with a white square in the
middle when standing in front of a light background such as on top of a hill
with clear sky behind you.
I create a cheat sheet for the boys to use with Morse code. It's a chart
that starts with a dot and a dash in the two squares at the top. Under the
dot is the letter E and under the dash is the letter T. The square with
the dash and T is shaded so it's a little darker. The idea is a single dot
is the letter E and a single dash is the letter T. The next row has 4
alternating unshaded and shaded with the letters I A N M. The I square and
A square line up under the E square and the N square and M square line up
under the T square. The code for any letter read going down from the top.
Since A is in a shaded square, its code is dot dash. The N is in an unshaded
square so its code is dash dot. Under each square of the second row are
two squares, one unshaded and one shaded, with the appropriate letters.
I can send a MS Word file with this chart if my explanation is unclear.
For semaphore, I start with the eight positions around the circle. The first
seven letters all have one flag in front of your legs and then they go in
order A through G with the other flag advancing around the circle clockwise
from the bottom position. Then we play a game of what words can you send
just those 7 letters. It's easy to remember those 7 and it shows that the
is not that hard to pick up.
Peter Murphy, Scoutmaster, Troop 125
Crossroads of America Council, Carmel, Indiana