Posted on: July 7, 2020 Posted by: admin Comments: 0


Jesse Ramsden and his Dividing Engine. 1 09 Forty-three years ago I paid a visit to the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich. At that. In the English instrument-maker Jesse Ramsden completed this machine, even small American instrument-makers had begun to buy dividing engines. Dividing engine, made by Jesse Ramsden, London, This machine permitted the automatic and highly accurate division of a circle into degrees and .

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At that time, there was an exhibition about the voyages of Captain James Cook. This led me to learn about engineering workshop technology and I gradually acquired some practical knowledge of dividing techniques.

In the winter ofin the Science Museum in London, I was able to examine a dividing engine of the type invented by Jesse Ramsden, one of the foremost instrument makers of the eighteenth century and a few days later stumbled across his prototype dividing engine in an ill-lit corner of the Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris.


I hope it will be of interest to navigators, as without dividing engines, the sextant upon which the navigator until recently relied would not have reached its final accuracy. It may also be of interest to engineers and students of the history of technology.

Ramsden Dividing Engine

It is ill-adapted to paper publication so I have jesae it to readers and members of NavList. The archive of this list will perhaps last longer than I do…If you navigate to http: Please leave a comment if you find these files of use or interest to you.

They took a lot of effort to produce and it dviiding helpful to know whether I should do more in the same vein. The Papers are in the 2nd and 3rd links here: Thanks a lot for these documents!

This was very cool. Wandered onto here while looking for methods of bootstrapping accuracy for lead screws or how to make more accurate tools from less accurate tools.

Dividing Engine

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The Dividing Engine

The Sextant and Its Applications. The Nautical Sextant A must-have work for enthusiasts on sextant construction, restoration, repair and adjustment.

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