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What Really Defines A Ship From A Boat?  
User currently offline2707200X From United States of America, joined Mar 2009, 8511 posts, RR: 1
Posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 5 hours ago) and read 1541 times:

We all know that a boat is rather small and a ship is rather large in the prospective of size akin to the difference between a plant and a tree. We know that a ship can carry a boat and a boat can carry another boat as they often do but a boat cannot carry a ship. From the research that I have done I have not been able to get a defined answer. Lake going vessels in the Great Lakes are referred to as boats even those that exceed 1,000 feet in length and small rigging vessels like the Santa Maria which was and is in replica 70 feet long are considered ships so is their a true definition or does it vary from industry to industry.


"And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by." John Masefield Sea-Fever
14 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineMaverick623 From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 5638 posts, RR: 6
Reply 1, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 5 hours ago) and read 1534 times:

Quoting 2707200X (Thread starter):
From the research that I have done I have not been able to get a defined answer.

That's because:

Quoting 2707200X (Thread starter):
so is their a true definition

No, there is no legal difference between a "ship" and a "boat" for purposes of maritime law. The legal term is "seagoing vessel".



"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
User currently offlinecmf From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 hours ago) and read 1506 times:

From my friend who has spent much of his life under the surface. Boats are vessels going under the surface. Ships are targets.

User currently offlineczbbflier From Canada, joined Jul 2006, 973 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 2 hours ago) and read 1493 times:

A boat is what you get into when the ship is sinking.

User currently offlineQuokkas From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 hour ago) and read 1483 times:

Depends on whether you are the Captain or a passenger.

If you're the Captain of the QM2, it's a ship and if you're a passenger it's a tub.  


User currently offlinepspfan From Netherlands, joined Mar 2008, 114 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 1425 times:
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Boats are under the surface. Ships above.

PSPfan



Fixit002Heavy
User currently offlineflyingturtle From Switzerland, joined Oct 2011, 2403 posts, RR: 13
Reply 6, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 1398 times:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sorites_paradox

Quote:
The sorites paradox (from Ancient Greek: σωρείτης sōreitēs, meaning "heaped up") is a paradox that arises from vague predicates. The paradox of the heap is an example of this paradox which arises when one considers a heap of sand, from which grains are individually removed. Is it still a heap when only one grain remains? If not, when did it change from a heap to a non-heap?


 

I think there are only arbitrary definitions somewhere in the law. I would define a ship as a vessel that is commanded by a professional, very much like a 747 is an airliner, and a 172, this' a plane.

[Edited 2012-02-11 06:12:28]

[Edited 2012-02-11 06:12:49]


Keeping calm is terrorism against those who want to live in fear.
User currently offlineSmittyOne From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 1377 times:

Technically the word "Ship" refers to a sailing rig with three or more masts, where all the masts are square-rigged, as opposed to a cutter, barque, schooner, sloop etc. That is the only formal definition that I'm aware of.

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 1):
No, there is no legal difference between a "ship" and a "boat" for purposes of maritime law. The legal term is "seagoing vessel".

Yep, the COLREGS don't care what you call it, just size, how it is powered and what kind of special work it might do...

Quoting czbbflier (Reply 3):
A boat is what you get into when the ship is sinking.

Another version of this is a boat is something you can hoist up on the deck of your ship...


The US Coast Guard defines anything smaller than 65' as a 'boat', and anything 65' or longer a "cutter", harking back to the rig of the original vessels that sailed for the Revenue Cutter Service. Which gets crazy when you consider that Coast Guard Cutter EAGLE, America's tall ship, is a barque! If that doesn't hurt your head I don't know what would.


User currently offlineflyingturtle From Switzerland, joined Oct 2011, 2403 posts, RR: 13
Reply 8, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1318 times:

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 7):
Another version of this is a boat is something you can hoist up on the deck of your ship...


MV Blue Marlin carrying USS Cole. 



Keeping calm is terrorism against those who want to live in fear.
User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14026 posts, RR: 62
Reply 9, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 1291 times:

I´ve once heard the definition that a boat is run by mutual consent, while a ship has a master and a chain of command.

Jan


User currently offlinejamincan From Canada, joined Aug 2006, 775 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 1281 times:

QI asked this question. It became quite clear that there is a very large grey area, but apparently within the Royal Navy, ships sail above the surface and boats below (as others have mentioned here). A submarine is certainly not a ship in most people's vernacular despite having a clear chain of command.

User currently offlineSmittyOne From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 1275 times:

Quoting flyingturtle (Reply 8):

Well played!


User currently offlineflyingturtle From Switzerland, joined Oct 2011, 2403 posts, RR: 13
Reply 12, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 1231 times:

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 11):

 
Quoting jamincan (Reply 10):
QI asked this question. It became quite clear that there is a very large grey area, but apparently within the Royal Navy, ships sail above the surface and boats below (as others have mentioned here). A submarine is certainly not a ship in most people's vernacular despite having a clear chain of command.

This might come from the German use of the word. The U-Boot/U-Boat was the submarine, and the Allies and the Germans called them, "U-Boote", "U-Boats" or simply "boats". (Why are there no "U-Schiffe" or "U-ships"?)

In German, we have "Boot" and "Schiff". The military meaning set aside, with "Boot" we designate things that are privately used (a rowing boat, a sail boat, a fishing boat). Then, with "Schiff" we mean mostly commercially used vessels, like fish trawlers, ferries, tankers and so on.


David



Keeping calm is terrorism against those who want to live in fear.
User currently offlineKingairTA From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 458 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 1197 times:

Is a 747 really an airliner if its privately owned and not flying a "line"? To me it would be a plane and not an airliner.

User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14026 posts, RR: 62
Reply 14, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 1165 times:

Quoting flyingturtle (Reply 12):
This might come from the German use of the word. The U-Boot/U-Boat was the submarine, and the Allies and the Germans called them, "U-Boote", "U-Boats" or simply "boats". (Why are there no "U-Schiffe" or "U-ships"?)

Possibly because the first military submarines in wider use during WW1 were quite small compared to the standard battleships of the day, with a crew of only about 20-30 men and a total length of less than 70 meters.

Even the most built German WW2 submarine, the type VIIc, was only 67 meters long, with a crew of 50 men.

Jan


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