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Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

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Wednesday, November 08, 2006

lignum vitae

ok, so i get a little loopy when it's bed time. so how do you explain the phrase "lignum vitae" popping into my head as i'm trundling off to the kip?
i know what it is, and what it was used for on my submarine.
any of you old duffers remember what it was used for?
do they use it on the newer boats? i don't know that answer, and am asking you younger pups.

6 Comments:

Blogger Vigilis said...

Bo, that's one I never heard about.

According to Wikipedia, the shaft bearings on USS Pampanito (SS-383) were made of this material since it (ironwood) provides natural, lubricating oils. If you're telling us no synthetic was available for that purpose when you served, I would not be very surprised considering our teakwood decking and GD's banana-peel derived lubricant.

Also likely: Lignum vitae was once used for guitar picks. Every crew seemed to have one decent guitar player.

11/8/06, 11:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not used on Brit boats. Never heard of it.

And we were an Polaris boat.

11/8/06, 11:32 PM  
Blogger reddog said...

Damage control plugs? I'm just guessing.

They used to use the sap to treat (not cure) syphillis but we're not that old, although every little bit helps.

11/9/06, 9:22 AM  
Blogger Old Gary said...

Torpedo juice?

Mixed with coffee on the sly?

11/9/06, 10:03 AM  
Blogger Cookie..... said...

We used it as a term indicating we were gonna go cut some "Z's" (wood)...which is what lignum is...a type of wodd....Cookie

11/9/06, 12:42 PM  
Blogger bothenook said...

i've re-read the post, and thought i'd congratulate vig on his ability to wiki something. yes, lignum vitae was used in the shaft strut bearings. it's slick as snot when wet, and stronger than hell. it worked good, and it worked for a long time, since it didn't rot like most woods do under water.

10/13/08, 6:04 PM  

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