from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun nautical The fore-and-aft spar extending from stem to stern on a lifeboat and serving as a raised spreader for a boat cover. (FM 55-501).
  • noun nautical A strong bar placed across a hatch opening to hold hatch boards or hatch covers. (FM 55-501).


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • For the NASA/SpaceX/rocketry term, it's the support tower which holds the rocket vertical before it's time to launch.
    Rocket launch commentary will have the phrase 'strongback retraction'

    August 14, 2016