1. qp83
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    qp83 Member

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    What do you call that bridge/dock/pier/jetty -thingy you dive/swim from?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by qp83, Jan 10, 2015.

    So in a story I have, the characters are at a lake, swimming. Now, what do you call that "bridge"-thingy, which you dive from, or enter the water from, and only purpose is those things. So no docking boats or stuff like that.

    Oh, and if there's a difference between brittish english and american english, I'd like to know :)

    Thanks!
     
  2. SwampDog
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    SwampDog Contributing Member

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    If you're thinking of a wooden walkway extending out a few metres and supported on piles, then I'd call it a jetty. Tie a dinghy to it or fish from it.
     
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  3. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Something like this?

    [​IMG]

    A jetty or a dock. A pier only if it's longer. As a Yank, my preference is dock.
     
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  4. qp83
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    qp83 Member

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    Okay, so jetty or dock, then :)

    @Wreybies that's pretty much what I had in mind.

    But now I'm stuck with either dock or jetty. Is jetty more brittish? And dock more american english?
     
  5. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Um.... I prefer dock in the scenario you paint because jetty feels more marine to me. Salt water. Not a lake. Could just be a me thing.

    ETA: I grew up where there was lots of fresh, brackish, and salt water recreational activity.

    [​IMG]

    If you said we were going to go jump off the jetty, I would get ready and head out because that's fun, but if you said we were going diving off the docks, I would tell you no because fresh water in Florida is scary and dark and the bottom is always yucky and gators. :(
     
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  6. GingerCoffee
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    If you are talking about the ones that are offshore not connected to the regular dock, they are commonly called swimming docks and also, swim rafts.

    To me, the jetty is not the same as a dock. But I see in Google images that they call piers, jetties.
     
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  7. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Yeah, I have a feeling there might be a pop-soda-coke dynamic in play as well.
     
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  8. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    Brits would call it a pier or jetty, unless it's not actually connected to the shore. Rather than @GingerCoffee's 'swim raft', we would call those pontoons.

    Edit: Just thinking about the difference between a pier and a jetty.... boats can be moored beside both, but here in N.I. those that have slipways tend to get referred to as jetties rather than piers.
     
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  9. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I think I've become a Brit. I was just about to say 'pontoon.' Lord, where did that come from? I'm a Yank, I tell you...a Yank. It's a dock. It's a raft. A diving platform. Aaakkkkk....
     
  10. Nicoel
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    Nicoel Contributing Member

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    As a south eastern american, I call those things dock or "piers." Dock sounds more accurate, as a pier reaches out much longer and is sometimes more associated with salt water.
     
  11. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    I just checked the government guff on the lake I used to live beside in WA... it's fresh water and the structure still gets called a pier.
     
  12. Aled James Taylor
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    Aled James Taylor Contributing Member Contributor

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    In the UK, I'd go with 'jetty'. 'Pier' is normally associated with much larger structures and 'dock' conjures up the idea of a large industrial site with cranes. The term pontoon would only be used for something that's floating in the water, rather than supported on pillars.
     
  13. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm in Canada (Ontario) and the thing in the picture is clearly a dock.

    I don't really know what a jetty is.

    A pier would be a big public-access thing, probably solid concrete right down to the bottom of the lake.

    Pontoon is just silly, as is 'swim raft' - those are just 'rafts'!

    We don't have any ocean here (unless you go WAY the hell up north, where nobody is likely to be swimming) so possibly that's why my vocabulary is so limited.

    I'm with Wreybies - it's going to be a very regional thing.
     
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  14. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    And that's why I mentioned 'Pontoon'. Not as some 'silly' suggestion for the OP but in response to Ginger's comment about the swim raft. Regional differences. We both made it quite clear we talking about something different.
     
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  15. matwoolf
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    'Pontoon' isn't silly. Yachts are moored, or tied up to the pontoon at the marina. Jetty is simple enough, and pier is not so outrageous, you think 'Wigan Pier' which was 4 foot long or something.

    My favourite thread of the year.
     
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  16. kfmiller
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    If it's in a lake and connected to the shore I'd call it a dock, if it's free-floating in deeper water anchored to the lake-bottom I'd call it a raft.

    If you're talking about a larger structure jutting out into the ocean which is made of wood and housing some kind of attraction or restaurant on it I'd call it a pier, and if it's made of concrete and rocks jutting out into salt water for the purpose of walking/fishing I'd call it a jetty.

    I grew up on the beach in Florida and spent my summers on a lake in New Hampshire and that's what we always called those things.
     
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  17. Cogito
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    A dock is primarily for access to boats, although one may be able to dive off one or descend a ladder into the water. A diving board is used only for entering the water by diving.

    Entry for swimming is usually from a beach, natural or man-made, or from a boat dock for small boats. only the beach id constructed primarily for swimmers.
     
  18. matwoolf
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    US,UK language difference? A dock is the concrete, the harbour wall.
     
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  19. BayView
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    A pontoon in Ontario is one of those big air-filled, metal/plastic tubes that go on the bottom of planes or boats...

    upload_2015-1-10_21-3-42.jpeg
     
  20. matwoolf
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    Nice plane you got @BayView.

    It's all those things, I looked at the dictionary, mmm.
     
  21. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    Aha! We agree on something... same here. :D (Although the word pontoon is also used to describe the makeshift floating bridges used in the D-Day landings, Mulberries.)
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2015
  22. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I'm totally in this camp, or on this dock. We used to dive off the dock and swim out to the raft all the time, in the small inland lakes as well as the 'big lake'— Lake Huron. I'm from northeastern Michigan.
     
  23. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    This, to me, is a dock... in fact there is even a plaque saying it is. This is a stones throw away from my place. Good luck swimming there. You'd get run over. :D

    DSCF2290.jpg
     
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  24. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    Ha ha! No, my dear @obsidian_cicatrix , THIS is a dock! On Lake Huron, too....

    dock.jpg

    A Michigander would refer to the site in your picture as 'the docks.' As in 'down at the docks.' Don't you just love 'regions?' In Ullapool, where the ferry and other ships anchor, the structure is called 'the pier.' As in 'down at the pier.' I've never heard it referred to any other way by the locals.

    Interestingly, the structure at the end of my street in my home town, which was built over the storm sewer's large drain pipe, and was strictly for walking on, is known as the Blair Street Pier. Go figure...

    pier2.jpg
     

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  25. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    That my dear @jannert is a bunch of planks. ;)
     

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