full speed ahead

(redirected from with a full head of steam)

full speed ahead

1. adjective Moving or proceeding with the utmost speed, energy, or enthusiasm. With all the legal hurdles behind us, it was full speed ahead as we began construction of the new resort. It took a while for solar panels to catch on for ordinary consumers, but now it's full speed ahead.
2. adverb As quickly and efficiently as possible; with all possible energy and determination. We'll have to go full speed ahead if we want to get this done by the deadline! We're ready to go full speed ahead once the health inspector signs off.
See also: ahead, full, speed
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

full speed ahead

Also, full steam ahead. As fast and as strongly as possible. For example, There's only one way we'll get there on time, so go full speed ahead, or Production would go full steam ahead as soon as the orders were confirmed. It is also put as with a full head of steam, as in She was traveling with a full head of steam-she was due there at noon. These expressions all allude to the steam engine, where full steam signifies that a boiler has developed maximum pressure. They became well known through an order allegedly given by Admiral David Farragut at the battle of Mobile Bay (1864): "Damn the torpedoes! Full steam ahead!"
See also: ahead, full, speed
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

full steam/speed aˈhead

with as much speed or energy as possible: We were working full steam ahead to finish the project by the end of April.This expression refers to the order given on a ship by the captain to the engine room.
See also: ahead, full, speed, steam
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

full speed/steam ahead!

Proceed with all possible rapidity and power. Both versions refer to the steam engine in ships and locomotives, as does with a full head of steam. “Full steam” meant a boiler that had developed maximum pressure. The terms became popular through an order attributed to David Glasgow Farragut at the Battle of Mobile Bay (Aug. 5, 1864): “Damn the torpedoes! Full steam ahead!” (Torpedoes in those days referred to mines.) They were transferred to nonmilitary enterprises soon afterward, but ironically one of them resurfaced in literal fashion more than a century later. In 1989 environmental activists from the Greenpeace movement sailed out among U.S. Navy boats that were testing torpedoes off the coast of Florida in order to impede what they perceived as a hazard to the surrounding ecology. The Greenpeace order of the day was, again, “Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead,” and the navy, either unwittingly or on purpose, collided with the Greenpeace vessel, which was severely damaged.
See also: full, speed, steam
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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