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  #1  
Old 06-17-2010
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Compass for weekend cruiser

A compass is one of those things on HAS to have onboard, but my new vessel doesn't have one. So what to buy?

I want a small one that doesn't require cutting big holes with a chain saw. And that is not in the way, neither in the cockpit, in the cabin, or on deck.

My favorite from previous boats was a second compass I had on my Havsfidra, a Silva 70 (Silva Steering Compass 70UN. It can be used for taking bearings, too, plus it can be mounted in just about any position using separate holders (I had a holder above my berth so I could check the course without getting out of bed). The only disadvantage I can see is that it doesn't tell you the inclination. I like to know how much it is healing.

Plus it is not the cheapest one around.

Can anyone recommend a better one?
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Last edited by ulferlingsson; 06-17-2010 at 01:23 PM. Reason: Added link to image of Silva 70
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Old 06-17-2010
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Silva Ranger CL 515 Compass - Silva Compasses

Honestly, that was the only compass (an older version) I had when sailing from DK to the Netherlands years ago - two battens held it in the cockpit.
Still have it btw.
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Old 06-17-2010
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Well, for the weekend cruiser....I keep a Suunto bearing (orienteering) compass in my nav kit anyway. The kind that has bearings AND reverse bearings on the dial, and can be held up to one eye to "sight" onto a target and take the bearing to it.

That doesn't replace having a larger fixed compass for helming the boat, but if all you are doing is piloting and using marks to helm by, that may be enough for now.

Or, a pair of binocs with a bearing compass in them, used similarly.

Anything that you don't cut a hole and mount flush, can eventually get in the way. Since you are in Miami...why not call Sailorman up in Fort Lauderdale, and ask them if they have any bargains on used compasses? If you've never been up there...take the ride up, it is a very interesting place to browse!
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Plastimo Iris 100.
Good unit, portable and also available lighted.
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Old 06-17-2010
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Thanks for the tips. The orientation compass from Silva is what I have for backup - if I can find it in this mess...
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Old 06-18-2010
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if you have a silva for backup, you could probably get an entry level gps w/compass for the same cost as a small richie...
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Old 06-29-2010
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i just got a really neat compass... thought you might wanna check into it... cant have too many knives, flashlights and compasses on a boat...

Vion MiNi 2000 Handbearing Compass
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