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Types Of Pocket Compasses

October 4th, 2010

Pocket Compass

There are several different types of pocket compasses. Pocket compasses have been around for ages, and even with the introduction of modern location technology such as GPS, pocket compasses will continue to remain relevant. This is can be attributed to their reliability, while modern technology tends to rely on electronic sources and signals that die and fade. Proving them to not very convenie

nt when you are lost and in a pinch. The different types of pocket compasses will help you to find your bearing, and/or locate an exact location on a map.

The first kind of pocket compass is the closed face compass. This is exactly as the name implies, as the compass has a hinge that enables it to be closed to protect its delicate inner workings. Some closed faced compasses have no hinge, but a lid that can be taken completely off. If you run across a compass like this then there is a good chance it is a WWII model compass.

Similar is the open face compass. This compass is again just like the name indicates. It is wide open and has no lid for it. A convenient compass for quickly glancing at.

A compass that includes a prism is called a prismatic compass. It is contained in a protective case that allows travellers to read the scale for bearing. The prism is usually located at the rear of the compass. Typically, the prismatic compass is a trademark of the UK military.

Then lensatic compass is mounted with at least one lens. The lenses are important to reading the scale of this pocket compass. Lensatic compasses have been around since 1910, and are commonly used by the US military.

The transit compass is a pocket compass that includes a front and rear transit sight. The transit compass may contain a rear sight that is a single prism, similar to the prismatic compass; and like the lensatic compass the transit compass includes a front sight as well. This can relate the prismatic and lensatic compasses as sub categories of transit compasses.

The base plate compass is one of the most simplistically designed compasses. It’s base is completely see through. This enables the base plate compass to be a very good compass to use with maps, as you can place it on the map and still see the locations and directions of the map.

These are a few of the different types of pocket compasses. You will find that the variations work well in certain conditions more so than others do. When hiking it is important to carry an accessory compass, which is a compass housed in hiking equipment i.e. a hunting knife. Compasses that include mirrors, magnifiers, or clinometers are very good for use with a map. The mirror is great for accuracy of readings on distant landmarks; the magnifier helps to closely examine map points; while the clinometer measures inclination accurately. This type of compass is excellent when in the woods with a map, or even without one.

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