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Which GI compas is best and most durable?

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by alfred10, Feb 21, 2010.

  1. alfred10

    alfred10

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    I want a GI compas. How durable are they? I was told to stay away from tritium. Is there a better brand than lenestic?
     
  2. slaytera666

    slaytera666

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    Wow, I don't even know where to start on this one.

    - First, why do you need one? You don't seem like the kind of guy practicing land nav in the woods. Second, The mil-spec LENSATIC (not a brand) compass is extremely tough. Just buy a GPS for yourself and have a young child show you how to use it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2010

  3. longhair

    longhair

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    Wow- that was cold and condescending.
     
  4. bennwj

    bennwj Command Sergeant Major (retired) Silver Member

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    A lensatic compass is fine for land navigation and most orienteering stuff.

    I bought this type of compass back in 1989 and had to replace it (finally) in 2006. http://www.rei.com/product/408031

    Built in protractor etc...
     
  5. RonS

    RonS Millennium Member

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    As stated, lensatic is the kind of compas, not a brand.

    Tritium is the glowing stuff that lets you use it in the dark. You can save about $25-30 by skipping the tritium. There is nothing wrong with having tritium, one millimeter of glass or 10 millimeters of air absorbs the little radiation that a typical glow spot gives off.

    If you want a GI compass then it doesn't much matter who makes it, they should be the same in terms of accuracy and durability, they are made to a specification set by the military. National Stock Number: 6605-01-196-6971. Mil Spec: MIL-PRF-10436N

    http://lensaticcompass.blogspot.com/

    http://www.thecompassstore.com/

    Get a book or books on how to use it, it is not like using a walmart compass to determine which way is South to set up your TV dish, they have a lot of features and to get the most out of it you need to understand it.

    Have fun.
     
  6. oldsoldier

    oldsoldier

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    You can buy a copy of FM 21-26 Map Reading and Land Navigation on various internet sites. It was superseded by FM 3-25.26 in 2001 I think. Lots of good information available in these two Army manuals. I used a M2 or other compass and topographic maps for over 30 years. I also used military GPS devices for about 10 years of that but often verified them against a compass and topographic map. There is nothing wrong with you wanting to pick up a lensatic compass and learn how to use it.
     
  7. blackjack

    blackjack

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    I second this recommendation. You can buy a more basic compass for less money but the one bennwj has linked to provides the best civilian equivalent to the military lensatic and has the protractor feature for map reading purposes.

    While I am a gadget guy as much as the next guy, GPS can be a crutch that limits development of good map/compass/direction skills. As a Boy Scout leader in pre-GPS days, I tried to make sure we spent time on each outing using a map and compass. The batteries don't die on a map and compass.
     
  8. kenpoprofessor

    kenpoprofessor

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  9. jdavionic

    jdavionic NRA Member

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    To the guy responding about the GPS as the answer, great help :upeyes:

    A GPS is great. But it really sucks if it breaks or the batteries die. I have a lensatic as a reliable backup. It's not a brand, but a type of compass. The REI one that was posted is nice. I've got a couple, including a surplus one that has a metal housing.

    For me, my kids love hiking and they also enjoy getting off the beaten path. Having a lensatic is a good idea as a backup. But you need to know how to use it. Just simply knowing the North direction is not going to get you back to your destination. You need to know how to navigate using it and you need to have maps.
     
  10. davew83

    davew83 hhhhhhhhmmmmmmm

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    everyone should go read the rest of the OP's threads....
     
  11. bearshoegun

    bearshoegun

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    Man, I need to take a civilian map reading course. Any good books dealing with this?

    Been dealing with Military maps so long I wouldn't know where to start dealing with a civilian equivalent.

    ps, trying to find a IED Cache at 2AM is not fun using a map and compass when the Blue Force tracker goes out! Thank God for 10 digit grids!
     
  12. slaytera666

    slaytera666

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    I was going to apologize for my sarcasm, but I skimmed a few of those and lol'd.
     
  13. KusoJijii

    KusoJijii alegacy of fear

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    Inquiring minds want to know...
     
  14. RonS

    RonS Millennium Member

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    OMG, I am so glad I did not slam the second poster for being unhelpful. Very restrained post given the circumstances.

    In case there is anyone who doesn't know, you can click on a posters name and see a thumbnail of the most recent posts.

    As far as GPSs go, I want one with a crank on it for charging the battery. They make flashlights, cell phone chargers and radios, how hard could it be?
     
  15. robin303

    robin303 Helicopter Nut

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  16. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo Ancient Member Millennium Member

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    GPS is great but for any real field work (other than strolling through a city park) it is smart to learn the fundamentals of land navigation with map and compass. There are several good and inexpensive books on the subject. I recommend those by Kjellstrom.

    A lensatic compass allows the most accurate work, but for general navigation a plain compass that has a straightedge will do fine. REI has a good selection, as well as Amazon. Coupled with a recent set of topographic maps and some training, there is no excuse for being lost.

    Someday those birds may stop working so GPS could be rendered useless, no matter how many batteries you have.

    Ronaldo, who always knows where he is...
     
  17. MtBaldy

    MtBaldy Obie Wan, RIP

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    Someday may be sooner rather than later:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8494225.stm
     
  18. GreenDrake

    GreenDrake Rip Lips

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    I have kept a Suunto basic compass with rotating bezel on my pack for years, I mean like 20 years, works like new and has taken a beating.
     
  19. Bren

    Bren NRA Life Member

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    I have a Cammenga lensatic, same as what the Army issues. It has always been a good compass - durable and no problems. GPS is better, unless you just want to learn to use a compass.
     
  20. Jay9928

    Jay9928 I laugh at liberals.

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    This one has been good to me in the service....



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