Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: Compass recommendations - what to consider - binnacle mount

  1. #1
    Contributing Member II
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Location
    Victoria, BC
    Posts
    27

    Compass recommendations - what to consider - binnacle mount

    We are shopping for a new compass for our 30+. Any thoughts or recommendations?

    Thanks in advance!

    Shannon
    Shannon Jones
    1986 Ericson 30+
    M18

    Current name: Eden (new name June22)

  2. #2
    Moderator Christian Williams's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    3,747
    Blog Entries
    77
    Can't have no responses at all after 24 hours, so...

    I'd say, whatever compass makes the best decoration--because that's mostly all a whisky compass is in the era of GPS--and multiple backup GPSs..

    The one remaining use for a binnacle compass is steering a course if the chartplotter goes out.
    Thelonious II, E381 hull 513 (1984) Universal 5432
    Table of Contents for Thelonious Blog here
    Videos: http://www.youtube.com/c/ChristianWilliamsYachting

  3. #3
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Portland, OR. Columbia River
    Posts
    7,362
    Blog Entries
    62

    Thumbs up Ritchie SP-5C

    http://www.ericsonyachts.org/infoexc...ss-Restoration

    Our Ritchie compass as pictured in my blog.
    Love having an easy-to-read compass, but as Christian points out it is less used nowadays with reliance on GPS chart plotters.
    1988 Olson 34 #8
    Sail # 28400
    Betamarine 25 (new 2018)
    Fresh Air
    Portland, OR USA

  4. #4
    Moderator Christian Williams's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    3,747
    Blog Entries
    77
    They're really lovely. Pricing is tough. But only $250 for the refurb (two years ago).

    Name:  ritchie.jpg
Views: 84
Size:  51.4 KB
    Thelonious II, E381 hull 513 (1984) Universal 5432
    Table of Contents for Thelonious Blog here
    Videos: http://www.youtube.com/c/ChristianWilliamsYachting

  5. #5
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Portland, OR. Columbia River
    Posts
    7,362
    Blog Entries
    62
    The one that looks exactly like mine is for sale today at WM for $599.99.

    If buying one, I would probably also shop around further. Considering the cost to rebuild an old one, I would probably not want a used one off of eBay, tho.
    Last edited by Loren Beach; 03-11-2019 at 03:29 PM.
    1988 Olson 34 #8
    Sail # 28400
    Betamarine 25 (new 2018)
    Fresh Air
    Portland, OR USA

  6. #6
    Principal Partner Kenneth K's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Gig Harbor, Wa
    Posts
    380
    Blog Entries
    6
    Check out the compass repair shops. Most sell refurbished Ritchie and Danforth models for $200-300.

    Vikingcompass.com
    Ken
    '85 E32-3 "Mariah" #641
    Universal M-25

    "Saltwater is the cure; sweat, tears, or the sea......"

  7. #7
    Contributing Member II
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Location
    Victoria, BC
    Posts
    27

    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by Christian Williams View Post
    Can't have no responses at all after 24 hours, so...

    I'd say, whatever compass makes the best decoration--because that's mostly all a whisky compass is in the era of GPS--and multiple backup GPSs..

    The one remaining use for a binnacle compass is steering a course if the chartplotter goes out.
    Thanks Christian.

    The skipper who taught is was pretty old school school and wouldn’t let us use gps. It kind of stuck.

    Although we are planning to upgrade the gps and have a handheld as a backup

    Shannon
    Shannon Jones
    1986 Ericson 30+
    M18

    Current name: Eden (new name June22)

  8. #8
    Contributing Member II
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Location
    Victoria, BC
    Posts
    27

    Smile Thanks again

    Thanks for the tips. I think may look at refurbishing the one we have. We believe it’s a Riviera Genoa. The diaphragm seal was torn and the fluid has almost drained out and the dome is yellowed, but somehow it did seem to work somewhat when we were out.

    I think part of the fun of owning a boat is figuring out how to fix it
    Shannon Jones
    1986 Ericson 30+
    M18

    Current name: Eden (new name June22)

  9. #9
    Contributing Partner Teranodon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    San Juan Island, Washington State
    Posts
    135
    Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to me that the only use for a binnacle compass (other than as a nice decoration) is steering a magnetic heading. This, in turn, happens primarily in open water when there are no landmarks on the horizon. How many Ericson sailors do that on a regular basis? Here in the "Salish Sea" (the former Puget Sound) it never happens, except in fog.

    On the other hand, a handbearing (hockey puck) compass has lots of uses. I'm always reaching for mine, I know.

    Whenever I've sailed on blue water (e.g., Atlantic crossing) I would try to sail magnetic courses. I was terrible at it, even after weeks of practice. Something in the way my brain works. Every time I stopped staring at the compass, the boat would drift off course. Bad genes, I guess.
    Last edited by Teranodon; 03-13-2019 at 09:58 PM.
    Stefan Michalowski
    San Juan Island, WA
    1988 Ericson 34 "Talpa"

  10. #10
    Contributing Partner kiwisailor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Groton, CT
    Posts
    122
    Blog Entries
    19

    Compass Use

    Quote Originally Posted by Teranodon View Post
    Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to me that the only use for a binnacle compass (other than as a nice decoration) is steering a magnetic heading. This, in turn, happens primarily in open water when there are no landmarks on the horizon. How many Ericson sailors do that on a regular basis? Here in the "Salish Sea" (the former Puget Sound) it never happens, except in fog.

    On the other hand, a handbearing (hockey puck) compass has lots of uses. I'm always reaching for mine, I know.

    Whenever I've sailed on blue water (e.g., Atlantic crossing) I would try to sail magnetic courses. I was terrible at it, even after weeks of practice. Something in the way my brain works. Every time I stopped staring at the compass, the boat would drift off course. Bad genes, I guess.
    I've sometimes used the compass to work out the new heading to follow after tacking ~90 degrees when I have a non sailor at the helm especially if no land marks available and I'm busy on the sheets.
    Sherene & Mike Taniwha

    1981 E38 "KIWI"
    Hull #53
    Groton, CT

  11. #11
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Portland, OR. Columbia River
    Posts
    7,362
    Blog Entries
    62

    Electircal ...watching the needle...

    Quote Originally Posted by Teranodon View Post
    Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to me that the only use for a binnacle compass (other than as a nice decoration) is steering a magnetic heading. This, in turn, happens primarily in open water when there are no landmarks on the horizon. How many Ericson sailors do that on a regular basis? Here in the "Salish Sea" (the former Puget Sound) it never happens, except in fog.

    On the other hand, a handbearing (hockey puck) compass has lots of uses. I'm always reaching for mine, I know.

    Whenever I've sailed on blue water (e.g., Atlantic crossing) I would try to sail magnetic courses. I was terrible at it, even after weeks of practice. Something in the way my brain works. Every time I stopped staring at the compass, the boat would drift off course. Bad genes, I guess.
    All good points. I recall that over a decade ago with my wife joined me for a delivery down the WA coast (Cal 34-3) we both got very used to steering a course by matching the "swing" of the needle from side to side as the boat moved around in the seas. This was at night, well over 15 miles off shore. Nothing outside the boat to see to orient by. Beautiful night, BTW.

    More recently, I was driving in big seas, during a rough crossing of the Columbia bar, and found that my compass was a Great help to stay on course, even with a large plotter mounted nearby. There is always some latency in the GPS information and the compass was very helpful.
    Last edited by Loren Beach; 03-14-2019 at 12:19 PM.
    1988 Olson 34 #8
    Sail # 28400
    Betamarine 25 (new 2018)
    Fresh Air
    Portland, OR USA

  12. #12
    Curator of Broken Parts toddster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Oregon - The Gorge
    Posts
    1,512
    Blog Entries
    48
    Quote Originally Posted by Teranodon View Post
    it never happens, except in fog.
    So, like, every morning then

    When I had my boat on the lower Columbia, I steered by the compass all the time. Even though you can see the shore or the next buoy now, in five minutes you might be in fog. This has happened every time* I’ve crossed the bar.








    Well, it sounds better than "both times." Although I think it was that way the time that I wasn't driving, too
    Last edited by toddster; 03-14-2019 at 10:10 AM.
    s/v arcturus E29 #134

  13. #13
    Grizz Grizz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    172

    A Freshwater Inland Sea Compass Viewpoint

    This is a late-breaking compass related check-in from the middle of the continent...

    A 2018 file was created last summer entitled 'Unanticipated Consequences', after the installation of the new B&G Zeus Chartplotter onto the binnacle guard. It was a fantastic upgrade, transporting us from analog Datamarine World and into full digital mode. The pod swivels on an arm, intended to be viewed from either a port, aft or starboard position (successful!). Unfortunately, it was discovered early in the season that certain pod positions throws the Ritchie Globemaster completely out of whack (a highly technical term for 'way off').

    The investment in the B&G's array of options far outweighed the Unanticipated Consequences of the compass SNAFU. As stated previously by others, unless the entire canopy of satellites is hijacked by a Rogue Nation State, the critical need for an accurate magnetic compass has been made largely unnecessary.

    That said, there still remains a use for this Ritchie Globemaster, especially at night, even if the B&G has inflicted a disorientation variable onto it: the 'lubber lines' around the compass' circumference provide great reference points of heading, especially when seated on the port/starboard side, helming with 1 hand, in pitch dark conditions. Yes, the B&G has heading, VMG and Boat Speed visible. But finding that lubber line and seeing that it's toggling between 90*-95* (as an example) is a quick means to confirm 'we're still on course'.

    Others may have different experiences with their compasses, this inserted as 1 opinion. Have a great day. Take care.
    1989 Olson 34 #9
    Sail #34109
    Shoe String
    Chicago, IL USA

Similar Threads

  1. compass housing on top of binnacle shattered
    By Scott Peterson in forum Maintenance & Mechanical
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 05-06-2018, 01:03 PM
  2. Binnacle mount for Yacht Specialties pedestal
    By hodo in forum For Sale & Wanted
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 10-01-2017, 05:08 AM
  3. between compass and binnacle
    By Lawdog in forum Maintenance & Mechanical
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 06-16-2017, 05:41 PM
  4. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-14-2012, 03:46 PM
  5. Compass mount question
    By exoduse35 in forum Maintenance & Mechanical
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 05-24-2010, 04:30 PM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •