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View Full Version : Great Price on Brunton 54LU Compass



Dick Blust
10-04-2009, 07:25 PM
A gentleman who attended one of my Back Country Navigation courses Saturday just called to point out that the Brunton 54LU compass is available at www.opticsplanet.com for $54.40. That's the lowest price for this compass I've seen in quite a while; if you're interested, check it out.

Dick Blust (dblust)

Jon S
10-04-2009, 08:22 PM
Thanks for the heads up, do you know if that one has a dial in declination?
Thanks, I have found them to be more trusty and user friendly while traveling and frequent bezel rotations.

CCH
10-04-2009, 08:25 PM
It may be the Shiner 100 or I may be slow, but what do you mean by dial in declination? Mine allows you to adjust for declination by dialing it to account for it, if that's what you require.

Dick, thanks again for all the great navigation info and the recommendation for this compass in the first place.

Jon S
10-04-2009, 08:46 PM
I am typing this slowly for the Shiner and you. :)
My current compass, some german model, has a declination plate in the bottom that you can twist independent of the bezel, allowing declination to be set regardless of anything else. Are we saying the same thing?
Got the stock sanded and two coats of danish oil on it, my all purpose pheasant gun is coming along nicely.

Sawtooth
10-04-2009, 08:54 PM
A good price, indeed. I think I paid about $80 for mine a few years ago. I think I'll buy a couple for my Raider team at this price. Thanks, Dick!

Dick Blust
10-04-2009, 10:56 PM
The Brunton 54LU is NOT declination adjustable.

CCH
10-05-2009, 07:09 AM
Ahhh... then I misunderstood what declination adjustable is. :) I checked my compass and know what you're talking about -- and what I didn't.

You really need a faux damascus finish on that barrel.

Bushcraft
10-05-2009, 08:11 AM
Dick,

Perhaps I need to revisit your writings on navigation, but why wouldn't you recommend a compass that was declination adjustable instead of one that wasn't adjustable?

On a related note, here's a handy declination calculator from NGDC for those that might be interested...
http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/geomagmodels/struts/calcDeclination

And an interesting map...
http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/seg/geomag/icons/us_d_contour.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.divorceinfo.com/letthesunwork/shelter/truesouth.htm&usg=__1y5p3IVcfjEPJKGXgtx4-2QtujY=&h=612&w=792&sz=108&hl=en&start=15&um=1&tbnid=ykhXSyrewcd3GM:&tbnh=111&tbnw=143&prev=/images%3Fq%3D2009%2Bmagnetic%2Bdeclination%2Bmap%2 6hl%3Den%26rls%3Dcom.microsoft:en-us%26sa%3DN%26um%3D1
http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/geomag/icons/us_d_contour.jpg

Allen

butts
10-05-2009, 08:47 AM
Brunton 54LU compass ordered...check
Print out Blust tutorial, again....check
Christmas gift's for son....check

David in OR
10-05-2009, 08:59 AM
It seems like the nicer compasses are not declination adjustable, which I personally think is kind of a drag. It's so nice to be able to set both compass and GPS to True North and forget about it.

I find the Suunto M-2 very convenient to use, but you can't be super accurate with it, with no sighting mechanism. My old Silva Ranger is hard for me to use as my up-close vision has degraded.

Dick Blust
10-05-2009, 09:33 AM
As you will note in my tutorial, I identify the three compasses I feel are optimum for hunters. (And anybody else that's serious about back country navigation, for that matter.)

The fact is that there aren't any declination-adjustable compasses out there that satisfy my standards for accuracy, precision, overall utility, and night-functionality.

Ed C
10-05-2009, 09:41 AM
I like declination adjustable, because that's the way I learned.

This is from Dick's essays:



Some compasses are “declination adjustable;” that is, you can set them according to the True-to-Magnetic or Grid-to-Magnetic declination in the area of your map. The compasses that have been recommended, however - the British prismatics, the lensatic M-27, and the Brunton Combi - are not declination adjustable. This is not a drawback or a shortcoming, it’s simply an element of their design and actually simplifies things when using them in conjunction with a GPS.


The key point is this: your GPS’s “North Reference” setting must always match your compass. Since our compasses are “magnetic only,” your GPS must be set on “Magnetic” for its “North Reference.” (Conversely, if you were working with a declination adjustable compass set for True North, you would want your GPS’s “North Reference” setting to be “True North.”)


The numbers on my Silva Ranger baseplate are getting a bit worn and hard to scale with. So I'm in the market for a new base plate model. I like the idea of tritium lights for night work, so I'm going to try to find one of the Silvas marketed in Australia.

From Dick's essays

Brunton Model 54LU Combi
An extremely clever, reliable, and accurate design that combines precise prismatic sight readings - down to ½ of a degree - with the features of a baseplate orienteering compass, all for about $76.00. Though it’s luminous - operating in the dark, you have to give it a “flashlight shot” from time to time - it’s not fitted with tritium lights, though there’s a Silva version marketed in Australia that is.

Ed C
10-05-2009, 09:49 AM
As you will note in my tutorial, I identify the three compasses I feel are optimum for hunters. (And anybody else that's serious about back country navigation, for that matter.)

The fact is that there aren't any declination-adjustable compasses out there that satisfy my standards for accuracy, precision, overall utility, and night-functionality.


From your essays:

There are other night-friendly compasses on the market made by Brunton, Silva, Suunto, and others, but I’ve used these three extensively and recommend them highly for hunters.

elmbow
10-05-2009, 10:02 AM
Not meaning to be an A**hole, although i'm rather good at it; but learn to use a map and compass and quit relying on crutches.

David in OR
10-05-2009, 10:53 AM
LOL It's simply a matter of eliminating a quick calculation for declination. I think most of us understand declination and how to add and subtract. Even I can add and subtract. But why bother if it's unnecessary? (Assuming your requirements in a compass are not as demanding as those of Mr. Blust.)

Bushcraft
10-05-2009, 11:03 AM
But why bother if it's unnecessary?

Exactly.

Heard this gem the other day..."If you can't terrain associate with a map and compass at a jog, then you ought to stay out of the woods."

I believe there is a truism in there somewhere.

Ed C
10-05-2009, 11:18 AM
LOL It's simply a matter of eliminating a quick calculation for declination. I think most of us understand declination and how to add and subtract. Even I can add and subtract. But why bother if it's unnecessary? (Assuming your requirements in a compass are not as demanding as those of Mr. Blust.)

With a declination adjustable compass there is no calculation. You have already set the declination on your compass

Please forgive me, but I learned to navigate with map and compass about 4 or 5 decades before Mr. Blust essay was published here on the board.
[As did elmbow]. So long before GPS.

This is where Dick lost me, but I think I understand now. His method is simplified to use with GPS.

So my question is; [for you rookies] If your GPS goes tits up and you don't have grid lines on your map and your declination set, are you up chit creek ?

Please forgive me for not understanding this as I am old and not to smart. Hence the original question from Bushcraft
why wouldn't you recommend a compass that was declination adjustable instead of one that wasn't adjustable?

Ed C
10-05-2009, 11:22 AM
Bushcraft

If you can't terrain associate with a map and compass at a jog, they you ought to stay out of the woods."


I am having a problem with the jog part! As far as I'm concerned jogging should be illegal.

David in OR
10-05-2009, 12:28 PM
With a declination adjustable compass there is no calculation. You have already set the declination on your compass

My point exactly.


Please forgive me, but I learned to navigate with map and compass about 4 or 5 decades before Mr. Blust essay was published here on the board.
[As did elmbow]. So long before GPS.

Well, it's been over thirty years for me.


This is where Dick lost me, but I think I understand now. His method is simplified to use with GPS.

So my question is; [for you rookies] If your GPS goes tits up and you don't have grid lines on your map and your declination set, are you up chit creek ?

Dick's method makes the best use of the map/compass/GPS toolset. If my GPS goes TU, I'm back to what I was doing ante-satellite: orienting the map and reading topo lines, using handrails and backstops and intentional offset, doing triangulations/resections when possible.

Ed C
10-05-2009, 12:35 PM
David what kind of compass do you use?
I think we are talking the same thing.

David in OR
10-05-2009, 12:49 PM
In highschool, I learned on a Silva Ranger and used that for a long time. Now that I need reading glasses, though, I switched over to a Suunto M-2. I can't focus on the reflection in the Ranger's mirror. (I could put the reading glasses on, but then it's just a pain to go back and forth from the compass to the object in the distance.) The M-2 is clearly not very accurate, but I find that I do everything I need to do with it.

elmbow
10-06-2009, 01:46 AM
Dick's method is of course aimed around combining the 3 into an ideal system. In reality there's nothing the matter with dec adj compasses, if you don't let yourself get lazy like I just did with typing. The single hardest part of land navigation with map and compass is remembering the east/west add/subtract mnemonics. Practice keeps them sharp. If you venture forth in the same regions year after year, then it gets easy. As for jogging, I've been places, deserts, forested plateaus, etc. where you could stand in one place all day craning your neck or jog 20 miles without ever seeing a thing to "associate" with on the map. GPS's and confidence in map and compass give some peace of mind there.

Bushcraft
10-06-2009, 08:54 AM
Well then, if the stand-out feature is on the map, you'll be able to associate with it once you get all that jogging out of your system.

one-eyed Bob
10-06-2009, 04:26 PM
I use a marble's pin-on compass.

elmbow
10-06-2009, 05:43 PM
I use a marble's pin-on compass.
I use pin on Binky's.

David in OR
10-06-2009, 06:50 PM
I've got one with a Tactical Leash in Tiger Stripe camo. It's a must for the hard use infant.

http://www.small-potatoes.ca/images/binky-leash-photo.jpg