Dashboard Compass

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by Stewart J, Mar 27, 2011.

  1. Stewart J

    Stewart J Funster

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  2. thehutchies

    thehutchies Funster

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    HOW BLOODY MUCH? :Eeek:

    My kids could have made one for you: a needle, a magnet and a circle of card.

    And the card could have been decorated with sparkly princesses or chainsaw-toting zombies for only £26.98.
     
  3. thehutchies

    thehutchies Funster

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    Seriously, though, a decent Silva hand-held compass costs a tenner.
    Couldn't you just place one on the dashboard?

    And what's the point of a compass in a road vehicle?
    You can only go in the direction the road goes, after all...
     
  4. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    It is hard to get one to work in a motor home

    Having used automobie compass fitted to Ford & GM SUV's I have been a fan of them for many years. I have purchased various after market compass.. But so far cannot get one to work.. Even with compensators they never will work due to the electrics that interfere with the compass.

    These days I use my hand held garmin Oregon 550 that has a dash mounting, and I can select just a compass which seems to work OK.. I also use it to give me a big display of kilometres as my Winnebago speedo only has a much smaller ring with kilometres shown.. So this is on my dash as an extra reminder when I am in Europe .. Plus of course I can set up my Snooper 7000 to show kilometres, it also shows where North is.. But the Garmin handheld is by far the best compared to the after Market compass that you can buy. Only down side is that it is an expensive bit of kit.



    Bob:thumb:
     
  5. Stewart J

    Stewart J Funster

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    :Eeek::Eeek::Eeek::Eeek::Eeek::Eeek::Eeek::Eeek::Eeek::Eeek:

    Why did I bother post???????????????????
     
  6. peterandclare

    peterandclare Read Only Funster

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    Don't worry, I am sure it will be good kit and I certainly find it useful to have a compass to do a quick check for South (and sun) when I am parking on a new site.

    Pete
     
  7. callumwa

    callumwa Read Only Funster

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    Excuse me if I'm missing something. (it won't be the first time)

    May I ask why you want to have a compass on the dash of a motorhome?
     
  8. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    Hi Stewart, sorry but due to the fact that a vehicle is on a steel chassis with various electrics will effect the magnetic field it is impossible unless you get it proffesionally swung and compensators added to get a compass to read correctly in a van. As to the question posed by some as to why the answer in my case is simple. When parked on a cloudy day I have some idea of where to point the Sat dish or point the van so that the solarpanel on my dashboard gets the full sun early morning before I am up and it clouds over again, hee hee.
    Don't be put off Stewart they were only trying to be helpful even though you have already bought one. now a question as to the best compass to get may well have saved you the expence, hee hee. I carry a compass but use it outside of the van having given up trying to use one inside.
     
  9. callumwa

    callumwa Read Only Funster

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    That was why I asked the question, why the need to have a compass on the dash?

    It will be so affected by the metal body and electrics of the van it will be next to useless. As to having it professionally swung, again useless. I have adjusted compasses on ships. Some of the correcting rods are 30cm long and have to be placed half a metre from the compass,and where would you put those on a dash board. Even then you can still have quite large errors.

    If you want it just to align your sat dish or solar panel, why not just look at a map. If you have a map, and are still not sure of your bearings, a standard inexpensive hiking compass will will soon let you know where North is, (again using the compass well away from the van).
    You could also use your gps or sat nav.
    If you place the mapping on it north up, you will again have your bearings. Just compare your position, to the direction of the nearest road on the map.
    Even your phone these days can give you a north up map, and if you walk a few paces you soon get a directional vector. You could take your gps out of the cradle and put it in "walking mode", again north up, and do the same.

    Even simpler use the sun, even on an overcast day you will still get shadow without direct sunlight which can help you.
     
  10. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    Now do not get upset



    I agree with Roger, it is a learning curve.. With my hand held garmin I can also work out the satellite directions.. Bonus... But I wanted a dash one like you do.. So why not.. Do not worry about those that say a waste of time.. Having tried a couple of units, I have given up other than the Garmin I mentioned that seems to be ok.

    So do not give up.. It is often a lot of trail and error with these sort of things.

    I am sure you will tell us all about it.. The worse part will be driving in circles to get it to work as it should.. But without proper metal compensators like used on ships it will always be hit and miss, but let us know..good or bad how you make out

    Bob
     
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