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How to Use a Silva Type 15T Ranger Compass

Updated February 21, 2017

The Silva Type 15T Ranger compass is a perfect tool for orienteering in rugged terrain, and comes equipped with a magnifying mirror and sighting hole which eases difficulty in sighting landmarks and plotting directional azimuths. The Ranger Type 15T can still be found on the market in some locations, but has been replaced from manufacture by the Ranger Type 16T compass. The compass is best used along with a detailed map of the area that you're navigating through, and requires basic compass skills to be used effectively.

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  1. Set the compass on the flat on the map, near the map's printed compass, and open the compass lid to a vertical position.

  2. Mark the starting point and your destination point on the map with a pen or pencil, then adjust the compass so that the long side is in pointing along your line of travel. This is signified by an embossed arrow on the compass, and referred to as the directional travel line. Ensure that the directional line is pointing toward your destination.

  3. Rotate the compass housing to align the North-South readings on the compass with the North-South lines on the map compass.

  4. Take the compass off of the map and hold it in front of you at eye level, so you can see through the sight window.

  5. Rotate your body while holding the compass out, and looking through the sight window, until the compass needle is aligned with the orienteering arrow. Look through the sight window and pick a landmark to walk to. Any landmark will do, such as a tree, rock structure, telephone pole or building.

  6. Walk to the landmark, then, if needed, adjust your bearings by repeating the above process and keep plotting and picking landmarks until you've reached your destination.

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