U.S. Army Compass

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This is required equipment for NATO U.S. Army participants.



All U.S. Army troops at East Wind are required to have a USGI issue compass. You may choose to use either Phosphorus or Tritium. It must be an issue compass, not a replica. If it does not say Stocker and Yale or Cammenga on it and have an NSN, it is not USGI and will not pass inspection.

The M2 Brunton compass is not acceptable.

The wrist/survival compass is not acceptable.

Selecting your compass

  • When buying a tritium compass, the date is very important. The newer the compass, the brighter the tritium illumination will be. This can of course be a good or a bad thing depending on your eyesight and whether or not you are skilled at working with map and compass through night vision devices. On the Cammenga compasses, the date is marked on the inside of the compass with ink. On the Stocker and Yale compasses, the date is cast into the base plate on the underside.
  • If you are on a budget, look for 1980s dated Stocker and Yale (frequently marked SandY 183). They are generally pretty scruffy looking since they did not use very good paint on the cases but are otherwise very nice compasses and the tritium has passed it's half life so it is quite a bit dimmer making these compasses a fair bit easier to use at night since they are not so wildly bright.
  • Cammenga still makes manufactures both the 3 H Tritium version as well as the 27 Phosphorus version of the USGI compass. Both are well made and will serve you well.
  • You may choose to bring another type of compass as well as the issue compass, but only the issue compass will satisfy the requirement.