What makes a great compass for a DofE expedition?

A compass is an expedition essential, and it’s important that you can trust it to guide you on unfamiliar ground.

The three key markers of a great compass are reliability, accuracy and toughness. Compass work is inevitable, so try to have one each, or if that’s not doable, three per team is probably the minimum. DofE recommended compasses from Silva give you all three – and what’s more, Silva will re-polarise an old compass for FREE!

Compasses are sometimes provided by your DofE Leader, so make sure you check ahead of your expedition.

DofE recommended compasses

All DofE recommended compasses from Silva offer reliability, accuracy and toughness. These are the three key markers of a great compass.

Silva Field Compass

  • Rubber grip
  • 1:50K and 1:25K scales
  • Detachable lanyard
  • 28g

VIEW FIELD COMPASS

 

 

Silva Ranger Compass

  • Rubber grip
  • 1:50K and 1:25K scales
  • Declination scale
  • 33g

VIEW RANGER COMPASS

 

 

Silva Expedition 4 Compass

  • Rubber grip
  • 1:50K, 1:40K and 1:25K scale
  • Built-in magnifier for precision map work
  • 36g

VIEW EXPEDITION 4 COMPASS

 

 

Silva Classic Compass

  • Enlarged dial
  • Lanyard
  • Magnetic declination scale
  • Scratch resistant base

VIEW CLASSIC COMPASS

DofE recommended maps and map cases

Learning to use an Ordnance Survey (OS) map is a central part of your expedition. UK walking expeditions need to use OS maps, usually 1:25000 and cyclists may prefer a 1:50000 scale one. And, you can choose from standard paper or stronger laminate which can be wiped clean of route markings.

Many DofE centres provide maps and map cases, so talk to your Leader before buying.

OS Explorer

  • 1:25000 scale
  • Highly detailed
  • Ideal for foot treks for shorter distances

VIEW EXPLORER MAPS

 

 

OS Landranger

  • 1:50000 scale
  • Standard or weatherproof
  • Covers bigger areas
  • Ideal for long distance foot or bike trails

VIEW LANDRANGER MAPS

 

Silva Dry Map Cases

  • M30
  • Fully waterproof
  • Quick and easy closure

VIEW DRY MAP CASES

How to get the most from your compass
  • Keep your compass in a soft case to protect it.
  • Do not store compasses near anything magnetic.
  • Tie your compass to your rucksack or jacket to avoid losing it.
  • Get a laminated water resistant ‘active’ map which is durable.
  • Always try to use a map case, even if using laminated maps and route cards. It keeps everything together and provides the best protection against rain.
Poster downloads

Navigation poster

Learn how to get your bearings with our simple navigation poster.

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