- Compasses -

We carry binnacles, box compasses, and lifeboat binnacles as well as the occasional pelorus and handheld piece.
Like most ship salvage these days, these instruments are getting harder to find; we bring in 1 or 2 binnacles per year.
Please call or email to inquire about availability and pricing.
Pieces that are available will read "available"; sold pieces remain pictured
to give an idea of the
uniqueness and range of designs and types.

Ship's Binnacle salvaged off a German vessel.  (sold)

 

Binnacles:
The binnacle houses the main magnetic compass on a ship which is mounted in gimbals to keep it level while the vessel
 rocks with the motion of the water. Sometimes there was an oil lamp or, later, an electrical light source, mounted
under the compass.  A brass hood sits atop the compass and has a viewing port thorugh which you can see the direction.
The green and red balls on either side slide to adjust the compass to compensate for the magnetic skew of the iron on the ship.
Pieces that are available will read "available"; items that do not read "available" have been sold.  Sold pieces remain pictured
to give an idea of the
uniqueness and range of designs and types

gorgeous all brass Sestrel Binnacle; appx 55" tall Sestrel Compass No 5703N - Type No90327MS - Henry Brown & Son
 Ltd.  Station Works - Barking - Essex-
available
 
Dobbie-McInnes ship's binnacle, made in Glasgow
appx 62" tall - available

Negus-New York U.S. Navy Compensating Binnacle by
E.S. Ritchie & Sons, Inc. Brookline, Mass.  Serial #1606
appx 55" tall - available
 
salvaged copper and brass binnacle w/original compass Type SR2 Serial No. 81064, by John Lilley & Gillie Ltd.
 Nautical Instrument Makers, North Shields England:
(hood - not pictured - is fiberglass and copper)
appx 23" tall to top of compensating balls, 28" to top of
Flinders bar  x 25" wide...  gimbal stamped w/ 12193  - 1 of 2 available

U.S. Navy Bureau of Ships brass binnacle, dated 1942, serial #6191;
Cassens & Plath compass, appx 52" tall - available
 
Copper and brass salvaged binnacle w/original compass,
Type MR No. 36115 by John Lilley & Gillie Ltd.
Nautical Instrument Makers, North Shields England
(hood, included but not pictured, is fiberglass and copper)
appx 23" tall to top of compensating balls, 28" to top of Flinders Bar x 25" wide,
compass w/glass etched service dates of 1964, 1975, 1989,
gimbal stamped with 23063, 11322, 17056
- 2nd of 2 available

brass ship's binnacle by Frank Morrison of Cleveland, Ohio. 
Compass by E. S. Ritchie & Sons Inc. of Boston, serial #90780
*sliding access panel on front is missing; faux panel pictured
(appx 52" tall, compass 10 1/2" OD) - available

salvaged bronze U.S. Navy Compensating binnacle by
Lionel Corporation, dated 1941, model number 697,
type Mark VII (appx 53" tall) with Lietz brand compass - available

aluminum and brass ship's binnacle
by Saura Marine Instruments Co., Ltd
Tokyo, Japan - dated 1983

German ship's binnacle
.
Lionel Corporation, USA Binnacle with
The A Pietz Co. compass, serial #22058

unmarked salvaged binnacle 
appx 52"tall
 
Lionel Compensating Binnacle Type
MBF #13481 -
compass dated 1944
. .
Kelvin & Wilfrid O. White Co. Boston - New York
serial # 2052 Binnacle with original compass 50" tall

.
Lionel Corporation, USA Type "K" Compass with
Compensating Coils; 1944. Serial #13921.
Original compass, electric light & shade
are functional.

Just in- Kelvin & Wilfrid O. White Co.
Nautical Instruments - Adjusters of Ship
Compasses - Boston - New York -
Binnacle #3404, Christie & Wilson
compass # 655, appx 42" tall
  
The A. Lietz Co., of San Francisco binnacle compass with hood,
serial #23415 (hood appx 18" tall)

Kelvin & Hughes ship's binnacle
appx 62" tall
Box and handheld compasses:
Always have a back-up.  The reserve magnetic compasses kept on board were stored in a box - sometimes
they come to us in the boxes and sometimes without the boxes but they were just as important to have on board in case
something went wrong with the main compass in the binnacle.
Hand-held compasses are hard to come by; we buy the salvaged varieties any time we can find them...
Pieces that are available will read "available"; sold pieces remain pictured
to give an idea of the
uniqueness and range of designs and types.  Call or email for pricing.

American manufactured DIP needle compass; front and back brass covers, 4" hanging ring, early 1800s.  available
 
Astro Compass MK II; interior stamp "Examined 1949"
 made WWII era:
appx 10 1/2" x 5 1/2" x 6 1/2" available

Astro-Compass MKII (aka "Sun Compass) - used at the
north/south poles where magnetic compasses
are unreliable; box appx 10x5x6" tall - available
 

American Box Compass by E.S. Ritchie & Sons
made April 8, 1918. Serial No: 49147.
10 1/2" diam. face

salvaged U.S. Navy compass 1943
by E.S.Ritchie & Sons Inc. in box
appx 8 1/4" face diameter, box appx 11 1/4"

E.S. Ritchie & Sons Inc. compass in box - Boston, USA, serial # 94142
(no fluid), box appx 13 3/4" square,
10 1/2" diam face

Baker-Lyman American compass
dated 1974, appx 9 3/4  OD, 11 3/4" gimbal

salvaged brass and aluminum compass;
original box, dated 1983 by Nunotani (Japan)
appx 9 3/4" face diameter - appx 6 3/8" deep

Nunotani Seiki Box Compass
dated 1986, serial #3387

box compass Nunotani box compass,
dated 1996 - salvaged off the MV Daio Copihue
appx 9 3/4  OD, 11 3/4" gimbal

box compass by Osaka Nunotani Seiki
Co., Ltd serial #4877 dated 2-1991
appx 9 3/4  OD, 11 3/4" gimbal

Telltale / Overhead compass (no box)
appx 6 1/2" face diameter, 9 1/4" with gimbal
serial #2886

  telltale overhead compass #C958
British Navy, Patt 0921
good condition, box 10" square,
face 6" diameter appx

"telltale" overhead compass #C394
British Navy, poor condition,
box 10" x 10", compass face appx 6" diameter

US Navy Sperry Compass

tiny salvaged American box compass by
A. Lietz Company, San Francisco, CA
appx 3 1/4" face - sold

tiny salvaged American compass by
Star Pathfinder Boston serial #60408
(Milton, Mass)

tiny salvaged American compass by Wilcox Crittenden Co., Middletown, CT
appx 4 3/4" square, compass
face appx 2 3/4"

tiny salvaged American compass by
Wilcox, Crittenden & Co (Middletonn, Conn)

salvaged military style pocket / handheld
compass - appx 3" diameter

marching compass in case by Bezard
appx 2 1/2" x 3" case, compass
face appx 1 3/4" diam

US Army Surveying Compass M2 with
case, Serial #102073 by Brunson Instrument
 Co., Kansas City MO. - appx 3" x 2 3/4"

Mark VII Model E; Creagh-Osborne marching
compass by Sperry-Gyroscope Co., Brooklyn,
NY (brass) appx 3 1/2" overall length

W.S. Darley & Co DIP needle compass
Chicago, USA - box appx 4 3/4" square
c. 1910

Universal Sun Compass by Abrams Instrument Co
Lansing, Michingan, War Department manual dated 1943
appx 9 3/4" x 9 3/4" x 3 3/4"

US Army Surveying Compass M2,
Serial #12748 by Brunson Instrument Co.,
Kansas City MO. (no case)
appx 3" x 2 3/4"

Box compass by Veb Schiffselektronik (GDR)
dated 1981 (East German)
box appx 14" x 14", compass face appx 11"

Plath (German) box compass, not dated
appx 12" diameter face, 12 1/4" gimbal

salvaged compass (no box) by C. Plath
appx 10 1/2" face OD, 12 1/4"
gimble OD

salvaged compass (no box) by Cassens and Plath
appx 10" face OD, 12 1/4" gimble OD

box compass by C. Plath - Hamburg (not dated)
appx 10 1/8" face diam, 12" gimbal diam
 
Box compassby John Lilley and Gillie Ltd
North Shields (London). serial no #385355

box compass by Sestrel Henry Browne & Son
(Barking, London) type #9052
gimbal diamter appx 13"
 
Lifeboat binnacles / Lifeboat compasses:
A smaller version of the main binnacle, a compass was always stored in each lifeboat in the event you needed to use the lifeboat and,
of course, once aboard, navigation was very important to a chance of being rescued and /or communicating your location.
Some had the side housing for a oil burner to illuminate the compass, some did not. (in general, 9-11" tall)
Pieces that are available will read "available"; items that do not read "available" have been sold.  Sold pieces remain pictured
to give an idea of the
uniqueness and range of designs and types
 
lifeboat binnacle compass - Japanese manufacturer
pre-WWII era, phenolic case, rear view port,
side light housing - appx 13 1/2" tall including
handle - available

salvaged brass lifeboat binnacle with side housing
Busan (South Korea) make, available

salvaged brass lifeboat binnacle with side housing
available

salvaged lifeboat binnacle / lifeboat compass
style without side burner
multiple similar available

salvaged lifeboat binnacle / lifeboat compass
style without side burner
multiple similar available
 
Danforth binnacle
Peloruses:
A pelorus is a reference tool for maintaining a relative bearing of visible objects relative to a vessel at sea, often
called a "dumb compass" and were used with a compass until gyro-repeaters were available.

US Navy Mark III Pelorus; by Kelvin & Wildfrid O. White
Co. Boston, serial #1947, illuminated face.  daetd 1941.
Box appx 12" x 12"
*minor face damage - SALE! available


US. Navy Bureau of Ships replacement dials (faces) for
Pelorus instrument by The Lionel Corporation,
New York, NY USA ; 2-10 1/8" dials in the box, case is appx 11" x 11" x 3"
1 case w/2 dials available
Repeater compasses:

Non-magnetic gyrocompasses are widely used for navigation on ships.  They find true north (versus magnetic north) as determined by
Earth's rotation and are unaffected by metallic materials which can skew the magnetic field - most hulls of ships are steel.

  
salvaged aluminum repeater compass taken off a
Russian passenger ship (appx 49" t x 18" w)
available

British Navy repeater compass: "Admiralty Pattern" stand #4782,
 hood #637, compass #8884 MT56 (appx 59" tall with hood, 51" tall w/out hood)
compass serial # R-78-RML-313 - available

Manufactured by Arma Corporation, Brooklyn, NY: salvaged brass and aluminum
USN U.S. Navy ARMA Mark VI repeater compass
stand serial number 311248, compass Mark VI model 3 serial number 604212..
Salvaged from the U.S.S. Radford, dismantled in Tacoma, Washington by Zidell (appx 57" tall)
available


newer model repeater compass by C. Plath Made in West Germany
fiberglass base - serial #27421717 (appx 57" tall, compass 17" OD)
www.PiecesOfShip.com - 409.539.5469 - PiecesOfShip@yahoo.com - 2202 Mechanic, Galveston, TX 77550 - Closed Tues & Wed