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craig_pickrall

Compasses - Various designs and time periods

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Compass Pouch with Dura-Last snap closure. There has been much discussion about this pouch but no photographic proof of it's use. If you should know anything of it's orgin or period of usage please comment.

 

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PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER, SADLY, HAS PASSED AWAY

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The compass pouch design was also changed to accomodate the newer design. A WW2 era pouch is shown lower left for a size comparison.

 

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Later First Aid Pouches became dual usage pouches for both compasses and first aid dressings. Some of these pouches are marked just for compasses, some are marked just for dressings and some are marked for both. There is no difference in the design of the pouch, just the marking changes.

 

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PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER, SADLY, HAS PASSED AWAY

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Here it is an interesting compass and its place. In my opinion it must be shock-proof compass. As we can see it is placed in the seat-type USAAF's parachute and it is a part of pilot's survival set.

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These came from a trunk full of WWII items from a US Army Air Force CBI Hump pilot. They are not US issue but were carried by American GI's when they could get them. I have seen first hand accounts of US fliers carrying these in Europe and Asia.

 

These are so-called escape compasses, designed to not only point the way but to be easily hidden as well. They are probably both British made but would have available for US airmen in the CBI theatre.

 

This one could be sewn on as a button (the British used it as a fly button on BDU's). When needed, it could be removed and one piece - with a small spike on it - became the compass base. The other piece, magnetized and with north and south marked by dots, "floats" on the base and points to north.

 

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Also called a "button compass", a modern version of this next one is still being made as the "NATO survival compass" ( NATO Stock Number 6605 99 522 0223 for the trivia-minded). This one is the WWII version and could be swallowed for concealment (adding a whole new meaning to the phrase, "Please pass the compass"). The Brits had buttons and cap badges which could conceal one of these.

 

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There some other concealable compass styles including one button style that hangs on a thread.



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Do you have any information about manufacturers of the various "sweetheart" compasses that were part of the "Red Purses" made by the British and prt of the escape and evasion kits?

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HA! I just noticed that there is a filter on forum posts! It actually changed the word above from "a$$h0le" to sweatheart. if I ever called my sweatheart an A-hole I think my "A" would be handed to me!

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Some USMIL survival kit compasses (post WWII), the smallest one in the bottom pic is of unknown origin, but appears to be a very high quality "escape" compass.

 

 

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