User Review: Cammenga Tritium Lensatic / 3HC
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $79.95
Durable and accurate.
- Easy to read
- Heavier than most.
I bought one of these as a replacement for an old Silva compass. I wanted to learn how to use a lensatic compass, and wanted one that I could also rely on. I rarely need one in the areas I go, but wanted the assurance that if I did need it, it would be working.
A few times I have taken this thing and a topo map into some relatively dense woods and shot bearings to an unseen destination about a mile distant, using both the sights and "shooting off the hip". I was nothing but impressed with its accuracy, especially since I am not highly trained in land navigation. I had my GPS also, but buried it in my pack to prevent cheating.
Once I downloaded the track to my PC I was surprised how straight the navigation was, including four 90 degree turns 100 to 200 yards apart to route myself around a swamp. (Walking a straight line in any forest with no clear target in sight is always a challenge.)
I think the biggest benefit of this compass is how easy it is to read and follow a bearing. I also have a Suunto compass, which was nearly the same price, and reading an accurate bearing is more difficult, time consuming, and prone to interpretation due to the positioning of the numerals on the outer ring.
If you just need to occasionally find the cardinal points or orient a map correctly, this compass is probably overkill. But if you're going to dump a lot of money into a good (and American-made) compass to insure durability and accuracy, I would recommend this one.