User Review: Silva Ranger CL
After my old Silva Ranger CL broke, I very nearly simply purchased another, thinking of it as the old standby, so to speak. That would have been a mistake. Somewhere in the last few years, production of the Silva Ranger CL--at least as available to me, in the States--shifted from Europe to the Far East, and production quality seemed to decline at least as far as the assembly line moved.
The several examples of the Silva Ranger I examined all suffered greatly in comparison with the older models, with defects or deficiencies ranging from sloppy and poorly marked bezels to off-center baseplate markings and a needle that takes some time to settle and doesn't do so smoothly or with assurance.
In short, the newer Silva Ranger CL completely fails to provide any of the "warm fuzzy" feeling I got from the older version, and which now is reportedly available from European-made competitors.
Although in the past I've frequently sung the praises of Silva compasses, I'm deleting that song from my playlist. The current Ranger CL is perhaps a fair "cheap starter compass", it certainly does not warrant its $50-plus price tag. Under $20, maybe. But if you're looking to spend your money on a sturdy, reliable, accurate, user-friendly piece of navigation gear that you may just rely upon in a survival situation, I strongly recommend looking elsewhere.