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Silva Wrist Sighting 424

rated 4.0 of 5 stars

The Wrist Sighting 424 has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best handheld compasses for 2024.

photo: Silva Wrist Sighting 424 handheld compass

First some background: As far as I can tell, the 'Silva' 424 wrist compass shown here is actually made by Suunto for Johnson Worldwide (who markets compasses under the 'Silva' brand name in North America, which is why the compass looks so much like a Suunto M-9 and not a Silva of Sweden wrist compass model).

Fortunately, the Suunto M-9 is about the best affordable wrist compass out there (much better than the Silva of Sweden or Brunton wrist models, I think), and since the 424 is almost identical, it's also a good compass. It has 5 degree markings, a good luminous dial, and the ability to lock in a magnetic bearing as well as a sighting window to take more precise bearings to landmarks for triangulating one's position (very useful for kayakers and canoeists). Though it has five-degree markings, one can easily 'split the difference' with the sighting feature to come within 2.5 degrees of actual course, about the best one can do with a wrist compass (especially one used on a small boat).

For a device built largely of plastics, it's surprisingly rugged. An excellent compass for small boat enthusiasts, mountaineers, or as backup to a more traditional protractor compass.

Price Paid: $16

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Price Historic Range: $19.99
Reviewers Paid: $16.00

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