Military Issue Compasses




 
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October 31st, 2011  
BritinAfrica
 
 

Topic: Military Issue Compasses


The compasses we were issued were always calibrated in "MILS" as opposed to degree's. If I remember correctly 6400 MILS was equal to 360 degree's.

Are MILS still used?
October 31st, 2011  
senojekips
 
 
Last I knew they were still used for Artillery direction. I have a small Artillery theodolite that I used for underground survey, and that was where I first ran into them.

I just had to consult Google and it looks like it is still the case, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angular_mi
October 31st, 2011  
BritinAfrica
 
 
I have no idea if RN or RAN ships were fitted with MILS or degree's compasses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by senojekips
Last I knew they were still used for Artillery direction. I have a small Artillery theodolite that I used for underground survey, and that was where I first ran into them.

I just had to consult Google and it looks like it is still the case, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angular_mi
I surprised, I would have thought you blokes would have been trained using MILS
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October 31st, 2011  
42RM
 
The one we use is graduated in mils and degrees.
October 31st, 2011  
Redleg
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BritinAfrica
Are MILS still used?
Yes it is, especially for Artillery...
October 31st, 2011  
BritinAfrica
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redleg
Yes it is, especially for Artillery...
I'd suppose long range snipers need more accuracy

I'd love to lay my hands on one of our old prismatic compasses. When they were handed out, we had to sign for them, then sign them back in. As if we'd nick one
October 31st, 2011  
42RM
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BritinAfrica
I'd suppose long range snipers need more accuracy
He he....! They call themselves 10 Mile Snipers. Grunts call them Drop shorts
October 31st, 2011  
AFSteliga
 
 
Mils are still used here in Canada for land nav, and probably a myriad of other things within the Army. Don't see it too much in the Air Force or the Navy.
October 31st, 2011  
senojekips
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BritinAfrica
I have no idea if RN or RAN ships were fitted with MILS or degree's compasses.

I surprised, I would have thought you blokes would have been trained using MILS
No, it was always degrees, minutes and seconds for us although I can't speak for the Gunnery side of things where they are doing indirect fire under the direction of a spotter. Most of our naval "goonery" is either direct (line of sight) fire or radar controlled.

As I said, I first ran into mils when I bought an old Artillery theodolite in a surplus store many years ago (I couldn't afford a real survey theodolite). It made it interesting doing my surveys as everything had to be converted for my reports to the department of mines. In the end I got friendly with the local Council overseer and he would let me borrow their old Pentax which saved me some time.

I must go and check where mine is now that you've mentioned it, I put it in it's box and put it away about 15 years ago

(30 mins later) Yep, it's still there, although looking a bit more battered than I remember it. I should give it a birthday, it's probably an antique now. Made by AWA (Amalgamated Wireless Australia) in 1942. Although it is not clearly visible, there is a magnetic compass within the main body You can see the glass covering and the white slash at the top is the luminous needle. Under the objective lens is a small knob which when depressed uncages the needle, and if you rotate it it will allow you to set the local Variation scale. It is a very robust, yet beautifully made device and certainly deserves far better treatment than I have given it. It's only real drawback being that the monocular sight is only 3X magnification, a factor that made it very suitable for the purpose for which I used it where illumination was often at a premium.

November 1st, 2011  
BritinAfrica
 
 
I reckon a museum would be interested in it Spike.
 


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