Nautical Instruments

While electronic navigation chart advances are an important milestone in the science of nautical navigation, many mariners carry on the traditions associated with navigation by plotting a position and a course on a paper nautical chart. They accomplish this task using traditional marine navigation tools, including: compasses, chart dividers, rulers, protractors, sextants, chart plotters, binoculars, chronometers, star finders, and more.

Most large commercial ships use electronic navigation methods as they are required under the SOLAS convention to use ECDIS as the primary means of navigation. However, many navigation officers and smaller, recreational vessels continue to work with traditional nautical charts to navigate and plot their courses using the same basic, yet ingenious, nautical tools used by ocean-sailing mariners for centuries. It is important that mariners remain knowledgeable on the use of these navigation tools in case the need arises to use paper nautical charts. It is good seamanship for mariners to know how to use these nautical tools work and to pass on that information to the next generation. 

High-quality modern nautical tools also make great gifts for anyone with a love of maritime history. Any sailor who uses traditional navigation techniques would appreciate receiving these items as a gift. 

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  • $76.95 $89.99
    This gallon container of compass fluid is to refill the German C. Plath Merkur or Venus bulkhead compasses.
  • $1,116.99
    Description This C-Plath Merkur R2° Lifeboat compass includes a 2° compass card with one lubber line and a square flange. It mounts horizontally and is extremely resistant to vibration. The Merkur R2° is manufactured in Germany by C. Plath and is built to function reliably in environments where s...
  • $818.98 $970.99
    This U.S. Coastguard approved, Merkur SR High Speed nautical compass manufactured in Germany by C. Plath is the right compass for fast going craft. It is highly dampened so that it can take the vibrational abuse that occurs at high speeds. The accuracy of indication, lag error, and oscillation pe...
  • $1,099.95 $1,170.95
    Typ: 2074 This yacht compass can be used on high speed boats that require flush bulkhead mounting and can be mounted with up to a 5 degree variance. It is highly dampened so that it can take the vibrational abuse that occurs at high speeds. The Merkur VZE Compass is manufactured in Germany by C. ...
  • $1,314.99
    Description This C. Plath Merkur VZR universal compass is for bulkhead, sliding hatch, and overhead mounting. The Merkur VZR is manufactured in Germany by C. Plath and is built to function reliably in environments where strong vibrations, saltwater, heat, humidity, and cold are the norm. The blac...
  • $1,458.99
    Description This premium German-made Venus H Compass with a 1 degree card is for use on large motor and sailing yachts. It is easy-to-read no matter where you are; whether cruising in the northern or southern hemispheres. There is no compass dip; the compass card will remain flat. This compass is...
  • $129.95 $185.00
    This Hand Bearing Compass is accurate, durable and easy to use day or night. The colorful sturdy rubber housing protects the compass and makes it easy to find when needed. This versatile hand bearing compass features: Superior damping gives quick and highly accurate readings to within 1 degree In...