515 Ranger Compass
4 by 2.5 inches
Lightweight compass with precise 2-degree measurement increments Affordable cost and good entry-level value
Liquid-filled capsule may have issues in low temperatures. Rotating bezel was overly loose.
As with the Coleman compass, at first we were suspicious of the Silva because of it s light weight . When we ac tually s tar ted reading bearings and using it with maps, however, we found the mirror design to be ver y well-thought-out and clearly marked. And althou gh it ’s ver y light weight , the plas tic is thick in the r ight places to prevent damage. Three scales, a map magnifier, clinometer, and declination adjus tment were additional features that made it s value s tand out .
In this produc t evaluation group, it s closes t competitor would be the Suunto MC-2, so let ’s make some comparisons. The design on both of them is ver y similar, and their appearance, weight, and feel are ver y close. There are a few dif ferences , as noted in the Suunto sec tion which follows , but both designs have a solid reputation in the backcountr y.