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    Re: Azimuth compass?
    From: Doug Royer
    Date: 2004 Feb 19, 11:11 -0800
    It is most likely the same concept of the sight vane attachment placed on a standard magnetic ship's compass.Something like a Pelarus.
    The sighting system had a stadia wire on one vane,a reflective mirror mounted on the vane's frame and another vane with a slot in it.The system was mounted horizontally on the compass houseing.The vanes were positioned such as to cause a beam of light to fall on the compass card and the two sight vanes lined up with the beam of light thus reading the azimuth of the sun or body from the compass.Or just 2 vanes as above with out the mirror to read the azimuth.
    I could be way off base on this one but is the only thing I can recall.
    -----Original Message-----
    From: Navigation Mailing List [mailto:NAVIGATION-L@LISTSERV.WEBKAHUNA.COM]On Behalf Of Jim Thompson
    Sent: Thursday, February 19, 2004 10:36
    Subject: Azimuth compass?

    Can anyone provide an answer for this person, and I will forward the answers to them?
    Jim Thompson
    Outgoing mail scanned by Norton Antivirus
    -----Original Message-----
    Subject: A plea for help....


    Forgive the intrusion, but I am a writer researching a novel about the 18C Royal Navy . 


    I wonder if you could help?   I have come across a reference to an "azimuth compass" on a voyage of exploration in 1790.   Most sites seem to refer loosely to an azimuth compass as being simply one which marks the card in degrees rather than rhumb-lines, but I suspect there is more to it than that.  The following definition from  the National Maritime Museum seems to bear this out:


     "The azimuth compass was a step up from the standard mariners' compass. These compasses incorporated a means of aligning the compass with a celestial body such as the Sun or the Pole star. The reading from this alignment would then give another reading for north which could be compared with that given by the compass needle thus allowing the variation to be easily read."


    Can you please tell me:

    1. If the above definition is broadly accurate?
    2. If so, I take it that the azimuth compass would be carried aboard separately from the steering compass?
    3. Hand-held like a sextant?


    I would be hugely grateful for any light you can throw on this, as it's always satisfying to get things right.

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