A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Frank Reed
Date: 2018 Apr 6, 11:59 -0700
You can find a like-new Astra IIIB for around $300 on ebay. You can also find a variety of Tamaya-alike sextants from the 1970s under various off-brands like MAC, International Nautical, Simex, and others for around $250 on ebay. Soviet/Russian SNO-T sextants are also popular and excellent (sometimes erroneously called SNO-T sextants when the Cyrillic letters are not transliterated). Sextants in "nearly new" condition are almost always just as good as brand new instruments, but the prices are drastically lower. Also, the very high prices you will see for Plath sextants and C&P sextants are not justified by any quality value. They are prestige names which will give you bragging rights among other navigators but not much more. You can always buy one of those later ...when you realize that one sextant just isn't enough (and yes, that day will come!).
As for buying from India (or Ukraine, which also seems to have a lot of sextant sellers), some buyers have had good success, but you're obviously taking a risk. Just do your homework, and make sure you know what you're buying. You may find after shopping for a while that there's no real benefit since you're paying a high shipping charge.
Finally, do NOT pay money to have some shop work on your sextant unless it is seriously damaged. Anyone can adjust a sextant. If you're not sure how, come back and ask us when you have purchased your instrument.
Clockwork Mapping / ReedNavigation.com
Conanicut Island USA