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Stock No. PC210

Price = n/a


Mk III '42 Pattern' Marching Compass converted to 'Mils Mk I' Spec - Click for the bigger picture

Mk III '42 Pattern' Marching Compass converted to 'Mils Mk I' Spec

A small but beautifully formed compass that clearly has a story to tell. The Mk III Marching Compass first appeared in 1932 and was issued to British and Commonwealth military personnel and was renowned for its durability and extreme accuracy. This example is clearly marked on the base with the makers details T.G. Co Ltd, London and below the serial number 178990. It is also broad arrow property marked showing its military origins and dated 1942. Interestingly the designation Mk III has been crossed through and it has been re stamped Mils Mk I and it also carries a later NATO reissue code stamp 6605-99-960-0789, added when the conversion was carried out. The '99' indicates the instrument to be of UK origin.

Further research indicates this original WWII British compass has been modified and re issued, probably to French forces, in Mk I specification and was used by them from the 1970's to the 1990's. The main difference from the Mk III variant is the original 360 degree rotating bezel has been replaced by a 6,400 mils example with 17.78 mils equal to 1 degree. This allowed the experienced user the ability to plot very accurately using the aiming posts and prism that were attached to the compass and was particularly useful in artillery, tank, and mortar gunnery.

The compass shows signs of wear with paint rubbed from the brass case but with the proliferation of fakes now being offered this adds to the authenticity of this example. The mother of pearl compass card moves freely and while we can no longer guarantee the accuracy of the instrument it appears to all be in good working order.

In summary a fine original instrument and despite being 75 years old and serving with the British and French military forces remains in fine display condition so grab a little bit of history whilst you can, at a modest price. As with all our stock additional detail photographs are available on request. Measures 2.25"diameter (6.0 cm)

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