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  • Tool-free declination allows for east or west declination settings to +/- 180°
  • The Brunton TruArc 3 Compass features a global needle system, metric and standard scales, 2° resolution and scales in inches and centimeters

Made in USA.

View all Brunton Compasses

REI membership


Best Use Backpacking
Analog Or Digital Analog
Increments 2 degrees
Declination Adjustment Yes
Global Needle Yes
Liquid-Filled Yes
Ruler Yes
Lanyard Yes
Dimensions 3.5 x 2.5 x 0.5 inches
Weight 1.1 ounces
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Accurate, light weight, good price. Although no compass works with a lot of metal around, like in a car, this compass is very accurate and in some cases more accurate than others because the needle still is free to rotate when the base is not completely level. When using the edge of the base to draw lines between points on the map, like when calculating a bearing, I find the side of the compass a bit short. Not a good straight edge. But it is adequate and if you purchase something like the Suunto M3 you will pay more for a small inconvenience. I have instructed students with the earlier model of this compass and it was easy to use and I like that it is light weight and reasonably priced.
Date published: 2014-10-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Does what it was designed to do well This is a unique compass as its the lowest cost global needle one can buy in a no frills chassis. The body is a stripped version of the Brunton OSS 10B, which is a stripped Brunton Classic, which is a copy of the Silva Voyager. If all you need is a superb compass capsule in a rugged, easy to hold shell, this is it. The ruler markings on the side are the absolute minimum needed to estimate distance from a map. Pros Gobal needle design: a practical usage in the USA is the needle spins much freer as its optimal balance is maintained at more dip angles, to reflect compass zones. I tested this by using a small magnet to emulate another zone compared against a Classic and a Suunto MC-2G, a true global needle that uses a permanent magnet. The TruArc 3 will spin free at angles that would lock up the Classic but not the Suunto. The capsule is large enough to allow for 1 degree resolution A global needle is an optimal compass for world use, and for under $15 is a steal. A Suunto or Recta model with a Global needle runs > $50 The declination adjustment is typical Brunton, squeeze capsule and spin, easy to fix without tools Cons This design has all the flaws of the Brunton Classic, which is decades old, but if you accept that when you buy it its not a limitation. To repeat: There are no cardinal headings in the degree markings, they are on the side of the bezel which you can't see The capsule is not fluid filled so a fall can potentially dislodge the needle from the spindle, however it won't form a bubble either [ I have not had such an issue with my 20 year old Classic] The printed degree scale is off by ~1 degree. That is 0 and 180 degrees must be aligned precisely, and in many low cost compasses this is a common flaw as its offset by >= 1 deg. Since the degree scale is printed on top of the capsule, the design is prone to parallax errors when estimating headings
Date published: 2015-01-14
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Malfunctioning Compass I'm sure this is fluke, but this compass did not work (a bit of an oxymoron) -- Due North was S SE. I thought I was going crazy. Had two buddies look at it, reset it with a magnet several times, and even took it to the outfitter we rented our canoes from before our trip. Compared it to several other compasses, and sure enough, N was pointing the wrong direction. While I'd like to get my money back, I'm also tempted to keep it as a wonderful practical joke. Haven't decided yet.
Date published: 2017-06-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Standard Compass Wanted a good reliable compass to wrap with paracord to put into my survival/EEE kit. Very large numbers and a brightly colored needle make this one easy to see and read. Provided cord is standard so might replace with paracord. Other than that I really like the looks of it and thinking of buying another to replace my old Sylva that I have hiked with ever since my Boy Scout years.(1970s)
Date published: 2015-01-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Accurate & affordable Bought this for work, and have been very happy with it. It's affordable, but still offers the ability to adjust declination, unlike a lot of cheap models. It was very accurate as well (based on using it to lay out survey lines on previously-established bearings and between GPS points).
Date published: 2016-06-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of the best tools to have. I had bought one of these about a year or two ago for myself and have used it so much and it works amazingly, so I decided to buy another one for my girlfriend. They're very durable and easy to use compared to other compasses I've used. I love it and would recomend this one to anyone.
Date published: 2017-01-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great compass This is a great little compass for the price. Some handy features 1. ruler for measuring scale 2. Orienting lines fixed within the compass 3. Orienting arrow fixed within the compass housing 4. The direction of travel arrow
Date published: 2015-12-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Quality Compass This compass functions as advertised. The declination is easy to adjust. If you're going to be plotting trajectories on the open seas you might want something with a longer edge, but if you're just using it to navigate lakes and trails this is a good lightweight and small option.
Date published: 2017-01-21
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Why do the specs say this compass is liquid filled, when the manufacturer says it is not?

Asked by: Flat Packer
We contacted Brunton to confirm that the TruArc 3 Compass is liquid filled. It uses mineral oil.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2017-05-14
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