DIY Lit Compass Guide

WARNING: Modifying your compass may cause damage that could affect its performance. By following these instructions you are taking responsibility for any damage that may result.

Always wear safety glasses.

What you will need

  • Lit Compass Kit (includes: Suunto Orca Pioneer Compass, eGear Guardian Light, Aquaseal)
  • Sand paper
  • Sharp chisel or utility knife. (a dremel tool if you know how to use it would work best)
  • Alcohol & rag to clean surfaces

Building the compass

Remove the plastic mount from the bottom of your compass

This is the black plastic rectangle on the bottom. Prying out the four posts that poke through the body of the compass with a screw driver works well. You won't need this piece so feel free to discard it.

Remove the two plastic fins

In the concave area revealed after removing the base are two little plastic fins that need to be removed. Use a sharp tool and go slow, it's important not to damage this portion of the compass or break off any plastic that would not give a smooth surface on the base of the liquid filled portion of the compass.

File down the six fins on the light

On the Guardian light are six little fins that allow you to grip it with your fingers. Remove enough of those fins that the dome of the light and the concave portion of the compass sit smoothly together.

Sand the surfaces of the light and compass

Sand the areas where the compass and light make contact when you hold them together. This is to give a rough surface for the Aquaseal to grab on to.

Clean the sanded surfaces

Use alcohol and a rag to clean the sanded surfaces and let dry.

Apply the Aquaseal

Apply Aquaseal to the Guardian light where it will make contact with the compass. Apply a thick layer, but not so much that it will flow off of the dome of the light.

Put the light and compass together

Set them on a piece of cardboard where they can both sit flat. Make sure the light and compass are in contact, and place a small piece of cardboard under the light if necessary.

Add a small weight to the top of the compass

Put something heavy on top of the compass and let it sit over night. Check the light has set in the morning.

Attach the bungee cords and hooks

Bungee cords and hooks are included with the Suunto Orcas Compass. Attach them in what ever configuration works best for your boat.

Go Paddling!

Make sure to attach the compass to the boat so that it will not be moved by waves, and that the read bearing line is in line with the center of your boat.