Steering by Compass


If you are in this section, it is for sure you want to know more about steering a boat by compass. Then let's start learning the basic things about this. Here, you can read some specific cases when a compass is used to steer the boat.

A compass forms part of the board navigation equipment by which a craft is steered. It is generally used for people in occasions when the state of the sea becomes much for the autopilot. Normally landing boats and standard powerboats are equipped with a compass in order the helmsman used it to maintain and set the course of the ship. They are a variety of compasses such as magnetic compass, gyro compass, etc. The steering compass is a standard compass usually placed in the binnacle.

Steering by compass

Once on board at sea, helmsmen steering by compass. To make this well, they have to know to do this. Generally novices or new boaters to compass steering end up all over the place.

Talking about some specific cases, for instance, if you try to maintain a course of 200 degrees and also want to maintain the lubber line right on this number of degrees on the compass rose, it is possible you get off course and steering 195 degrees. In that case you must move back and forth the head of the boat with right rudder in order the lubber line come back to the original number of degrees (200 in this case).

Besides, when you turn right to get the lubber line back to the 200 degrees, initially it will seem that the compass is going to the left, so don't surprise about this. Then, once you get again the 200 degrees, the compass could keep on going to the right before staying down to the actual heading, so keep in mind this.

For doing things easier, you must think that the lubber line is the bow of the boat. The card of the compass will stand meanwhile the lubber line moves back and forth around it. Another thing you have to know is the difference between a digital and magnetic compass. A digital and gyro compass reacts quickly than a magnetic compass.

If you are a new boater maybe you can be found making yawing from side to side or going in zig-zag. This usually happen when novice helmsman tries to catch the compass. The goal here is intending to straight the course or going in only one direction. Of course you can do it with practice, and also considering to make just slight movements and try to have a straighten steer.

Whether you are a experience or new boater, you will always try to find ways to make all the above things easier. If you are an experienced skipper you must know that once on a heading, a good idea is finding and object or point to steer toward and surely use the compass to get reference. The objects or points can be land, a star, a cloud, etc. If you are starting, then not worry, you will know about steering by compass as soon as you go on board.