Best Deck Mount Compass

I’m looking for recommendations for a deck mount compass for a NDK Explorer. There is a mounting cavity just in front of the forward hatch. Anyone know which make & model compass this is meant for? Thanks in advance.

It’s made for the Brunton 70P - most dealers of British boats will carry these. Be sure to use non-magnetic fasteners to install it.

Just use the screws that come with it…
…and you don’t have to worry.

thanks for the info.
what would you use to seal the screw holes in the deck?

sealing the holes
You don’t need to worry about water getting through around the screws. No hatch covers are tight enough that you’d notice the miniscule droplets that could possibly get in that way.

To prevent catching drybags on the ends of the screws, put a dab of sealant on the tips of the screws inside the boat, after installing the screws.

Some hatch covers are tight enough
I have 3 kayaks with a total of 10 hatches between them. Nine are always bone dry, one leaks a little. I sealed my compass crews.


Compass screws
Rather than using the “pointed” screws supplied with the compass, I use small ss machine screws with lock nuts. Solves the “bag snagging” problem…

(some compasses ship with both sets of screws)

Any type of sealant is fine…

– Last Updated: Aug-09-10 9:48 AM EST –

...but I avoid using silicone products on my boats. I'll usually put a small dab of sealant on each hole before installing the compass and a blob on the end of each screw to cover the point. The screws can be trimmed with wire cutters if they protrude enough to cause concern about them snagging other gear. If you can't reach them to cut them, they're far enough out of the way that you don't need to be concerned about them.

I did this too, brass machine screws and cap nuts since it was all that was available locally (not near salt water and a lot of stainless is actually magnetic).

Probably used a little 5200 around each screw, but it was several years ago… I do remember it came with long wood or sheet metal screws which wouldn’t work too well.

What Brian said
That’s exactly what I do. Lexel is my sealant of choice.

Installation Article
You may appreciate this article on installing and calibrating a deck compass, including some thoughts regarding screws vs. bolts, etc…

Good luck!


alternative to Brunton 70P
which is a very good compass and seen on most Brit boats. BTW these compasses used to be made by Nexus which was bought out by Brunton, so if you see an older Nexus for sale it’s worth a look.

Another compass maker worth a look is Ritchie. They have been in the business for decades and like Brunton are American. Ritchie makes surface mounted and the half-globe compasses, too. If you are nearsighted (like me) and find the standard recess on the NDK, Valley, Tempest and other makes to be too far away, a surface mount will give you more options.

You can bring the compass in closer (but not too close to tempt seasickness LOL).

Ritchie makes a S59 (black w. white numerals ) or SW59 in white w. blue compass which is removable (nice for travel, storage or land classes) with a course-minder bezel that just takes a split second glance to confirm that you’re holding course once you set it. I like switching mine off from one boat to another w. relative ease.

Both very good companies. Pick the one that best suits your needs.

Brunton 70P on sale
I just notice the deal on 70P’s, in case anybody’s looking.

I paddle a Romany with the same space reserved for a 70P (used to be Nexus but now Brunton). After many years, I had a peculiar problem. Brunton customer service was fantastic as is their warranty. I had a good experience during a tough time and feel the need to say something good about a thoughful and responsible company. Good job Brunton! By the way, my compass is used and relied upon a lot, especially in the mangroves in SW Florida.

Compass Mounting Instructions
I read your instructions and your “sidebar” about hardware magnetism. It was interesting, and thank you for that.

I have the 70p to mount in a plastic Necky Chatham. I thought I might use the supplied screws, with 1/4" minicell behind them so they are not sharp, and 1/16" sponge neoprene under the face plate on top for water resistance. What do you think of that idea?