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/ true north question
true north question
March 30, 2009 10:36 PM
whats an easy way to find true north using a compass. does it have to correspond with your location. thanks, don
March 30, 2009 11:12 PM
Yes, it depends on your location.
Here's a website
that will look up your latitude and longitude based on your zipcode and then look up the magnetic declination. If, for example, your declination is 5 degrees west, your compass needle points 5 degrees west of true north.
Don ---------- Atlas EQ-G Orion 8" f/4.9 newtonian Orion 127mm Mak-Cass Orion Skyview Pro mount Orion 80mm guide scope Canon Digital Rebel XT Canon Rebel T2i Meade DSI Philips SPC 900 NC webcam
March 30, 2009 11:13 PM
You do need to know your location then it is just a simple process of adding or subtracting degrees from the magnetic north position on your compass. The degrees to add or subtract can be found on a topographical map of your area like the kind you buy at REI for hiking. It isn't a very orderly pattern either, the magnetic lines curve all over the place. I am sure you can find the info someplace on the web also.
March 30, 2009 11:16 PM
Oops - I see Don already found you a web site.
March 30, 2009 11:31 PM
thanks very much, appreciate. don
March 30, 2009 11:45 PM
One more (accurate) way imho of doing this is location solar noon. Check this site out:
Enter in your latitude/longitude and the date. It will tell you when solar noon is. Have a nice stick in the ground, ready for it. Mark it at the appropriate time. Done.
March 31, 2009 12:22 AM
Registering at the CalSky website and inputing accurate location from a map will also give your magnetic offset. Note that it changes slightly year to year but much less than a degree.
"My God, it's full of stars!"
March 31, 2009 7:41 AM
I looked up the culmination of the Sun in CdC and used the shadow of a plumb line at that time.
I'm beginning to think that every astronomers garden needs an accurate N/S line set up permanently :-)
March 31, 2009 8:39 AM
If you are near a large mountain with iron core or something similar, the compass is useless.
First you need to clarify if you want to find the magnetic north or the earth rotation north. They are very different in some parts of the globe.
Astrology is the science for ignorants. Astronomy is the science for those who feel ignorant. - Miguel Lopes
/ true north question
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