Measurers Corner

Measurer’s Interpretations and Recommendations

Topic:Optional Equipment
Question:May an electronic compass (i.e., TackTick) be used?
ID Number:000006
Short Answer:Yes 
Answer:This was discussed during the National meeting at the Larchmont National Regatta (2005) and adoption of the electronic compass was tabled for further discussion. 
Action Date:2008-10-15
Wed Apr 17 01:58:27 2024
2007-10-23Richard RobbinsSee article by Dr. Charles Shoemaker on DIGITAL COMPASS in the Fall 2003 - Spring 2004 Masthead. (This can be found in the Newsletter section of the web site.)
2007-10-27Kim RobertsAs National Measurer and Board Member I don't believe the electronic compass is confirmed. It remains a big issue, one that I support, but it is unresolved. The New Measurer and Board as they take office in the New Year may chose to address the issue. Charlie's article was supporting the passing of such a change. It did NOT represent a decision by the Board.
2007-10-27Kim RobertsThis is the place to discuss the issue and to vote. If enough members are interested in the change the Board will have to consider it and presenting it to the body politic at the Annual meeting for a vote, or whatever the By-Laws say is the process.
2008-04-04Richard RobbinsThe technical committee discussed this (3/12/2008) and it has been selected as a topic to pursue. Fleet comments are welcome.
2008-08-04Reed BaerCan anyone let us all know what the price of these babies is, and how, if solar powered, they will stay powered up when under the tent cover when the boat is at mooring? (Or can they get enough sun just in use).
2008-08-04Greg DavisReed, the TackTick is $500 vs a traditional compass such as the Sunto B116 which retails for $215. They have a sealed rechargeable battery which is charged using the solar cell on top. The compass will function just fine if it is under the boom tent all week. If the technical committee reviews these compasses I suggest they look at the accuracy when heeled over 25 or 30 degrees. These compasses were originally designed for dinghies which are sailed flat. I have found the micro to be inaccurate when heeled over at higher angles. It is possible newer units have fixed this problem.
2008-09-01John ShannahanAn electronic compass such as the KVH 1000 would fit easily under the boom on the deck aft of the mast and out of the way of the vang assembly. It would not disturb the original post and deck supports. A traditional and really good magnet and fluid Ritchie would require deck modification which I view as detrimental. The Tick Tack is more sophisticated. Some electronic compasses may show opposite tack and alert the skipper to the existence of a lift or header. Therefore it is my comment that an electronic compass be permitted but not one which has software other than to display the heading.
2008-09-03Richard RobbinsOne thing about the KVH-1000 is that it requires a 12 volt power source. A good article about electronic compasses from KVH can be see at What is nice about the KVH is that it is gimbaled to 25 degrees. An electronic compass has errors due to tilt and these would show on the KVH after 25 degrees.
2008-09-09William Berry1. The compass can be set to compass mode which has no tactical input. I would even question the value of tactical mode since it depends on tacking angles which can change.
2. I have never been able to have accurate basic navigation with the standard compass due to difficulty with location because of it's size. The standard mast mount invariably gets bent and becomes inaccurate while the tacktick can be mounted on a secure bulkhead.
3. We are probably the only class to not allow the tacktic, and it accepted by every "traditional" class that I can think of including Bullseyes, Lightnings, Snipes, and Ensigns,to name a few.
4. My main argument still comes down to it being user friendly since the information which is basically a simple number is easily obtained and does not depend on eyesight and running a quick computation in your head. The class has consistently supported such changes in the past.
2008-09-25Richard RobbinsThe compass in "tactical" mode only subtracts or adds the tacking angle so you are seeing the wind direction on either tack (the tacking angle have been set into the unit). One still needs to decide if you are seeing a header or lift. We could say that this mode cannot be used but it was thought that the feature is so minor it would be easier to allow it rather then enforce that it can't be used.
2008-10-09Richard RobbinsThis topic is is being voted on at the members meeting on October 15, 2008. It would not go into effect (if passed) for 2008. The following is the proposed rule: ┬žIV 9.6 Compass A working compass must be on board at all times. A self-contained electronic compass without wind shift indications is allowed. The use of a built-in timer and "tactical" display mode can be used. The Tacktick model T060 Micro Compass with brackets is approved.
2008-10-15John KienerSailing or racing a Shields is fun because of its classic simplicity. The boat itself is made of glass and uses new technologies such as high performance line, but otherwise performs as a classic boat. Adding an instrument such as an electronic compass will change the essential nature of the Shields in an unneccessary way. I think we, as sailors, can put up with the inconvenience of a normal compass, and figure out what the tactcical advantages are in our heads (as real sailors should be able to do). Don't change the boat in this way.
2008-10-20Richard RobbinsThis was passed by the member's meeting on October 15, 2008 in Oxford, MD and is in effect for the 2009 season.
2008-12-05Richard RobbinsOn December 4, 2008 objections to the membership meeting of October 15, 2008 were rejected by the Governing Board and the rule has been affirmed.