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    Japanese Aircraft Compass

    Hey guys,
    Here is probably the most valuable item in my collection, a Japanese aircraft compass. My late father spotted it and pointed it out to me while we were at a Threshery Show and Flea Market in Freeport, IL during the Summer of 2004. I had a good feeling about it and paid the whopping sum of $9 for it. It was the best $9 I ever spent.

    As you can see, it is in very good condition. It still retains it's original light bulb, which is encased behind the little door in front. My father hooked up the plug in the back to a model train transformer and the bulb still works! It casts an eerie, green glow through the whole interior of the compass, so it can be read at night. The compass has definately seen some use, since the heat of the light bulb has discolored the piece of paper (used to record headings?) on the front of the door. The interior of the compass still contains some oil or other liquid that used to fill the entire inside of the instrument. On the top of the compass, there is an ID tag that has lists the serial number of the compass, an anchor (Imperial Japanese Navy?), and another symbol which is also stamped on the side of the light bulb.

    Are these compasses scarce? I have never seen one before, not even in a museum. Also, if anyone has any more information about it, what it might be worth, or what is written on the ID tag, I would be very interested to know about it. Any opinions about it are also welcome. If anyone wants to see any more pics, don't be afraid to ask.















    #2
    Your instrument is a Type 92 Magnetic Compass. It was mainly used in single engine navy aircraft like the Zero, Nakajima B5N2 Kate, and Aichi B7A2 Grace. It was also used in the Okha 11, the infamous "Baka Bomb".

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Gunbunny View Post
      Your instrument is a Type 92 Magnetic Compass. It was mainly used in single engine navy aircraft like the Zero, Nakajima B5N2 Kate, and Aichi B7A2 Grace. It was also used in the Okha 11, the infamous "Baka Bomb".
      Thanks Gunbunny. If this thing could talk, I'll bet it would have some great stories to tell. Just finding out the story of how this thing got back to the States would be amazing. Maybe, right after the war ended, a GI pulled it out of a Navy Zero that was awaiting destruction at an airfield.

      Just how common are these Type 92 Magnetic Compasses? I have never seen one before or since I bought this one. Also, what would a ballpark value of this compass be, especially in this condition? Don't get me wrong, the value isn't really important to me right now, because I think will be keeping it for a while. I just think it would be good to know.
      Last edited by MauserKar98k; 02-01-2007, 01:00 AM.

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        #4
        These compasses are actually not particularly rare, nor are Japanese aircraft instruments as a whole. This compass is missing its internal magnet cluster which slides in and out in the vacant compartment. When complete, they fetch in the 400 to 500 dollar range. I would guess that it would probably be in the 300 range without the internals.
        One sees quite a few Japanese aircraft instruments on epay and they seem to fetch somewhat inconsistant prices relative to rarity and condition, but they are generally fairly expensive.
        Most of them are in quite good condition and are probably spares from warehouses etc. obtained during the early years of the occupation, rather than removed from planes in the field which often show more wear and tear.

        CB

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          #5
          Here is one I found at an estate sale for $1 (Mauserkar98k, you overpaid ). It has the magnetic cluster, but backing material is brass colored0. Nameplate has a small anchor on the right site, it is hard to make out.
          Regards,
          Fred
          Attached Files

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            #6
            internals
            Attached Files

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              #7
              back
              Attached Files

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                #8
                nameplate
                Attached Files

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by cbuehler View Post
                  This compass is missing its internal magnet cluster which slides in and out in the vacant compartment. When complete, they fetch in the 400 to 500 dollar range. CB
                  My compass still has its internal magnet cluster. It is just hard to see because I took the picture in my dark basement. When I tried to use my flash, it reflected off of the front of the compass and just made a huge glare, so I turned it off.

                  Nice find, getting one of these for $1! Your compass looks like it was made much later than mine, because it's construction is much more crude. This can particularly be seen in the oddly-shaped dial adjustment knob, the brass back, and the painted on/etched in nameplate.
                  Last edited by MauserKar98k; 02-28-2007, 10:30 AM.

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                    #10
                    Baka Sight/panel

                    Can anyone offer any info on a Ohka/Baka sight and panel I have acquired from a Vet who brought it back from WWII?

                    http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/foru...d-it-be-worth/

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