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Compass in handle of Randall Mod. 5

Oct 7, 1999
I am thinking of buying a 6" Randall mod 5 and thought I might opt for the compass in the handle. Does anyone have any experience with this? How well does it hold up when you use the knife for chopping or wood spliting chores around camp.


Randall does make great knives,just dont depend on that compass as your only means for land Nav. get a good Military compass, or better yet a good GPS if your going into the back country.

my .02

Allen Blade
Spokane,WA USA

" It is Always Better to learn The RIGHT Way, Than to Continue Doing it WRONG "

My Custom Knives :
Thanks Lonegunman, I probably stated my question wrong. I don't usually use a knife for major chopping jobs, I was interested in how the compass would hold up when i use it for trimming dead branches and other general abuse you give a knife while around a camp fire. I have been useing a Randall Mod. 14 I bought over 20 years ago for camping and hiking but have been influenced by others in the forums about using a 5" or 6" knife for this.

Allen, I think you who were among those who suggested in the wilderness & survival forums how important it was to carry more than one compass... that started me thinking about the Randall compass.

Of course, many forums members are now saying "Who is this guy trying to B.S. He's just looking for an excuse to buy another knife." Well...
Bradford Angier, the famous outdoors writer and author of "How to Survive in the Woods", had a Model 5 with a compass. I think his was a 6 incher.
It will break. That's the bottom line. At some point the knife will be dropped, or used as a hammer, and Mr. Murphy will make sure it hits butt down on some hard pointy object. You're much better off with one of those small pin on compasses if you think you need a backup to your main nav. gear. Regarding the knife it self... Get it! The Mod.14 can get a bit heavy for normal camping/hiking. I think you will find the 5" more versatile and if you need something bigger take the 14. Either way you won't be unhappy.

Thanks for the info guys. Rich, I think I'll go along with you line of thinking since I am of the opinion that a good fixed blade knife should also be part crowbar. I think I kind of had a feeling I would end up with a busted compass in the butt of my knife.

I don't understand why people would want to put a compass in knife handles. Metal will deflect compass needles (called divergence or something like that) so doesn't the tang effect the compass needle? Am I wrong on this?

"Come What May..."