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Compass Dolphin Point

Riverton is affectionately known as 'Southlands Riviera' and wandering down the main street you can imagine and almost feel the excitement, the bustle and romance of the town's heyday of the mid 1800's.

Whaling schooners and sailing ships arrived with immigrants, livestock and stores, trading ships headed across the Tasman, the whalers, sealers and sailors frequented the port and the many other 'establishments's.

The ship's would have to 'box' their compasses' which required the use of a Compass Dolphin. A ship's compass is not constant and may produce errors due to the effect of iron on the ship.

A ship was moored to the 'Dolphin' and compass bearings were taken on a point such as a tree or rock. The ship was moved around and readings were noted down. Eight bearings were taken at regular intervals and totalled, with the average producing the correct magnetic bearing.

"If the bearing is best - The error is West
If the bearing is least - The error is East"



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