The Boreal Arrow
Code BA12061919: BENN FRANKS English Compass, c. 1920
This is a rare and nice hunter compass made by BENN FRANKS Ltd. , HULL & DONCASTER , ENGLAND (engraved inside front lid). The full hunter case is thin and is very similar to that of a pocket watch. It is gun metal and kept in its original condition. Another unique feature of this compass is that it was owned by a certain 118878 RAFVR F/Lt. LESLIE WILLIAM LOWTHER D.F.C..... see inscriptions on the case and on the sticker inside the front lid. It has serial number 736. The dial is a variant of the Singer patent. It is marked ENGLAND REG. 416645. The British National Archives (South-West London) gave the following information: "The design no. 416645 was published on page 1318 of the Official Journal of patents dated 30th September 1903, covering designs registered in the week ending 17th September 1903. The owners were Francis Barker & Son, of 12 Clerkenwell Rd, London WC" (text from the Compass Museum). The dial is in excellent condition and retaining all its colors. The slightly domed glass crystal is in excellent condition without chips or scratches. The lid clicks when closed activating the transit lock to reduce friction on the pivot. When the lid is open, it releases the needle, which points North very easily and smoothly. This is a nice example by a quality maker. Measures 50mm in diameter excluding crown and ring, 1cm thickness.