Binnacles changed the way sailors navigated, plus they look really cool. This is a great piece.
- Fact 1: Early ship's compasses suffered interference from pitching waves and iron deck nails until the development of the shielded binnacle in the mid-18th century.
- Fact 2: The rotating gimbals inside a binnacle allow the ship's compass to stay level despite the swaying of the deck from waves.
- Fact 3: The large spheres on either side of a binnacle are adjustable magnets, designed to cancel out any magnetic interference caused by the ship itself.
- Fact 4: Later binnacles incorporated clocks and other instruments, allowing for more precise navigation, and were only recently replaced by GPS.
- Fact 5: Despite the modern dependence on GPS for navigation, most boats and ships are still required to carry a small binnacle as backup.