Ritchie has manufactured successfully and continuously since 1850. There are several capacities prominent in our manufacturing processes that contribute to this success and longevity.
No Artificial Dampening
All Ritchie compasses are built with ultra lightweight dial assemblies. Therefore, we don't need to use heavy fluid to artificially dampen the movement. Our compasses are filled with a highly refined, very low-viscosity dampening fluid which allows the dial to move smoothly within the bowl and lock on to magnetic north faster than other compasses. Ritchie's Dampening Fluid is also refined for brilliant, optical clarity. Compasses are filled with fluid drawn under vacuum. Fluid drawn this way helps eliminate the formation of bubbles and is again, one more reason for Ritchie's quality reputation.
Hand Balancing Assures Accuracy
The Ritchie Compass dial assembly is a combination of components that includes the pivot and jewel, the gimbal system, powerful DirectiveForce magnets, extremely lightweight dials and a counter balance tab. Before this entire assembly can be placed into the compass bowl, it must be balanced to assure optimum performance and accuracy. Any adjustment is made with a light weight counter balance which hangs below the dial. This tab also provides additional stability to the entire assembly.
Machine Shop Capabilities
All the advances in computer aid design and machining can't replace personal craftsmanship. That's why Ritchie's in-house machine shop manufactures or finishes many of the metal assemblies that go into every Ritchie compass. It is also critical in prototype development and tooling of new compasses.
The words "Quality Control" are not just buzz words at Ritchie. They are an integral part of our manufacturing process. For over 14 years, components purchased from outside vendors have had to get our critical eye before they go into the compass assembly room. Meeting high standards for manufactured components and long-term testing of prototype compasses and parts assures that every compass we make will provide years of accuracy and dependability.