I own and carry one for about 8 years now. It is on my zipper pull and went through the washing machine several times. It still is functional without any maintenance whatsoever. Several others I bought at the same time work just fine too. The compass can be remagnetized (watch polarity). Dry button compasses may collect dirt in the bearing of the needle and quit working because of that. The needle is very short and canīt override too much frictional torque.
If it isnīt broken, it doesnīt have enough features yet.
Loc: Nottingham, UK
I've heard this claimed for very cheap ones - for example, Deal Extreme do 10 for $1.60. I don't know if it's true, and it's not true for reasonable quality ones. If you paid more than a dollar for yours its probably OK.
If you are referring to the small ū inch clear plastic ball compass you clip on things, I have 2 of these button compasses, they are several years old (one is in the area of 12-years) and never a problem with them I gave no idea who made them as they have no name on them.
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