Tip/Trick for Calibrating Kestrel Compass

Subwrx300

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Here's a fix to calibrate the compass if it's being picky.

Updated to firmware 1.27 and immediately afterwards, I had issues with my compass calibration not working no matter what I try: slow, fast, slow/fast turns, nada. All variations would not show any turns of the 3 required.

Steps:
  1. Go to WEATHER mode
  2. Go to DIRECTION View (up/down arrow)
  3. Enter settings (use enter arrow key)
  4. Change from MAGNETIC North to TRUE NORTH
  5. Keep VAR at 0.
  6. Calibrate compass normally using last option in this menu. (Best way is setting upright on table or other flat surface; palm of your hand works in a pinch)
  7. After successful, revert back to MAGNETIC NORTH setting.
Done!! Compass works and even wind capture orientation is working properly now. Before it would be wildly off and sometimes not change regardless of how much I moved relative to target.

ALTERNATIVE METHOD:
After thinking through the calibration process, I couldn't understand why they want us to spin the Kestrel around itself (like a top) to calibrate. So I tried holding at arm's length, upright, as if capturing wind and turned circles like taking a panoramic photo while calibrating... Worked like a charm! You do look kind of stupid for 20-30 secs but it's better than getting pissed at a Kestrel that won't calibrate. I think this method works best because it can be done nearly perfectly smooth vs start stop when calibrating in your hand or on a table.

Hope this helps anyone having compass calibration issues.
 
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LawnMM

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Interesting, my wind direction capture has been all over the place, I'll try this
 

LawnMM

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@Kestrel Ballistics you heard anything about this? My last match I noticed after setting DOF and attempting to capture wind speed/direction it was often way off.

Like full value 3pm wind vs Kestrel capturing it as 1230
 

Subwrx300

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@Kestrel Ballistics you heard anything about this? My last match I noticed after setting DOF and attempting to capture wind speed/direction it was often way off.

Like full value 3pm wind vs Kestrel capturing it as 1230
I was on the phone with @Kestrel Ballistics trying to troubleshoot it when we found the solution above. The tech I was working with hadn't heard of it but was glad it worked.

I was having the same issue you describe (long with not being able to calibrate at all) and fix above worked for both issues.
 

Travclem

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Are y'all having to calibrate the compass every time you go out? I have always had to since day one, doesn't seem right to me.
 

Subwrx300

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Are y'all having to calibrate the compass every time you go out? I have always had to since day one, doesn't seem right to me.
I usually have to but haven't tried multiple back to back days since above fix. This was one aspect I was hoping to have resolved as a result of this most recent firmware update, but not sure if it addresses any of those issues.

Ill report back if mine seems to stay more properly calibrated.

At the very least, it seems this calibration method is more reliable/consistent than when using magnetic mode.
 
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pbatesaz

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Here's a fix to calibrate the compass if it's being picky.

Updated to firmware 1.27 and immediately afterwards, I had issues with my compass calibration not working no matter what I try: slow, fast, slow/fast turns, nada. All variations would not show any turns of the 3 required.

Steps:
  1. Go to WEATHER mode
  2. Go to DIRECTION View (up/down arrow)
  3. Enter settings (use enter arrow key)
  4. Change from MAGNETIC North to TRUE NORTH
  5. Keep VAR at 0.
  6. Calibrate compass normally using last option in this menu. (Best way is setting upright on table or other flat surface; palm of your hand works in a pinch)
  7. After successful, revert back to MAGNETIC NORTH setting.
Done!! Compass works and even wind capture orientation is working properly now. Before it would be wildly off and sometimes not change regardless of how much I moved relative to target.

Hope this helps anyone having compass calibration issues.
Tagging. Thanks!
 

Subwrx300

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Well as an update, the calibration still didn't stick the way I'd like but the method does seem to make it easier to calibrate. So it's a half win. Lol!
 

kingston

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Following...

My Kestrel 5700 4DOF requires the compass be constantly re-calibrated and even then wind direction relative to DOF is still regularly off by 180ish degrees.

I’m setting DOF using capture function, then capture wind and wind displayed is off by around 180°.

For example, if wind is coming out of 6:00 relative to DOF (wind blowing from shooter toward target). After wind capture, Kestrel displays wind at 1:00.

Sometimes, if I recalibrate the compass, it will display the wind correctly.

Edit to add: Firmware 1.28

I just followed the instructions in the OP, steps 1-6 (Copied Below). I did not revert back to Magnetic North, Step 7. Unit seems to be working now. We’ll see.

Steps:
  1. Go to WEATHER mode
  2. Go to DIRECTION View (up/down arrow)
  3. Enter settings (use enter arrow key)
  4. Change from MAGNETIC North to TRUE NORTH
  5. Keep VAR at 0.
  6. Calibrate compass normally using last option in this menu. (Best way is setting upright on table or other flat surface; palm of your hand works in a pinch)
  7. After successful, revert back to MAGNETIC NORTH setting.
 
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kingston

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The information in the OP’s post should be included as an addendum to the quick start guide Nielsen-Kellerman ships with Kestrel I literally thought I was going crazy. I never expected they’d ship an instrument with a flaw undermining it’s basic function. Mine shipped 7/31 and I received it on 8/2.
 

Cheeseburger1976

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Second question which I forgot to ask the first time I just got my new CRF 2800.com last week and the display that shows the yardage is crooked
The information in the OP’s post should be included as an addendum to the quick start guide Nielsen-Kellerman ships with Kestrel I literally thought I was going crazy. I never expected they’d ship an instrument with a flaw undermining it’s basic function. Mine shipped 7/31 and I received it on 8/2.
in reference to my crooked yardage indicator? Or the different modes for calibration?
 

Near miss

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I will add my story here.
I received a Kestrel 5700 in July that had tremendous problems with the compass. Factory/battery resets did not help.

It would read odd readings and after a restart it would get stuck in a certain degree band, like 330-10, 160-180 or 0-50. After recalibration it worked.. Until next day or so.

I was just about to send it in when the 1.27 firmware came up.
After updating the firmware the compass worked again. Have not experienced problems since. Just yesterday I (briefly) tested the 5700 against a Suunto compass and it was pretty much spot on.

NK could let us rerun the firmware for repair reasons. The option would not hurt.
 

NexTex375

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Thanks for the info. I have been having problems with wind reading right when obviously it was coming from the left. I am going to check for an update and try spinning in circles ha.
 

smokeon

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Interestingly, I'm running 1.23 on my 5700 elite and I am having the same issues with wind directions being all over the place after wind capture - relative to DOF...

So with each target I have to re-check & confirm the wind direction - time consuming & undermines the "efficient" target scrolling format of the Kestrel.
Very disappointing indeed...

Come on @kestrelballistics - help us out!!
 

Near miss

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Huh a fix would be good. My Kestrels strggles have returned with a new twist.
At the moment it says I have West to the right of me and North to the left.

I am going to get a replacement when I have time to visit the shop.
 

NexTex375

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I called Kestrel and told them the issues I was having with getting the wrong wind direction relative to DOF. They told me to send it in and they would give it a once over. I haven't yet, but the one curious part of the conversation was when they asked if i was using a Magneto speed barrel cooling fan?. They said that they have been having issue with those effecting the compass in the Kestrel. Take that for what it's worth just passing it along.
 

Near miss

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I called Kestrel and told them the issues I was having with getting the wrong wind direction relative to DOF. They told me to send it in and they would give it a once over. I haven't yet, but the one curious part of the conversation was when they asked if i was using a Magneto speed barrel cooling fan?. They said that they have been having issue with those effecting the compass in the Kestrel. Take that for what it's worth just passing it along.
I have also many magnetic items and first I thought it was them. But keeping the Kestrel away from magnetic fields did not help the issue.
 

kingston

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This past Saturday morning, I’m at a match, it’s my first stage and the Kestrel will not correctly coordinate DOF and Wind Direction. DOF is entered and a right to left wind is inputted, the unit displays the wind speed but at 7:00. I try using the compass calibration function and it won’t calibrate. As a note, two days earlier I’d changed the battery and calibrated the compass.

I try five times to get the unit to calibrate, slowing rotating the unit and it won’t register a revolution. I try rotating it quickly and I don’t get a too fast error. The screen reads 0/3 until I exit out. I’m sitting out in the open on a gravel landing. I remove the battery, then reinsert and try again several more times and nothing. I give up and pocket the device. I shoot six stages, then try calibrating again, and the unit calibrates.

Something isn’t right.
 
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Near miss

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My problems returned.

I already updated firmware to 1.31 and calibrated it but now day later it is showing 120-130 degrees, no matter which direction it is pointed at.

I really want this to work. I would like to buy the Elite upgrade to use DSF but if I end up returning this to store then that will probably leave a mess.
 

Subwrx300

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My problems returned.

I already updated firmware to 1.31 and calibrated it but now day later it is showing 120-130 degrees, no matter which direction it is pointed at.

I really want this to work. I would like to buy the Elite upgrade to use DSF but if I end up returning this to store then that will probably leave a mess.
I've kept mine away from magnets and electronics of all sorts (including my phone) for the last 2-3 weeks and it seems to be holding a decent calibration.

There seems to be a persistent issue with not detecting rotation and therefore not calibrating, but I'm very suspicious that it could be with some part of the kestrel becoming magnetized. I wish they'd figure out a way to do a gyroscopic calibration (similar to the figure 8 motion most phones have you do to calibrate orientation and compass).

It can be super frustrating to have it fail and not calibrate prior to a match but for the most part, it's easy to set wind orientation using the clock method. Just not as convenient.
 
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Near miss

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Indeed. It would be nice to calibrate it easily but I would rather like to not calibrate it all the time.

Tried it this morning and it seemed true.
But I have previously kept it in the gun bag for few days and away from electronics and it still had the same problems.
 

Near miss

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Good news everyone!
First troubleshooting and diagnosing my Kestrel for few months I then returned it to supplier in hopes of them finding it faulty too.

Well, they put a new one on mail pretty much in 1 or 2 days and today I grabbed it. Just test it and finally upgrade to Elite?
It indeed has a different serial number, untouched box etc.

But it also has problems with the compass!!!
Freaking hell.

I took some readings of it 6 hours from calibrating it and when it was freshly calibrated. I also took readings from my Suunto compass, which I have trust in.

Added also readings 21h after calibrating.
They read like this:

1:
Kestrel 6h: 2
Kestrel fresh: 39
Kestrel 21h: 56
Suunto compass: 40

2:
Kestrel 6h: 181
Kestrel fresh: 140
Kestrel 21h: 117
Suunto compass: 130

3:
Kestrel 6h: 240
Kestrel fresh: 250
Kestrel 21h: 178
Suunto compass: 220

4:
Kestrel 6h: 290
Kestrel fresh: 308
Kestrel 21h: 355
Suunto compass: 305


Conclusion:
Once again my time was wasted, and it looks like Kestrel has hard time determining North and East.
 
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Kestrel Ballistics

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Good news everyone!
First troubleshooting and diagnosing my Kestrel for few months I then returned it to supplier in hopes of them finding it faulty too.

Well, they put a new one on mail pretty much in 1 or 2 days and today I grabbed it. Just test it and finally upgrade to Elite?
It indeed has a different serial number, untouched box etc.

But it also has problems with the compass!!!
Freaking hell.

I took some readings of it 6 hours from calibrating it and when it was freshly calibrated. I also took readings from my Suunto compass, which I have trust in.

Added also readings 21h after calibrating.
They read like this:

1:
Kestrel 6h: 2
Kestrel fresh: 39
Kestrel 21h: 56
Suunto compass: 40

2:
Kestrel 6h: 181
Kestrel fresh: 140
Kestrel 21h: 117
Suunto compass: 130

3:
Kestrel 6h: 240
Kestrel fresh: 250
Kestrel 21h: 178
Suunto compass: 220

4:
Kestrel 6h: 290
Kestrel fresh: 308
Kestrel 21h: 355
Suunto compass: 305


Conclusion:
Once again my time was wasted, and it looks like Kestrel has hard time determining North and East.

Please look at this video and be sure your Kestrel is away from anything magnetic

 
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Near miss

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Please look at this video and be sure your Kestrel is away from anything magnetic

This new one I took it out of the box, calibrated and put it back and onto the kitchen table.
In the morning I woke up and did the test again. After day was over I did the "21h" test.

The previous Kestrel I kept in the range bag for a couple of days and the problem still occurred. For some reason I kept thinking it will fix by itself.

I understand that the Kestrel is sensitive to magnetism, your support advised me about this and I did my best to keep it away from magnets.

Once I decided I had done all the troubleshooting to it that I could, I returned it back.
 

dopedealer

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Have a 5700 with AB en route and find out about all this... does anyone have the same issue with the BR2500? Don't want to spend all my time running from magnets. Thx
 
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Subwrx300

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Have a 5700 with AB en route and find out about all this... does anyone have the same issue with the BR2500? Don't want to spend all my time running from magnets. Thx
It's not as problematic as it seems. If you have any strong magnetic devices, simply don't store them near the Kestrel.

Since I've removed the RifleKuhl from my pack, I've yet to have a single issue. The issue is one that can happen to ANY device that tracks magnetic North. Haven't calibrated in last 3 months and it's still spot on.

Don't worry about it.
 

dopedealer

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It's not as problematic as it seems. If you have any strong magnetic devices, simply don't store them near the Kestrel.

Since I've removed the RifleKuhl from my pack, I've yet to have a single issue. The issue is one that can happen to ANY device that tracks magnetic North. Haven't calibrated in last 3 months and it's still spot on.

Don't worry about it.
Thank you
 
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