Necessity of Non-mechanical Orientation
Some non-mechanical method of finding the south must have been used when a mechanical south-pointing chariot was initialized, aiming its pointer to the south at the start of a journey. Any of the methods mentioned above in "Non-mechanical possibilities" could have been used.
If any south-pointing chariot was really used for long-distance navigation, it must have relied (after initialization) on a non-mechanical direction-finding method. It might have been operated non-mechanically by someone riding in it, as outlined above. Alternatively, if it had a mechanical mechanism, it must have been frequently re-initialized non-mechanically to eliminate accumulated errors and uncertainties.
The only chariots that might not have needed non-mechanical methods of finding the south would have been those that were never used for long-distance navigation. If some chariots were used only for amusement or fraud, they could have worked purely mechanically. Even initialization could have been avoided by simply declaring some arbitrary direction to be "south".
Read more about this topic: South-pointing Chariot
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