Earths magnetic field and permanent magnets

1. Jan 31, 2009

Tominator

I was always fascinated by magnets and I never understood, why Earths magnetic field doesn`t conspicuously affect permanent magnets. Is it too weak or what?

2. Jan 31, 2009

confinement

A compass with a needle made of lodestone should work just as well as one with a needle made of iron. But if by ''conspicuous" you mean flying through the air, then notice that the north and south poles of a piece of lodestone are so close together compared to the scale of the earth that there is just as much pull towards the north pole as there is a push.

3. Jan 31, 2009

Tominator

But what if you were on the pole? The magnet should attract to the ground but I have not heard about such a case.