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Old 26-01-2011, 12:49   #1
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Bluewater Cruising and Navigation Lights Question

So, one of my goals in life is to do some blue water cruising. Looking at power consumption needs I got to thinking about the use of running lights while well off shore and was wondering what others do. I understand that all vessels are required to use the propper running lights, but if someone is on watch and they want to conserve on power do some blue water cruisers not use their running lights at night? Another benifit to this would be better night vission as well.

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Dave
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Old 26-01-2011, 13:11   #2
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So, one of my goals in life is to do some blue water cruising. Looking at power consumption needs I got to thinking about the use of running lights while well off shore and was wondering what others do. I understand that all vessels are required to use the propper running lights, but if someone is on watch and they want to conserve on power do some blue water cruisers not use their running lights at night?
I haven't seen any. (pun intended)

Greg
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Old 26-01-2011, 14:09   #3
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So, one of my goals in life is to do some blue water cruising. Looking at power consumption needs I got to thinking about the use of running lights while well off shore and was wondering what others do. I understand that all vessels are required to use the propper running lights, but if someone is on watch and they want to conserve on power do some blue water cruisers not use their running lights at night? Another benifit to this would be better night vission as well.

Thanks,
Dave
Don't think i've met any who sail sail with no lights. that really is a bit daft. However a high percentage I've met (and me) sail offshore without nav lights but with an all white at the masthead. Quality LED are bright and low power. Logic being that a good all white will be more visable than a green/red. There's sometimes a bar argument sometimes about you being more likely to the stand on vessil with an all white but i dunno about that one.
But offshore, personally, bright white LED up high and assume no one will be sober enough or awake enough to see it.
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Old 26-01-2011, 14:40   #4
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Offshore I use a tricolor whenever I can (if it's on the boat I'm delivering) - one bulb, legally appropriate colors, and up high where waves and swell won't interfere with visibility by the big guys.

Running dark or with the anchor light on is unwise.
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Old 26-01-2011, 14:49   #5
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I agree Masthead tricolour Led. Big flashlight in cockpit and a good lookout!!
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Old 26-01-2011, 14:55   #6
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Aqua Signal masthead tricolor with marinebeam LED replacement bulb--uses less than 0.25 amps, and visibility well over 3 miles.
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Old 26-01-2011, 15:08   #7
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There was a time when nav lights used a lot of power, but now-days an LED tricolor uses an insignificant amount of power and so I think it is a weak argument for turning nav lights off. My tricolor is positioned so the white sector illuminates the wind direction indicator, so it does something else useful and eliminates the need for an electrical wind indicator.
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Old 26-01-2011, 15:19   #8
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One thought, the OP was about blue water cruising, if you're heading offshore then most places in the world have no idea about colours of nav light or the IRPCS, or at least it's prudent to assume they don't. Anything that gets you noticed is a good start! But don't trust anyone.
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Old 26-01-2011, 15:51   #9
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Nav lights are useful for other boats/ships to monitor your course and direction. Debate flares up on this forum over the Colregs, so it would stand to reason that rules are rules.
I used a tricolor, and what with all the toys of modren cruising turned on - radar gps. plotter, autopilot, etc, etc. the power drain from nav lights is a nit.

Would you turn your refrigeration off when undersail?
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Old 26-01-2011, 16:44   #10
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We use the tri. Anything else might have an unwanted effect of sending the freighter to investigate to see if it is a life raft, someone in trouble or some other anomaly.
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