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Old 08-07-2015, 08:12   #16
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

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Originally Posted by monte View Post
I agree... the auto on/off is a great feature and I wish we had that. I also wish we had a light that you could put the VHF antenna on top of the led light.
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Old 08-07-2015, 08:34   #17
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

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Got em both. Thanks. Looks like a nice unit, and cheaper.

As a side note, I know when I changed the bulbs to LED in the AquaSignal units, that several people commented that as the configuration was not Coast Guard certified, I would be taking on some liability. "Couldn't see the lights, that was the cause of the collision, etc.". The Stecktronic unit are CG certified. For whatever that is worth. (Maybe just knowing that potential issue is eliminated.)
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Old 08-07-2015, 08:38   #18
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

If you use a double-pole double throw (DPDT) switch to control your running lights, you can have the advantage of both masthead and bow lights. Because of the double-pole feature, your compass light is turned on by a separate power source no matter if you are in "sailing" or "power" mode. The double throw allows for masthead lights in "sail", and the other direction for "power" allows you to run the steaming light at the same time as the deck-mounted bow lights. No chance for screwing up (unless you forget to switch over). This is an "on-off-on" rocker switch, though you can use toggle switches that are configured DPDT.
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Old 08-07-2015, 09:04   #19
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

I have had an orca green marine tricolor anchor strobe combo for many years just switched it from Valiant Esprit over to Beneteau 473
They sent me a new faceplate and selector for zip
Fantastic support excellent product!
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Old 08-07-2015, 09:06   #20
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

I switch with separate breakers for bow vs mast head
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Old 08-07-2015, 09:26   #21
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

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The tricolor cannot be used when under power, as you must also show a masthead (steaming) light at least one meter above the red and green. And the masthead (steaming) light may not be used when under sail alone, as it indicates that you are under power.
So you need both sets and it has to do with mode of propulsion, not length of voyage. On one of my previous boats I had a breaker for "Running Lights", then a double throw selector switch to select "Power" or "Sail". That way an improper combination could not be lit.
I think it's the all around light that has to be 1M above the side lights, not the steaming light.

When separate red and green sidelight fixtures are used, the masthead or all-round white light, whichever configuration is installed, must be located as close as practical to the vessel's fore and aft centerline. For vessels less than 12 meters in length, the masthead or all-round light may be displaced from the fore and aft centerline providing that the sidelights are contained within a common fixture and mounted on the vessel's fore and aft centerline. The masthead or all-round light must be installed at least one meter (3.3 ft.) above the sidelights.
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Old 08-07-2015, 09:52   #22
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

Hmmm, right now my stock configuration is red on port hull forward (view from front and side), green on stb hull, and white located on solar panel arch and viewed from rear. The steaming light is around halfway up the mast and viewed 180 degrees forward. The anchor light is at top, and the only all-around light.

I will look up the Coast Guard regs. I remember they have diagrams. It changes depending upon length of boat. And obviously is different whether motoring or sailing.
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Old 08-07-2015, 09:53   #23
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

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I switch with separate breakers for bow vs mast head
Yeah, mine are all on individual breakers as well.
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Old 08-07-2015, 11:00   #24
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

I recently had this one installed while I was replacing standing rigging. Anchor/OFF/Tri-Color switch routed through my current 2-wire anchor light breaker (now called "masthead"). My rigger likes these.

Misc: NASA Marine Instruments

Cost 212 + 2.12 POS . I ordered it and got it quickly without confirmation.
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Old 08-07-2015, 11:16   #25
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

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I think I would be good with the current wiring. The current anchor light on the masthead would be replaced with the sail configuration white (stern)/green/red, with the white anchor light above. Depending upon how many times that switch is flipped, turns on either the anchor alone, or the masthead sailing lights.

The stock navigation lights are on a different switch, which illuminates the bow red/green and the stern white. These could be switched off when the masthead sail configuration lights are on.

The steaming light is a separate light on separate switch about halfway up the mast. But from what you are saying, to be completely legal when motoring I need to use the stock lights with the red/green on the bows? Because the steaming light has to be above them?

Right. If your engine is engaged, the steaming light must be on. If the engine is off, the steaming light must be off. A lot of sailors light the steaming light all the time, but when they do that they are telling everyone else they are a power boat. Then they get mad when a power boat doesn't give way for them. But they told him not to give way when they turned on the light. Rules of the Road.
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Old 08-07-2015, 11:22   #26
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

We were told by a crewman on a freighter that he found masthead lights tended to get lost in the shorelights when viewed from the deck of a ship. The lower nav lights due to the dark sea background were much more visible. Just something to think about.
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Old 08-07-2015, 11:26   #27
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

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I think it's the all around light that has to be 1M above the side lights, not the steaming light.

When separate red and green sidelight fixtures are used, the masthead or all-round white light, whichever configuration is installed, must be located as close as practical to the vessel's fore and aft centerline. For vessels less than 12 meters in length, the masthead or all-round light may be displaced from the fore and aft centerline providing that the sidelights are contained within a common fixture and mounted on the vessel's fore and aft centerline. The masthead or all-round light must be installed at least one meter (3.3 ft.) above the sidelights.
That passage is talking about the small outboard power boat with the masthead and stern lights combined on a pole at the stern. That makes an all around light, and must be one meter higher because it incorporates the masthead light. The masthead light must be one meter higher on any vessel, and on sailboats is rarely at the top of the mast. That's why we call it a "steaming light", because it's not at the "masthead". The one st the top is the anchor light.
I teach a captain license course, and have to spend a lot of time "unlearning" the sailors on this point. If I don't, they fail the exam.
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Old 08-07-2015, 11:56   #28
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

I have a Skeptronic. it is an outstanding piece of equipment and if I sell my boat will be sure to put it on the next one. When the anchor light is switched on, no need to turn it off at night or on in the AM. All automatic. Same when night sailing on passages. If nav light is on, it will go on and off automatically. Also, no interference with VHF or any electronics. it is well worth the cost.
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Old 08-07-2015, 12:00   #29
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

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I have a Skeptronic. it is an outstanding piece of equipment and if I sell my boat will be sure to put it on the next one. When the anchor light is switched on, no need to turn it off at night or on in the AM. All automatic. Same when night sailing on passages. If nav light is on, it will go on and off automatically. Also, no interference with VHF or any electronics. it is well worth the cost.

Can you over ride the auto off feature? Lights must be shown during fog too, and it might be too bright for them to auto on.
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Old 08-07-2015, 12:06   #30
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Re: Navigation Lights on Mast or Bow, or Both

Also regarding the deck level lights. It's mandatory to keep these in order to be legal under power as you must have a white steaming light above them. Under power you do use the masthead nav light.
Regarding visibility of the masthead nav lights when sailing coastal with visability possibly difficult to freighters due to background lights, you could have both deck and masthead on. Not sure if it is legal but if I was concerned about visibility, I would not hesitate.
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