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Old 06-10-2013, 20:44   #1
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Birthing a Bebi

With the demise of the Bebi company, I no longer have a source for a Bebi Owl Light.

I am experimenting to build a similar light myself, but hit a snag.

Does anybody know about photosensors that switch a light off and on with the light or darkness? I am scouring the net, but have yet to find them for sale. I suspect if I used the correct terminology I could find them

A one dollar yard light has one built in, along with the light, solar panel, and battery or capacitor, and housing, so they cannot be that complex or that expensive.

I suspect they're a diode which is toggled by light. I am hoping for a single unit to put in series, rather than a complex circuit.

Has anybody got knowledge about this, or even the correct terminology.

I know that what I build will not be USCG approved. I believe that "deck lighting" can be used in conjunction with an anchor light, covering both bases.

Also, how do you mount a LED in a PVC end cap? Any suggestions on that? I will use a 5 mm LED to avoid heat buildup and big sinks, though the 10mm LEDs are brighter.

Any and all suggestions will be greatly appreciated. I have use for several lights, so spending $300 apiece is just not a real alternative, so don't suggest that.

Thanks, Bestathook
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Old 06-10-2013, 20:54   #2
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

The sensor is called a photocell. google will find lots of options.

But why not buy the one dollar yard light, pull out the goodies you want and mount them in a better package with the LEDs?
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Old 06-10-2013, 21:07   #3
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

Refine the search to "photocell switch".
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Old 06-10-2013, 22:06   #4
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

I'm in Savusavu right now and just walked out the Bebi Electronics shop. Why can't you buy it form them?
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Old 06-10-2013, 23:08   #5
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

All the links I have found to Bebi on the net lead to a message that Bebi is out of business.

Could you give a way to contact them? It would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 06-10-2013, 23:33   #6
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

Aussie_Sequoia, I'd love to know whassup with Bebi as well. The message on their website about being shut down and fleeing the country for personal safety is pretty clear. We love our Bebi cockpit light so I'd be happy to know they are still in business, and how to connect with them for future orders.
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Old 07-10-2013, 00:47   #7
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

I recently bought a box full of stuff from Searolf in the UK. Cabin and Nav lights. Good service and the product is made for boats. That carry all the fittings etc.
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:00   #8
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

i am one of the last orders to be processed. they are staying open while they get everything wrapped up and filling the remaining orders that were placed before they made the final decision.

we had a good convo but i didnt ask any personal questions and they didnt volunteer any info about what they are planning next.

it is pretty clear that we all wish them well as they are excellent people and have done the boating community a real service by offering a kick ass product.

-s
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:02   #9
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

I knew Michael and Kendra years and years ago when I worked in Fiji. I haven't been back for 6 years and I've only heard rumors about their departure from Fiji so I won't comment on that here.

I believe that the community that they trained to make the lights are still making them and, as posted, I just visited the Bebi Electronics store which was filled with their lights.

I will ask them tomorrow for some contact info and let them know that if they had a new website there may be some future sales pending.
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:20   #10
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

I used to build these ( for my own use) in the early days before before you could buy decent production units.
This is an early one that worked for many years until a lightning strike took it out.
I used a standard replacement anchor light lens. I made my own base out of a scrap of teak (because I did not like the normal plastic offerings and I also wanted to make to make it completely waterproof ).

These days if I made one I would use 3 Cree LEDs mounted on an aluminium heatsink in a similar enclosure.
The result would be extremely bright (it would exceed the 5 mile visability requirement and also illuminate the deck mast etc)

Circuits with photo cutoff are available. It is difficult to make this reliable and waterproof you also need to watch the parasitic consumption of the circuit to make sure you are not loosing a lot of the gains compared to leaving the light on full time. Bebi did it, so its possible, but not easy.
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Old 07-10-2013, 02:42   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aussie_Sequoia View Post
I knew Michael and Kendra years and years ago when I worked in Fiji. I haven't been back for 6 years and I've only heard rumors about their departure from Fiji so I won't comment on that here. I believe that the community that they trained to make the lights are still making them and, as posted, I just visited the Bebi Electronics store which was filled with their lights. I will ask them tomorrow for some contact info and let them know that if they had a new website there may be some future sales pending.
Say hello from Madman Marine! I've been in contact but my recent correspondence has gone unanswered. It's good to know they're ok.
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:18   #12
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

My experience with the newer lighting technology (LED, CF) is the more they are switched the shorter the bulb life.
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:33   #13
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

Try Stecktronics they make a real nice anchor light similar to Bebi.
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Old 09-10-2013, 10:27   #14
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zil View Post
My experience with the newer lighting technology (LED, CF) is the more they are switched the shorter the bulb life.
This is true if filament globes, but I doubt it applies to LEDs that are essentially diodes. Heat is as well know killer of LEDs and this is helped by giving them a cool down cycle.

In many applications they are switched very rapidly and given their fast reaction time they are often blinking at a high frequency even if we cannot see it.

Happy to be educated and convinced otherwise if you can provide any references I would be interested in reading them.
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Old 09-10-2013, 13:57   #15
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Re: Birthing a Bebi

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aussie_Sequoia View Post
I'm in Savusavu right now and just walked out the Bebi Electronics shop. Why can't you buy it form them?
By chance do you have any contact info for them?
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