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Old 20-03-2012, 15:10   #76
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

Target, ask yourself this:
Do you want to meet Colreg requirements for an anchor light? Or would you prefer something like a sodium vapor light, so drunks and fools mistake you for a parking lot or fishing trawler, and steer away from you?

OK, most of us can't afford enough batteries for the sodium vapor light. But "certified" anchor lights....I mean, isn't that about as useful as a single serving of potato chips? Anchor light, fine. Deck lights, spreader lights, disco lights....you know, something to increase the odds a bit.
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Old 20-03-2012, 15:45   #77
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

Agreed. The main issue is to avoid getting run over. The secondary issue is the assignment of responsibility after the fact, which will be determined by some combination of insurers, law enforcement, and the court. You may need to convince them that your lights were adequate, and that is a whole lot easier if they are commercially manufactured to a standard - I would not want to defend the use of a garden light to them. Sometimes officials harass boats that have lights that they deem inadequate, but that is pretty unusual.
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Old 20-03-2012, 15:49   #78
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

I should add that I mostly don't use the masthead anchor light, as it is too easy to not be seen with harbor lights in the background. I have an all-round white hoisting anchor light that I hoist a few feet above the top of the boom (usually in the foretriangle); it is visible 360 degrees and illuminates the rigging and deck - pretty much impossible to not notice.
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Old 20-03-2012, 17:17   #79
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

Im starting to see a lot of white strobe lights used as anchor lights in the Eastern Med- anyone using these??
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Old 20-03-2012, 17:25   #80
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

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Originally Posted by Ram View Post
Im starting to see a lot of white strobe lights used as anchor lights in the Eastern Med- anyone using these??
A strobe for an anchor light? That's wacky.
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Old 20-03-2012, 17:55   #81
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

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Originally Posted by PamlicoTraveler View Post
A strobe for an anchor light? That's wacky.
Not so sure about that- they grab your attention from a long way out- there is no missing them- Many of the larger commercial fishing boats are running them at anchor and underway-
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Old 20-03-2012, 19:23   #82
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

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Not so sure about that- they grab your attention from a long way out- there is no missing them- Many of the larger commercial fishing boats are running them at anchor and underway-

Strobe lights as anchor lights are not legal. A strobe is used for navigation lights, buoys and as distress signals.

This from the Coast Guard FAQ site, Chuck

14. Can I use Strobe Lights to be more visible at night? For any other lights beyond those specifically defined within the Navigation Rules they should be such lights as cannot be mistaken for the lights specified in these Rules, or do not impair their visibility or distinctive character, or interfere with the keeping of a proper look-out (Rule 20).

Displaying a strobe for "higher visibility" would confuse other vessels as to your navigational status (many aids to navigation use a strobe or flashing). Also, lights provide direction and aspect information to other boat operators. For example, if while operating my vessel I see a red light on my starboard side I know I am the give-way vessel (Rule 16, 17). The use of a strobe light could overwhelm a vessel's navigation lights and cease to provide such crucial direction and aspect information to other boat operators.

Also, Rule 36 of the International Rules addresses signals to attract attention and for the purpose of [that] rule the use of high intensity intermittent or revolving lights, such as strobe lights, shall be avoided. Rule 37 of the Inland Rules addresses strobes in regards to distress signals so that when a vessel is in distress and requires assistance she shall use...a high intensity white light flashing at regular intervals from 50 to 70 times per minute.

Since strobe light use is to be avoided (International waters) or used as a distress signal (Inland waters), it cannot be used to routinely mark vessels operating on the water.
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Old 20-03-2012, 20:23   #83
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

+1 Nicely documented.

garden lights, strobes as anchor lights - why do so many people try to invent something different instead of simply implementing the rules in a seamanlike manner? The USCG banned strobes on pleasure boats for anything other than distress signalling more than 20 years ago. And yet it keeps coming up...
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Old 21-03-2012, 06:33   #84
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

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Since strobe light use is to be avoided (International waters) or used as a distress signal (Inland waters), it cannot be used to routinely mark vessels operating on the water.
Your post sets out the theory, the practice of course is a different thing altogether.


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Old 21-03-2012, 11:31   #85
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

A strobe would be confusing to other vessels and thus not good seamanship. It is to be used to help someone locate you in an emergency. I would also consider using it in fog and maybe a really hard downpour where visibility is limited. Can you imagine what the harbors would look like if everyone used strobes to anchor. There is no way you could navigate.

And for the lawyers out there consider that sometimes people have Photosensitive epilepsy siezures caused by flashing lights. You could get sued.
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Old 21-03-2012, 11:50   #86
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

Im looking for a bright battery power all around LED to hang above my boom, besides the anchor light- anyone have this & where to get one??-
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Old 21-03-2012, 13:04   #87
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Your post sets out the theory, the practice of course is a different thing altogether.


Dave
Indeed it is. In much of the world not only are the rules not adhered to but most people are completely unaware of their existance. There's something deeply unsettling about being overtaken by a flashing green or red, but at least it's better than no light at all or a flickering torch at the end of it's battery life.
I've seen long lines with strobes each end of the 5 mile string of bouys as well.

I'm fiddling around with some ebay high power led's for the mast head at the moment which, if the fiddling ever finishes, will have the ability to strobe. Might well never get used to strobe but if the sh&t hits the fan then it might be a welcome thing to have.
Backed up by Rule 2a "or by the special circumstances of the case". When the sh&t hits the fan anything goes if it keeps you safe.
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Old 21-03-2012, 13:33   #88
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

A true story:

About 25 years ago I was working deep in the bowels of Carina one midnight when I was interrupted by a loud knocking on the deck and a shout. When I climbed out I was greeted by four very angry Multnomah County Sheriff's deputies, replete with armor and armaments. One barked out "Are you in distress?". My response was a puzzled "No, why?". Then "Turn off your damn strobe!". It seems I had accidentally turned on the masthead strobe - I probably rubbed against the panel climbing in and out of the quarter. The deputies explained that they had been trying to locate me for an hour, and were none too happy about it. My boat was located in a channel with a mess of marinas on both sides, just off the end of Portland International Airport's (PDX) main runway and about half a mile to the south of Pearson Air Park in Vancouver. Shortly after takeoff pilots out of PDX were seeing my strobe and were reporting it to air traffic control, who in turn contacted the Sheriff, who eventually tracked me down. My profuse apologies seemed to have no effect - the deputies left still wearing some very ugly looks. After that I added a buzzer in parallel to the strobe so that I would always know if it was turned on. If I still had the strobe I would add a switch cover to prevent an accident.

The point I would make is that the strobe is universally recognized as a distress signal, and not just by mariners. It is treated very seriously by SAR personnel. If sailors misuse this distress signal they risk in the short term false SAR alerts and in the long term a dilution in the value of the distress signal (crying wolf...)

The fact that, in practice, some people do silly things is certainly no argument for doing silly things. That is the lemming approach to thinking... Count me out.
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Old 21-03-2012, 13:39   #89
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

In the late 70's I was asked to design a mast-head strobe system for several of the tuna seiners in what was then a San Diego based fleet. The strobes were not sanctioned by the USCG but served two purposes - the first was to allow a airplane or helicopter to identify a particular ship using only visual contact (once they find fish they usually go 'quiet' so the other boats can't 'home in' on them (now they use coded channels)... the other reason was so that in a storm, rough seas, night or foggy times the dozen or so 'chase boats' (14-20 ft speedboats used to 'chase dolphin out of the nets), could keep a reference of where the mother ship was. They did not use them for anchor lighting however.

The units I designed were modified small plane strobes, after looking around I'd suggest that if you are interested in this kind of thing you search for strobes and if LEDS are your thing, include that in the search, comments aside, LEDS even when 'high output' will outlast flashing incandescents by a large margin and usually be brighter. A better strobe is made by 'double -tapping' the strobe so it doesn't blink 'once' but 'twice quickly' as this helps us humans see the flash - electronic (xenon tube OR LED) flash so quickly our eyes can't effectively establish the necessary persistence of vision reaction, a 'double tap' let's the eye get stimulated and then supplies a source of light to 'remember'.

FYI xenon strobes are high voltage units. LEDS are far safer in wet conditions or on top of a metal stick....
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Old 21-03-2012, 14:18   #90
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Re: LED Anchor Light Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by CarinaPDX View Post
A true story:

About 25 years ago I was working deep in the bowels of Carina one midnight when I was interrupted by a loud knocking on the deck and a shout. When I climbed out I was greeted by four very angry Multnomah County Sheriff's deputies, replete with armor and armaments. One barked out "Are you in distress?". My response was a puzzled "No, why?". Then "Turn off your damn strobe!". It seems I had accidentally turned on the masthead strobe - I probably rubbed against the panel climbing in and out of the quarter. The deputies explained that they had been trying to locate me for an hour, and were none too happy about it. My boat was located in a channel with a mess of marinas on both sides, just off the end of Portland International Airport's (PDX) main runway and about half a mile to the south of Pearson Air Park in Vancouver. Shortly after takeoff pilots out of PDX were seeing my strobe and were reporting it to air traffic control, who in turn contacted the Sheriff, who eventually tracked me down. My profuse apologies seemed to have no effect - the deputies left still wearing some very ugly looks. After that I added a buzzer in parallel to the strobe so that I would always know if it was turned on. If I still had the strobe I would add a switch cover to prevent an accident.

The point I would make is that the strobe is universally recognized as a distress signal, and not just by mariners. It is treated very seriously by SAR personnel. If sailors misuse this distress signal they risk in the short term false SAR alerts and in the long term a dilution in the value of the distress signal (crying wolf...)

The fact that, in practice, some people do silly things is certainly no argument for doing silly things. That is the lemming approach to thinking... Count me out.

I guess in the eastern Med like Ram says it is not such a big deal.

Maybe they are just waiting till there are more so they can get them all in one haul to save gas?
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