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Old 16-11-2018, 12:58   #1
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Running lights

I am refitting my boat with led running lights.
I am aware of potential radio interfearance.
I will be using my exist light housings and replaceing the bulbs with approved ones rated for 2mi visibility req'd for the boat.
Question.
1-If I put 2 of the same bulbs in the housing (plenty of room) will that increase the Long range visibility ?
2-Or should I use a "brighter" bulb (more lumens) that may not be approved ?
Thanks. Cat Nap
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Old 16-11-2018, 13:59   #2
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Re: Running lights

I would go brighter where you can, but only with top quality LED bulbs [e.g., MarineBeam, etc.]

I can say this because three years ago we did the same; we updated our existing AquaSignal Series 40 nav light fixtures with these purpose built MarineBeam LED bulbs.

As you already know, the LED colors need to match the nav lights lens colors- using 'warm white' for clear lenses.

We judged the LEDs to be maybe 25% brighter [subjective] than the old 25 watt incandescent bulbs, and they trued the colors showing through the tropics bleached colored nav light lenses. [The starboard lens was looking more blue than green- from UV exposure over the years- with the old incandescent bulb... The LED made it appear green again...]

However, we also want better than 2 mile visibility, and more robust, truly waterproof fixtures. Therefore I plan to replace all of our deck level nav lights with Hella 3 mile sealed LED fixtures.

I mention this in case you want to compare the cost of good LED bulbs [e.g., MarineBeam] to new, certified [IMO COLREG, USCG, RINA, NZCG, ABYC] waterproof (IP67) fixtures.

Note: The Hella specs indicate the 3 mile range is for 'Power boats' only. My understanding is that means if a sailboat is heeled to a certain degree while sailing [I haven't found a mentioned angle yet...] the stated 3 mile range may be reduced... My solution is to turn on the tri-color instead of the deck level nav lights if I'm heeled that much anyway...

Either of these solutions work well. The LEDs are cheaper to get up and going, but the Hellas appear to be far more robust [and certified] so will likely have a longer fixture life if occasionally exposed to inclement conditions.

Best wishes sorting out what best suits your needs.

Cheers! Bill
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Old 16-11-2018, 14:14   #3
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Re: Running lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cat nap2 View Post
I am refitting my boat with led running lights.
I am aware of potential radio interfearance.
I will be using my exist light housings and replaceing the bulbs with approved ones rated for 2mi visibility req'd for the boat.
Question.
1-If I put 2 of the same bulbs in the housing (plenty of room) will that increase the Long range visibility ?
2-Or should I use a "brighter" bulb (more lumens) that may not be approved ?
Thanks. Cat Nap
2 bulbs are just 2 bulbs visible from the same distance

approved is NA probably if you are just replacing the bulbs as they weren't really part of the approval to start with

and, just how old and faded are the lens on your old lights
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Old 16-11-2018, 15:34   #4
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Re: Running lights

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
2 bulbs are just 2 bulbs visible from the same distance

Two bulbs are twice as much light. So visible at greater distance.
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Old 16-11-2018, 15:39   #5
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Re: Running lights

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Two bulbs are twice as much light. So visible at greater distance.
really now, why don't you try it
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Old 16-11-2018, 15:43   #6
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Re: Running lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post

Note: The Hella specs indicate the 3 mile range is for 'Power boats' only. My understanding is that means if a sailboat is heeled to a certain degree while sailing [I haven't found a mentioned angle yet...] the stated 3 mile range may be reduced...

Discussed in this thread: https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...er-207605.html


Here's the angles ABYC specs for US boats:


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Old 16-11-2018, 16:15   #7
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Re: Running lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
really now, why don't you try it
Yep, really.

Let's see if it makes sense - replace say a 10 watt lamp with two 5 watt lamps and then remove one, can you still see from the same distance? Halve it again (and again), soon you won't see it.

Or double it over and over, soon you will have a 2,000 watt light - I think you will seen from a very large distance.
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Old 16-11-2018, 19:30   #8
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Re: Running lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by StuM View Post
Discussed in this thread: https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...er-207605.html


Here's the angles ABYC specs for US boats:


Thanks, Stu.

This likely clarifies what Hella was trying to say...

Cheers! Bill
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Old 16-11-2018, 19:43   #9
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Re: Running lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
really now, why don't you try it
Range of visibility of course increases with the amount of light--besides being rather obvious, it is also physics. Visible range increases with the square root of the brightness.

Two light bulbs = twice as much light, so visibility increases from 2 miles to about 2.9 miles. (square root of 2)*2
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Old 17-11-2018, 16:35   #10
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Re: Running lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
really now, why don't you try it


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