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Old 28-12-2015, 03:33   #46
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Re: running lights on pulpit

As Wotname cautioned, you need seperation on the port and stbd to show aspect in a close quarter situation.

With the masthead tricolour as back up....my deck mount port and starboard are far enough back from the pulpit fitted to stations so as to have that proper separation.


Also far enough back but still in the narrow bow section so as to NOT cause glare from reflecting off the pulpit or fouling a headsail .

You might try just playing with mounting on stantions as I have in the photo to see what works at night when your pulpit is back in place
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Old 28-12-2015, 08:28   #47
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Re: running lights on pulpit

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Originally Posted by Wotname View Post
Yes, this is (IMO) a vital caution!
Another problem is that when viewed fro ahead and crossing, both colours can seen for too long suggesting the vessel is continuing to turn towards you!

Another issue with Tricolours is that they are usually (always?) fitted with only one lamp and if that fails, you lose all three lights. Bicolours suffer similarly but without losing the stern light (of course ).

In fact I prefer to see all three lamps with its own circuit and circuit protection. A three pole switch can be used to good effect here!
To add to your comment, I prefer seeing the lights as far outboard as possible.
Is it a day sailor of tri with a 25ft. beam? JMO
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Old 28-12-2015, 08:46   #48
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Re: running lights on pulpit

I dont have the info in front of me and I may be wrong. But I remember that when I replaced my aqua signal 40 bulbs with LED that it specifically stated on the package the the LED replacement bulbs were certified to be legal in the aqua signal. I think the replacement brand was Dr. LED. That is why I used them and kept the packages.

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Old 28-12-2015, 22:58   #49
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Re: running lights on pulpit

Thanks for all the info.

Stopped at a local DIY/storage yard and took a million pics of bowlights. Good/bad/ugly. Got some good ideas. Might write it up for submission for publication as a photo essay.

Dropped by the welder and asked him to add a transverse tube with tab below it a bit aft of the front. Gives me the option of adding a light later.
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Old 31-12-2015, 14:06   #50
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Re: running lights on pulpit

Just to confuse things. I contacted the coast guard about my lights. I stated that the original lights were tiny and legal and if I could go from the aqua signal 25 to the size 40.
They said the required light sizes for length of boat was a minimum and as long as I kept the proper angle and location I could use the largest ones I wanted. There was no maximum size only minimum.
Some boats have a glowing marble size light. I use the aqua signal 40 on my 30 foot boat. If I could mount larger I would.

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Old 31-12-2015, 14:44   #51
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Re: running lights on pulpit

From the standpoint of a commercial boat driver, you can't use a strong enough set of running lights on pleasure craft, power or sail. Smaller craft are particularly difficult to pick up on radar anytime and at night they are a bitch to see. Once a watch keeper has ID'd a small sail boat or power boat, far better to have a visual out of the bridge than relying on radar. The stronger the running and steaming lights, the better chance you have of NOT being run down! Phil
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Old 31-12-2015, 14:51   #52
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Re: running lights on pulpit

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From the standpoint of a commercial boat driver, you can't use a strong enough set of running lights on pleasure craft, power or sail. Smaller craft are particularly difficult to pick up on radar anytime and at night they are a bitch to see. Once a watch keeper has ID'd a small sail boat or power boat, far better to have a visual out of the bridge than relying on radar. The stronger the running and steaming lights, the better chance you have of NOT being run down! Phil
But driver, my father would have given me hell for that.
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Old 31-12-2015, 16:29   #53
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pirate Re: running lights on pulpit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Badsanta View Post
Just to confuse things. I contacted the coast guard about my lights. I stated that the original lights were tiny and legal and if I could go from the aqua signal 25 to the size 40.
They said the required light sizes for length of boat was a minimum and as long as I kept the proper angle and location I could use the largest ones I wanted. There was no maximum size only minimum.
Some boats have a glowing marble size light. I use the aqua signal 40 on my 30 foot boat. If I could mount larger I would.

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I have the glowing marbles. I'll upsize first thing next year. Like tomorrow. Hell, I wish we could use strobes.
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Old 31-12-2015, 17:32   #54
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Re: running lights on pulpit

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Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Stillbuilding,

I will be replacing the incandescent bulbs in our Aqua Signal Series 40 nav lights this spring when I get back to the boat. I will be able to report back first-hand observations after that.

Our driving reason for this change is to reduce our deck level nav light electrical load by 80+% [from 100 watts to 12 watts...]

I am basing my decision on the excellent feedback I have received from CruisingSolutions.com [No affiliation or incentive- I'm just a happy, repeat customer...] Here is a link to the bulbs specified for the Series 40 nav lights we have.

It is important to note- as already mentioned by others in this thread- if you switch to LED bulbs for existing nav lights, you must use an LED bulb of the same color as the lens in the nav light. [i.e., don't put a white LED bulb behind your red or green nav light lenses; use red and green LEDs instead to achieve maximum brightness...]

In case this is helpful.

Cheers!

Bill

Thanks for the link to the LEDs and your future feedback.

I understand the reduced power consumption of course, but in bust Hong Kong waters it seems very plain that the larger incandescents like the Aquasignal 50s and 70s stand out dramatically better than LEDs on the smaller boats. So much so, that at this point in time I would pass on LEDs.

Sure, the figures state visibility of 2 or 3 miles but such a tiny pin-prick of light that it is easily missed in a busy harbour against a backdrop of city lights.

In open waters the LEDs are possibly ok but in coastal waters I don't think so.

I would recommend two sets - a tricolour LED and slower incandescents cos in close to harbours we are usually motoring so the power is a non-issue.


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Old 01-01-2016, 18:38   #55
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Re: running lights on pulpit

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Originally Posted by Olddave View Post
Hi Jim,
With due respect, Nav lights or Runnng lights shouldn't be almost invisible, although it may be a good idea to operate your vessel as though no one can see you!
Col-regs stipulate minimum distances required for various lights. Viewing capability from the wheelhouse of a large commercial vessel is excellent and the vast majority of watchkeepers are doing a good job.
Good lights in a prominant position are the first step to being seen. AIS is outstanding for bringing a small vessel to the attention of shipping at night. If a sailing boat does not have AIS, good lights may well be seen before radar picks up the boat. At the very least, ships will confirm what they are seeing on the plotter by looking out the window. WE HOPE
Point taken Olddave. Inshore under ideal conditions most running lights are minimally acceptable. I was thinking in terms of being offshore. I have a passive radar reflector mounted above my spreaders port and starboard but with any sea running I know my running lights are only occasionally visible to shipping. That's why I'll turn a deck light on for a minute or two in the hope that it might be noticed.
As I was approaching Bermuda this past summer I had a cruise liner approaching me from dead astern. I have an AIS receiver (I do not emit an AIS signal) so I was keeping a close eye on him physically and electronically. He was making a beeline toward me at 13 knots from dead astern. When he got 5 nm from me I contacted him on VHF (something I try never to do unless absolutely necessary). He replied immediately. That was a relief. He said he would come no closer than 1nm of me and pass on my starboard side. I asked how my radar signal was and he said he could clearly see me on radar (which was very reassuring) and was able to discern my running lights when not obscured by swells. He was HUGE and lit up like a city street. He was very concerned about my welfare, which I thought was very kind, and offered to email a relative back home if I would like to take advantage of his services. Since I was singlehanding and had been a sea a week already I took advantage of his offer and sent an email home to let everyone know I was fine. That officer was a real gentleman.
By the way, HIS running lights could not be made out against the light pollution from the hundreds (thousands) of lights on his vessel
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Old 02-01-2016, 02:22   #56
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Re: running lights on pulpit

Quote:
By the way, HIS running lights could not be made out against the light pollution from the hundreds (thousands) of lights on his vessel
A common feature of cruise ships, and many fishing vessels. AIS helps with the cruise palaces, but all too few fishers broadcast AIS, and they also maneuver in incomprehensible fashion... they can be a real worry in crowded coastal waters!

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Old 02-01-2016, 18:21   #57
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Re: running lights on pulpit

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A common feature of cruise ships, and many fishing vessels. AIS helps with the cruise palaces, but all too few fishers broadcast AIS, and they also maneuver in incomprehensible fashion... they can be a real worry in crowded coastal waters!

Jim
As I was crossing the continental shelf south of Block Island last spring I found myself with 9 vessels in sight at 1:00am. Some had AIS, some didn't. It took a couple hours before I found myself alone again and able to take it easy. At least the active fishing vessels are well lit. Between times they can be hard to spot at any distance with a sea running.
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Old 04-01-2016, 07:22   #58
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Re: running lights on pulpit

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Originally Posted by Orion Jim View Post
Point taken Olddave. Inshore under ideal conditions most running lights are minimally acceptable. I was thinking in terms of being offshore. I have a passive radar reflector mounted above my spreaders port and starboard but with any sea running I know my running lights are only occasionally visible to shipping. That's why I'll turn a deck light on for a minute or two in the hope that it might be noticed.
As I was approaching Bermuda this past summer I had a cruise liner approaching me from dead astern. I have an AIS receiver (I do not emit an AIS signal) so I was keeping a close eye on him physically and electronically. He was making a beeline toward me at 13 knots from dead astern. When he got 5 nm from me I contacted him on VHF (something I try never to do unless absolutely necessary). He replied immediately. That was a relief. He said he would come no closer than 1nm of me and pass on my starboard side. I asked how my radar signal was and he said he could clearly see me on radar (which was very reassuring) and was able to discern my running lights when not obscured by swells. He was HUGE and lit up like a city street. He was very concerned about my welfare, which I thought was very kind, and offered to email a relative back home if I would like to take advantage of his services. Since I was singlehanding and had been a sea a week already I took advantage of his offer and sent an email home to let everyone know I was fine. That officer was a real gentleman.
By the way, HIS running lights could not be made out against the light pollution from the hundreds (thousands) of lights on his vessel
Sorry it has taken a while to reply Jim. I wonder if you were talking to the cruise liner Captain or perhaps a Mate who hasn't forgotten why he went to sea in the first place. Either way it's a good story.
Early one morning, some years ago I was heading out fishing, doing about 16 knots in a 16 metre commercial lobster boat, when I noticed a target on the radar. It was a pretty ordinary day weather wise & I can't remember how far off the other vessel was when the radar target caught my attention, however, it eventually turned out to be a sailing vessel about 11 metres long, with nav lights mounted on the pulpit. The lights were being obscured by waves as I was approaching on his leeward side.
My love of sailing boats compelled me to call them on ch16 to let them know how close I was before they were visible. I don't know how much of an impression it made on them, but it certainly convinced me that a masthead tricolour might give a better chance of being seen.
I have just fitted one to my latest sailing boat. Let's hope I'm right. It's personal choice of course, and as you demonstrate in the cruise liner story, being seen is often the result of several actions and factors.
Fair winds to you.
Dave
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Old 08-05-2017, 11:38   #59
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Re: running lights on pulpit

Hello all, I did write this up as a magazine article and submitted it. It was accepted and is published in this months edition of Good Old Boat magazine. Thanks to everyone for the info and assistance.

http://www.goodoldboat.com/promo_pdfs/May17_Promo.pdf
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Old 08-05-2017, 12:07   #60
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Re: running lights on pulpit

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Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Stillbuilding,

I will be replacing the incandescent bulbs in our Aqua Signal Series 40 nav lights this spring when I get back to the boat. I will be able to report back first-hand observations after that.

Our driving reason for this change is to reduce our deck level nav light electrical load by 80+% [from 100 watts to 12 watts...]

I am basing my decision on the excellent feedback I have received from CruisingSolutions.com [No affiliation or incentive- I'm just a happy, repeat customer...] Here is a link to the bulbs specified for the Series 40 nav lights we have.

It is important to note- as already mentioned by others in this thread- if you switch to LED bulbs for existing nav lights, you must use an LED bulb of the same color as the lens in the nav light. [i.e., don't put a white LED bulb behind your red or green nav light lenses; use red and green LEDs instead to achieve maximum brightness...]

In case this is helpful.

Cheers!

Bill
I am reporting back after having installed the above mentioned LED bulbs in our deck level nav lights.

Subjectively they appear [much] brighter [and the red/green colors are more vivid] than the 25 watt incandescent bulbs they replaced.

I would not hesitate to do this again using the specific LED bulbs I procured from the above mentioned source. [But I have kept some incandescent bulbs for field replacement in case an LED malfunctions...]

Therefore, my recommendation is for the specific LED bulbs mentioned in my original post, above; not unspecified LEDs in general...

As an additional aside, I recently noticed Cruising Solutions [same source mentioned above] now stocks a combination tri-color/anchor LED light [with dusk to dawn control built-in] that fits in a typical anchor light fixture- converting an anchor light to both uses... [I already have a separate LED tri-color on the mast, so I have not tried this new bulb...]

In case this is useful for some.

Cheers! Bill
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