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Old 04-06-2012, 13:15   #1
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Do You Always Show an Anchor Light When Anchored?

So they stick a little white light on top of my mast and tell me to switch it on a night so I can sleep soundly and not get run over by a supertanker.

Now I feel really safe.

The trouble is most places we anchor have background lights and I doubt anyone would see our light against the background.

Oh I dutifully switch it on and waste my hard earned power that could otherwise have been keeping my beer cold but

When do you use your anchor light?

Do you use it when you are anchored in a marina or behind a breakwater and

What is the difference between a boat anchored and a boat tied to a mooring buoy?
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:25   #2
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

I always use an anchor light, even in a designated anchorage where one is not required. When you get up to check your anchor in the middle of the night, you'll appreciate that the other boats are lit up--makes it much easier to determine whether there has been any relative change. Why not return those other boats the same favor?

(BTW: We may be using terminology differently here. To me, "marina" is a place where you tie up to a slip and where anchoring is not permitted.)
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:32   #3
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

This year i found a great- new to me product-here on CF- an anchor light that turns on and off by itself & is LED and uses very little of that hard earned power your talking bout- also is only less than $50 usd!- - I usually have the brightest light in the anchorage and yes itís very important even if there are a lot of back ground lights - itís going to give you better odds of being seen- Iíve got a lot of money tied up in my boat & me and donít want to lose it all because I was too cheap to keep the anchor light on- so mine comes on every night weather I need it or not and goes off every morning on its own- with such a little draw of power its not even noticed-if Iím night sailing i turn it off-I have just ordered a second one I like it so much , so I will have 2 one in the front & one in the back-- Bebi Electronics-Home of the Finest Marine LED Lighting Products on Sea (or Earth)!
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:35   #4
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

I always have a white light on at night as I have one of those solar powered lights on the stern (and yes it isn't an really anchor light but it is better than nothing for when nothing is required). When in a mooring field or designated anchorage that is normally enough for me (if I'm tucked in out of the way). But if on the edge of any designated anchorage or anchored somewhere else I turn on my regular anchor light also.

PS - I figure anyone going though an anchorage fast enough to hit me because they didn't see me probably doesn't understand the concept of designated anchorage to start with. And I figure having the light on increases the distance someone passes by and I get less wake.
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:37   #5
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

I don't know about Portugal but in the U.S. if I am anchored and without an anchor light, I am liable if someone hits me. I frequently anchor off a local barrier bar island. It is not a designated anchorage. But if some drunk at 3 a.m runs into me and I wasn't using an anchor light, it's my fault. So for me, unless I am tied up at a dock, I use the anchor light.

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Old 04-06-2012, 13:38   #6
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

i use lights in my cockpit and on my main mast--panga drivers do not look up so they dont see the silly and useless mast head lighting we are all blessed with.....
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:40   #7
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Lucas View Post
I always have a white light on at night as I have one of those solar powered lights on the stern (and yes it isn't an really anchor light but it is better than nothing for when nothing is required)...
+1

I've found that putting something, anything to light up the cockpit works quite well as most recreational power boaters aren't looking for the top of my mast when they're running around.
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:44   #8
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

Quote:
Originally Posted by McGinnis View Post
+1

I've found that putting something, anything to light up the cockpit works quite well as most recreational power boaters aren't looking for the top of my mast when they're running around.
+2

Have a Bebe masthead LED light but keep 2 solar LED garden lights, bow and stern and another automatic on/off anchor light over the cockpit.
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:45   #9
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

I don't even have an anchor light at the masthead where nobody is looking for it and a pain in the butt to repair. My anchor light hangs in the rigging at a height I select. Yes I always use my LED anchor light that draws 0.1 amps, 1 amp-hour in a 10 hour period when anchored.

John
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:45   #10
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

So why don't you have to show one when moored up to a buoy.

We re currently in a town bay which has a scattered mixture of mooring buoys and places to anchor. I will have my anchor light on tonight but you won't see one on any of the boats swinging round the buoys even though they are smaller and harder to see.

I have thought about solar lights but most have insufficient brightness required and a lot do not last through the night.
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:51   #11
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

Quote:
Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
i use lights in my cockpit and on my main mast--panga drivers do not look up so they dont see the silly and useless mast head lighting we are all blessed with.....
How about a movement detector and a 1000w halogen floodlight.
It would drain your batteries quickly but it would also be fun.

Then again it is difficult to see where you are going when your retinas are fried
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:56   #12
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

Anchor light at top of mast and light in cockpit or hanging at eye level from forestay. Those LED lights Ram talked about work great or I use my parents kerosene anchor lamp they used during their circumnavigation.
Also a neat trick is to put reflective safety tape at your stantions and even up your mast, it catches even the dimmest light making a clear outline of a sailboat. Also makes it easier to find your boat in a crowded anchorage when you are dinking home late at night
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Old 04-06-2012, 13:57   #13
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nostrodamus View Post
So why don't you have to show one when moored up to a buoy.

We re currently in a town bay which has a scattered mixture of mooring buoys and places to anchor. I will have my anchor light on tonight but you won't see one on any of the boats swinging round the buoys even though they are smaller and harder to see.

I have thought about solar lights but most have insufficient brightness required and a lot do not last through the night.
It all boils down to how much risk are you willing to take- I want as little as possable- so mine are on auto - if i stay off the boat too long they come on- even if i take a road trip for a week or 3 i know my lights come on & off
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Old 04-06-2012, 14:11   #14
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

when you are moored you are in a designated anchorage and an anchor light in a designated anchorage is unnecessary. you can use one if you wish, but is not mandatory.
bubba would set off the motion detector lights and no one would sleep . ever.
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Old 04-06-2012, 14:27   #15
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Re: Do you always show an anchor light when anchored?

Quote:
Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
when you are moored you are in a designated anchorage and an anchor light in a designated anchorage is unnecessary. you can use one if you wish, but is not mandatory.
bubba would set off the motion detector lights and no one would sleep . ever.
Not requiring a light in a designated anchorage is a US Inland rule only.

International Rules call for an anchor light, unless under 7 meters and within specific guidelines.

Quote:
RULE 30 R»GLE 30
Anchored Vessels and Vessels Aground ó International
(a) A vessel at anchor shall exhibit where it can best be seen:
(i) in the fore part, an all-round white light or one ball,
(ii) at or near the stern and at a lower level than the light prescribed
in subparagraph (i), an all-round white light.
(b) A vessel of less than 50 metres in length may exhibit an allround
white light where it can best be seen instead of the lights
prescribed in paragraph (a) of this Rule.
(c) A vessel at anchor may, and a vessel of 100 metres and more in
length shall, also use the available working or equivalent lights
to illuminate her decks.
<snip>
(e) A vessel of less than seven metres in length, when at anchor, not
in or near a narrow channel, fairway or anchorage, or where other
vessels normally navigate, shall not be required to exhibit the
lights or shape prescribed in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this Rule.
(f) A vessel of less than 12 metres in length, when aground, shall
not be required to exhibit the lights or shapes prescribed in subparagraphs
(d)(i) and (ii) of this Rule.
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