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Old 05-08-2009, 18:48   #1
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Spreader Light Question

Although I know that almost everyone's spreader lights are the "white" lights that are most common, is anyone of the mind that there might be some validity to consider RED lenses for them???
It seems to me that when you most need the spreader lights on, it is obviously dark,and you are underway, destroying night vision with white light does not seem like a good idea............I would like to find other opinions regarding this....
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Old 05-08-2009, 19:44   #2
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Sounds good to me. Maybe a LED truck break light.
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Old 05-08-2009, 19:49   #3
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For the helmsman and lookout:

Lights off...

Lights on....



Seriously though, it sounds like an idea worth trying.
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Old 05-08-2009, 22:57   #4
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Could red spreader lights be confused with running lights? If so then maybe not a good idea.
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Old 06-08-2009, 02:33   #5
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There are some previous threads on night vision and there is a strong body of evidence that the best light for NOT destroying night vision is very low intensity WHITE light (Gord might remember the links ). Red light was historically used as it is by nature reasonably low intensity but one needs more red light than white light to see the same.

This being so, all you need to do is fit a dimmer to your spreader lights and adjust up from very dim until you just have enough light to carry out your task. Night vision remains safe.
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Old 06-08-2009, 20:11   #6
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What about Blue?
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Old 06-08-2009, 20:18   #7
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I have read and tend to believe that red has less of an effect of closing down your pupils than blue. Your pupils opening up is how you get your night vision. Different colors have different effects at closing down your pupils with the higher frequencies having more of an effect for an equivalent intensity. The human eye is most sensitive to the green frequencies....but sensitivity is different than at what frequency the pupil starts closing down.
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Old 06-08-2009, 22:42   #8
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try this link, good info
The Eye and Night Vision
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Old 06-08-2009, 22:48   #9
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i replaced the courtesy lights just above the cabin sole w red leds
Superbright LEDs[ no affiliation etc]. great selection.
over the chart table i did use automotive red LED brake light module. its bright.
I put white LEDs inside all the lockers w magnetic reed switches, and in the frdge as well so it defeats night vision.. but sure is nice to see in the black holes. the acrlyic over the engine panel is clear and horrible at night so ive gotta change that plastic piece. sorry somewhat off topic of spreaders.
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Old 07-08-2009, 06:00   #10
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Skiper John,
Since spreader lights are oriented "down", I don't believe that there would be any conflict with the "rules" regarding running lights.........they would only be on for a relitively short duration in any case.
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Old 07-08-2009, 06:28   #11
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Whichever colour light you choose, to preserve your night vision, you want to use the dimmest light possible, whilst still providing enough to safely perform the desired task.
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Old 07-08-2009, 08:44   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidschiff View Post
try this link, good info
The Eye and Night Vision
That's a great article David. Thanks. Well worth it for a sailor to read since so much of a sailors safety depends on vision, especially vision at night.
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Old 07-08-2009, 09:48   #13
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Old 07-08-2009, 10:14   #14
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Extremely dim light of any colour will preserve night vision, since that what night vision is for - for seeing in extremely dim light. At these EXTREMELY dim levels, blue-green is the light wavelength we are most sensitive to, and therefore can be used at lower intensity levels than any other extremely dim colour.

Red light preserves night vision, at a higher intensity level than any other colour, since the dim light elements of the eye are insensitive to red light. This allows you to operate more effectively with red light, as a result of the greater light intensity possible, and therefore more detailed perception of the environment by the red-sensitive elements, of the eye without disrupting your night adaptation.

See also these very important articles:

Night Vision: The Red Myth
Night Vision - The Red Myth

Green or Red for Better Night Vision?
EQUIPPED TO SURVIVE (tm) - Green or Red for Better Night Vision?
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Old 07-08-2009, 13:24   #15
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not sure that red will project well enough to the deck.
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