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post #2 of Old 07-08-2013
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Re: Do you use dinghy lights?

Can't say I'll always use mine, particularly in a remote spot with no other traffic about... But in some areas - like South Florida, in particular - a failure to display proper lights, you're simply making yourself a target of a 'visit' from the water cops, and a guaranteed citation...

My stern Aqua Signal portable light is mounted on a pole set in a bracket on the transom, well above and behind my eye level, so presents no issue at all... Agreed, any light that seriously impairs your night vision, is likely to be more of a detriment...

Definitely worthwhile to be carrying a powerful handleld searchlight, if for no other reason to deter the annoying use of one by another vessel. A few seconds of a 2 million candlepower light trained directly at them usually does the trick...

Few things more aggravating than the practice of powerboats running around at night with their bow-mounted remote searchlights turned permanently on, and scanning all over the place... Searchlights can be like bow thrusters - most people use them WAY more than necessary... (grin)

You're absolutely right, few people really understand how effective their night vision can be, if they'd only give it a chance... Hence, my objection to the current trend of mounting huge electronics arrays mounted at the helm, particularly when enclosed within something like a full-cockpit enclosure... The extent to which you're truly 'flying blind' can be astonishing...

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