Originally Posted by Perithead
I want to replace my6 navigation lights with some LED nav lights. I have read where people have bought a tri-color steaming light(I think thats right) and it mounts at the top of the mast.
Since it has both red and green lights and a white bulb, I was curious if it is legal to only have that one light for all of your nightime needs underway/at anchor.
I think this would be the best way to go LED if you can use that one light for everything. So can I?
Perithead, If you were only going to sail at night, it would be legal to only have the tri-color light. But the tri-color will not satisfy your anchor-light requirements, nor will it satisfy the requirements for operating under power at night.
So the answer to your question "I was curious if it is legal to only have that one light for all of your nightime needs underway/at anchor?", as SailingDog emphatically indicates later in this thread, is "NO."
Also, even if you were only going to sail at night, most folks who install a mast-head tri-color retain their deck level running lights for coastal and near shore sailing, because the tri-color light at the top of your mast is difficult to see at close range and when competing with other lights such as background shore-clutter.
Also, you MAY NOT legally use both the masthead tri-color and the deck level lights simultaneously. You must choose one or the other based on the sailing conditions or circumstances.
However, another option is to install an all-round "red-over-green" mast head light in lieu of the tri-color. This light can be used simultaneously with the deck level lights, but not while steaming.