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  #1  
Old 02-28-2009
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Question Red Over Green

The USCG refers to various "occupation Lights" for commercial vessels. Categories include RAM (restricted in ability to maneuver), NUC (not under command), Pilot, etc., etc.

They also allow a Red Over Green top-of-mast lamp for a sailing vessel. I have never seen this displayed on the Great lakes, and don't know where one would buy such a unit.

Maybe the Masthead TriColor is more popular, but I know that if a TriColor is lit, the USCG requires that the regular sidelights and sternlight must not be displayed simultaneously. However, they do allow a red-over-green to be on at the same time. So you can legally run the red-over-green Occupation lamp at the same time as the regular sidelights and sternlight.

In the interest of being seen at night (especially when heeling, or the sidelights are obscured by a large Genoa), and particularly when racing, or when on large seas, or near shipping lanes, the red-over-green occupation light seems prudent.

Does anyone have a source where these can be purchased?
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  #2  
Old 02-28-2009
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Most people don't use the red over green since they have to have a meter or so separating the two lights. It also requires running two more bulbs... with the associated electrical drain. If visibility is an issue, why not just use a masthead tricolor?
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  #3  
Old 02-28-2009
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Valid points. I wasn't aware of the 1-meter separation requirement. I wonder if I can verify the exact requirements easily?

My reasons for considering the Occupation lamp are:

If running LED's, power drain is a non-issue.

The red-over-green is legal on all sizes of yachts -- the tricolor is not.

More lights means more possibility of being seen.
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Old 02-28-2009
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Paul,

Rule 25(c) allows any sailing vessel to carry, in addition to sidelights and sternlight, red over green all-round lights.

Annex I para 2 specifies the vertical positioning and spacing of lights. On a vessel less than 20 meters vertical lights must be spaced at least 1 meter and the lower light must be at least 2 meters above the deck.

Bill

BTW, the tricolor is legal for vessels under 20m in length. Is yours larger?

B.
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Bill,

No, my current vessel is in the "under 12 meter" category. But some of the boats I have delivered are indeed too long to legally run a tricolor.

Too bad that they require a full meter of spacing; That would get to be awfully clunky on a 30 footer's mast -- both windage and weight aloft would be real issues.
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Old 02-28-2009
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We've had more than a few discussions about the "red-over-green sailing machine" light configuration. Most recently a week or two ago:

Identification Lights & Nav Lights on Sailing Vessels

As I mentioned in that thread, I have seen them implemented with pairs of 180 degree lights on each side of the mast. It is fairly straightforward.
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Old 03-02-2009
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Unfortunately, that then requires FOUR Bulbs and fixtures, and is a pretty big electrical draw, especially on a smaller boat.
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Originally Posted by JohnRPollard View Post
We've had more than a few discussions about the "red-over-green sailing machine" light configuration. Most recently a week or two ago:

Identification Lights & Nav Lights on Sailing Vessels

As I mentioned in that thread, I have seen them implemented with pairs of 180 degree lights on each side of the mast. It is fairly straightforward.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 03-02-2009
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Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Unfortunately, that then requires FOUR Bulbs and fixtures, and is a pretty big electrical draw, especially on a smaller boat.
It could be implemented with low-draw L.E.D.s, along with converting the deck lights to same. It would probably be less total power draw than with the typical deck-level incandescents. But I'm speculating a bit. Has anyone done the math on this?

Even if the power draw were marginally greater, I still feel it's a better solution than the either/or alternative. You'd still have the option of running with just deck lights to conserve power if necessary.
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True... LEDs change a lot of things, but finding LEDs that are USCG certified for this use is a problem.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Probably the best/most efficient way to implement it would be with a single red at the top of the mast, and a pair of greens on either side of the mast 3-5 feet below the masthead. Gets rid of one bulb, anyway, as well as a bit of wiring. The red could be capped with the all-round anchor light, too.

Any vendors listening?
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