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  #1  
Old 04-10-2010
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Adding anchor lite

Here is what I am dealing with. First this is a friend and not a paying customer so no sending him to a rigger. He has an Oday 27 the boat is wired with a steaming lite but no anchor lite. I took a look up the mast and down below. What I can tell is they wired the steaming lite through the panel up the compression post up the mast to the lite. The wires are run on the back side of the compression post and no way to see them to see if there is room for wires for the anchor lite. Here is my thinking, got 60 feet of anchor wire (two wire 10 gauge in a sleeve) climb the mast, drill the hole feed the wire down below, hope it goes down, use a jack and wood to support the cabin top to unbolt the compression post, unhook steaming lite from panel and hope the wire is there and with in reach to pull down and fiqure out how to get it out the bottom of the post to reach the panel. Any help here? Really pics wont help cuz I can't see anything anyway
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Old 04-10-2010
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Maybe use a fishing weight on some fishing line, then tie the wire to that and pull her down. Would be easier to fish through.
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Old 04-10-2010
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First, 10 AWG wire is awfully heavy, even for an anchor light. Even if you got a 25 Watt light fixture, you wouldn't need 10 AWG. Running the 10 AWG is going to be a lot harder than running 12 AWG, which is a more appropriate size for that run and wattage.

Instead of running the wire, I would run a messenger line with a piece of bicycle chain on it. This will be easier to fish out of the bottom of the mast, since you can retrieve it with a magnet. A good messenger line is about 3 mm or so...

You might want to try fishing the messenger line out through the compression post by using a fish tape with a magnetic end on it. If you can thread a fish tape up the bottom of the compression post, that would really simplify things.

BTW, McLube SailKote works wonders as a wire lube for pulling wire through masts and such.
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Old 04-10-2010
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How about using the existing wire for both lights. LEDs use current in only one direction. (You can't switch wires around like with an incandecent.) With some added parts, normal bulbs can be made to behave that way too. I'd recommed the LEDs though.

When the wires are connected the original way (red to +, black to -), the steaming light goes on. When they are wired the other way (red to -, black to +) the anchor light goes on. I believe they make switches all labeled for this, but it is easy to make one, using a douple pole double throw (DPDT) switch.

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Old 04-11-2010
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Not a good idea. The diodes required to do this create a voltage drop of .7 VOLTS or so... which ends up reducing the brightness of the lights quite a bit. It also creates a single point of failure and makes troubleshooting more difficult.

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Originally Posted by Bene505 View Post
How about using the existing wire for both lights. LEDs use current in only one direction. (You can't switch wires around like with an incandecent.) With some added parts, normal bulbs can be made to behave that way too. I'd recommed the LEDs though.

When the wires are connected the original way (red to +, black to -), the steaming light goes on. When they are wired the other way (red to -, black to +) the anchor light goes on. I believe they make switches all labeled for this, but it is easy to make one, using a douple pole double throw (DPDT) switch.

Regards,
Brad
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—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 04-11-2010
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After you climbed the mast you should loosen the stays and shroud before you remove the compression post so there will be less strain on the deck.
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Old 04-11-2010
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I relooked at the wire he bought and it is 12 guage, good call SD. I did think about looseing up the stays also but, he kind of said before we do that I will drill a hole I will talk him into it because bad things good happen otherwise. The bike chain seems like I would have to drill a hole that is oversize to get it through the top of mast. I will look but don't think I can pull the cap off the top of the mast without major surgery. What is this fish thing you are talking about SD trying to feed a fish up the post seems way to hard
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Old 04-11-2010
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A fish tape is a long piece of metal used to run through long enclosed spaces to pull wire. You start at one end, feed it into the mast in your case, until it reaches the other end, tape your wire onto it, then pull it all back to you. It is firm enough that it will poke on by any obstructions, vs. trying to drop something from the top and if it catches on something it stops.

Amazon.com: fish Tape Reels
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Old 04-11-2010
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Okay that's what fish tape is Got to pick one of those up, looks helpful.
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Old 04-11-2010
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Is there some good reason you insist on having the anchor light on the top of the mast?
I know of more than one anchored boat that was almost run down by shrimpers heading out early in the morning. With the shrimper's deck lights on a masthead anchor light can look a lot like a star on a foggy morning. With their outriggers down they could do a good job of dismasting a small sailboat.
We use a photoelectric unit that plugs into a cigarette lighter receptacle. You can attach it to the headstay with cord. It comes on automatically at dusk, goes off at dawn, and uses very little electricity. We actually use two, each attached to one of the lazy jacks. Technically our arrangement is illegal (lights aft of the mast), but the boat can seen very easily which is supposed to be the idea after all.
It also makes it easy to find your boat in a crowded anchorage, especially if you've stayed too long at the Peace And Plenty (or similar).
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