Stern lights on HF antenna - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 10-25-2010
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Stern lights on HF antenna

This justs sounds wrong...

I had my almost new boat surveyed. The stern lights were hidden by the dinghy when on the davits.

The owner said he'd move the lights. He mounted a braket with new stern lights on the HF whip antenna. Will there be transmission/receiver issues when the stern light is on. Will there be stern light problems when one transmits?

This just doesn't seem smart to me, but I'm not a radio expert. Thoughts??
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Old 10-26-2010
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Having the lights on the whip antenna is not the brightest of ideas. Is there anyplace more appropriate that you can mount the stern light.
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Old 10-26-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Is there anyplace more appropriate that you can mount the stern light.
Like, maybe, the stern rail? Like SailingDog says - there has to be somewhere better.

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Or the dinghy davits... they're the problem..so why not make them part of the solution.
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It shouldn't be a problem as long as you use a conventional light bulb. There is a small chance that the power cable to the light will pick up RF when transmitting and carry that back into the boat where you could have some interference.

If you change to an LED stern light there is a good chance the light will flicker when you transmit.

All-in-all however there are usually lots of options for placement so I'd have the light moved off the antenna to avoid having a problem later.
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Thanks all

As I suspected. Thanks for the advice all...will move to the dingy davits!
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I think the wires for the stern light will interfere with the HF antenna pattern and gain. You would not get full strength in the direction of the wires. After all, one of those wires is grounded. The other wire would have some effect perhaps too.

The effect may be small, and it sometimes seems like antennas are more like magic than science, so I really have no idea what actual effect it would have. You could test it by turning the boat very slowly as you transmit to several known receiver locations - with people there who will note your broadcast heading and takes dutiful notes. You would need a bunch of receivers at different ranges to see if there is an effect.

Better yet, put the stern light somewhere else.

Regards,
Brad
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