Aft Navigation Light - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 10 Old 07-23-2017 Thread Starter
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Aft Navigation Light

I have a 1990 Catalina 22. The wiring for my aft navigation light runs through the pushpin railing and comes out through a hole drilled in the rail. The metal on the edge of the hole has won away the insulation on the wiring for the light and now that's a problem.

Can anyone tell me how that wire is run from the panel to that spot where it exits the rail. I'll want to snake a new wire through there and I'm wondering how much wire to get and how to start the job.

Any idea?


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post #2 of 10 Old 07-23-2017
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

Different approach...

How much wire is available to work with? You need about 4 inches loose wire sticking out when you disconnect the light for this idea.

Disconnect the wire, Slide on heat shrink tube (commonly used in electric repairs and assembly today. Can even get it from Harbor Freight)

Slide the tube over the wire to cover the place insulation is damaged + at least 1 inch each side of it. Shrink the tube with a heat gun or common blow dryer. (or a butane lighter if you have to)

Then coat the ends of the heat shrink with liquid electrical tape (to ensure its sealed because its a boat)

If possible slide a rubber grommet down the wire and insert in the hole in the rail that caused the damage. If yo skip this you'll be repairing that wire again in a couple of years. As insulation gets older it is easier for those sharp edges to cut it.

****************

Just a few minutes to fix instead of fighting to pull a wire which might even require you to pull your railings that the wire runs through.
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post #3 of 10 Old 07-23-2017 Thread Starter
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

Thanks TT, but that ain't gonna do it.
My dad and I are sitting here around the kitchen table and he asked me, "how did the insulation get fraid to begin with?" The light is attached to a bracket that was welded to the pushpit just above the swim ladder. I guess over the years, enough folks kicked it to break the weld, then the light was hanging from the wire. As much wire as will come out of that pushpit is out, and it's right at the spot where the wire contacts the rail that the insulation is opened. I'm prettty sure we're running a new wire up in there.

I guess the wire probably comes up on the starboard side of the cockpit right above the battery compartment and enters the rail there. I'm thinking I'll tie a piece of string to the end of it and pull it back through the void to the panel and hten tie a new wire to the string and pull it back.

I'd just love to know more or see some pictures before I head out to the moring.
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post #4 of 10 Old 07-23-2017
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

Tie a messenger string to the rail end of the wire, wrap tight in elec tape.
Use a person holding the rail end while you are below poking and pulling wire until your helper hollers real loud.
Then pull that holler wire thru, measure it, add a ft, then pull new wire back thru the other way with messenger string.
Buy holler helper a cold 6 pack....
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post #5 of 10 Old 07-23-2017
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

Unfortunately... They often lay the wires in place before they join the top deck to the main hull and essentially build the boat around the wires.

If they did that, you aren't pulling the wire.
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post #6 of 10 Old 07-23-2017 Thread Starter
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

TT:
On second read...I think you've probably got the easiest fix. I'll fish around with the wires, but what are the odds that pulling a new wire isn't going to waste what could otherwise be the very best sailing day of the year!

I'm gonna get me some of that shrinkie dink stuff and see if that works. Since I've bought a new bracket, I'm optimistic that the wire won't get pulled against the sharp hedge, but I'll look for a grommet too.

Thanks for the ideas. I'll write back later in the week after I've electrocuted myself and burned the boat to the waterline. ....wish me luck.


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post #7 of 10 Old 07-24-2017
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

Quote:
Originally Posted by Turnin Turtle View Post
Unfortunately... They often lay the wires in place before they join the top deck to the main hull and essentially build the boat around the wires.

If they did that, you aren't pulling the wire.
That's exactly what they did on our C30. We love our C30 but the fact that our next boat uses conduit is a huge plus.

We ended up running our new wires in a way that makes sense to someone that cannot disconnect the deck from the hull.

Donna


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post #8 of 10 Old 09-27-2017
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

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post #9 of 10 Old 04-12-2019 Thread Starter
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

Update two years later....

So itís Spring and Iím thinking about my beloved Ď22 and wondered back here. Iíve just noticed that I never came back to tell you all how I made out. Well it turns out that Turnin Turtle takes the prize. There was indeed some wire in that pipe. I pulled out about 5 inches of wire complex with the outside cover on it. I installed a new light from a certain mail order house and mounted it to the rail. Job done. Thanks everyone.


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post #10 of 10 Old 04-12-2019
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Re: Aft Navigation Light

Pull a small line through from the pushpit to the panel. Tie a knot outside the rail when the string reaches the switch. Now tie another line to the end of the line AT the switch and pull the original line and the one tied to it. When the second knot tying the two lines together comes out of the railing... Pull it a few feet more... this will become your pull/snake/messenger. Cut the line at the knot and measure the first line. That is the length of the wire run. Pull wire thru with the messenger... but make sure it is several feet longer that the "measured" line.

Good luck!
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Last edited by SanderO; 04-13-2019 at 09:55 PM.
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