Solar powered light for mast head? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 25 Old 09-11-2015 Thread Starter
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Solar powered light for mast head?

Are there any solar powered lights that can be mounted on top of the mast? Eliminating wires going to battery through the mast. These days there are so many self contained lights out there. If they were marine grade, that would make them worth installing.

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post #2 of 25 Old 09-11-2015
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No wires. How do you turn it off when sailing at night?
Maybe a remote control?
I found the USA to be totally backward when it comes to solar so you might have to look for stuff on the internet in Singapore or Australia.
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Re: Solar powered light for mast head?

I was thinking of keeping it on all the time, as in that rule:
25(b) In a sailing vessel of less than 20 meters in length the lights prescribed in Rule 25(a) may be combined in one lantern carried at or near the top of the mast where it can best be seen.

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Re: Solar powered light for mast head?

This is one example of a unit that could be modified for masthead use:
Elegant solar-powered Shine light delivers 30+ hours of portable LED illumination with just one charge

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Re: Solar powered light for mast head?

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Originally Posted by krisscross View Post
This is one example of a unit that could be modified for masthead use:
Elegant solar-powered Shine light delivers 30+ hours of portable LED illumination with just one charge
OGM, owned now by Aqua Signal is working on one. Not sure of current status, but
they were working on prototypes last I knew about 6 months ago. Check with them.
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post #6 of 25 Old 09-11-2015
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Re: Solar powered light for mast head?

There are lots of solar powered lights that would do the job. Most are set up for lawns and walkways, but they would be more than adequate. You could just strap it to the top of the mast with some wire ties, the light turns off automatically at sunup and turns on at dusk. Less than $10 at several big box store locations. I have some 16-foot rope lights along the toe rail on each side of the boat, stays lit about 12 hours before running out of battery. During the day, the batteries charge completely. No one can mistake me when entering a dark anchorage.

All the best,

Gary
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Re: Solar powered light for mast head?

Well Gary, I do not want my boat to look like a Christmas tree I wanted a light that actually meets the navigation requirements.

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Yep, I like the one you linked to.
For 39hours it must have a better battery. The garden type ones have very low miliamp hour batteries. I change them for larger.
Also you could remove the stand at bulb and put in a uscg rated led bulb.

Invent it yourself
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Re: Solar powered light for mast head?

Quote:
Originally Posted by krisscross View Post
I was thinking of keeping it on all the time, as in that rule:
25(b) In a sailing vessel of less than 20 meters in length the lights prescribed in Rule 25(a) may be combined in one lantern carried at or near the top of the mast where it can best be seen.
At anchor you need one all-round white light. Underway you can have a combined tricolour. You need switches to turn one off, and the other on, unless you plan to sail around the world and never stop.
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post #10 of 25 Old 09-11-2015
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Re: Solar powered light for mast head?

Before I purchased our solar panels I bought 6 garden path solar lites to learn about the realities of solar. Yes they would charge on a cloudy winter day in New England. Yes they seemed to always work OK, even when buried under a few inches of snow. But every 8 months to a year, you've got to put in a new set of rechargeable batteries.
So, to answer your question, how would you feel about going aloft maybe 3 times over a couple of years to change the batteries? I think I'd rather just run the wires once and change a completely maintenance free light every 10k hours or so. By the way, ours is probably around 16k hours now and still going strong.
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