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post #11 of 20 Old 06-25-2019
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For a bit of history, I believe the bouyage and navigation lights we use today were largely settled on the the mid 1800s. Before that things were very much a hodgepodge. The use of red/green for both bouyage and nav lights may be coincidental; I believe the bouyage colors were initially proposed to be red/black, changing to green for purposes of visibility. Cockcroft attributes the red/green navigation light origins to railway signals (I don’t have a copy at hand to verify).

The story of the US swapping the colors on bouyage to confuse the British makes a good legend, but predates the existence of such standards. The US just happened to have different colors and dragged along countries in their area of influence. (A bit similar to how the US and imperial units of measure are not always the same size.)
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post #12 of 20 Old 06-25-2019
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Re: Red right return .

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Originally Posted by Markwesti View Post
I taught myself how to remember the side the Port light was on . Port wine "LEFT" me with a hangover .
Simpler version - "Port wine is red.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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post #13 of 20 Old 06-25-2019
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Re: Red right return .

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Originally Posted by msogin View Post
If you are on a starboard tack approaching a vessel on a port tack, you will see a green aviation light and at least in the US, green means you have the right o way over the port tack vessel.
If you're sailing and seeing aviation lights you have bigger problems than port/starboard.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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post #14 of 20 Old 06-25-2019 Thread Starter
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Red face Re: Red right return .

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Originally Posted by SloopJonB View Post
Simpler version - "Port wine is red.
Right it's red , ask me how I know that . There is no left in your version .
Red sky at night sailor's delight .
Red sky in the morning sailor take warning .
It has to have something we can relate to .
(I would put a smile face here but they don't work)

Westsail 28 , Patricia A
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post #15 of 20 Old 06-25-2019
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Re: Red right return .

Actually around here it's 'Red sky in the morning ,Sailor take warning., Red sky at night, sailor take warning.' The lighting system may have something to do with the right of way of the big ship approaching on your starb'd bow Maybe you can see his red light in time to do something about it.
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post #16 of 20 Old 06-26-2019
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Re: Red right return .

Red wine at night, sailors delight.


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post #17 of 20 Old 06-27-2019
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Re: Red right return .

Just remember to ask "Is there any Port left?"
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post #18 of 20 Old 06-27-2019
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Re: Red right return .

Is there any Port Wine Left? oooh I like that one.

Not to be a party pooper and stop all the laughter but tell your wife it is because a bunch of old salts way back in the 1800's sitting around drinking grog decided they had to find a way for their ships to stop smashing into each other. From the Wikipedia;

Marine navigation lights
In 1838 the United States passed an act requiring steamboats running between sunset and sunrise to carry one or more signal lights; colour, visibility and location were not specified. In 1848 the United Kingdom passed regulations that required steam vessels to display red and green sidelights as well as a white masthead light. In 1849 the U.S. Congress extended the light requirements to sailing vessels. In 1889 the United States convened the first International Maritime Conference to consider regulations for preventing collisions. The resulting Washington Conference Rules were adopted by the U.S in 1890 and became effective internationally in 1897. Within these rules was the requirement for steamships to carry a second mast head light. The international 1948 Safety of Life at Sea Conference recommended a mandatory second masthead light solely for power driven vessels over 150 feet in length and a fixed sternlight for almost all vessels. The regulations have changed little since then.[1]

The International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea established in 1972 stipulates the requirements for the navigation lights required on a vessel.

Next: Why is the light on the right hand jetty red? Remember the Red Right Returning ditty. It's on the right because you are returning from the Sea (or other body of water) into the marina.

Back in the the 1980's I was running (or it was running me) a Coast Guard facility that maintained Aids to Navigation, otherwise known as a Buoy Depot (we had a much fancier name ) I can remember replacing all the black buoys with green ones. For us it was simply a matter of painting them green instead of black and the putting them back where they came from. But of course the inevitable question came up of why? Why do we do it different? The real reason is no one knows, but there are lots of pretty stories.

But in 1979 the International Association Of Lighthouse Authorities (IALA) established the buoyage system with 2 regions. Region B (North, Central and South America, the Philipines and Japan ( see a pattern here) and region A, the rest of the world. In B we do it backwards to A (or Vice Versa) Why? I put it down to same reason we still use standard (English) units of measure and everyone else use metric. Just plain contrariness.
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post #19 of 20 Old 06-27-2019 Thread Starter
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Re: Red right return .

Well , good analogy there peikenberry . But the question still remains . However I think I know why we still measure in inches . Oh boy , but now I just forgot , and do you know where my wallet is ?

Westsail 28 , Patricia A
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post #20 of 20 Old 06-28-2019
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Re: Red right return .

I still get confused going from the ocean to areas considered part of the ICW. So need to look at a chart , take a breath and think (omg) to get organized. I basically ignore colors in the Caribbean as private bouys seem to be any color or white after having faded from the sun. Have entered harbors where all of them are white either from the sun or guano. Similarly you can’t trust the sticks they place here and there. Love how people setting traps use any color they please.
I do pay attention to yellow and caution signs.
Boat is still floating so it all good.
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