Date: Mon Nov 19, 2001 12:12 pm

As part of the offshore upgrade campaign in 1997-98, I installed a tricolor mastop light plus strobe, which has proved power efficient. I was concerned with repeated spray/immersion exposure of the pulpit lights, and with power consumption, as well as lack of visibility.

I would consider LED lights today at the top, if I could be convinced of their reliability and if their cost has come down since 98. I have had problems with LED clusters bought 3 years ago, I hope they are more reliable and long-lasting now. I have converted all cabin lights to cheaper halogen instead, which give a better, stronger lighting inside for a quarter of the power. I kept only one LED for nightlight above the kitchen area, for off watch's sake. Only my spreader lights are still 12v incandescent bulbs, because they are so rarely used, until they give up, at which point I may try halogen there too.

So, consider halogen bulbs, unless you are convinced about LED reliability and price. Just don't touch the bulbs with naked fingers or greasy, dirty gloves, as you install them.

A red LED cluster, which proved insufficient for the chart table, was tested on the pulpit port navlight, and worked very well. It is used as a back up, never proved necessary as yet. But I wouldn't buy LED again unless convinced that cost and reliability are much improved.

Date: Mon Nov 19, 2001 2:59 pm

I would concur with Bert's observation regarding upgrading the masthead to a tricolor/strobe. I have no information to help decide if in fact LED has become more reliable or not in the past few years.

Date: Tue Nov 20, 2001 9:41 pm
I appreciate your response. I chekced the ground wires in the head where they lead up to the mast and they were showing good continuity to ground at that point. One was a light green color and the other was the traditional black. I suppose my next step is to unlimber the old bosun's chair.