steaming mast light install?

i just bought a sailboat that doesnt have a steaming light. From looking online they cost close to $500, and thats not including the install of running it down in the mast, etc. Can someone tell me how much they think it would cost, (like if that 500 is accurate) and also how would you go about running it down in the mast? Since I'm a new boat owner I'm hesitant to start drilling holes in my mast.

I will mention the electrical panel does have a switch for that light already.

5 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    All boat owners hate to drill holes but in this case it's normal. The bigger issue is that every few years, you need to "unstep" the mast. When you do so, you'll find wires to the mast head, for the anchor light, any radio or Instruments mounted there. You might find foam padding to keep stuff from rattling inside the mast......It's all normal. While your at it, spreaders need a close inspection and every fitting and cable end needs close inspection. Replace the bulb in every light mounted and make sure the wind indicator is in good condition.

    Now, having said that, when was this last done on your boat? Ask your boat yard how they unstep mast, and what they charge.....then ask around at other yards. Some do this so often it's no big deal and it's much less expensive. others don't do it much and are not equipped to do it, so they charge a lot more. Once down, you can mount the light yourself or hire a rigger to do it.

    I'd plan everything you want to do and do that at the end of the season, (winter) or next spring. Unless there is a pressing need. You need to get to know your boat this year. You might find other things you want to do, like replace a radio, I'd wait.

    Good Luck!

  • 1 decade ago

    What size vessel do you have? $500 seems high for a mast head light, or an all around or even a tri-color.

    Not to support any on line retailer - but I found a 12 volt tri-color for vessels less than 65' for under $100 at Defender and Jamestown. We have 120vAC Navigation lights and the fixtures are no where near $500. You biggest cost will be the install. If you do this during pre launch you may get it done cheaper. If you only need it a few times I have seen some raise a light on a halyard.

    Good Luck - Boat Safe!

  • 4 years ago

    On my boat, a 1981 Seidelmann 37, the steaming light and anchor light are in a single fixture, on top of the mast. It is split, with two bulbs, the front half being the steaming light, and both are the anchor light. This may be the setup you have. While most have the steaming light half or three quarters of the way up on the mast, as far as I know the set up like my boat is perfectly legal. These fixtures are easily available, as I just replaced mine a short time ago, and was no problem finding one.

  • 1 decade ago

    I bought a new steaming light / deck light last year that cost me about $30. I'm not sure what you're looking at for $500, but this is what I got for my 30 foot sailboat.

    Installation instructions for mounting the light and running wiring are included. Here is another website that gives tips on running wires inside a mast.

    If the existing switch includes a breaker, or fuse, ok. If not you should add one. There should be an overload breaker or fuse on every circuit.

    Before, drilling more holes, look for existing holes near the spreaders that could be used for mounting.

    Something you might consider as a new boat owner is not putting the steaming light on this year. You might want to wait a year or so before going out at night and by not putting the steaming light on, you're removing that possible temptation.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • Orion
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    First check that the switch is not already operating a light at mast top or midway up mast.

    A combination spreader deck light/motoring light runs about 80 dollars at west marine.

    You can also purchase a battery powered light that you can run up a halyard.

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.