Thursday, November 3, 2011

aCappella's anchor light...

The highest fixed item on our boat is the anchor light.  While we can tilt down the VHF and HF radio antennas for bridges, the light on top of the arch only comes down with great effort.  It sits a full 20 feet above the water surface.  We know that any bridge lower than about 20' must be lifted in order for us to proceed through it.

No, we didn't hit a bridge.

In 2005 I changed the bulb in the anchor light.  It's an expensive halogen light that we turn on through all darkened hours at anchor.  It has burned brightly over many nights for us warning other boats that we were anchored.  Because of its technology, it consumes a fair number of amps to provide the required 2 mile range.

A couple of weeks ago there was a wonderful new LED replacement bulb at a great price from Defender (part of our Defender 1st program with them).  We purchased a couple of the bulbs with the intention of using one for the anchor light.  It has the required range but burns less than 30% the amps of the previous bulb.

So I carefully removed the sealed fitting that has guarded the existing bulb from wind, rain, and even hurricanes through the last 6+ years.  When I got the housing off there was an unexpected finding inside.  It was almost filled with dog hair.

Can anyone come up with an explanation of how this sealed container could be filled in this way?

The new bulb is wonderful, bright, and saves a lot of power.

I'm starting to wonder what my lungs look like.


Dave Gibson said...

LOL! That's great. I owned a computer shop and my service guys also found dog and cat hair inside PCs. They were mice nests. While a mouse didn't make the nest in your anchor light, is there a small hole anywhere that an insect could get in? That being said, what kind of an insect makes nests?

Anonymous said...

It’s not dog hair, it’s cat hair.

I climbed up there one night at Freds and filled it up, so that all would know you guys like all creatures, great and small


It’s probably spiders.

Wow, you’ve made good time from Norfolk. I’m guessing you’re waiting out the weather before venturing offshore to Charleston.

DF 40

Kevin in Ashland said...

Is it really dog hair?? I've had a "boatlab" myself, and the hair got everywhere but not inside a sealed anchor light! Hmm guess I should not say that there was ntohair inthe anchor light because I never looked there. However with Lab hair I bet if I could locate my old sail boat I could still find Jib's Hair in that boat - some 20 years latter! Hmm I could get some of that hair and have him cloned!

She:Kon said...

It's that same mischievous spirit that always takes one of your socks out of the dryer! ;-)

MV Red Head said...

Honest, it was dog hair and it was from our dogs. Given how long it had been since replacing the bulb, some of it could have even been from Tucker.

Here's what I think might have happened...

The light dome is totally sealed with a rubber gasket. There's really nothing that could pass through it. There wasn't a drop of moisture inside.

But inside there's access to the red/black wire pair leading out of the stainless pole. The arch is totally sealed. I'm thinking that there's a swirling mass of dog hair in the arch that finds its way up the pole, through the hole, and falls into the dome where it gets trapped.

It was just totally out of expectation to open that thing up and find it filled with dog hair.

I just know that someday an autopsy will be done on me and they'll be scratching their heads about why there's dog hair in my liver.


Del said...

The wiring chase to the bulb probably is not sealed. Halogen bulbs burn hot. When lit, the bulb heats the air column in much of the chase because air increases in volume when heated. When the bulb is shut off, the anchor light cools first because of its exposed location. The warm air in the chase rises and contracts in volume creating the updraft that is drawing Dylan's hair with it. Dyna's hair is of course too heavy to make the trip.