Jon Boat Running Lights

Discussion in 'Boat Modification Journal' started by Frog Legs, Mar 6, 2008.

  1. Frog Legs

    Frog Legs New Member

    Messages:
    297
    State:
    Illinois
    I am rigging up my 1760 Lowe Roughneck with some running lights to get up and down the river. What do other guys with jon boats use? I just have a 25hp. so I won't be going the speed of light! Rusty
     
  2. AwShucks

    AwShucks New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    Guthrie, Oklaho
    There are temporary lights you can get at Bass Pro, Academy, and Walmart stores that clamp to the front for running lights and another you clamp on the stern for you anchor/stern light. Then, each store generally has lights you can fasten to the boat in a permanent manner and run wire from a switch, a switch panel, or (bad move) directly from a battery. One point to keep in mind is the stern light must be visible on a 360 degree circle. Even your body is to not block a view of the stern light. You can get the fixture that is fastened to the boat, and a separate light on a pole slid into the fixture to turn the light on. For my boat, I require a 4' light pole to meet this requirement.
     

  3. Frog Legs

    Frog Legs New Member

    Messages:
    297
    State:
    Illinois
    Lawrence, I was thinking more about front lights to see the river with than the legal navigational lights. Thanks Rusty
     
  4. bigBB

    bigBB Member

    Messages:
    242
    State:
    St.Louis, MO
    they have what are called "docking lights" that some ppl use. I'm not sure that they are legal to run down the river with though. I usually just use a hand held spot light. mounted lights are pretty much never where you need them to be while under way.
     
  5. AwShucks

    AwShucks New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    Guthrie, Oklaho
    I do believe its illegal to mount headlights onto a boat. Seems like I read that in the US Coast Guard Rules, which all state abide by...the only exception I can remember it making was for docking lights. You'd probably be better off as suggested to use a hand held spotlight.
     
  6. txthumper1691

    txthumper1691 New Member

    Messages:
    399
    State:
    Temple, Tx.
    I took some lights off an old pontoon an mounted them on th side of my jon boat, they swivel so if I need a spotlight I use one of them. hooked'em up to my trollin battery thru a fuse box an they work fine for me. didnt know it was illegal to have front lights on a jon boat.
     
  7. Todd Strong

    Todd Strong Active Member

    Messages:
    1,023
    State:
    Cambridge, Ne
    The remote spotlights are nice, gets the light to the front of the boat, reduces glare and the driver can control the light.
     
  8. dledinger

    dledinger New Member

    Messages:
    34
    State:
    NC
    I've got rubber "utility lamps" from Wally World. They seem to work ok.....and the price was right.

    My real workhorse is a handheld spotlight.
     
  9. JEFFRODAMIS

    JEFFRODAMIS New Member

    Messages:
    2,537
    State:
    TEXAS
    anybody know the legality of lights on a boat in texas?

    i knwo the required lights but not sure about "headlights"
     
  10. catwhisper

    catwhisper New Member

    Messages:
    456
    State:
    georgia
    i know in ga you can only use running lights except when docking. you cannot use spotlights to run with.
     
  11. The local authorites here in PA told me it is illegal to run with them on, but not to have them on the boat. As in cases when you are anchored and fishing, docking or loading unloading, or navigating a very hazardous condition where they are a neccesity for safety. It comes down to what kind of day the officer has been having also. I have them on my boat and use them when I see fit, I'm usually the only one out there anyway. Plus it helps to be buddy with the game commision. ;)
     
  12. Jeremy Sheffey

    Jeremy Sheffey New Member

    Messages:
    2,388
    State:
    Columbus, Ohio
    i have the clamp on lights for my Jon Boat... they work good enough to pass inspection.... however i would just get a spotight... thats what i use on mine... i dont think you are aloud to run with head lights on ether, but i know when i go out with some of my buddies and we are running alot faster, when the fog and all is on, we use a spotlight...
     
  13. Neal F.

    Neal F. New Member

    Messages:
    62
    State:
    Gwd SC
    I have 2 kc lights on the front of my boat w/a toggle switch at the back to turn them on. When I run the river they light the whole river up no need for a handheld spotlight.
     
  14. JEFFRODAMIS

    JEFFRODAMIS New Member

    Messages:
    2,537
    State:
    TEXAS
    im thinking of running low wattage LEDs inside the boat and something like the kc lights for..when i need em....
     
  15. AwShucks

    AwShucks New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    Guthrie, Oklaho
    Nea. I understand where your coming from.... the question is... is it legal in your state? If your state has adopted USCG rules and regulations, it is illegal.
     
  16. CatFuStyle

    CatFuStyle New Member

    Messages:
    211
    State:
    Xenia, Ohio
    this might be a dumb question, i dont have a boat but with my common sense wouldnt having some kinda of light on the front to see ahead of you be a sensible thing, i mean thats like the dmv and police telling us its illegal to have our headlights on on our cars and trucks but only when neccessary and only for parking?
     
  17. AwShucks

    AwShucks New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    Guthrie, Oklaho
    Well Brandon, it really is not a dumb question. Most people have tried to run a boat at night with a fixed light, only to find it is extremely difficult to keep the light on the water in front of you. With the swells and waves, the light may be five feet in front of your boat one minute and pointing at the moon the next second. You can't keep it fixed on one general area. Secondly, it is extremely easy to outrun the light...if it illuminates 40 feet of water in front of you...how much reaction time do you have when you finally see a tree trunk or pallet, or other obstruction floating in the water. Normally you have all ready hit it. Third, past experiences show that boats with headlights have a tendency to blind other boaters, causing them to hit the tree, or the bridge piling, or to even run into your boat. Fixed headlights are just bad ideas, but a hand held spotlight can normally solve the problem... light is there when you need it, its directed to where is is most beneficial, and no moron should blind an oncoming boat with a hand held light. But even though we encourage people to check their states laws and regulations, you will find those who are above the law and will do as they want. In many cases, fixed lights on a boat will wash out the red/green running lights, which is most definitely illegal.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2010
  18. JEFFRODAMIS

    JEFFRODAMIS New Member

    Messages:
    2,537
    State:
    TEXAS
  19. CatFuStyle

    CatFuStyle New Member

    Messages:
    211
    State:
    Xenia, Ohio
    Thanks for the explanation, it just didnt make sense but that makes perfect sense once again thanks
     
  20. Neal F.

    Neal F. New Member

    Messages:
    62
    State:
    Gwd SC
    Lawrence,thank you for letting me know never thought it was illegal,but the river I run I have hit some pretty big chunks of wood.Will look into it.