The Lagoon 420’s came equipped with halogen overhead lights in the cabin and cockpit……lots of them. Last year we began switching them over to brighter, energy efficient LED lights. We finished the replacements this month. There were 12 alone in the salon/galley, and a total of 40 to replace. While considering what to put in the cockpit sitting area, where Mark recently built a large drop-leaf table, we wanted something that would provide plenty of light for card games, Mexican Train, reading, relaxing, and of course eating. There are only two lights on the hard bimini ceiling which is 9.7 feet above the cockpit floor. Even putting the brightest LED’s there wouldn’t give us the amount of light we wanted, so Mark built a hanging lamp fixture. We brought home a number of possible “shades” and ended up using a rattan basket. Inside it, Mark mounted an LED dome light with 36 warm white LEDs. We also experimented with various colors and sizes of chains and decided to use a white one. Then we had to decide how high above the table it should hang, which we determined by sitting at the table and raising the fixture until it was above our heads. After all those decisions were made, Mark ran the wires and made the adjustments.
Now we have plenty of light shining on the table and our choice of blue or white LED’s high on the bimini ceiling. (Red is the preferred color for nighttime sailing because it doesn’t ruin your night vision, but we don’t like the look of red lights in the sitting area and don’t use those lights while sailing in the dark anyway.) We also have several lighting combination choices. We can have the two bimini lights on by themselves in either the blue or white color. Or, we can just have the hanging light turned on. If we want a lot of light we can use the overhead and hanging lights, all combinations made with switches.
Only one problem remains. A hanging lamp on a boat obviously swings whenever the boat rocks. We have a way of tying off the hanging lamp in heavy weather or when sailing, but probably will get used to the swaying while anchored or moored in relatively calm water. Visitors on the boat might get hypnotized if they stare at it for too long, however, because it does tend to swing back and forth and back and forth.