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Nav/anchor light switch diode

Old 12-11-2014, 08:07 PM
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Default Nav/anchor light switch diode

The standard 2-position switch for nav and anchor lights (up for Nav and anchor and down for anchor only) appears to have a diode hooked up with the wiring on the backside. I understand the "why" of the diode.

I'm about to move some switches around and set up the dash/switch lights similarly since they are so damn bright. My plan is to have another two-position switch. One way will have gunnel/cockpit floor lights AND dash/switch lights and the other position will have switch/dash lighting only.

Anyone know what size/type/specification of diode I need?
What else do I need to know?
Old 12-12-2014, 11:37 AM
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Dot use a diode...
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Old 12-12-2014, 11:49 AM
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buy a dpdt switch as mentioned above - no diodes needed
Old 12-13-2014, 11:17 AM
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Thanks gents...that makes sense.

As a follow up, one of the reasons I'm moving switches/lights around is that the switch back lights are WAY too bright and white. So the plan was to put the switch back lights on a seperate switch. I know there are dimmers available, but I don't have a convenient spot to put another switch and don't think a knob adjust inside the console will work well for me.

Is there an easy way to replace the existing white bulbs inside the switches to red bulbs ? Less bright red bulbs would be even better. Anyone know the specs of the bulb I should be looking for?

I have the "standard" production boat switches...with incandescent (not led) bulbs. The rocker part snaps off, and the body of the switch is waterproof. Same spade layout on the back as the diagram above.
Old 12-13-2014, 11:54 AM
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The wiper motor switch on my boat has a diode for the self parking feature, maybe someone used one of those for your Nav. lights.
Old 12-13-2014, 09:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Hossharris View Post
Thanks gents...that makes sense.

As a follow up, one of the reasons I'm moving switches/lights around is that the switch back lights are WAY too bright and white. So the plan was to put the switch back lights on a seperate switch. I know there are dimmers available, but I don't have a convenient spot to put another switch and don't think a knob adjust inside the console will work well for me.

Is there an easy way to replace the existing white bulbs inside the switches to red bulbs ? Less bright red bulbs would be even better. Anyone know the specs of the bulb I should be looking for?

I have the "standard" production boat switches...with incandescent (not led) bulbs. The rocker part snaps off, and the body of the switch is waterproof. Same spade layout on the back as the diagram above.
If you put the "back lights" on a separate switch, like you planned, you could use a "DC to DC converter module, like this, (12v to 9v) - http://www.amazon.com/KEEDOX%C2%AE-C...F6BDN8585SC45W There are others with different output voltages, (6v, 5v, etc).

As far as using a diode, it saves you the trouble of buying a more expensive DPDT switch. You can use common diodes with a rating that will match the current load. 5 amp rated would be more than enough. Cover the diode and exposed wires with electrical sleeving, (clear, if you can find it).
Old 12-13-2014, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by jayyy View Post
The wiper motor switch on my boat has a diode for the self parking feature, maybe someone used one of those for your Nav. lights.
Some boats are factory wired with a single pole nav/anchor switch that uses a diode. Probably cheaper.

With dual wipers, the self park feature on some wiper motors will back feed to the switch, (single wire feeding both wipers) causing the motors to run on and on. Without diodes, the motors won't stop until they're both in sync. Another method is to use a DPST switch. Six of one, half a dozen.....

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