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PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 12:07 pm 
faltbootemeister

Joined: Sun Dec 16, 2012 8:48 pm
Posts: 248
Location: Wisconsin, USA
For safety or visibility or aesthetics or any other reason you can think of.

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Long Haul Stretch Mark 2
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Advanced Elements Convertible
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:52 pm 
lord high faltbotmeister

Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2011 1:51 pm
Posts: 602
Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Safety first :D
I read up quite a lot on this before choosing the ccolour of my incept Tasman a couple of years back. The bay of Naples is swarming with power boats in the summer months and I thought I needed all the help I coould get...
To summarise, orange was/is recommended as the best safety colour in the water based on tests carried out in 1957, as I recall, but recently this theory has been revisited, with chartreuse (yellow green) coming out well, followed by yellow then orange. Red is very hard to see in low light apparently. If you do a search for Ambulance and colour you'll come across some research done in Australia which is also backed up by this 2011 research on colour visibility at sea http://www.worksafebc.com/contact_us/research/research_results/res_60_10_1050.asp

This research is lso reflected quite well by this comment I found on a science forum about most visible colours
http://www.scienceforums.net/topic/56291-is-it-yellow-green-or-yellow-green-color-to-which-human-eye-is-most-sensitive/

However, there is also the fact that you'll be staring at the deck colour all day in your kayak, so eye fatigue is also a factor, and bright yellow doesn't do well here:
http://www.colormatters.com/color-and-vision/color-and-vision-matters
I remember staring at uellow and green screens on my monitor for ages while I was making my mind up :D

Based on the research I could find at the time I went for bright green for my Incept, the yellowest dye I could get (not very bright) for my F1 and bought green deck and yellow hull pvc for the F1 replica I never seem to have time to finish.

You decide what you think is best :-)

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Pakboats Quest 135, Nautiraid Narak 460, 416 & K1 (sold my 550), First light 420, Feathercraft Wisper, Fujita Alpina AL-1 400, Incept k40 (for sale)
Non-folders: Cape Falcon F1. Beth sailing canoe, 2014 Hobie Adventure Island


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:08 pm 
Brotherhood of the Golden Paddle

Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2009 10:05 pm
Posts: 1379
Location: South Salem, NY
I'm guessing red would be the best of the colors Mark offers. In low light at sunrise and sunset everything becomes difficult to see and color becomes irrelevant in my experience. Most boats on the water are white, and that color shows pretty well until it's pitch black.

I'd go with the color that you want to look at all day and buy a nice bright PFD with lots of SOLAS reflective tape on it, to wear while you're out in the boat. The movement of your paddles is going to be a strong visual - Think about reflecting surfaces on the blades. I put a life line around my boat that has reflective elements in the line. This is very helpful at night. As is a nice bright flashlight.

Keeping a signal mirror handy during busy crossings might not be a bad idea.

I think color is important, but I don't think there are a lot of great color choices for our canvas boats, red is probably it. But the fact that the boats are so low to the water I really don't think color is a tremendous factor. You will appear as a silhouette or a moving object much quicker than color will distinguish you in most cases. I say this from years of experience working in NY Harbor and spotting kayakers, rafts, logs, and other large flotsam on the water while underway day and night. Unlit navigation aids are red, green, yellow and white.

Now I've got to go and look at Mark's color choices... good question.

d

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 12:00 am 
faltbootemeister

Joined: Sun Dec 16, 2012 8:48 pm
Posts: 248
Location: Wisconsin, USA
I found this information about red and it surprised me. http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/%E2%80%8Chbase/vision/rodcone.html
I think I'm still going to get Seamark Blue and a yellow velcro Spray cover. At least you can see blue in lower light better than red. Has anybody that has a yellow spray cover felt you get eyestrain with all that bright yellow?

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Long Haul Stretch Mark 2
BSD 36 HP Sport & BSD 24 HP Sport
Advanced Elements Convertible
2015 Windrider 17 white w/white & black sails


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:36 am 
Brotherhood of the Golden Paddle

Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2009 10:05 pm
Posts: 1379
Location: South Salem, NY
I think it's important to keep in mind that on the water the issue is more contrasting colors than which is more visible. Water is usually blue, gray, green or brown - red is a pretty good contrast to all of those. I know that when I looked down from my second story wheelhouse it was the red kayaks that stood out. Probably followed by yellow... but red is what I remember sighting first.

I have a blue AII, blue T9 and red Ute. I got the gray for the AII and think it was a good choice, definitely easy on the eyes from the solo center position. My T9's is gray as well and I like that. The Ute came with a yellow cover and it is definitely much more visible. I'm kinda glad it's smaller.

I opted for the gray... and I have red and yellow PFDs.

Most motor boats, fishing or ski, won't be high enough to see much of the color of your deck. My .02¢

Dennis

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2013 7:51 pm 
faltbootemeister
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Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:41 am
Posts: 221
Oh boy, should I answer this question too?..:)

We are making a transition from olive drab clothing and PFDs to a jet black all around..:) Those who saw our U-boat know what I am talking about... and how much I enjoy every black inch of it. It melts so well in nature.

A powerful large whistle, a stroboscopic light and the VHF radio on Ch. 16 add a bit to our safety. If we think a boat is coming too close, we blow the whistle and give a shout on the radio, but when in traffic we keep an eye on them and stay out of the way.

I am not suggesting black for anybody else. Do it only if you like it..:)

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:42 pm 
Brotherhood of the Golden Paddle

Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2005 3:40 pm
Posts: 1027
Location: isles of scilly UK
Black no one will see you, except in sunshine. A whistle no one will hear you. Good luck in all your adventures.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2013 11:45 pm 
lord high faltbotmeister

Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2011 1:51 pm
Posts: 602
Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Just to second that about the whistle. Mine is a divemaster duck profile shaped one billed as the world's loudest - so loud to me that I have to put my fingers in my ears when I use it. But our tests have shown that my buddies just dont hear it. :-( They all have the largest mouth operated telescoping fog horns they could find. They do seem to be more effective and carry further

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Simon

Pakboats Quest 135, Nautiraid Narak 460, 416 & K1 (sold my 550), First light 420, Feathercraft Wisper, Fujita Alpina AL-1 400, Incept k40 (for sale)
Non-folders: Cape Falcon F1. Beth sailing canoe, 2014 Hobie Adventure Island


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 12:32 pm 
faltbootemeister
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:41 am
Posts: 221
john allsop wrote:
Black no one will see you, except in sunshine. A whistle no one will hear you. Good luck in all your adventures.


Agreed...:) Black decreases your visibility... and thank you, so far, so good!

The initial question was, "What's your favorite color?", not what is the safest color...:)

As far as safety goes, I am always relying a bit more on me seeing them first and avoiding them before I need to blow the whistle, rather than relying on them to see and avoid me. Truth be told, I tend to paddle/sail as far away as possible from boats and traffic to begin with. Where I go, black is magic. Wild life seems to be more tolerant and I don't spoil the landscape in the video..:)

I use two strobe lights placed high (one is on top of the mast when sailing) when I think I should become more visible.

If you plan to paddle the NY Harbor, or similar, perhaps yellow, red, or mango would be your better choice.

That being said, if other boaters approaching you do monitor channel 16, as they should, you can always give a shout and let them know you exist... on their path...:)

You can also try a SeaSense ECO-BLAST Sport Horn ($ 19.99 at Walmart). It can be refilled and it is loud.

Cheers

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Last edited by DoiNomazi on Wed Mar 06, 2013 2:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 1:49 pm 
Site Admin

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 12:34 pm
Posts: 1694
Location: Southeast Michigan
I currently have *five* boats from Long Haul, Klepper, and Folbot in blue, red, green, and tan, and I like them all. I've had two yellow boats in the past. A number were purchased used, and I didn't have a choice.

The last one I I bought new was a tan Folbot Yukon, which prompted then-owner Phil Cotton to exclaim to me, "Tan! Nobody buys tan!!" I'd planned to use the Yukon for nature watching and photography on a local river, and picked the color specifically for low visibility. I guess Phil was right, as I just looked at the Folbot website, and they don't even offer tan as a color choice anymore.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 4:56 pm 
Brotherhood of the Golden Paddle

Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2009 10:05 pm
Posts: 1379
Location: South Salem, NY
Quote:
I use two strobe lights placed high (one is on top of the mast when sailing) when I think I should become more visible.


One all-around white light would work for your boat at night or limited visibility (it's actually for power driven vessels under 7 meters, but I've seen a lot of leeway here). Better would be the tri-color light on top of your mast. This is what bigger boats look for at night. Actually a flashlight meets the requirements for a sailing or rowed vessel under 7 meters. Strobe lights are Distress Signals and should only be used when you are in an emergency situation.

You might want to change that as you could get fined by the Coast Guard or local authority for improper lighting at night. Also, it doesn't make us kayakers look good to the 'REAL' boaters...

You can check this in Navigation Rules 23,25 and 37 (distress signal).

I think the black looks pretty cool btw.

I got a STOWMASTER manually blown fog horn. I think it's as loud as my son's trumpet. It's small but a little bulky.

d

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 11:21 pm 
faltbootemeister
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:41 am
Posts: 221
DLee wrote:
Quote:
I use two strobe lights placed high (one is on top of the mast when sailing) when I think I should become more visible.


One all-around white light would work for your boat at night or limited visibility (it's actually for power driven vessels under 7 meters, but I've seen a lot of leeway here). Better would be the tri-color light on top of your mast. This is what bigger boats look for at night. Actually a flashlight meets the requirements for a sailing or rowed vessel under 7 meters. Strobe lights are Distress Signals and should only be used when you are in an emergency situation.

You might want to change that as you could get fined by the Coast Guard or local authority for improper lighting at night. Also, it doesn't make us kayakers look good to the 'REAL' boaters...

You can check this in Navigation Rules 23,25 and 37 (distress signal).

I think the black looks pretty cool btw.

I got a STOWMASTER manually blown fog horn. I think it's as loud as my son's trumpet. It's small but a little bulky.

d


Indeed. You're absolutely right.

I never had to use them so far, day or night, but i have two of them permanently on the yak, one on the front mast and one much higher that can raised and lowered on the central mast. They can be steady white, or they can be red, or they can blink. If I'll ever think that a boat is on a collision course with my yak, I'll use both of them flashing without hesitation...:) Hopefully, I'll never have to turn them on.

Sorry for not being clear. It did sound as if I use them. My bad.
Cheers.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 11:45 pm 
faltbootemeister

Joined: Sun Dec 16, 2012 8:48 pm
Posts: 248
Location: Wisconsin, USA
Thanks for the tip on running lights. I thought about buying one to mount on top of the Kayaksailor but since I don't have it yet I don't know if that is possible. Anybody know?

The color question is interesting and DLee is most likely right about visual vantage points and not being able to see the tops of our kayaks as well as we think they should. I'm still going with the Seamark Blue w/yellow velcro spray cover and a 1.6 M KS sail (White w/blue stripes) My wife's PFD's is bright green and mine is Orange. Her paddle is a Werner Camano carbon (red blade) and mine is a Werner Skagit carbon (yellow blade). I think we'll be seen. We also have a 56 inch WindPaddle (yellow) for those times downwind where one more sail would help.

I am always very impressed with the black Commando when I see it. Batman could not have done better? :lol:

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Frank
Long Haul Stretch Mark 2
BSD 36 HP Sport & BSD 24 HP Sport
Advanced Elements Convertible
2015 Windrider 17 white w/white & black sails


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 12:59 am 
faltbootemeister
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:41 am
Posts: 221
FrankP wrote:
Thanks for the tip on running lights. I thought about buying one to mount on top of the Kayaksailor but since I don't have it yet I don't know if that is possible. Anybody know?

The color question is interesting and DLee is most likely right about visual vantage points and not being able to see the tops of our kayaks as well as we think they should. I'm still going with the Seamark Blue w/yellow velcro spray cover and a 1.6 M KS sail (White w/blue stripes) My wife's PFD's is bright green and mine is Orange. Her paddle is a Werner Camano carbon (red blade) and mine is a Werner Skagit carbon (yellow blade). I think we'll be seen. We also have a 56 inch WindPaddle (yellow) for those times downwind where one more sail would help.

I am always very impressed with the black Commando when I see it. Batman could not have done better? :lol:


Good choices, Frank! Don't mind me and my preference for black. I really mean it. We all enjoy our boats and there is plenty room on the water..:)

I don't care much about Batman, though...:) Never bothered to watch the movie.

Enjoy your new boat and don't forget to post some pictures and video.

Cheers.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:20 am 
lord high faltbotmeister

Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2011 1:51 pm
Posts: 602
Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Frank, it's worth noting that having lots of bright colours next to each other isnt necessarily going to make you any more visible and may actually have the opposite effect, with the best solution appearing to be as much of one bright colour as possible with clean (eg straight) edges.

For further reading check out this site http://www.ambulancevisibility.com/

E.g. http://www.ambulancevisibility.com/index.php?p=1_44 has articles on the high contrast Battenburg pattern and why some emergency services no longer use it.

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Simon

Pakboats Quest 135, Nautiraid Narak 460, 416 & K1 (sold my 550), First light 420, Feathercraft Wisper, Fujita Alpina AL-1 400, Incept k40 (for sale)
Non-folders: Cape Falcon F1. Beth sailing canoe, 2014 Hobie Adventure Island


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