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Navigation lights in shrouds

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Charles Oates28/04/2018 18:41:35
663 forum posts
52 photos

Hi all, I've been looking at some drawings of a 1930s river /coastal cabin cruiser and the port and starboard lights are mounted in the mast shrouds, just above the lifebelts. How the heck were these fastened on? I presume they were lashed on in some way, but the lights were on traditional wooden mounts and must have been heavy.

The shrouds are very simple, just two ropes each side so there wasn't much to secure them to. Any ideas?


Colin Bishop28/04/2018 18:46:37
5192 forum posts
6120 photos
421 articles

As you suggest, I think they were just tied on basically. It was quite a common arrangement which probably would not be acceptable today when arcs of visibility are more precisely prescribed.


Ian Gardner28/04/2018 20:32:14
566 forum posts
1 photos

Hello Charles,

I had just the same problem when I was building my Vic Smeed Mistral. No amount of searching could come up with the definitive answer but I did discover that the lifebelts were often mounted in the same place but on a wooden cross piece. In the end I just stuck the light boards on the shrouds with cyano and they have remained securely in place ever since.

Here are some photos of my Mistral.**LINK**

All the best,


Tim Rowe29/04/2018 10:26:16
572 forum posts
577 photos

Hi Charles

​A 1930 cabin cruiser would probably have galvanised wire for the rigging and although tying on is quite likely, another method would be to use wire rope clips to stop the board from sliding up and down.

​Commonly used is this type of arrangement where the U passes around the wire and the bolts pass through the wooden board to provide the clamping force.


Charles Oates29/04/2018 18:35:29
663 forum posts
52 photos

Gentleman, thank you all. Ian, the model is the Mistral same as yours but slightly enlarged for a project I'm working on. I'm sure that you are right about the boards for the lifebelts, I've seen something similar in the past, but had forgotten all about it.

Tim, using U bolts or wire clamps seems to be a likely answer, unless they did use rope instead of wire for the shrouds. From a modeling perspective I prefer to simulate lashing cords to making miniature U bolts so that's what I'll do.

Thanks again.


Ian Gardner30/04/2018 14:18:55
566 forum posts
1 photos


I wondered if your model might be the Mistral- a lovely old Vic Smeed design. Mine was also enlarged a little from 18'' to about 23''. I found that the shapes on the plan didn't work out quite as intended so a bit of juggling was required- although it might have been me being clumsy.

I hope you have fun building the model and look forward to seeing some photos at some stage. I know others who follow this forum are great Vic Smeed fans too.



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