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Old 06-27-2010, 12:49 AM   #1
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Has anyone used a signaling laser? Have one aboard? What do you think of it?
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Old 06-27-2010, 12:12 PM   #2
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What's a signaling laser? I have an LED flashlight with a little red laser light - something like that?
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Old 06-27-2010, 04:18 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by JeanneP' date='27 June 2010 - 02:12 PM View Post

What's a signaling laser? I have an LED flashlight with a little red laser light - something like that?
I think, maybe, something like this

I have no experience of these myself but have also been considering their usefulness. Any advice will be gratefully received.

//Stephen
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Old 06-28-2010, 04:36 PM   #4
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I cannot imagine, how they can be of any help!

- We all know these small pointers serious people use for their presentations and students bring to school to irritate their teachers. Even though they are small they carry the warning that they should not be pointed diretly into the eyes... I guess, these cannot be used as search lights.

- there are stronger laser lights on the (grey) marked that were in the media here in Europe last winter because some kids used them to ¬*seriously irritate landing airline captains (it must have been like looking into the sun for a fraction of a second - you don't see anything for another minute!). ¬*If laser lights are used for rescue purposes, they must be strong and therefore big cortions must be taken not to harm the retina of a nearby person!

- years ago german yachting magazined issued the warning not to look at Swedish navy ships with your binoculars as they work with laser lights for whatever ¬*(maybe secret) reason. It can harm the eyes. That impressed me the way that I did not look at Swedish navy ships at all¬*¬*¬*.

- Using a laser light might have an incredible effect once you directly point on the MOB wearing some reflective gear. But as the laser beam is sooooo narrow it is easier to win a lottery than to find the MOB with this beam.¬*

So, I am not convinced that the laser light is the solution. I stick to a handheld LED-Light that bundles its beam.

Uwe

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Old 06-28-2010, 04:50 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Aquaria' date='28 June 2010 - 07:36 PM View Post

I cannot imagine, how they can be of any help!
Your points are very valid on the assumption that a laser always have a narrow concentrated beam.

So we either have a more dangerous than effective device, a marketing misnomer, or wide angle laser beam utilized here.

Interestingly google did find some hits for "wide angle laser beam".
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Old 06-28-2010, 05:42 PM   #6
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... the once we know from the cashiers scanner in the super market or , even better, the light shows beamers scanning the audience in rock concerts? ¬*I.e. sending a vertical wide angle beam across the horizon. That sounds interesting!

Uwe

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Old 06-28-2010, 08:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nausikaa' date='27 June 2010 - 09:18 AM View Post

I think, maybe, something like this

I have no experience of these myself but have also been considering their usefulness. Any advice will be gratefully received.

//Stephen
Yes, exactly this sort of thing. The advertising on the site you link to says the following:

These up-to-the-minute devices offer a simple and effective way of pinpointing your position to a rescue ship or aeroplane searching for you. The laser "torch" emits a fan-shaped beam which is pointed at the target and moved slowly back and forth across it. The rescue crew will see a flashing red light which they will be able to home in on.

Laser flares and lights have a number of advantages over pyrotechnic flares for guiding rescuers to the casualty:

1. Longer in-use life. A typical white pyrotechnic flare, a one-off device, lasts for less than a minute whereas the Rescue Laser Flares and Lights last for hours. Whilst this depends on the weather and the amount of ambient light, in clear conditions and no ambient light the laser devices can be seen out to 20 miles (30 miles in the case of the Rescue Laser Flare Green) by night. By day they are visible out to 3 miles.

2. Location. Laser flares and lights can be used to illuminate reflective materials such as those on oilskins and lifebuoys out to a range of 1 mile.

3. Ease of use. Having a simple twist method of switching on and off, laser flares and lights are easy to use.

4. Safety. Laser flares and lights are battery powered and are not a fire hazard. They are much safer to use than a pyrotechnic flare and they can be carried by air.


I don't know anything about them, but I do know that we carry a quantity of flares because of their short-lived nature. Having something last longer I would think is a very good thing. But, I don't know anything else about them.
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Old 06-29-2010, 06:02 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquaria' date='28 June 2010 - 06:36 PM View Post

- years ago german yachting magazined issued the warning not to look at Swedish navy ships with your binoculars as they work with laser lights for whatever ¬*(maybe secret) reason. It can harm the eyes. That impressed me the way that I did not look at Swedish navy ships at all¬*¬*¬*.

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Hi Uwe,

The warning you read should have applied to many warships - not just Swedish. Lasers are used by warships for measuring distance to other objects. They can also be used to "paint" a target to guide missiles.

Incidentally, NAUSIKAA will be in the water again next week. Young Philip Steven and I will be at sea for four weeks. Be in touch if you are heading towards Denmark.

Stephen
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Old 08-30-2010, 12:55 AM   #9
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The survival laser I had read about (never used one) sounds good. The person who needs help points the laser at someone. The laser has a lens that creates an pie shaped wedge of light. This make it easier to hit someone's eye. They will notice the red light and come investigate. If you don't think lasers has a big affect why did the FAA make them against the law to point at a plane...

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Old 07-03-2014, 02:34 PM   #10
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Howdy,

I came across this thread/topic today while reading this section of the forum. Obviously it is an older thread (2010) but a topic which should be of anyone today (or future).

The "Rescue Laser" IS designed to be seen at sea (or land) and is designed differently from the cheap pointer lasers that have a narrow beam (the cheap lasers kids buy at a store for fun).

As of this writing (July 2014) there are numerous videos on Youtube that show the Laser Flares in use on the water. Worth your time to view the videos? I think so. It may not be YOU that is using one of these new signaling devices in the future, but you might see one on the water some night/day and IF you know what it is, you might just save someone else!

There are different designs for these laser flares.

Here is a link to one device (ODEO) that is specifically designed for the marine use. It floats.
Odeo Flare :: #1 in eVDS

There is a very good test by Yachting Monthly mag on a youtube video.
ODEO Laser Flare Review - YouTube

Watch that. Seeing the light in actual use is better than reading about it in a mag article.

The "flash" of the laser light does look different.

Here is a review of only ONE device (ODEO) by respected magazine Practical Sailor (mag):

The ODEO Laser Flare - Practical Sailor Article


Here is another magazine review worth reading on this topic. However, this one is a bit dated and does not review multiple devices. But it does give very interesting TEST results from field testing (by pilots). Good info on the topic.

EQUIPPED TO SURVIVE (tm) - Rescue Laser Flare Review
_____
NOTE: I do not sell these devices, I have no connection in any way with anyone that does. I am posting this information for purpose of discussion on a topic started earlier by someone else.
_____

Will I buy one for my future yacht?

Most likely, yes. But, that same $250 or so could also buy a LARGE quantity of 26.5 mm parachute flares that each last 20 seconds and go up hundreds of feet and are VERY bright and very difficult to mistake for anything but a distress signal when seen at night (or day) when on the water.

That said, a "Laser Flare" is very small, compact, waterproof, does NOT cause fires, can be operated by anyone with ONE hand, and would pack well in a GRAB situation or Abandon Ship bag. AND, it is something one COULD take with one on a dinghy if taking any longer night trips by dinghy or kayak etc. And, it does have a longer "shelf life" and "burn time" than any single pyro flare. Choices, choices.

Safe Sailing!
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Old 07-03-2014, 04:19 PM   #11
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You could also buy a bucketload of signal mirrors for $250.00

I've heard of people being jailed for shining a laser at aircraft.
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Old 07-03-2014, 05:58 PM   #12
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You could also buy a bucketload of signal mirrors for $250.00

I've heard of people being jailed for shining a laser at aircraft.
I understand.

These lasers are designed to be signals. Different. And according to the reviews I read, there is no danger to the pilot. (See linked articles for more on that.)

Signal mirrors work very well during the day (and can even reflect moonlight on full moon nights), but the do NOT work so well at night.

Flares and "Laser Flares" are intended to work best at night, though some are visible during day too.
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Old 07-04-2014, 04:05 PM   #13
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... I've heard of people being jailed for shining a laser at aircraft.
If I was adrift and dying of dehydration in the middle of the ocean, after having my boat sink from under me... jail would sound pretty good
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