Searchlight install

I just found a great deal on a golight stryker searchlight with the mounted controls to go on my lil rinker 230 EC.  We are always out at night and often travel from the local tie up to our overnight cove after the sun is down so I know this will get some use.  I want to duplicate what a lot of the bigger rinkers have, SS plate welded at the front of the bow rail and mount the light onto it and run the wires through the bow rail back to the wired controls.  Has anyone done this upgrade or have any pointers.  Being a small cruiser im really hoping the bow rail is thick enough and hollow to run the wires.  
2007 230 ECC 350 Mag MPI Alpha 1


  • Dream_InnDream_Inn Annapolis, MDPosts: 4,497Member, Moderator mod
    I would think the most economical way of mounting is to use a bracket that you bolt onto the rail.  You could make one or have it made, but instead of welding, just use U-bolts to hold it into the V of the rails.  I would think if you welded, then you'd have to get all of it replated.  On my first boat, I just used a hand held one that was pretty decent as well, just an option. 

    I will say that I really don't use mine as much as you'd think.  First off, using the light at night really affects your night vision, so you use it sparingly (I have one bridge I have to go under and depending on tide, I may not fit under, and it is less than 20 feet wide (which seems tight with my boat at times).  Also there are a couple of markers near my marina that aren't lit that I'll look for if I need to.

    Let us know what you decide and post pics to help others out!

    Dream 'Inn III -- 2008 400 Express

  • Cableguy GregCableguy Greg Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 3,458Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    I agree with not using it at night. I rarely use my light as well. Maybe because I am in the city and there is a lot of ambient light around. On my last boat, I had a handheld light as well. One of my pet peeves are the people that thing that the spot light and/or docking lights are headlights. They don't realize that the other boaters can't tell if they are coming or going, or they are blinding the other boaters.
    2008 280 Express Cruiser, 6.2MPI, B3, Pittsburgh, PA
    Go Steelers!!!
  • MarkBMarkB OntarioPosts: 3,046Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    Also if you weld, you may have to take the rail off to avoid the risk of burning the gel coat. The attached posts will become really hot and conduct heat to the base. 

    Boat Name: King Kong

    "Boat + Water = Fun"

  • JohnCostellloJohnCostelllo Posts: 50Member
    edited December 2015
    Hey Guys where do you feed the wire    It looks like I can snake the wire through the bow rail but can't get it out to the cockpit??
    Post edited by raybo3 on
  • Michael TMichael T Posts: 6,347Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    The bow rail should be hollow and using a wire "snake" you should be able to pull it's wiring through the rail then either have it go through the hull via a sealed deck port or under the rail - if that's possible. I have seen bolt on plates that look excellent. As well it should be very easy to have one manufactured that wraps around your rail and could be fastened from underneath with some SS screws. I think the whole project is very doable. I agree with @markB that you have to be careful if welding. Some specialty SS welders with the newer specialized equipment could likely do it without damaging your gel coat. I would be more worried about discoloring your adjacent SS than damaging the gel coat. IMO price a wrap-around plate that slides on from the front and is fastened with screws. It should look great and work well.
  • rasburyrasbury Sanford, FLPosts: 4,236Member ✭✭✭✭
    I'd avoid the welding as well as that's where it will rust. I have one from Rinker and I do like having it while I don't use it that much, when I need it, it's there. Did use it the other night for the first time as I seldom am on the water after dark going anywhere but we thought we should try it in familiar territory...worked like a charm and could not have made it back without some sort of a light. Mine is snaked through the bow rail and assume it goes through the hull through one of the bases to the bow rail and then to the helm.Should not be that big of a job (my famous last words). That being said, if I did not have the mounted spot I think I would just do the hand held but I understand the want!
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