A Light for Stitching Aboard a Boat

We become so spoiled when away from our favorite stitching nest with all its conveniences (at least I do!), that stitching elsewhere for an extended period is a real challenge. Sometime in the future, we plan to go on extended cruises, so we have been thinking how to work the logistics of my stitching. Actually, it was John who brought up the issue, bless him!

Right now we don't have to solve the problem of where to stow supplies for an extended period, but on short cruises the lighting problem needed to be addressed, as, shall we say, my vision is not as young as it once was. (Not nearsighted yet, but I seem to need a -lot- more light.) Here's the solution we came up with.

John mounted a lamp for me so it would shine over one shoulder and work from battery power when we were on the hook. (There won't be any stitching going on when we're under way!) He took some pictures of the lamp in action, and when they're developed, I'll get them up here. Please come back.

The lamp is a "chart light" by ABI (imported, I am sure); 800-422-1301. The rectangular base is 1.25 x 2.25" and about .5" deep. There is a switch on the base. The "shade" part is 2.25" in diameter and the extension is 14" (gooseneck). Power source is 12v. Comes with a 20-watt halogen bulb (this is the same wattage as I have at home in my lamp there. Cost is $40. Brass with some brass-finished-something. Probably steel. Replacement bulbs are $11.

The stock number in the 1998 West Marine (800- ) master catalogue is #298127. (This lamp also comes with a dimmer, and although I can't see why you'd want this option, the stock number of this model is #594186. $50)

We did not worry about the steel parts. We looked a long time for anything that was solid brass and came up empty-handed, so we decided to live recklessly and if the thing eventually rusts, we'll get another.

John put up a clamp that is designed to hold those big MagLite flashlights, and I fasten the shade part into the clip when I'm finished. Didn't rattle at all while we were under way.

This lamp is a dream! It's plenty bright and with my around-the-neck magnifying glass, and it's almost like stitching at home with my regular lamp.

In addition to use on boats, if RVs have the same power source when there is no "land power" (and I don't anything about RVs), I don't see why this lamp wouldn't work for RVs, too.

copyright 1998, Martha Beth Lewis
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