No idea how to anchor

AntarcticPilot

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It’s nothing to do with whether you free drop or not. (I know Geem is addicted to ‘free dropping’ his anchor). It’s simply a matter of not allowing the boat to plough the anchor backwards and snag loads of weed before it’s had a chance to dig in. How you pay the chain out is irrelevant.
I was thinking about this and realized that an anchor being dropped freely will rapidly reach its terminal velocity - an anchor has a very high surface area relative to its weight. There's also the drag on the chain. So actually, I guess that a freely dropped anchor won't actually go down very fast compared to the speed with which it would fall in air. Even the Titanic probably only hit the bottom at 30mph; an anchor is much less streamlined than she was, so I wouldn't be surprised if the velocity is only 15mph, no matter what the depth.

Wasn't there an anchor that was designed with hydrodynamic properties to allow it to "fly" to a particular location with respect to the boat? Just found it - the Flook: Flook Flying Anchors for Sale | Boat Accessories | Boats Online | New South Wales (NSW) - Sydney Region Greenwich NSW

The point is that anchors freely dropped don't hit the bottom with any great speed.
 

michael_w

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A bit late to this thread, but my favorite way of setting the anchor is:
Move slowly ahead, paying out the chain under the bows, when you've veered enough, belay and let the boat's momentum drive the anchor in. Set the snubber, anchor ball and pour the beverage of your choice. Job done.

Provisos. Have a boat with a decent bow overhang and don't go too fast or you'll damage the windlass or bow roller. Those 'flying anchors are a POS. The drag from the rode stops them from going very far.
 

Neeves

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Anchoring is meant to be simple. Simple arithmetic, a well chosen anchorage and a decent anchor (for security you will need more than one style) - and you will be most unlucky not to set first time and be secure)

Develop a committee from the members posting here - no wonder it takes 17 attempts to get an anchor to set. The 'Brits' were psychic and were testing each of the recommendation to be made on this thread.

One of the best being - I'm kind, I'll not mention, but I do wonder what variants are possible for some techniques in a full anchorage.

You can identify successful anchors - they are still in the market and you see them on bow rollers. But all credit to those that try, successful or not, they test ideas.

There is no one successful practice - it depends on both the conditions, wind, current, depth, seabed and the anchorage, available room etc etc - you need to be flexible (what works on sand will not work on squishy mud, what works on mud will not work in weed, what works in 3m depth (at low tide (with a 10m tide) needs some careful consideration of location of the anchor etc etc).

Dogmatism is unnecessary as is rejecting techniques that obviously work for the owner.

Jonathan
 
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Bouba

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Not knowing how to anchor in different localities is not a crime....but refusing to take advice should be.
A long while back in a French lock, the boat behind me asked to share my bollard...I immediately said no, but didn’t have the French to explain that the ropes would lock up and we would be left dangling sideways on the lock wall...so I knew he was miffed but I also knew it was for his safety as well....anyhow he was too far back and I knew he would would get caught up on the big concrete ledge in front of the lock gate....but he ignored all my yelling as gesticulating....he even gave me the teapot pose...the water went down and so did his bow..while his stern got stuck on the ledge...only gravity and slippery cement would save him now....his wife wasn’t impressed. Take advice....even from someone who doesn’t speak the lingo
 

Bouba

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Hmmm, you arrive at a berth, an unknown person on the pontoon shouts something while taking your mooring lines: will you "take his advice"?
I should have added ‘if you are struggling in a strange environment...do not hesitate to ask advice from a local....please understand that the stranger could be just a passing drunk madman...or axe murderer’
 

Bouba

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Such a song and dance…. Unless it’s blowing a hoolie, or the ground is especially bad, it’s hard not to anchor securely with a modern hook. Ordinary common sense, and thinking about what your anchor is doing down there is all you need.
You can just get the wrong bit of ground...I have tried to get my Rocna to bite and it just won’t....probably just a thin surface of sand over sheet rock...probably also why it’s the last available space in a crowded mooring
 

Neeves

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I should have added ‘if you are struggling in a strange environment...do not hesitate to ask advice from a local....please understand that the stranger could be just a passing drunk madman...or axe murderer’
Or a redundant actor whose last gainful employment was with Specsavers :)

Jonathan
 

ashtead

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This tale from the OP reminds me of our early days of sailing as a family and thought before buying a boat a few flots in Med etc and then a bareboat charter . We’ll recall in Croatia encountering a helpful German who gave us some instruction on anchoring after entering a bay somewhere. It was all quiet peaceful in the anchorage as we attempted to deploy the charter Bavaria tackled until our new German friend decided to jump up on his coachroof clearly displaying his own tackle as he shouted out his instructions🤣🤣. A great difference from the mud of Newtown creek but as many know the midnight rafting party isn’t unknown there or indeed at East Head so it’s not all safe in the sunny Solent -we just don’t have the floating harbour bars which seem so popular in the WI
 

Roberto

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I should have added ‘if you are struggling in a strange environment...do not hesitate to ask advice from a local....please understand that the stranger could be just a passing drunk madman...or axe murderer’
Try the other way around: once you have done something by yourself (anchoring, mooring... whatever) with a proper result, try and ask people nearby for their advice, "how would you do this or that"; my guess is out of 10 people 7 will be very convinced theirs is the one and only way (and they will most likely be different ways), 2 will say "I do like this, seems ok", 1 will admit not having a clue. A bit like the internet sometimes :)
 

john_morris_uk

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You can just get the wrong bit of ground...I have tried to get my Rocna to bite and it just won’t....probably just a thin surface of sand over sheet rock...probably also why it’s the last available space in a crowded mooring
We had exactly that in Bequia. A nice ‘hole’ in the boats and conveniently nearer the town than other available spots. Our spade anchor refused to bite. A local quickly explained that there was a sheet of flat rock there…. We thanked her and anchored first time (as usual) a little further away.
 

Bouba

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We had exactly that in Bequia. A nice ‘hole’ in the boats and conveniently nearer the town than other available spots. Our spade anchor refused to bite. A local quickly explained that there was a sheet of flat rock there…. We thanked her and anchored first time (as usual) a little further away.
Excellent…you took the advice of a local and weren’t murdered in your bed 😎
 

Chiara’s slave

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We had exactly that in Bequia. A nice ‘hole’ in the boats and conveniently nearer the town than other available spots. Our spade anchor refused to bite. A local quickly explained that there was a sheet of flat rock there…. We thanked her and anchored first time (as usual) a little further away.
Common sense applied. You didn’t try another 16 times in the same place🤣
 

Bouba

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In fact it’s the official Rocna method of anchoring…drop the chain and then reverse
 

jamie N

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I had to laugh at myself a few years ago. I'd sailed up from Inverness to Holm in Orkney, overlooked by the Italian Chapel. I'd owned my boat for only a few weeks, and had recently had some success in stopping her obvious desire to sink, so was feeling fairly smug.
Anyway, as I'm motoring towards the Churchill barrier and getting ready to anchor, it occurred to me that I'd never anchored a yacht before, ever.
The only time that I'd anchored was as a cadet running the rescue boat on Hayling Island, being told to anchor by the leeward mark, and "stay out of the way", during the OK nationals in about 1973. I'd a vague recollection from my youth of 5 or 6 times the depth to let out as scope, and carried on without anything further to report, resting well after having imbibed some local relaxant.
 

Bouba

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I had to laugh at myself a few years ago. I'd sailed up from Inverness to Holm in Orkney, overlooked by the Italian Chapel. I'd owned my boat for only a few weeks, and had recently had some success in stopping her obvious desire to sink, so was feeling fairly smug.
Anyway, as I'm motoring towards the Churchill barrier and getting ready to anchor, it occurred to me that I'd never anchored a yacht before, ever.
The only time that I'd anchored was as a cadet running the rescue boat on Hayling Island, being told to anchor by the leeward mark, and "stay out of the way", during the OK nationals in about 1973. I'd a vague recollection from my youth of 5 or 6 times the depth to let out as scope, and carried on without anything further to report, resting well after having imbibed some local relaxant.
Ahhh….the days before YouTube
 
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