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Old 06-02-2014, 11:37   #1
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Sea Anchor vs Drogue

Sooooo,

Not so much of a SA vs D thread, but wondering can you use the same thing for both.

I have a Paratech drogue. If I hang it off the bow, is it, by default, now a sea anchor?
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Old 06-02-2014, 11:56   #2
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Re: Sea Anchor vs Drogue

Drogues are much smaller, meant to reduce forward motion to a more controllable level in the case of heading down wind under bare poles or being on the downward slope of large rollers.

A sea anchor is meant to arrest motion almost completely, like an anchor would.

If you deploy a drogue or an undersized sea anchor off the bow, you run the risk still having too much sternway, which could end up damaging a rudder or allowing green water up in to your cockpit.

If I were to only have one of the types of devices aboard, I would have a sea anchor, but I have a full keeled boat that heaves-to very well. (I would typically use the sea anchor on a bridle, 45-50 off the bow, hove-to, i.e. the Pardy technique.) If I wanted to run before the wind and my speed was getting too high, I would stream lines from the stern, attaching each end to a stern cleat to make a giant loop, to reduce speed.

Fin keeled boats often have trouble properly heaving-to without fore-reaching. For those folks, it seems that the more prudent technique is to deploy a drogue and run before the wind and forget the idea of a sea anchor all together. For this purpose I think the Jordan Series Drogue is the best, or so I've heard.
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Old 06-02-2014, 12:00   #3
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Re: Sea Anchor vs Drogue

Interesting, you are probably right about the full keel vs fin keel.

More interesting is what to do in the middle, the plethora of boats that have partial fin keels, cut outs etc.
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Old 06-02-2014, 12:04   #4
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Re: Sea Anchor vs Drogue

Good observation Argyle38.
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