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Old 13-12-2007, 10:28   #31
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Originally Posted by marc View Post
Kanani,

Great stuff.
I have a 15' Para-Tech anchor that I've never used or tried, but everything you've said, confirmes to me how I thought about doing it.
About deployment, PT recommends throwing the "rode deployment bag" into the water following the anchor deployment bag, and just let everything straighten itself out. Seems haphazard to me. Have you ever tried this method?

Thanks, Marc
Marc,

I have never tried it that way, I just kept enough rode in the cockpit to give me time to make my way to the bow, releasing the rode lashings along the way. I think that I might be a little concerned about the length of time that it would take to come up taught on the rode, if I through it all in at once and laid ahull that long. Even if you deploy the rode from the cockpit, you will still have to release your lashiings along the deck, all the way to the bow. No matter what you do, you will need to go forward at some point. In my mind, the sooner you get the bow to windward, the better. I could usually get the bow up in less than 2 minutes. However, that was a pretty hairy 2 minutes. I just can't see how it can be avoided. Just imagine if you wait to attach the para-anchor until you are ready to deploy it....I don't even want to think about it.

Besides, I didn't see the need to carry an extra 400' of anchor rode when I kept that much in my anchor locker (attached to my chain) anyway.

I liked being able to pull up on the rode early and bring the bow up quickly. Then let the rode out slowly while the boat is riding comfortably, bow to seas & wind.

I can't emphasize enough how important it is to practice with it, in moderately heavy weather (20-30kts). Even if you have to pick a nasty day and head out of port and motor into soup, if you have to. Go out a couple miles and deploy it. You will be able to sit on it for an hour or two safely and still have plenty of sea room. If you do practice with it, I guaranty you that it will change your thinking about heavy-weather tactics forever. There is just no need to keep going when it gets uncomfortable, when you have the ability to just "Park-it" in comfort.

Work out what works best for you and your boat. My system may not work well for you. After you are finished, just hang the para from a halyard, hose it off, let it dry then pack it back in the bag.

The other thing that I wanted to mention. I have never deployed my para-anchor in over 50kts. I just don't know if it could be done safely in stronger winds than that. I prefer to deploy early and sleep out the storm in comfort. If I deploy it and the wind dies (which has happened), I've lost nothing. It's the same principal as reefing early.
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Old 13-12-2007, 10:49   #32
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Thanks Kanani,

I like your common sense approach.

On another note, what sort of nav lights or day shapes did you display, when anchored for long periods.

Marc
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Old 13-12-2007, 11:25   #33
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Originally Posted by marc View Post
Thanks Kanani,

I like your common sense approach.

On another note, what sort of nav lights or day shapes did you display, when anchored for long periods.

Marc
In weather like that, way out at sea, day shapes are the last thing on your mind. However, I did run an anchor light (not that anyone could see it). I also ran my radar and manned my VHF, in case of a ship sighting (which I never had in those conditions). When the wind gets over 60, you can't see much anyway because the air is so full of spray and foam, it's hard to see the foredeck. Radar is your only defence in those conditions.

It should be mentioned that commercial ships have the ability to turn and out-run most of this stuff. If there is a gale blowing, there is less chance of any commercial traffic in the area. They don't like that stuff any more than we do and they have the ability to avoid it in most cases, which we don't.
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Old 13-12-2007, 13:36   #34
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Originally Posted by Kanani View Post
Seeratlas,


My Passport 45 ketch is 20-tons. I would sit on my parachute on 5/8" nylon rode in any conditions. The stress on lines while towing a drogue are far higher than the stress of sitting to a para-anchor because the boat is stopped behind the Parachute. The boat towing a drogue is under way with some pretty extreme loads. You'd be absolutely amazed at how utter chaos can turn to relative calm in the most horrendous conditions. If you've never tried it, there is no way that you could imagine the difference. Every time that I go onto the parachute, I am amazed at the difference.

.
I believe you have the loads generated by lying to a stern drogue vs para anchor off the bow 180 out. Far less loading from the stern deployed drogue.
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Old 13-12-2007, 14:49   #35
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I believe you have the loads generated by lying to a stern drogue vs para anchor off the bow 180 out. Far less loading from the stern deployed drogue.
I suppose that is debatable and I respect your opinion. The only way to know for sure, of course, would be to put a pull scale on them in the exact same conditions.

I can tell you for certain that running before a long warp alone (with no drogue attached) applies a tremendous amount of stress on the line. Once a drogue is attached it multiplies the stress dramatically, that's what makes them more effective than a bare warp. The fact that the vessel is still making about 4+kts through the water, even with the drogue attached, makes me feel that the stress could be higher than a vessel that is lying motionless to a para-anchor that is merely subjected to the forces of the wind. I will grant you that the vessel is also pushed back (although not as much as you might think) by the impending seas the shock loading can be tremendous but most of that momentum is absorbed by the flexing of the parachute and stretching of the line. Although I really have no basis for this assumption other than personal experience under both types of conditions.

I know that the one time that I did cut away a drogue, the line snapped like someone fired a shotgun. I was really quite amazed.
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Old 13-12-2007, 17:43   #36
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Originally Posted by marty9876 View Post
one reason against the deployment off the bow was the potential to pull thebow under water.
Theres a solution to that problem.
Nicely deployed during storm which then lightens off and before the crew retrieve the para anchor it sinks deep into the water, the still high sea state may hold the bow down while a big wave slides over the top.
This scenario is solved if there is a bigger fender used at the head of the canopy as the trip line. It has a duel job, make it retrievable and to keep the chute from sinking. Obviously that trip line can't be too long, so another line is added with another float. Solves the chance of the trip line tangling around the chute too.


in Lin and Larry Pardys book they first set the para anchor with a light fender and it was dragged down under. the next time they used it they put a larger fender and that kept it up.


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Old 14-12-2007, 08:50   #37
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According to the Para-Tech setup instructions, a large float is connected to the built-in tether that is attached to the apex of the canopy. The tether is about 30' long, for a 15' chute, thus limiting how deep it will sink. The trip line is then connected to the large float.
Since the Pardeys' were using a surplus military chute, there was no built-in tether to limit sinking, so they had to learn through trial and error. I would think the biggest danger when using a sea anchor is allowing it to sink. The enormous downward pull could be disasterous.

Marc
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Old 14-12-2007, 09:57   #38
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According to the Para-Tech setup instructions, a large float is connected to the built-in tether that is attached to the apex of the canopy. The tether is about 30' long, for a 15' chute, thus limiting how deep it will sink. The trip line is then connected to the large float.
Since the Pardeys' were using a surplus military chute, there was no built-in tether to limit sinking, so they had to learn through trial and error. I would think the biggest danger when using a sea anchor is allowing it to sink. The enormous downward pull could be disasterous.

Marc
The only way that the parachute could sink would be if there was little to no strain on the anchor rode, as while motoring up to retrieve it. If you have a large float, there's no problem. If for some odd reason, the float gets away, the chute will sink rather quicky while motoring up.

In that event there will probably still be a swell running so it could be very difficult to retrieve. Here is what I did, the first time that I deployed the chute and it sank upon retrieval.

I fell back on the anchor rode and let it tighten up again. It was still blowing quite hard so the chute came to the surface in about 10 minutes. However, if the wind were lite, I think that you could accomplish the same thing by motoring in reverse. With 400'+ of rode out the angle was not enough to pull our bow down.

Once the chute was on the surface, we were able to pull the boat up to the chute by hand and windlass rope gypsy (being careful to keep enough stress to keep the chute on the surface). It was hard, I will admit but we took our time and we were able to get close enough to the chute to grab one of the long chute shroud lines (close to the anchor rode) and pull that one line in enough to start spilling water out of the chute. We pulled the chute aboard sideways.
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Old 19-02-2013, 00:31   #39
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Well this thread gets me a bit excited since on my old boat I used different tactics and dismissed the para anchor as too complicated and too much hassle. But when we bought out new boat it has a new para anchor and a heap of rode (yet to be measured) I had thought of just selling it but now I think I will test it a few times and see if its worth taking up its space. I hope it will be because if it works as good as what is written than it sounds like a great tool.
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Old 19-02-2013, 02:11   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marc
Thanks Kanani,

I like your common sense approach.

On another note, what sort of nav lights or day shapes did you display, when anchored for long periods.

Marc
You are not anchored , so running lights
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Old 19-02-2013, 02:16   #41
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Originally Posted by rtbates

I believe you have the loads generated by lying to a stern drogue vs para anchor off the bow 180 out. Far less loading from the stern deployed drogue.
Correct on my experience. On a modern boat without extremely good attachment point forward, I would not consider deploying a sea Anchor. In fact have used one once, never again. If I can't run off , I forereach under tiny main and engine. This often can be managed with a modern autopilot, getting the crew away from the wheel.

Series drogues put of the stern need to be carefully calibrated to slow the boat not stop it. Again I prefer towing a large warp.

Dave
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Old 19-02-2013, 03:46   #42
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Re: Heavy weather tactics. Anyone want to share experience with sea anchors or warps

FWIW,

I have used Drogues twice. First Time it was a little plastic squid thing on a S&S 34, halfway across the Tasman heading for Bluff, we put it out on 50 odd meters of old climbing rope with about 5 meters of chain at the end, then the squid.

Hopeless, the line was far to short and the drogue was only about a half way up the wave behind us.

We would start surfing down the wave and the climbing rope would stretch like a bungy, snatching us back with much violence, and ripping the drogue clear of the water to skip forward 15 meters or so.

Then we would accelerate again repeating the cycle, eventually we chucked a anchor warp out as well and this stopped the drogue skipping.

It did hold the stern up and stop the worst of the uncontrollable surfing, we found the boat wanted to crab sideways rather than lie with the wind dead astern. As she moved ahead the drogue would angle to follow us and eventually the boat would lie maybe 30 degrees of the wind. So we had to hand steer her to keep the drogue upwind of us.

The next time I used one was heading to antarctica on Snowpetrel. I ran a proper plastic seabrake on at least 150 meters of 16mm poly, with 10 meters of chain.

It was much better, but the seas were also much smaller, although before dropping the drogue in we been knocked down.

We still had problems with the drogue not lying upwind and us wanting to head off on a broad reach, and It needed the windvane to hold the bow down.

I had a series drogue on-board but I was saving it for the ultimate storm...

I can think of many times that being able to put a sea anchor out and park up for the night would be nice, but the loads on the warp scares me!

I have hove to in an odd way before, with just a backed storm jib and the helm up presenting the stern quarter to the waves. It was comfy enough, but we had a decent wave roll her badly and gave me a bit of a fright
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Old 19-02-2013, 05:15   #43
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pirate Re: Heavy weather tactics. Anyone want to share experience with sea anchors or warps

I experimented with trailed warps.. home made cone drouges and a sea anchor when I got my 1st boat in '85... as a solo sailor... was not overly impressed.. to much faffing about and hassle getting back in... it knackered me and I was 30's and fit..
Only really like simple things that can be done effectively single-handed.. so far I've been happy enough with my 2 tactic's... heaving to or laying a-hull.. depending on the type of sea being generated.
Still not lost or seriously damaged a boat yet with those tactic's... and its not through lack of weather...
Horse's for course's..

Edit; Did crack the bridgedeck on a Catalac about 15miles S of Trafalgar... got caught by a sudden gale (unforecast) that went from F4 to 50kts wind over tide in minutes... needed both engines to keep her head to wind while I furled the jib and reefed the main... felt I could not turn in the sea's without serious risk of capsize.
As I had loads of fuel and Barbate was only 20 odd miles away I decided to crab in that direction... then my crew reported ankle deep water over the sole in both hulls... then the pumps broke.. but we made it in... shadowed by the Barbatte lifeboat that I'd Pan Pan'd with the situation and was standing by in case the crew needed taking off.
The crack ran hull to hull under the anchor locker just behind a timber beam.. I assume we came down on something pretty solid which made a break then the sea just enlarged it.. it was 5 days before any of us ventured out again
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Old 20-02-2013, 02:21   #44
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Originally Posted by goboatingnow

You are not anchored , so running lights
Not exactly,
You are restricted in your ability to maneuver.

Rule 27 - Vessels not under command or restricted in their ability to manoeuvre

(b) A vessel restricted in her ability to manoeuvre, except a vessel engaged in mine clearance operations, shall exhibit:
(i) three all-round lights in a vertical line where they can best be seen. The highest and lowest of these lights shall be red and the middle light shall be white;
(ii) three shapes in a vertical line where they can best be seen. The highest and lowest of these shapes shall be balls and the middle one a diamond;
(iii) when making way through the water, a masthead light or lights, sidelights and a sternlight, in addition to the lights prescribed in subparagraph (i);


Unless you have a great light set up you likely don't have the right lights to display being a recreational boat.

Myself personally I'm going to try and set up proper lighting and shapes.

I suppose if you didn't have the proper lights than I would do whatever I could to avoid collision and would probably light myself up with running and anchor lights and trilcolor. Yes wrong lighting but unless you have the correct red white red 360 degree light plus apropriate additional lighting then your wrongly lit anyway. So you will be a) noticeable by having more light and a unique display and confusing but a ship on look out will at least wonder what the hell your doing which is better than thinking you are just steaming and are able to maneuver. Proper display of light can be expensive but proper day shapes are cheap and just take up space.
Under sea anchor you are a Lame duck.

I should also add that I have not read all the other links yet but as an Alpinist a rigger and big wall climber I can tell you that not only should you have the knowledge on how to deploy and retrieve your system but also how to escape it in an emergency. That means a proper plan and strategy on escape and the reaction from the escape. Simply cutting the line may or may not be the right strategy and under different circumstances different escape plans may need to be employed.
I hope this helps.
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Old 20-02-2013, 03:43   #45
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Re: Heavy weather tactics. Anyone want to share experience with sea anchors or warps

This thread has certainly been a good read. Kanani is quite thorough in his excellent comments. To address what Seer said (I think it was Seer), the diff 'tween the loads of a drogue and the parachute is the former introduces vastly variable loads whereas the latter results in constant strain. The live loads introduced by the drogue will snap the rode.

I've seen trebled 2" hawsers (50 ton sloop) snap because of the cyclic surge at the dockside. It is the tensioning/relaxing of the lines which is the culprit...a drogue has the same effect since the vessel continues to be under way...which introduces it's own loads.

Like has been mentioned about the Pardeys, we used a mil suplus 'chute. Contrary to what Kanani says, a Parachute will sink. Use the largest float you have (or a series of fenders if required) The object is bouyancy to avoid the parachute from "creeping" downward in the water column. The float is attached about 30' along the trip line as measured from the 'chute. A long rode results in a much better ride. And, like Kanani mentioned, having the anchor rode pull double duty for the parachute is the smart way to avoid all that extra line in the locker.

Other than warps trailing aft, we'd use a perforated flat plate (most recently, a hard plastic milk crate borrowed from the diary) for a drogue. But the drogue requires a constant watch while the parachute does not.

The worst I've seen was 60 kts and 30'. It was a non event on the parachute. I too would add to the warning that a drogue is only good "to a point"...when conditions worsen. The attempt to turn head to after running before the seas can be rather dicey. It is a timing maneuver to swap ends.

A parachute works equally well in short choppy seas and long waves in a high sea state. I don't recall ever having the trip line any longer than about 10 fathoms. A small float on the bitter end may help in retrieval.

Now I am trying to figure out how I'd secure a parachute to a 40-45' catamaran. I surely know it won't be with a bridle. Securing a neutral rudder was always a part when deploying a parachute. Perhaps putting in some opposite rudder with the 'chute secured to one bow may work.
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