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Old 04-10-2016, 03:06   #1
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How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

Newb question: in making a solo ocean crossing one needs to sleep at night, presumably. But oceans are deep; how could one possibly spool enough chain for an anchor to hit the ocean floor thousands of feet below?

Just how does a solo sailor anchor at night in deep ocean?
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Old 04-10-2016, 03:25   #2
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

Why would you even want to anchor? What would be the point?

But I think you answered your own question -- you can't, even if you wanted to, which you don't.

You can heave to and stop the boat if you want, but generally solo sailors just keep sailing while they sleep, getting up once in a while to look around.
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Old 04-10-2016, 03:38   #3
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

Realistically, you can't anchor mid ocean. Not only is it often thousands of feet deep, you need multiple times the depth to get any kind of scope.


Solo long distance sailors violate the colregs by not keeping a watch while sleeping and just leave the sails up and continue on typically. Often they will reduce sail to minimize risk if a sudden squall kicks up but otherwise, they just live with the risks.


Open ocean far from shipping lanes, they usually get away with it.
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Old 04-10-2016, 03:46   #4
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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Originally Posted by nicholastanguma View Post
Newb question: in making a solo ocean crossing one needs to sleep at night, presumably. But oceans are deep; how could one possibly spool enough chain for an anchor to hit the ocean floor thousands of feet below?

Just how does a solo sailor anchor at night in deep ocean?
On a sailboat, exceeding +- 100 meters of anchor chain will exced the weight your anchor winch is capable to pull and you will never be able to get the anchor up from the deep sea again,,,, well known problem even on large ships,,
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Old 04-10-2016, 04:13   #5
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

I have many times just dropped sail, doused the nav lights, turned on the anchor light and went to bed. That said, I do figure set and drift, and compare it to the nearest charted obstruction.

All I ever worry about in the waters I regularly transit is the errant shrimp boat that has the autopilot set and is merrily steaming along at 8kts with nobody on watch.
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Old 04-10-2016, 05:33   #6
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pirate Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

What I do is reef my main right down at sunset and leave my jib out to drive the boat.. set/check my course on the AP then doze through the night..
Alternatively if the weathers starting to kick up a bit I may heave to and get my head down below.
All my lights are on so one is kinda reliant on the 'Crewed Boats' to be doing their job and keeping a lookout.
From my perspective skippers who sail with crew bitching about solo sailors grabbing some sleep are aware of their own poor watchkeeping abilities else they'd not make such a fuss.. they're more likely to hit an unlit floating log or container than run into a well lit solo sailor..
Mind.. having said that I have been T-boned by a yacht motorsailing with 4 crew on board in broad daylight.. they were All below eating.
So as you can see.. The righteous are as bad as they claim we are..
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Old 04-10-2016, 05:55   #7
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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Mind.. having said that I have been T-boned by a yacht motorsailing with 4 crew on board in broad daylight.. they were All below eating.
So as you can see.. The righteous are as bad as they claim we are..
Somehow I find it hard to assign a crew in clear violation of the colregs as "the righteous".

The difference is once more than around 24-36hrs, no solo sailor can reasonably maintain a watch. With a crew of 4, there is at least a reasonable possibility of maintaining a watch. They can't really be placed among "the righteous" unless they at least attempt to maintain a watch.

Yeah, once midocean, solo sailors typically get away with it because there are so few other boats in the vicinity.
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:14   #8
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pirate Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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Somehow I find it hard to assign a crew in clear violation of the colregs as "the righteous".

The difference is once more than around 24-36hrs, no solo sailor can reasonably maintain a watch. With a crew of 4, there is at least a reasonable possibility of maintaining a watch. They can't really be placed among "the righteous" unless they at least attempt to maintain a watch.

Yeah, once midocean, solo sailors typically get away with it because there are so few other boats in the vicinity.
Can You say for certain that the skipper of that boat is not someone who bitches on about solo sailors on this or another forum..???
Think about it.
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:21   #9
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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Yeah, once midocean, solo sailors typically get away with it because there are so few other boats in the vicinity.
Most I've met have AIS and radar alarms on when dozing (what I do) . Midocean that gets close to crewed yachts with no radar on and someone with a head deep in a kindle on watch. Not fullproof but the odds are much better stacked.

Coastal isn't much fun solo IMHO.
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:25   #10
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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On a sailboat, exceeding +- 100 meters of anchor chain will exced the weight your anchor winch is capable to pull and you will never be able to get the anchor up from the deep sea again,,,, well known problem even on large ships,,
One can deploy and easily recover chain well in excess of the winch capacity to gain scope...as long as the weight of the chain required to reach the bottom vertically does not exceed max capability.
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:30   #11
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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Originally Posted by nicholastanguma View Post

Just how does a solo sailor anchor at night in deep ocean?

You don't, or if you do, you'll never get anywhere.
Example I plan on making 50 miles a day in the ICW, cause we stop at night.
Once out in the Ocean, I plan on making three times the daily distance, cause we don't stop, we sail or motor or motorsail 24/7.
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:33   #12
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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Can You say for certain that the skipper of that boat is not someone who bitches on about solo sailors on this or another forum..???
Think about it.
I can't say he isn't a cannibal (not that it's relevant just like your point) because I don't know him or anything about him...except he apparently isn't bothered by having no one on watch...if he isn't bothered by not keeping watch, why would you expect him to be bothered by other boats not keeping watch?

Again hardly "the righteous".
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:40   #13
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

I always forget to add to the list of volatile threads: Anchors, guns and politics.... the issue of solo sailing...

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Old 04-10-2016, 06:42   #14
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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I always forget to add to the list of volatile threads: Anchors, guns and politics.... the issue of solo sailing...

We've no one to argue with on the boat so have to look elsewhere....
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:52   #15
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Re: How Do You Anchor In Deep Ocean?

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Originally Posted by conachair View Post
We've no one to argue with on the boat so have to look elsewhere....
Its not the solo sailors that argue... too busy sleeping..

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