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Old 14-09-2020, 19:32   #1
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Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

If you are skilled and equipped to dive your anchor in the waters you intend to frequent, is a spare still necessary?


I scuba dive and always find myself in possession of a surfeit of anchors.
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Old 14-09-2020, 19:35   #2
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

In my mind, unless you're in a position to do an immediate "return to dock" if necessary in a lost anchor situation, then yes, it's necessary. A spare buys you options. If nothing else, it can be used for a Bahamian moor or a stern anchor if you end up in a spot with very limited swing room.

Think about this: you foul or lose an anchor and want to go down to recover it. It might be handy to have another to hold the boat in place while you work on the first one.
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Old 14-09-2020, 19:46   #3
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

Good points made. We have an oversized Rocna primary, kinda small Bruce as a spare. Both on the bow rollers. I carry two more spares in the lazerette.
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Old 14-09-2020, 19:58   #4
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

I guess I was under the (mistaken?) notion that most lost anchors have been abandoned deliberately when they will not come free of the bottom, rather than departing of their own initiative for points unknown. Assuming reasonable attention to maintenance of anchor and rode, of course.
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Old 14-09-2020, 20:00   #5
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

Have always carried a spare anchor and rode. Fortunately, never had the need to deploy.
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Old 14-09-2020, 20:20   #6
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

We find anchors occasionally in favorite hurricane holes and some other harbors that were set by owners who show up to use them for storms. Often networked with lots of heavy chain and line. Leave them alone unless you know they are truly abandoned.
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Old 14-09-2020, 20:24   #7
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

As a matter of law in my part of the world a spare anchor must be carried on boats over 7 metres
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Old 15-09-2020, 09:19   #8
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

I would not go to sea without a spare anchor.
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Old 15-09-2020, 09:23   #9
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

I have used my spare as a kedge to keep from swinging onto the rocks or shore. Also I have used a 2nd anchor only 1 other time in 10 years of cruising to be sure the main didn't drag and send me crashing onto the rocky shore. It gives great peace of mind in tough situations.
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Old 15-09-2020, 09:56   #10
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

Two is better than one, three better than two, what about muddy water? What do you do with your anchorless boat when you are searching for the lost one?
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Old 15-09-2020, 10:00   #11
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

I carry a second anchor as a...

1) Stern Anchor
2) Emergency second anchor
--> In case I somehow lose the primary
--> Need to Bahama Moor
--> Need a second anchor due to weather
3) Kedge

Let's say someone fouls their running gear with your anchor line (It happens more than you'd think in really tight anchorages). It's nice to be able to deploy the spare anchor to take the pressure off of the primary bower. This will allow you to dive on it and unfoul the primary.

Let's say you're in a tight anchorage and a group of googans come in and build a party raft and start throwing out stern anchors in your swing radius (It happens more than you'd think in really tight anchorages). Good luck getting them to move. In many cases the harbor master will claim it's easier to move you than to move them. So, sometimes you have to throw out a stern anchor.
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Old 15-09-2020, 10:02   #12
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

Yes you need a spare anchor.
A scuba tank isn't heavy enough to hold a boat in place.
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Old 15-09-2020, 10:09   #13
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

My father lost an anchor during a 60 kt. blow due to rode chafe. He returned to retrieve the anchor as soon as the wind abated (he is a diver), but the locals had already salvaged it for themselves.

Back then, this cruising area (Baja) had few marine stores so the replacement anchor was brought down from San Diego by another cruiser. While he waited for delivery, a marginal danforth copy was all he had.

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Old 15-09-2020, 10:20   #14
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

Jammer, I think this is a very valid question. I guess it depends on where you plan on cruising and what conditions you can expect to encounter. I do carry a spare anchor and a third along with a smaller kedge anchor. I have used a stern anchor in tight anchorages where swinging needed to be limited and where others boats were anchored bow and stern.

I have never fouled an anchor so badly that I couldnít recover it and had to abandon it in favor of a spare anchor. But I can easily imagine situations where that would be necessary even if by diving the original anchor could later be recovered. For example, an anchor fouled and there was need to escape from a suddenly lee shore in pitching swells. Or an anchor stuck on a tree, cable or rock in strong winds or current requiring a second anchor to take the pressure off the first anchor allowing a diver to free the stuck anchor.

I snorkel but donít scuba so for me this is less of an option than for you but I still think carrying a spare is prudent seamanship.
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Old 15-09-2020, 10:43   #15
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Re: Do you need a spare anchor if you SCUBA dive?

As a diver, I wouldn't want to be dealing with a fouled anchor or a broken rode during any kind of weather. Always carry a spare for emergencies.
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