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Sailors, how do boat anchors work?

Ok so I've seen a couple of videos on how to set up an anchor. It turns out you just drop the anchor from the bow, and then you back up your boat until the anchor gets buried into sand or whatever and you're all set. But what happens if the wind blows from the back? Isn't that going to move the boat forward and set the anchor free?

⚓____(chain & rope) ⛵ <<<<<< (wind)

What happens if the wind blows from behind the boat??

2 Answers

  • 9 months ago
    Favorite Answer

    You should always sent the anchor facing the wind. The standard amount of anchor line is 7 feet of rode for every foot of water depth. If the wind changes direction after you're set the anchor may pull out but reset.

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  • 9 months ago

    If it is only the wind direction that changes, the anchor will reset. But if you also get a big increase in strength as well as a change in direction, you need to know that in advance (the maritime weather forecast is your friend - don't bother with land forecasts).

    In those circumstances, I have usually put out two anchors at 45 degrees from the bow, join the two chains, and lower away some more so the join is near the bottom. Have never had a problem when doing that.

    Pro tip: you sleep much better if you KNOW your anchoring is good.

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