Anchor ball ... who's got one, and uses it? - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 08-12-2010
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Anchor ball ... who's got one, and uses it?

So we're having fun with nav lights, reread regs, and realize that a vast majority of Chicago boaters don't know what they're doing.
I figure we'll be getting one soon enough and always fly at anchor. Having a nice fat radar reflective item a few feet up can't be a bad thing day or night.

How often do you see them used?
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Old 08-12-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PicassoIII View Post
So we're having fun with nav lights, reread regs, and realize that a vast majority of Chicago boaters don't know what they're doing.
I figure we'll be getting one soon enough and always fly at anchor. Having a nice fat radar reflective item a few feet up can't be a bad thing day or night.

How often do you see them used?
I've got one, since my boat is kept in a swinging mooring very close to a navigation canal.

In fact I use it so often than I often forget it up even while sailing

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Old 08-12-2010
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I used the anchor ball pretty often as well. Not that many boaters know what it means, but in the (charter-boat infested) waters of the BVI I feel confident that the other boat's insurance will cover the damage when I get hit while at anchor.
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Old 08-12-2010
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I'd point out that a RADAR REFLECTOR, like the Davis Echomaster Deluxe DOES NOT QUALIFY AS AN ANCHOR BALL. Most anchor ball signals are made of lightweight black plastic and don't reflect RADAR very well.

The reason a Davis Echomaster doesn't qualify as a daymark is that it is the wrong color. I'd point out that you really want a radar reflector hoisted most of the time, as a safety precaution, especially if you sail in fog-shrouded waters. You need to have both a RADAR REFLECTOR and an ANCHOR BALL, as they serve two very different purposes.

The black plastic anchor daymark is only REQUIRED if you're anchored in a place not designated as an anchorage during the daytime. I find that they are rarely used in inland waters. BTW, if you are sailing and have the anchor ball up and get hit, you may be found partially liable for the accident, since you were flying a signal that was misleading...


Quote:
Originally Posted by PicassoIII View Post
So we're having fun with nav lights, reread regs, and realize that a vast majority of Chicago boaters don't know what they're doing.
I figure we'll be getting one soon enough and always fly at anchor. Having a nice fat radar reflective item a few feet up can't be a bad thing day or night.

How often do you see them used?
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Last edited by sailingdog; 08-12-2010 at 05:10 AM.
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Old 08-12-2010
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For the US sailors note that most anchorages are not actually "anchorages" in the legal sense which would allow anchoring without showing a day shape or night sign.

See The Code of Federal Regulations, Title 33 Navigation and Navigable Watersä, Part 110, Anchorage Regulations (CITE: 33CFR110.1) at U.S. Government Printing Office Home Page

or 2009 CFR Title 33, Volume 1 for the list by location.

Any other anchorage is not an official one according to the CFR and Colregs, no matter how big it is or how many boats are anchored there.
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Last edited by Zanshin; 01-01-2011 at 07:42 AM. Reason: corrected typographical errors
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Old 08-12-2010
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Hello,

Here on the east coast (Long Island Sound and surrounding areas) I have NEVER seen an anchor ball. On any summer weekend you will see lots of boats anchored with people fishing, swimming, eating, etc, and you will never see an anchor ball.

Around here no one seems to care (me included). The anchor rode coming off the bow is all the indication I need that the vessel is anchored.

Barry
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Old 08-12-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
I'd point out that a RADAR REFLECTOR, like the Davis Echomaster Deluxe DOES NOT QUALIFY AS AN ANCHOR BALL. Most anchor ball signals are made of lightweight black plastic and don't reflect RADAR very well.
Oh Snap. Shoots down that idea. Thanks for the clarification SD.


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Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
I'd point out that you really want a radar reflector hoisted most of the time, as a safety precaution, especially if you sail in fog-shrouded waters. You need to have both a RADAR REFLECTOR and an ANCHOR BALL, as they serve two very different purposes.
My concern was under anchor only, conditions where we could not get underway quickly if need be. It doesn't get too foggy close to shore often round here anyway. Maybe at dawn, but this Captain is NOT a morning person so we wouldn't be moving that early.
I have some vague recollection that the Playpen 'anchorage' being marked off on the charts ... but they're on board. I'm unfortunately, not. Booo.

As for a cone (under power) day shape i can't remember EVER seeing one flown by anybody.
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Old 08-12-2010
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When you run out to get an anchor ball, be sure to pick up a steaming cone. Equally useful.
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Old 08-12-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryL View Post
Hello,

Here on the east coast (Long Island Sound and surrounding areas) I have NEVER seen an anchor ball. On any summer weekend you will see lots of boats anchored with people fishing, swimming, eating, etc, and you will never see an anchor ball.

Around here no one seems to care (me included). The anchor rode coming off the bow is all the indication I need that the vessel is anchored.

Barry
It will only take a New York Minute for the LIS sailors to start using an anchor ball WHEN ... Luigi Testosteroni in his souped up mega-Donzi crashes into the side of your anchored boat .... and the admiralty court assesses 50%+ BLAME to you because you didnt have a proper 'shape' up in the rigging.
In admiralty court if you dont have the proper nav. light (360 anchor light) or the proper 'shape' up (anchor ball) you are legally NOT anchored.
;-)
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RULE 30: ANCHORED VESSELS AND VESSELS AGROUND
RULE 31: SEAPLANES
Rule 30
(e) A vessel of less than 7 meters in length, when at anchor not in or near a narrow channel, fairway or where other vessels normally navigate, shall not be required to exhibit the shape prescribed in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this Rule.
(f) A vessel of less than 12 meters in length, when aground, shall not be required to exhibit the lights or shapes prescribed in subparagraphs (d)(i) and (ii) of this Rule.
(g) A vessel of less than 20 meters in length, when at anchor in a special anchorage area designated by the Secretary, shall not be required to exhibit the anchor lights and shapes required by this Rule. [Inld]

Most recreational boats are not require to use shapes because of their size.
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