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  #1  
Old 06-29-2013
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Since Hurricane prep has already been mentioned ...

I would like to run my prep by the community, just to get some responses. We live in Eastern NC and our boat (Heron a 35' sloop at 11,000 lbs) survived Irene by anchoring to 2 trees and 2 anchors in a protected cove in our creek (plus all the other precautions like stripping the boat, etc). But I did loose 1 anchor rode due to chafe (my fault as I was in a hurry to get things done) and because it was anchored fore and aft with 4 attach points.

This time my plan is to use a swivel with at least 3 groundings; 2 anchors and a tree. I purchased the swivel at a local consignment shop and it is huge. It is a Crosby swivel for a crane with a 1" shank; I also purchased over-sized shackles to fit it. I will hang the swivel, on chain, from an inflated mooring ball. The topside of the swivel will have 2 pendants to the boat; one slightly longer than the other. See the picture below; it only shows 1 pendant on top, but imagine 2.



For pendants I plan to use 5/8" 3 strand nylon (the largest my cleats can handle) around 30' long, open on one end so I can change the tie off and chafe points, with plenty of chafe protection.

The bottom of the swivel will have the 3 anchor rodes. The one to the tree is a 3/4" line and I use chain around the base of the tree and shackle the hard eye end to it. I plan to use my existing 2 anchor rodes (5/8" @ 200'); one is 4 years old and the other brand new (after the one broke in Irene) for the other 2 anchor points, and here is where I have a question. The lines have a hard eye on one end for the chain connection. The other end is open, so my plan it so tie them to a shackle using an anchoring knot (2 round turns, pass the free end thru and add a half hitch).



This way I can tie them off at whatever length I need for enough scope based on the proposed water depth. The alternative is to make up special anchor lines, just for this mooring, with hard eye's on both ends and at fixed lengths. The cost is probably a few extra hundred dollars as I have good lengths of chain on the anchors and probably need < 100' line to get 10:1 scope. I question whether that is really necessary as these knots seem to be considered very adequate, the lines are in excellent shape and there is some redundancy in the anchoring. Am I just being "an$L" and worrying about nothing or would anyone else be concerned about this?

thanks,
Ron
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Old 06-30-2013
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Re: Since Hurricane prep has already been mentioned ...

Don't worry too much about being "an@L" - paranoia and ground tackle are cheap compared to replacing your boat. Do you have the bitter end seized to the standing part? Just in case you're
subjected to a long bout of surges, it would help keep the knot from 'walking' out of the line.


Good luck.
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Old 06-30-2013
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Re: Since Hurricane prep has already been mentioned ...

Manatee,
Thanks for the response. I agree seizing is the right thing to do. For Irene I was on business travel and returned with only a half day to square away the boat and the house. I want to be prepared again and make use of any shortcuts that work. Could I use plastic cable ties for short term seizing? Or do they just slip and/or cut into the line? Either that or I have to practice my speed seizing skills (not a bad idea anyway).

Where I am thinking about spending my money is on a cyclone mooring pendant ($150) to reduce the concern about chafe at the fair lead. I would add a length of nylon line to the swivel for shock absorption. The second pendant would be all nylon line. Which brings up a philosophical question; should better combination be the primary line or the backup?

Ron
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Re: Since Hurricane prep has already been mentioned ...

Hi, Ron,

I would not trust plastic [cable ties]. You might use [cable clamps] if time is short.

In 'Knots for Boaters' (isbn# 9781588162625), Brion Toss shows a *Round Turn Spilled-Hitch Bowline, Locked*
that should work well for you. The bitter end is locked by the knot itself when you draw it up. It's easy to tie, and comes apart fairly easily - you might need a spike to loosen it to start with.

I think your primary should be strongest, if there must be a difference. With any good luck, by the time primary fails, worst is past. Have you thought about adding weight down low, say at the heads of your anchor chains, to 'synthesize' scope? A 5-gallon bucket of concrete would help keep pull on anchor horizontal and reduce shock loads.

Gary
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Re: Since Hurricane prep has already been mentioned ...

Gary,
A couple of years ago, before Irene, I was in a hurry and bought a few new shackles for my anchors, only to find out they were made in China (well it is stamped right on them dummy!). I figure I could use them to run make shift kellets down the anchor lines. I have lots of old chain and some left over Turfstone blocks from a walkway to the dock. The blocks are designed to allow for drainage with large holes in them and weigh 24 lbs each (less under water). I could run the chain thru the holes, attach it to the shackle with the anchor line thru it as well. I would tie a long leader line to the shackle and tie that off to the anchor line, so the 'kellet' would sit about a boat length away from the swivel. My anchors (a 35 lb New Zealand Rocna and a 25 lb Danforth) have 65' of 5/16" chain attached. Our creek has nominally 5' of water, Irene brought a 9' surge; so I figure 100' of rode will give me > 10:1 scope. I really cannot let out much more than that due to the width of my hurricane hole in the creek. The bottom of the creek is mud and sand, the anchors dug in well enough last time that I lost the anchor rode rather than drug the anchor. I think these kellets would mostly keep the lines under the boat and offer some additional shock abosrption (along with that of pulling the mooring ball under).
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Re: Since Hurricane prep has already been mentioned ...

I did not know the word kellet for the extra weights - thanks. Sounds like you're all set, unless you get an Andrew.

Are the shackle pins wired, to keep them from unscrewing?

Gary
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Old 06-30-2013
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Re: Since Hurricane prep has already been mentioned ...

Actually, the scope would be closer to 5:1 than 10:1 at maximum surge. 9-10 ft. of surge is typical of what we have experienced at Washington, NC and I expect about the same at Oriental. 5 ft. initial depth. Plus, 3-4 on deck = ~19 ft. with 100 ft. of line.

Chafe is likely a major issue. Chafe will be where line rubs or works against a hard surface such as a chock. Just an idea, shackle to boat cleats a short length of chain(each side) covered well with fire hose, or reinforced rubber hose to protect the boat, chocks, etc. from the chafe that would eat through a nylon line. Then, shackle the nylon line to end of this chain to get the shock absorbing benefits of nylon (with other end connected to the swivel)

You would have to be aboard to retie the lines to move wear spots during the storm. I suspect handling these lines in a hurricane is going to be pretty tough and dangerous. To get past the worn spot will require taking in line against the wind force, which might be difficult. And just when will you know you've reached that critical point? My thoughts are that you should do what you can for the boat in advance and then leave.

Also, on those anchor knots on the lines, I would additionally tie the bitter end in a series of half hitches (reverse every other one) just to make sure that line doesn't untie itself as it moves against boat and turbulence of the water. Hard to untie, but that's the idea in this case.

Not sure how you get more scope. Could you tie to trees on both sides (or maybe over a 270 degree area if you must leave a channel open? If not, anchors and rodes are cheap. Get more to compensate for the relatively low scope.

Something else to think about. You mentioned about putting down blocks to hold lines down. Keep in mind that often in these NC waters, on the back side of the storm, the wind may blow out the water in the creek and you could be settling on the bottom (or those blocks which probably aren't going to do much good for the boat).

Last edited by NCC320; 06-30-2013 at 10:02 PM.
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Old 07-01-2013
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Re: Since Hurricane prep has already been mentioned ...

NCC,
thanks, I did include 65' of chain to my total scope calculation (165' total), but you are right I did forget to add the deck height. If I add a 20' pendant, past the ball, than I have a total scope of 185', which comes pretty close to 10:1 anyway.

The anchor knots do include extra half hitches and then seizing (of some form) with extra line bagged or tie wrapped to the rode.

I could tie the off the blocks so they sit inside the swing circle of the boat (< 20 feet from swivel if I use a 20 ' pendant)

The chain sounds like a good idea, I still have to buy/fabricate the nylon pendant with hard eye's on both ends, the chain, shackles and protective cover. A Yale Maxi Mooring pendant is $100 at Defender is close to the same price point. I am thinking one of those as primary and the chain approach as my back up.

thanks again,
Ron
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