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When anchored overnight, raise or lower board/rudder?

Discussion in 'Trailer Sailors' started by TraylerSailor, Jan 11, 2019. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. TraylerSailor

    TraylerSailor

    Joined Sep 15, 2018
    13 posts, 0 likes
    Hunter H240
    US Richmond
    While I was anchored in wave sheltered Urbanna, VA for last November's Oyster Festival, this was my unanswered question. Boat is a Hunter 240, and we had up to 20 mph winds as fronts and rain moved through both nights. Fortunately, the thick mud sucked my danforth in, and I never drug. So my question has as much to with minimizing swinging while at anchor as it does dragging? Any thoughts?
     


  2. Don S/V ILLusion

    Don S/V ILLusion

    Joined Sep 25, 2008
    5,235 posts, 404 likes
    Alden 50
    US Sarasota, Florida
    If there is any current, you will swing different compared with any nearby keel boats
     


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  3. DayDreamer41

    DayDreamer41

    Joined Oct 29, 2016
    1,098 posts, 529 likes
    Hunter 41 DS
    Un Port Huron
    You could always invest or stitch together an anchor sail
     


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  4. SG

    SG

    Joined Feb 11, 2017
    1,326 posts, 255 likes
    J/Boat J/160
    US Annapolis
    I'm not sure the centerboard on your Hunter 240 will make any difference in the swinging or pitching. The tidal cycles into the Chesapeake usually range in 18" to 2' range (though there are times when it's is significantly more -- sometimes over 3' in one cycle for high to low.)

    We too sailed in the Chesapeake a lot. I wouldn't do this in rocky or gravely bottoms, but you might consider this: Our previous boats were had centerboards (a Pearson 35 and a Sabre 42). I occasionally let the centerboard down MOST OF THE WAY (not all the way) so that it would function as "warning" if we dragged back in the mud. Now I'd tend to do this in an area where you are in deep water but at some point it shoals up because you dragged back.

    There is a counter theory: In the mud, going aground with on you bottom without the centerboard being your pivot point is a lot less likely to cause damage if you really get "jammed".
     


  5. TomY

    TomY Alden Forum Moderator

    Joined Jun 22, 2004
    1,456 posts, 1,147 likes
    Alden 38' Challenger yawl
    US Rockport Harbor
    Unless there is a lot of current, I don't think your centerboard will keep your boat from 'sailing' around your anchor. It appears to me that boats with more windage - especially forward - sail around their anchor or mooring.

    That's why a riding sail helps some boats, it counteracts the windage forward (roller jib, high freeboard, etc), that is blowing the bow off.
     


  6. thinwater

    thinwater

    Joined Mar 26, 2011
    2,172 posts, 490 likes
    Corsair F-24 MK I
    US Deale, MD
    I would have thought every CB and lift rudder sailor would have played with this. I've had 2 multihulls with CB and lift rudders, over 30 years, and I have tested this. Article in the near future.

    I think the OP is talking about sailing at anchor, not tide. The tide is very slow in that area and would have minimal effect compared to the wind. I see that none of the people who have responded have lifting rudders.
    • Rudder up. This moves the center of lateral resistance far forward and should stop the sailing at anchor.
    • CB can stay down. Up may add some sway on a monohull. It doesn't effect yawing much one way or the other.
    • If you have a dinghy on the bow, don't leave it there. That's like having a riding sail a the wrong end.
    • A light kellet can help you match the swing of boats on all-chain. 10 pounds of chain in a loop attached to the midpoint of the rope will work and is easy to recover over the roller.
    • You probably don't need a riding sail. Try lifting the rudder first.
    There is also a lot on anchoring in here:
    https://www.amazon.com/Rigging-Modern-Anchors-Drew-Frye/dp/1948494078
     


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  7. TraylerSailor

    TraylerSailor

    Joined Sep 15, 2018
    13 posts, 0 likes
    Hunter H240
    US Richmond
    Thanks, thinwater, I believe you have nailed it. Appreciate the perspective.
     


  8. Will Gilmore

    Will Gilmore

    Joined Oct 19, 2017
    3,902 posts, 1,912 likes
    O'Day 19
    US Littleton, NH
    CB down will make a small boat more comfortable and less prone to rolling. It should also have some effect on pitching as it lowers CG. The rudder down has the obvious effect of acting as a vane to the current. May also prevent swinging around the CLR and ease yanking on anchor rode. The down side is, most CBs are a little loose and you have to listen/feel them rattle in their trunk.

    -Will (Dragonfly)
     


  9. Crazy Dave Condon

    Crazy Dave Condon

    Joined Jun 8, 2004
    7,008 posts, 704 likes
    -na -NA
    US Anywhere USA
    This boat is a water ballast sailboat with a swing up centerboard and rudder.
    If one raises the rudder particularly without tensioning the rudder housing assembly, you could snap the rudder off if not tightened up while in the water if in a raised position due to depth. As for the centerboard I would again raise it too due to depth. @TraylerSailor is smart about staying in a sheltered cove near Urbana which I know the area as well. Good call sir.

    As for a danforth anchor in muddy waters, I learned to tie a trip line to the anchor tied to a fender. If stuck I would go to that and generally would lift the flukes up backwards. Never lost an anchor after that either on the Chesapeake or Smith Mountain Lake
     


    Will Gilmore likes this.
  10. TomY

    TomY Alden Forum Moderator

    Joined Jun 22, 2004
    1,456 posts, 1,147 likes
    Alden 38' Challenger yawl
    US Rockport Harbor
    Sailing around an anchor: Anchored in Cuttyhunk this season, the South wind kicked up to around 20-25 knots(and rain!).

    No current in anchorage, flat water with no fetch, this boat next to use sailed widely on it's all chain rode, even with a riding sail.

    It was curious because of all the windage, aft on this boat. I can only surmise that the high freeboard, house and dodger enclosure, presented the 'sail area' as it swung, to get the 'lift' it needed to get a motion going.

    Keel rudder helping it's sailing motion? Tag of mast furled mainsail?

    On 40' of chain and the same amount of nylon rode, we nearly had to re anchor as it sailed.

    Most boats were sitting still in the anchorage. The anchor sailing of this boat may have been exacerbated by a paddle board or two, on the forward deck.

    Boat sailing at anchor.JPG
     


    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019
    Will Gilmore likes this.
  11. thinwater

    thinwater

    Joined Mar 26, 2011
    2,172 posts, 490 likes
    Corsair F-24 MK I
    US Deale, MD
    Will is right about CB clunking; you need to make a boat-specific call on that.

    Dave is right in that the rudder needs to be well secured, well clear of the water. If it drifts down it can be damaged. If anchored in very shallow water it MUST be up; it is one thing to touch the rudder while moving forward; it just swings up. A anchor, on the other hand, if the tide drops at night and the boat moves sideways, backwards, or up-and-down with the rudder bumping, this is very bad. Same with CB.

    I've never broken a rudder, but I've damaged a few casings over the years. One was a beach cat that flipped over backwards on a beach (no sails, lots of wind), another was a rudder that slipped down at anchor while I was away from the boat.
     


  12. Gunni

    Gunni

    Joined Mar 16, 2010
    5,685 posts, 1,348 likes
    Beneteau 411 Oceanis
    US Annapolis
    I was out that day/night also. Eastern Shore in the Tred Avon. What you experienced was a 180 wind shift (East to West as I remember) as a front came through. So while you may have been sailing about on anchor, your true risk was the massive wind shift that veered your boat after dark and could have popped the danforth out of the bottom. That would have put you in danger of dragging out the river. I don’t sail at anchor (3/8 BBB), but I still have a roll-bar shovel anchor. Suggest you consider one as well, it will go deep, but more importantly it will re-set much better than that Danforth. Another consideration is setting your anchor knowing the forecast and the certainty that you will be laying 150ft and 180d different in a few hours. This is how boats meet in ugly ways.

    We were headed to Urbanna too, but the crew woke to the 30 kt front and decided that they would rather dink to the Robert Morris Inn and get some bloodies. How were the oysters? For anyone headed that way, the Rappahannock Oyster Co. has some outstanding farm-raised ‘ersters’.
     


    Will Gilmore likes this.
  13. Daveinet

    Daveinet

    Joined Sep 20, 2014
    942 posts, 177 likes
    Rob Legg RL24
    US Chain O'Lakes
    Nothing better than trying to sleep to the musical sound of a clunking centerboard.
     


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  14. Sumner

    Sumner

    Joined Jan 31, 2009
    5,180 posts, 228 likes
    Macgregor 26S/Endeavour 37 .
    US Utah's Canyon Country
    We have a swing centerboard (un-weighted) on the Mac along with a swing up rudder. They will swing up if they hit something going forward. Swinging on anchor we aren't going forward and no telling what might be down there that the rudder or centerboard could hit from the side if we are in shallow water to begin with. A side hit on them could possibly break or damage them. Being a paranoid person, especially anchored, I always raise both on anchor.
    [​IMG]
    http://purplesagetradingpost.com/sumner/Macgregor Trips-2-Priest/08-09-14-priest-koot.html
    On one anchorage in Canada there was a large rock that was about a foot under water We didn't see it when we anchored as the wind was from a different direction and we weren't near it. The wind changed and I got up in the night and saw it and then pulled us a little closer to the anchor so we wouldn't hit it if we swung further in that direction.
    [​IMG]
    http://purplesagetradingpost.com/sumner/macgregor-canvas/canvas-5.html
    Ruth sewed up a Sailrite anchor sail for us and it helped to some degree in slowing the swing down...


    ... but I hardly ever deploy it as we just got use to the swinging on anchor and it doesn't bother us,

    Sumner
    =====================================================================
    1300 miles to The Bahamas and Back in the Mac...
    Endeavour 37 Mods...
    MacGregor 26-S Mods...
    Mac Trips to Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Canada, Florida, Bahamas
     


  15. TraylerSailor

    TraylerSailor

    Joined Sep 15, 2018
    13 posts, 0 likes
    Hunter H240
    US Richmond
    Dave, what is "tensioning the rudder housing assembly"? Please remember this us a new boat for me.

    Guni, we also experienced the wind, rain, and wind shift in Urbanna. Fortunately, likely due to the weather, not a harbor load of boats were packed in as I understand is usually the situation during the festival. Had enough room to swing, but not drag.
    Was an exciting first night to ever sleep aboard for sure.
    We don't eat oysters, but the crab bisque was awesome.
     


  16. Crazy Dave Condon

    Crazy Dave Condon

    Joined Jun 8, 2004
    7,008 posts, 704 likes
    -na -NA
    US Anywhere USA
    @TraylerSailor the bolt that holds the rudder blade to the rudder metal housing should have a tensioning handle on it. That is what I am referring sir
     


  17. TraylerSailor

    TraylerSailor

    Joined Sep 15, 2018
    13 posts, 0 likes
    Hunter H240
    US Richmond
    Did not know this. Thanks.
     


  18. TraylerSailor

    TraylerSailor

    Joined Sep 15, 2018
    13 posts, 0 likes
    Hunter H240
    US Richmond
    Sumner, I have read much of your blog posts, and am thankful for your aiding my learning curve. Almost considered a Mac, but the Hunter 240 is so easy to trailer, set up and take down...plus I love the way it looks!
     



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