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Old 01-18-2016, 12:13 PM   #1
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Stern anchor/shore Tie line

Heading for Canada in a few months and several friends have recommended that we carry a stern line for tying off to rocks or trees. Our boat is roughly 50 ft. And weighs in at about 50k.
Any suggestions for size, length and type of line would be appreciated. Also, should we fabricate a spool to retrieve and store the line?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 01-18-2016, 12:31 PM   #2
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Most boat in our yacht club carry 600' of 3/8" yellow polypropylene(floats) on a garden hose reel. These boats are mostly in the 35' to 45' range. Have seen quite a few starting to carry "flat rope", a complete package is made by ULTRAline (or Quickline) Flat Rope & Reel.
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Old 01-18-2016, 12:51 PM   #3
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Hi Crusty Chief,

The previous reply is a good one. And, circumstances always dictate the "correct" answer! No wind, no current, a fly line will work. Let the wind pipe up, the currents in the anchorage change to the worse, and nothing will seem adequate.

My old boat, a Canoe Cove 53 (56K displacement) carried 600' of 3/8 braided poly, spooled on a garden hose reel. Not the most elegant, but filled the bill for 12 years or so. I've seen the flat line and reels, and have gagged at the cost. I've seen and admired Amsteel (floats, strong as all getout),but again gagged at the cost.

As in all things afloat, YMMV, but think the 3/8 braided poly is a pretty good middle ground. And the garden hose reel works good to keep down the snarls and kinks.

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Old 01-18-2016, 12:52 PM   #4
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Buy a Waggoners book, all manners of shore ties covered in there. We have 600' of 1/2" floating line on an old cable reel. Such a pain to deal with so we pretty well know where to go to avoid the need for a shore tie. In rainy, cold and miserable weather lifting a hook is task enough.

When the wind is howling a shore tie will likely have your boat in the wrong position as opposed to a free swing. On several occasions we have been securely anchored in strong winds and had nearby shore tied vessels leave their shore tie and come swing with us.

When above Cape Caution unless you know the areas well a shore tie puts you nearer uncharted rocks (bears too) and stuff with no nearby help if you need it. In the social areas of Desolation Sound and lesser so the Broughtons there will always be someone there to assist you off a rock in the 18 foot tidal swings. Seen it happen, just last summer in fact in Skull Cove. Heard on the radio where the same had occurred in Grace Harbour.

Many will chime in and say they stern tie all the time. In quiet times and well charted waters yes they do. I may as well.
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Old 01-18-2016, 12:57 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rochepoint View Post
Most boat in our yacht club carry 600' of 3/8" yellow polypropylene(floats) on a garden hose reel. These boats are mostly in the 35' to 45' range.
That's what we have on our 42 footer and it works fine. High visibility poly!

Keep in mind that the norm is to run the line ashore, run it around a sturdy stationary object, usually a tree, and then back to the boat. Among other things it allows you leave without going ashore again. So the more line the better.
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Old 01-18-2016, 12:57 PM   #6
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rochepoint did the main part now here is a start on some tips.

Hollow braid handles easier than 3 strand.
When you reach shore with the line, signal the deckhand to stick a zip tie or piece of tape around it at the boat, then pull it to the shore until you reach that marker and you know you have almost enough. Pull another 10- 15 feet to make it easier to reach back to the boat with the dinghy and that will also give you a head start for tidal adjustment.
Be aware of the state of the tide and range.

I don't like spools because of the extra bulk but if you choose one, think about where it might be stored.
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Old 01-18-2016, 01:16 PM   #7
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We carry 600' of 3/8" poly line on a hose reel. Be careful what you put the line around on shore. Some of the more popular anchorages have metal rings set in the rocks for this purposes. Try not to put the line around a living tree, particularly an arbutus which I understand are in some danger environmentally along the coast. The line can damage the bark which in turn can damage or even kill the tree. If one has to put a line around a living tree it's recommended that one put a towel or other pad of material to distribute the load and help protect the bark.
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Old 01-18-2016, 01:57 PM   #8
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Thanks all for the response so far. I am surprised that so many have suggested 3/8 size line as I would have thought 5/8 or larger would be needed. Maybe I'm overthinking this after all.
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Old 01-18-2016, 02:05 PM   #9
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I use my spare anchor line, 400' of 5/8" nylon. Not very convenient, but it's already aboard along with a second anchor "just in case" I am not able to recover my primary anchor. I keep a SS snap clip on the end of the chain so I can simply loop the chain around an object on shore and clip it back onto itself (quick) and I don't have to worry about abrasion to the line. Anywhere I might have to shore tie is well within the length of the line, and some of my anchorages are so deep with such a steep scope that the shore line is usually to keep me from drifting off the anchorage rather than to limit swing. The extra strength of the line makes sense in this case.
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Old 01-18-2016, 02:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawgwash View Post
When you reach shore with the line, signal the deckhand to stick a zip tie or piece of tape around it at the boat, then pull it to the shore until you reach that marker and you know you have almost enough. Pull another 10- 15 feet to make it easier to reach back to the boat with the dinghy and that will also give you a head start for tidal adjustment.
Excellent tip - never thought of that. Thanks!
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Old 01-18-2016, 03:10 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by AKDoug;
...some of my anchorages are so deep with such a steep scope...
Nice when you can tie off a stern line from the pulpit or swim grid.

If I have to stern tie because of parking lot conditions, I probably won't.
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Old 01-18-2016, 03:14 PM   #12
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600' spool of 3/8" Samson MFP float line. Brightly coloured with a nice hand. I also have a strap that I occasionally use for trees. Hook together with a locking carabiner. Easier on trees and because of the heft, is easier to toss around a tree from a dinghy or kayak.
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Old 01-18-2016, 09:49 PM   #13
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Never really thought about the return run of the line, makes sense being able to release from the boat in an emergency. And the zip tie to mark the line is a great idea. Thanks Hawg!
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:15 PM   #14
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[QUOTE=Crusty Chief]The zip tie to mark the line is a great idea./QUOTE]
If you're using braid or 3 strand poly, the zip can go through it, and leave a small loop that's easier bite off, which you want to do each time.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:42 PM   #15
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We used the "flat rope" on a reel for stern tying a 45 foot catamaran in Turkey last summer. It was very handy to use on the compact reels, but I wouldn't recommend it due to the effect wind has on it.

Any wind over about 10 knots and the flat rope began to flutter and flap while under tension. It makes a helluva racket. We had to hang fenders along the lines to keep it under control whenever the wind picked up.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:51 PM   #16
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I have found a way to cut down on the amount of line needed to almost half of the typical 600 feet. What I do is make a shorter loop from tree ring or rock out to where my dinghy would be at low water. I tie both ends to a ring or shackle and then tie a single line from there to my boat. The value of this is less line and when its time to leave I don't have to climb ashore again since I can untie one end of the short loop from my dinghy and retrieve the works. This allows for less line or if room is available heavier line. I recently switched to the ultra tape and reel pricy but it does work well.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:54 PM   #17
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We used the "flat rope" on a reel for stern tying a 45 foot catamaran in Turkey last summer. It was very handy to use on the compact reels, but I wouldn't recommend it due to the effect wind has on it.

Any wind over about 10 knots and the flat rope began to flutter and flap while under tension. It makes a helluva racket. We had to hang fenders along the lines to keep it under control whenever the wind picked up.
cure for flat line is to twist it same as with taped electric fence if not twisted acts badly in wind. Twist it solves problem. Guess you never ran a horse farm.
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Old 01-19-2016, 12:11 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eyschulman View Post
I have found a way to cut down on the amount of line needed to almost half of the typical 600 feet. What I do is make a shorter loop from tree ring or rock out to where my dinghy would be at low water. I tie both ends to a ring or shackle and then tie a single line from there to my boat. The value of this is less line and when its time to leave I don't have to climb ashore again since I can untie one end of the short loop from my dinghy and retrieve the works. This allows for less line or if room is available heavier line. I recently switched to the ultra tape and reel pricy but it does work well.
I like that - another great idea!
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Old 01-19-2016, 12:47 AM   #19
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Spare anchor line. 200' of 3 strand nylon in a milk crate, 300' in another. sometimes, I tie one end to the boat, carry the crate to the shore, up the bank, around the tree, it pays out as I go, back to the boat.
In the places we like to go, the boat is rarely where I left it, so I often need to take the longer line, then move the boat closer and haul in the excess.
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Old 01-19-2016, 02:15 AM   #20
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Get a 6' piece of 1" line of your choice and put a small loop (like a thimble) in one end and a 1' loop in the other. Loop this short line around the tree. Then run your shore line through both loops back to your boat. Put a monkey fist or some lumpy knot in the end of your shore line. When you want to leave, pull the line back in, the knot goes easily through the large loop and gets caught in the small hole, pulling the large line around the tree and in with the shore line.

This way you don't kill trees.
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