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Old 10-09-2019, 02:37 PM   #1
Seevee's Avatar
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Winch for stern anchor?

Does anyone have a winch for their stern anchor?

Not sure how one would be set up, but kinda envision perhaps a short pole or hoist to keep the rode to pay out and in easily.....

Also, need better techniques for just getting the stern anchor out. Seems like a bit of a hassle. I'll typically run the bow anchor way out, drop the stern and work forward, set the stern and continue about half way back, playing in the bow line and in on the stern which seems like a two person operation all the time. I suppose one to do it solo in steps.


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Old 10-09-2019, 03:40 PM   #2
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I always walk the stern anchor out in shallow water and retrieve the same way. When over my head I used to use the dink when I had one, now I just let the bow rode way out to drop and retrieve.

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Old 10-10-2019, 05:00 AM   #3
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A used sailboat winch , mounted on the stern on the side you usually come along side works for many docking purposes as well as a stern anchor winch.

Either a 2 speed winch or an extra long handle is easier than getting a kit to DC power the unit.
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Old Yesterday, 10:03 AM   #4
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I guess not a lot of interest in this subject, but got some ideas. I wonder why anyone would want to hoist a 35 to 50 lb anchor up 10 to 20 feet, if there were an easier way. And a winch could pull the boat to where the anchor is to unset it.

Still working on it.....
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Old Yesterday, 10:16 AM   #5
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SV, I can't speak generally for the PNW crowd up here, but I hardly ever see stern anchors deployed in this region, the preference being to let the bow come up into the wind. A variation of it is done in tight anchorages by sterning-tying to a tree or rock on shore.
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Old Yesterday, 11:18 AM   #6
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Rarely see stern anchors in NE. Need to be careful regarding distance from other boats. Everyone is typically at same scope but at slack tide boats go off in random directions.

A more interesting question is how do get someone in a life sling onboard. Thinking a single speed winch with a solid mounting? Not sure where I would locate it.
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Old Yesterday, 11:25 AM   #7
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We boat in the PNW. Like Ken said, not a lot of stern anchors used up here. I carry one and have used it a few times, such as in Montague Harbour to keep from swinging into one of the many (and increasing) private buoys or when anchoring in a narrow inlet and cannot shore tie. I take it out in my tender and drop it manually. So far no problems picking it back up, just pull it backwards a bit first.
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Old Yesterday, 04:30 PM   #8
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I have carried a stern anchor on every trip I've taken in the past 10 years - and not had occasion to use it a single time. Not that I do the extensive cruising that the OP may be envisioning.

However, I would really like to install a stern winch along rthe lines of FF's concept for .... cause I want one. Even have the candidate winch for the asking. But, the work involved to create the hard point to mount it is more than I'm willing to undertake.
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Old Yesterday, 05:38 PM   #9
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As others have said, we only use a stern anchor occationally in the PNW. However I've used it occationally when I want to prevent swinging. I've only done it when I know the weather is going to be calm. Our stern anchor is intentionally much smaller than the main and uses mostly a rope rode, so deploying or retrieving is not a big problem.

IF you did want a winch I think the challenge will be to find one that fits without being in the way when not in use. Also you'd probably have to reinforce the area you're mounting it.
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Old Yesterday, 05:41 PM   #10
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I sail in Alaska where tides can rise as much as 21' between low and high so anchoring from the stern can be very risky. As mentioned above, I was advised years ago to tie a stern line to the shore or tree. I read too many stories about boats being pulled under with a stern anchor
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Old Yesterday, 06:28 PM   #11
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I use a stern anchor when the swell is on my beam causing rolling at anchor. If I'm not solo, I drop the stern anchor first (with short chain and 200 ft rope) then motor into the swell and drop the main anchor, then motor back 2/3 the way back towards the stern anchor taking the tension up on bow anchor rode.
When solo, I use out extra bow anchor rode and motor back to where I want my stern anchor, drop it, then take up the tension up forward.

When there is a strong wind blowing the placement of the stern anchor has to be further upwind as the forward and aft rodes will never be in a straight line.

As I rarely anchor somewhere where there are other boats, there are never any issues with boats swinging into me.
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Old Yesterday, 07:42 PM   #12
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As someone said, we just swing at anchor and occasionally tie to shore in the PNW.

But when rafted with enough other boats to require second, third and more anchors, a stern anchor or two is deployed to keep the rodes from twisting together with the tide change four times a day.

The stern anchors are placed with tenders for precise orientation of the raft. Retrieval with tenders. The rode is nylon rope so hand retrieval is not difficult in the depths anchored.
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Old Yesterday, 10:18 PM   #13
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I have never done stern anchoring but for a winch on smaller boats (under 40') I'd use a capstan. one could use a Fortress anchor and a bit more chain. To further the lightweight rode concept a longer scope aft and shorter scope fwd would work well w the Fortress. > DC Powered

Here's my capstan anchor winch
Don't know if they make bigger ones. It's an Endurance brand.
Inexpensive and made in BC Canada. I bought mine where they are made in Surry BC.
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North Western Washington State USA
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Old Today, 09:12 AM   #14
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I seldom use a stern anchor. Mostly, it's been to keep my stern out of a channel. So my stern anchor is a small aluminum danforth, 6' of 1/4" chain, and 300' of 3/8" twisted nylon. Usually I drop the stern first, motor forward and drop the bow and all the chain needed, quickly. Then I go back to the stern and pull in the anchor line until I'm tethered between the two. As I'm using a really small anchor, I usually scope 10:1.

When recovering the anchors, I slack the stern and pull the bow first. Then I go back to the stern and recover the anchor either by pulling the boat to it or backing down slowly while retrieving anchor line. Having the stern docking station makes this pretty easy. As the anchor and chain are pretty light, a winch isn't really necessary. Once or twice I've had to cleat off the line after it was vertical to break the anchor out.

I'm very impressed with the holding and strength of the line. While I would never do it, I could probably anchor from the bow with that setup and 10:1 scope 90+% of the time without breaking out the anchor or parting the line. Final thought, I've only ever double anchored solo, probably looks pretty funny, me running back and forth. Never fouled the second anchor line, touch wood.


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