Originally Posted by Marshall Muller
One man's view:
Backing down on an anchor is largely useless. Practical Sailor Magazine tests have shown that with a change in direction of wind or tide, all anchors pull out and reset. This is likely when we are sleeping or visiting on another boat. Consequently, we all need anchors that set themselves. If we are setting anchor in a breeze, the pull back is done for us. If setting in a calm, the direction of pull-back is wrong and the anchor will still have to pull out and reset itself.
Can you post a link to the PS article? I have a subscription, but haven't been able to find that article...
I suspect a well-buried anchor really doesn't unset/reset every time a tide or wind shift changes the location of the boat relative to the anchor.
Might do sometimes, and if so that'd likely be at higher wind speeds or faster currents... but I know sometimes our boat only moves around the chain drop, i.e., without even ever bothering the anchor at all.
And when we used the Fortress as primary, it seemed it sometimes just flipped upside down and then buried itself some more...
FWIW... for the first time with our current anchor style... I think our anchor actually moved a bit on the tidal/wind shift Friday night. Not much, but the several different anchor alarms we had running at the time suggested we'd moved a bit. Seemed odd, until when we weighed anchor and we discovered it had been seriously fouled with something -- looked like a cross between a big roofing shingle and a tractor tire inner tube. The outer fluke tips were completely shielded... but the center fluke tip was still in play I think... and it still looked like we'd buried at least half of the shaft...