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Seamanship

Anchoring and Buoy Mooring

UNCLASSIFIED

References

Anchoring, NSTM Chapter 581


Mooring and Towing, NSTM Chapter 582
Navigation Rules: International-Inland, COMDTINST M16672.2 Series
Surface Ship Navigation Department Organization and Regulations
Manual (NAVDORM),
COMNAVSURFORINST/COMNAVAIRFORINST 3530.4 Series
Knights Modern Seamanship, Eighteenth Edition, CAPT John V. Noel, Jr.,
USN (Ret.), John Wiley and Sons
Naval Shiphandlers Guide, CAPT James A. Barber, Jr., USN (Ret.), Naval
Institute Press
The Naval Officers Guide, Eleventh Edition, Naval Institute Press
Watch Officers Guide: A Handbook for All Deck Watch Officers, Fifteenth
Edition, Naval Institute Press

Terminal Objectives
Given an evolution DESCRIBE the components and
functions of the anchor and anchor windlass IAW
NSTM Chapter 581, Anchoring
Given an anchoring evolution DISCUSS the proper
procedures for anchoring and weighing anchor IAW
NSTM Chapter 581, Anchoring
Given a mooring situation EXPLAIN the procedures
and precautions for buoy mooring IAW NSTM Chapter
582, Mooring and Towing
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Enabling Objectives
DESCRIBE the different types of anchors used by US naval
vessels.
DESCRIBE the anchor and anchor chain components.
DESCRIBE the anchor windlass system components to include:
capstan, wildcat, mechanical brake, electrical brake, and control
box.
DISCUSS safety precautions during anchoring evolutions.
DISCUSS the procedures and reports made for making the anchor
ready for letting go and for properly setting the anchor once
dropped.
DISCUSS the environmental and geographical considerations
taken into account in determining the scope of anchor chain to
employ.
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Enabling Objectives
STATE the chain-to-water depth rule-of-thumb ratio.
STATE frequency and information contained in an anchor report.
DISCUSS the Mediterranean moor with respect to procedures,
advantages and disadvantages.
DEFINE buoy mooring terms.
DESCRIBE the trolley method and ordinary (dip rope) method of
mooring to a buoy.
COMPARE mooring to a buoy to anchoring.
DISCUSS the buoy party duties and safety precautions that apply to
the evolution.

Introduction

Anchor Components
1)
2)
3)
4)
5)

Ring
Shank
Fluke
Crown
Shoulder

Types of Anchors
Standard Navy Stockless

Danforth

Commercial Stockless
Navy-Type Stock

Mushroom Cap

Design Specifications
Navy anchors and anchor equipment are designed to hold fast
based on the following conditions:

Firm, sandy bottoms


Less than or equal to 70 knots of wind
Less than or equal to 4 knots of current
Less than or equal to 40 fathoms depth of water

The anchor size and type determines the following factors:


Size and type of chain
Length of chain on the ship
Type of ground tackle

Anchor Chain
A detachable link after every shot of
chain
The adjacent links are white,

indicating the number of shots of chain


Wire is wrapped around the furthest

white link to also indicate the number


of shots
Second to last shot is all yellow, last
shot is all red
A shot is 15 fathoms, 6 feet in a
fathom

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Anchor Gear
Hawsepipe
Riding
Stopper

Housing
Stopper
Chain Locker

Capstan

Wildcat

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Brake

Anchor Windlass

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Anchoring Precautions
Wear appropriate clothing, safety goggles, gloves, safety
helmet, and life preserver.
Control the chain speed by applying and releasing the hand
brake or lowering the anchor under power.
Never step over, on, or straddle the anchor chain.
Prior to starting anchoring operations, ensure area is clear of
non-operational personnel.
Do not anchor in depths greater than 100 fathoms.
Use the ship's ground tackle to reduce the ship's headway only
in extreme emergencies.

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Preparing to Anchor

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Chain-to-Water Depth Rule of Thumb


Anchor chain length is also called scope. The scope of chain to
use when anchoring depends on a variety of factors, including the
water depth and type of bottom.
Based on a firm, sandy bottom, the rule of thumb for scope of
chain is:
In less than 20 fathoms of water, use five to seven times the
water depth.
For deep water anchoring your ship may not have enough
chain to pay out 5-7 times the water depth, in this case you
may pay out 3 times the depth or potentially use a second
anchor.
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Holding Factor
For ocean bottoms that are not firm sand, determine the scope
of chain based on the holding factor of the bottom.
Divide the scope of chain (based on water depth) by the
holding factor to determine the total scope of chain.

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Type of Bottom

Holding Factor

Stiff, dense clay

1.50

Firm sand

1.00

Sticky clay, medium density

.66

Soft mud

.33

Loose, coarse sand

.33

Gravel

.33

Hard rock/shale/boulders

Anchoring Commands and Actions


Command: Make the anchor ready for letting go
Action:

Chain Locker checked for loose gear


Anchor Windlass is tested
Housing Stopper and Riding Stopper removed
Anchor is walked out of the hawsepipe
Set the brake and disengage the wildcat
Riding Stopper is passed again

Report: Anchor is ready for letting go

Command: Standby
Action:
Brake is released
2 Seamen stand by Riding Stopper ready to trip the pelican hook
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Anchoring Commands and Actions


Command: Let go the anchor (given when
the pelorus is on the letting-go bearing)
Action:
Pelican hook is tripped
Chain pays out until anchor hits the sea
bottom
Receive reports of amount of chain on
deck, amount at waters edge, and
direction the chain tends as chain pays out
Set the brake and check for constant strain
Veer chain out 5-7 times the depth of
water
Stop the chain so that a detachable link is
between the stoppers.
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Anchoring Commands and Actions


A fix is taken to determine
position the moment the order
"let go the anchor" is given.
If the anchor report and fix
position are satisfactory, then
the command is given to "pass
the stoppers.
Action:
Stoppers passed
Wildcat disengaged
Anchor watch set
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Execution as CONN
1,000 yds from the anchorage point
slow to 5 kts
500 200 yds stop engines
100 yds all back 1/3
Speeds and distances will differ
from ship to ship
Slight sternway at the time of
letting go the anchor prevents the
anchor chain from falling on itself.
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Anchor Watch
The Forecastle Watch:
Report any anomalies to the Officer of the Deck, such as a
vibrating anchor chain.
Report every 30 minutes on the anchor's status
Anchor tends 3 oclock, light strain

The Bridge Watch:


Qualified navigation plotter
Fixes taken every 15 minutes for the first hour to determine
if the anchor is holding. Once this is determined,
navigational fixes are usually obtained hourly.
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Dragging the anchor


Physical signs an anchor is dragging:
See or feel a vibration in the anchor chain, or through the ship
Fluctuation in the strain from moderate or heavy to light.
Navigational sign an anchor is dragging:
A fix does not fall within the drag circle as plotted by the
Navigator.
Another fix should be taken immediately. If the second fix is also
outside the drag circle, then the ship is considered to be dragging
anchor.
Be especially vigilant during tidal or weather changes.
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Anchor positions while getting U/W


When chain is nearly vertical
Anchor is at short stay

When the crown still rests on the


bottom Anchor is up and down

When anchor is clear of the bottom


Anchor aweigh
(ship is U/W)

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Mediterranean Moor
Mooring technique using anchors and mooring lines.
Used when space is limited for mooring parallel to pier.
Difficult and time consuming.

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Mediterranean Moor

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Moor to a Buoy
Mooring buoys are large, round, flat-topped floating
platforms kept in place via multiple anchors.
They are used extensively in congested ports and harbors.

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Moor to a Buoy Prep


The anchor is secured to padeyes and the chain is disconnected.
A mooring shackle is placed on the bitter end of the chain and
ran through the bull nose

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Dip Rope Method


1) Buoy Party picks up buoy wire,
dip rope, and messenger.
2) Attach buoy wire to buoy, run dip
rope through shackle to messenger.
3) Ship heaves messenger in to make
loop for dip rope
4) Chain is walked out by heaving on
dip rope
5) Buoy Party secures chain to buoy
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Trolley Method
1) Chain is hung over the side with
an easing-out line to keep chain out
of the water
2) Buoy Party receives buoy wire and
attaches it to the buoy
3) Buoy wire is made taught and the
chain slides down via trolleys
4) Buoy party secures chain to buoy

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Moor to a Buoy SAFETY


Two

seamen to handle the buoy line


and shackle on the buoy.
While personnel are on the buoy, do
not allow the ship to surge against the
buoy line or to brush against the buoy.
Never allow the boat to get between
the buoy and the ship.
Remove personnel from the buoy
before taking any considerable strain.
Qualified personnel
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Advantages/Disadvantages to MTB
Advantages:
Reduces swing circle radius (important in
congested harbors)
Provides more strength than a single anchor
due to multiple anchors securing the buoy

Disadvantages:
Requires small boat
Introduces safety considerations for the buoy
party
Requires more preparation time
Requires precision shiphandling

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Questions?

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