Things of Your Day




Steel is cheap. No value in retrieving them.


That’s a smart question. Well, depends on how deep, of course, but at many depths, yes. There’s even salvage and deep salvage outfits that specialize in it. Luckily, aside from the depth, anchors and chain are relatively easy to salvage - no tricky problems with making sure it doesn’t break apart, or implode, or collapse, etc. If you have the equipment, you can just grab it, and pull it back up to the surface.

And that said, it’s unlikely they’re in the deep ocean. Or at least, unsalvagable kind of deep - because if they were, they wouldn’t be trying to anchor, they simply wouldn’t reach anything for the anchor to grab, making it rather pointless.

Steel is cheap, but it’s not THAT cheap. Rule of thumb - Heavy = Expensive. Heavy and worked to a particular form = more expensive. Like, for example, Anchors and anchor chains - a single shot(90 foot length) of anchor chain of that type is about seven and a half metric tons of steel, and as you can see from the video, they’ve got fair few shots on that chain. Seriously, JUST replacing that chain and anchor would be easily more than 200K by itself, not including install, delivery, etc. And that’s a very conservative figure - anchors for a ship using that size of chain tend to be in the 100K range by themselves. In many cases, it would be cheaper to salvage than replace.

Plus, they also have a legal obligation under maritime law to salvage their anchor, if it’s at a salvagable depth - which it almost certainly is, as I said a moment ago.



Approximately, how much do retrievals cost?


Depends on the difficulty of the recovery. Assuming they did the smart thing and their procedures are intelligently designed, they took a GPS mark of their location, with the best accuracy they can manage, along with any other relevant details(like, “we were also moving astern on this heading at this speed”) and gave it to the salvage company - the largest cost of Anchor salvage is just finding the damned thing, hunting about with magnometers, sonar and the like. So if they know reasonably accurately where the anchor is, don’t have to do much hunting about the seafloor, and it’s not at TOO crazy of a depth, you can almost certainly get one salvaged for well under 100k.

It’s a simple operation in general, no need for crazy recovery rigs. They hunt down the chain, find the end, run cables through to drag it back up to the ship, load it on to a windlass, and haul it back up just like it was their own anchor. Once that’s done, often they’ll have a crane on deck to lift the anchor up on to the deck, rather than letting it hang. It’s common enough that you have companies like PSOMakara and Resolve Marine Services that specialize in it.

Edit - oh, and often, their insurance will cover some or all of the cost. Since you’re obligated to retrieve dropped anchors if possible, most companies that operate large vessels have those sorts of things included in their insurance policies.


I thought anchors don’t work by grabbing, but work due to just being long and heavy.


That’s partially true. The anchor and the chain won’t do the job on their own, they have to work in tandem. The chain helps the ship stay in position with weight and length, but the anchor keeps everything locked in place. Without the chain(correctly deployed) the anchor would just pull free of the seabed. Without the anchor, the chain is just a dangling weight, and doesn’t really help much.

Okay, so, you know the old-school bar-and-hook anchors? Forget 'em. They suck. Raggedy-ass old-timey bullshit. Nowdays, your anchor is a two-part construction, a long shank - the bar everything connects to - and then the bottom section, which is the Crown(the kind of shackle shaped bit where it connects to the shank), the shoulder(the big flat bottom part) and the Flukes(the big wing-like flat sections that dig into the seabed.) When you drop it, the shoulder hits the seabed, and digs in. Now, when the ship moves against the anchor(with the current, wind, or under power, whatever you need to do to set the anchor), the movement flops the anchor over in that direction, the flukes dig in, and you’ve got your holding power. You play out a long length of chain - from memory, five times the depth in good weather - to keep the forces acting on the anchor as horizontal as possible, and to add more weight to help it along - because anchors don’t work so good vertically.

No long chain, doesn’t work, you’re dragging anchor because it’s just pulling free vertically. No anchor to provide holding force, doesn’t work, chains just hanging out, drifting along with you.

Now, there are anchors made to minimize drift in the deep ocean, Sea Anchors or Drogues, but they aren’t used as often - when you’re that far out to sea, you can normally just let it drift. Because what are you gonna run into? There’s fuck-all out there. If you don’t want to drift too far, you can drop a drouge, or you can use a Dynamic Positioning system, which is basically just automated station keeping, an autopilot that holds you in place instead of taking you places.


This is an unedited clip from the Singapore dub of YuGiOh:



" Number of incidents during anchoring or while at anchor suggest that we might not have yet mastered the art of anchoring a ship effectively."


This is a good story.


That’s basically the Internet in a classroom.


This is an awesome cover


What worries me about this story is that while its the childish antics of kids, it looks like the seeds of online harassment of women. Notice how the boys felt the need to call out every girl who disagreed, to tell them that what they do like is crap without even knowing what those things are, how their ire was targeted at the ones who dared speak up and how their opinions were dismissed out of hand. I find this story rather frightening to be honest.


While you see it as frightening, all it does is show me that tantrum-throwing children and stupid internet nerds are one and the same.

That, and that the girls knew that they could so easily wreck these boys’ days by saying their favorite video game is bad.