We have invested in a storm drogue.
There are numerous storm devices on the market and as many opinions amongst skippers as to which is best for them. We looked at when we were most likely to need storm devices and concluded that it would be far from land when, for whatever reason, we were unable to avoid the storm conditions and had no safe haven to run to. That scenario would present us with ample running room.
After doing our research we opted for a Jordan Series drogue by Oceanbrake in UK.
In hurricane conditions the loads generated by the drogue on the bridle was estimated as 6tonne per hull. Oceanbrake strongly recommended custom installed chain plates and cleats. We opted for waterproof Wichard pad eyes with stainless load spreading plates glassed inside the hulls. We also sourced Wichard bow shackles that connect the thimbled bridle ends to the pad eyes. You can see in the photos below, that the bridle ends connect to the drogue with a cow hitch. We opted for a 12mm spectra recovery line that will be used with a power winch during recovery. The drogue is comprised of nylon line that reduces in diameter as the loads decrease towards the aft of the drogue and 150 cones that are sewn into the line. At the end of the line we have a custom made spectra bag to take 15kg of dive weights, obviating the need for dedicated drogue weights.
Time will tell if we have made the right selection but one thing is for sure, it is a serious bit of kit for serious weather.
Here’s hoping we don’t have to use it.
More info at www.oceanbrake.com