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Old 06-04-2010, 02:53   #1
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Another Anchor Thread . . .

Some people like these.

Our new boat, 54' LOA and 44,000 pounds (20,000kg) light ship displacement, has to my mind inadequate ground tackle -- a 25kg Delta anchor with 40 meters of all-chain rode (apparently 12mm; I haven't put a caliper on it).

Almost all of my unpleasant sailing experiences over the years have been of the anchor dragging in the middle of the night variety, so I have a little fetish about anchors, as I think some others here do too.

Our old boat had periodic ground tackle upgrades until we installed a Spade some years ago, which has worked fantastically and never once dragged even in some pretty tough conditions.

I was tempted to put a Spade on the new boat, but after some thought I decided to go for a Manson or Rocna, 40kg. My question to the group is about chain, which has me quite confused:

I think I need about 100 meters (300-odd feet) of rode for the kind of cruising we will be doing and for this kind of boat (deep draft; we might have to anchor in deep water). I am being offered a choice between G30 and G40 chain. I found one table which indicated that a 12mm chain (or even 13mm, if that's what it is -- I will take a caliper to it in a couple of weeks) is smallish for this boat. Does that mean that I should go for the higher-strength G40 chain? But isn't the high strength chain more brittle and less long-lasting? What do you guys think?

Also, should I be considering part chain and part rope rode, for such a long rode? I am conscious of the weight of 100 meters of big chain, right in the bow, plus the old anchor and old 40 meter chain rode as a spare. It adds up. My windlass has a chain-only gypsy but I suppose I could swap it out for a chain/rope one.

What do you guys think?
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Old 06-04-2010, 04:03   #2
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My boats 20,000kg.
I have 100m 10mm chain and 60kg bugel (I wanted 50kg but at the time it was not possible). I set my wind alarm to wake me up at more than 30kts.(then I would set it to 35kts and go back to sleep if all looked ok)
I feel pretty confident in more than 50kts even though my boat sails around alot. (Im not sure... but mine is cutter rigged and this might be part of the cause sailing around at anchor). Ive never been in 60 so this would make me nervous but I would expect it to be ok (depending on all conditions of course)

I think that it is important to have the chain not jam in the locker for safety reasons.
My understanding is that high test chain is not more brittle, it has a higher breaking point.
I asked in the forum a while back if anyone had ever broken their anchor chain... no-one said they had.

My boat originally came with 60m chain and 35kg bugel anchor. 60m is not enough in the med. 35kg in good holding held fine in 45kts but looked like it did not have a lot in reserve... The next morning I put it in reverse and dragged it in 45kts so there was not much reserve.

If I was buying again I would get high test 10mm chain (just for safety) and 50kg bugel (only because I know the bugel)
12mm chain won't fit in my locker without jamming
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Old 06-04-2010, 04:29   #3
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That's a big anchor, way bigger than anything recommended for my boat, which is about the same displacement. What kind of boat do you have?
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Old 06-04-2010, 05:01   #4
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Its a 22,000kg 49ft one off aluminium cutter. full skeg rudder. 60kgs is too big most of the time.
As I said, if i was doing it again I would get 50kgs.

I also do not want to worry about my anchor and I know that the 34kg was not big enough partly due to the bugel having a small surface area even though it never dragged (it had dragged of course but it was always my fault through not putting out enough chain.)

2 years ago I was in a night thunderstorm in turkey swinging at anchor in winds up to 60kts. 40m behind me were rocks as I was in a wave sheltered bay. I was up of course.... but I did not have a big fear of dragging even with the 180 wind shift that was so severe that it took me diagonally right over the top of the anchor.

If I was at anchor and the forecast was for a 50kt storm, I would not be too worried... and that would not have been the case with the 34kg.

My windlass pulls up the 34 or the 60 just the same, there is no noticable strain.

My anchor gives me lots of confidence and I also feel happy to leave the boat for a day on its own while I go on a trip which I think you also need from your anchor.
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Old 06-04-2010, 05:26   #5
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Yes -- I appreciate that logic very much.

Also when you figure that 100 meters of 12mm chain weighs something like 350kg (770 pounds!), what's ten or fifteen kilos plus or minus on the anchor? Nothing! Maybe I'll go another size bigger with the anchor. I have a nice open bow roller and I think I could fit almost anything up there.
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Old 06-04-2010, 07:36   #6
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If it starts to look too big, even a bit silly, then you know you can get a good nights sleep

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Old 06-04-2010, 07:58   #7
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Yeah. The boat was delivered with a 25kg Delta. If I go to not a 40kg Rocna (as recommended in the charts) but rather a 100lb Manson or even 55kg Rocna, that will be a massive increase in holding power. I guess there is no such thing as "overkill", where anchors are concerned. How much I hate those sleepless nights at anchor, wondering if you're going to drag, wondering whether you will hear the anchor alarm in time . . .

Looking silly may be a small price to pay.
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:05   #8
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You may know this, but compatibility with the windlass is one big concern, most "G30" grade that I have found is industrial link for moorings or boats without a windlass; that grade in short link will be BBB or "3B" stamped. The cost for BBB or hi-test G4 was about the same (US, Florida) so I went with the high test, but then had to look hard to find shackles that fit and met the same strength test. The standard stainless shackles had a lower strength than the chain so I wound up with some mail-order alloy shackles with the strength stamped in them. I have later learned that these are sometimes available from industrial lifting companies.

I have the 80lb Mason on my 40,000 lb and have been pleased with its performance, have had winds up to 40 kts as the fronts come through, and have swung 180 degrees; no problems with dragging (yet!)
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:17   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troubadour52993 View Post
You may know this, but compatibility with the windlass is one big concern, most "G30" grade that I have found is industrial link for moorings or boats without a windlass; that grade in short link will be BBB or "3B" stamped. The cost for BBB or hi-test G4 was about the same (US, Florida) so I went with the high test, but then had to look hard to find shackles that fit and met the same strength test. The standard stainless shackles had a lower strength than the chain so I wound up with some mail-order alloy shackles with the strength stamped in them. I have later learned that these are sometimes available from industrial lifting companies.

I have the 80lb Mason on my 40,000 lb and have been pleased with its performance, have had winds up to 40 kts as the fronts come through, and have swung 180 degrees; no problems with dragging (yet!)
What size chain do you have, and what is the length of your rode?

All the chain I'm looking at is made in France and calibrated for Lewmar gypsies, so I think I'm ok there. I have always heard that it is better to avoid stainless shackles (unlike metal corrosion; crevice corrosion of stainless) and better to use the tested, "colored-pin", forged alloy steel shackles. Shackles are supposed to be the weakest link, and so worth finding the strongest and best.
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:22   #10
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DH, these folk new exactly what spec I needed to match the numbers off my windlass gypsy. Picked up the recommendation from YBW so a few other happy folk too.

Bradney Chain for chains, lifting gear, forgings, fabrications, anchor kits

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Old 06-04-2010, 08:25   #11
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Also I think you can get that chain ordered with special enlarged end links so you can go one shackle size up onto the anchor.
If you are ordering it then this is worth considering.

Will the 12mm fit in the locker without jamming, I think this is also an important point.

For me, if the 12mm was going to jam then I would go with high test 10mm as more will fit in the locker.
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:33   #12
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DH, these folk new exactly what spec I needed to match the numbers off my windlass gypsy. Picked up the recommendation from YBW so a few other happy folk too.

Bradney Chain for chains, lifting gear, forgings, fabrications, anchor kits

Pete
Thanks for that! Very good prices. They only have G30 grade chain in calibrated 12mm. I wonder if that's enough? Working load 3,000kg (6,600 pounds); breaking load double that. For a boat with light ship displacement of 44,000 pounds (20 metric tons)?
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:34   #13
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Colored pin shackles, that's what the high strength alloy ones are called. I have 200 feet of 3/8" chain; that's a half drum order quantity and I got a decent price. Figured that would be enough for my cruising in the Caribbean for the next few years. I understand I'd need more for the Pacific or Med but figure I'll need some new chain by then anyway.
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:37   #14
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Originally Posted by john Fussell View Post
Also I think you can get that chain ordered with special enlarged end links so you can go one shackle size up onto the anchor.
If you are ordering it then this is worth considering.

Will the 12mm fit in the locker without jamming, I think this is also an important point.

For me, if the 12mm was going to jam then I would go with high test 10mm as more will fit in the locker.
Yes, the 12mm chain is fine in my very large chain locker (I can stand up in it and close the hatch over my head). The boat now has 40 meters of 12mm chain and it's actually the only sailboat I've ever cruised on where the chain doesn't pile up in the locker, needed to be knocked over to prevent jamming.

What I don't understand, however, if what strength is needed. G30 12mm chain has a safe working load of 3,000kg (6,600 pounds). Is that enough?
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:38   #15
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With the quantity you are looking at, I would give them a ring and talk it through with them, they might even have G4, just not advertised . Very helpful over the phone to us, which resulted in me getting my credit card out on the spot. However ours was slightly easier to spec, 30m x 8mm G3.

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