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Old 02-05-2007, 10:14   #1
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Connecting chain

I have 100' of chain backed up by nylon rode. I also have another 100' that came with the vessel. I want to connect both lengths of chain so I have 200' of continuous chain for most anchoring conditions.

I went to my local Marine store and they sold me a connector that looks like a chain link. It comes apart in half (like a link cut the long way) and then loops onto two ends of chain and then gets sandwiched together.
The final step is to peen (spl) the four pins that marry the two halfs so it holds fast.

My question is, does this connector link have the same strength as the chain itself? It seems counter intuitive to have a link that may be weaker than the rest of the gear. Has anyone linked chains together and is this a safe system.

HERON
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Old 02-05-2007, 12:22   #2
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It sounds like you have a a "split link". The only way to answer the question is to find the manufacturer's rating on the link, and compare it to the chain. Since there will be different metals, etc. it may be more susceptible to galvanic problems, but your options are limited. If you really want a uniform chain...you could take them both to a welding shop and have one link opened up and then re-welded (and galvanized) after they were joined, but I would think a split link would work well enough, as long as you keep an eye on it. And perhaps throw some extra galvanizing paint over it as insurance.
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Old 02-05-2007, 19:29   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heron
does this connector link have the same strength as the chain itself?
HERON
Yes, The only possibility is to check with the manufacturer of this "C" link and to have a garanty that the working (or breaking) load is at least the same as the one of your chain..

If from "unknown" origine, don't use it..
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Old 02-05-2007, 20:05   #4
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Defender's online catalog lists "working" loads

HERON:

I had two pieces of anchor chain joined with one of these, and remember checking to see that the working load was equal or greater than that of the chain. It seemed at the time that the connector was always rated at the working load for the comparably sized High Test/G4.

The reason I no longer have this set up has nothing to do with the chain connector . . . long, sorrowful story involving abandoned anchor and chain.

Mary
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Old 02-05-2007, 20:13   #5
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Heron, we have 2 pieces of 3/8 BBB that has been connected together with a C link to make up 200' and have been anchoring with it more times than I would like to count for the last 4 years and no problem. We are planning to have the chain galvanized so I will remove it since they don't like more that 100' at a time. I doubt very seriously that you will break the link unless it is a very inferior product. You need to be more concerned with its quality than whether it will break under load. You did not say what size the chain is but unless it is undersized for your vessel you will not be able to break it unless you are in very extreme conditions or the chain is in very poor condition.
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Old 02-05-2007, 22:44   #6
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Interesting question.
I have exactly the same problem - need to extend the length of my 10mm chain. I have seen the split links in question but having a welding machine, wondered if I'd be better off cutting a link, joining the chain and re-welding the link, and then re galvanising the whole thing.(My chain needs it.)
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Old 02-05-2007, 23:16   #7
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Chrisc-
The only uncertainty with welding, is how well do you weld?<G> If I had the machine I'd go for it, probably do a test link and destroy it to make sure if there was any doubt. Just remember the chain is galvanized and inhaling the vapors from welding that is supposed to be a Very Bad Idea.
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Old 03-05-2007, 02:01   #8
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Yes, you're right about the fumes. They can be pretty fruity.
Alternatively, I had thought about galvanising both lengths of chain and then joining them together with a link fabricated from a bit of 10mm stainless round bar. Using a stainless rod for the weld is about the same strength wise as a low hydrogen weld in steel, ie pretty strong. The stainless link would show up as a handy sort of marker in the rode, and I think the potential galvanic problems would be more theoretical than practical.
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Old 03-05-2007, 10:06   #9
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I read something awhile back about corrosion at the welds of stainless chain. Something about when under water causes the welds to crack?

Edit: Found it... Stainless Anchors and Chain
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Old 03-05-2007, 23:17   #10
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These things are not expensive, Please change every few hundred times at anchor for a good nights sleep.
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Old 04-05-2007, 22:38   #11
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If the 'C Link' (Split links are slighty differant, could be a regional name thing though) are well marked up with manufacturers name and stuff you should be fine. There are 1000's in use without problems.

If it has no names/stamps and so on i.e. no manufactuer is identifiable chuck it away. Don't just rely on a 'Test Cert' if the fitting has no way of tracing the manufacturer. The Eastern companys will give you a Test Cert, or what they call one anyway. Never seen one that I believe as yet except for 2, unfortunatly both showed very low WLL's. They can be quite 'creative' when making those so call Certs.

Good well made stainless gear is perfectly fine in anchor systems. There is masses of it in use and if there was an issue it would be well known. You will find many negitive comments are mostly hearsay and/or involve cheap eastern made gear.

Cutting and welding links togeather is perfectly fine as well, obvioulsy, but make sure that who ever does it knows their stuff and knows it well. We do it often and as Hellosailor said we also do many for busting purposes just to make sure. So far never had an issue. The Galv fumes are not an issue, you have to take the galv right off to weld anyway.
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Old 05-05-2007, 13:27   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynx
These things are not expensive, Please change every few hundred times at anchor for a good nights sleep.
If we followed this advise while cruising we would be changing every couple of months. I can understand being overly cautious but we have found this is not necessary. If the link begins to rust or show signs of fatigue or other issues I would say replace it just as you would a piece of chain under the same conditions. Replacing it just because of a number of times at anchor to us would not be necessary. Each skipper must make those decisions for him or her self.
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Old 06-05-2007, 06:45   #13
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Hello All,

Thanks for the information. The photo that became part of this thread is exactly the one I used. I will keep a watchful eye on this connector each time she comes back through the gypsy. Seems like a good idea to have a spare or two on board to keep the gear in good order. Fortunately, she is at the 100' mark on the chain and for most purposes will rarely be deployed as we usually anchor in 20 feet of water.

I appreciate the feedback.

HERON
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Old 08-05-2007, 09:24   #14
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It all comes down to this...how much is a good nights sleep worth to you.
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