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Old 16-11-2009, 19:55   #1
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Manually Retrieving an Anchor on a Roller

Well, my last anchor question has just topped 200 responses in under 2 months, and it has been an incredibly informative read. I'm now officially more confused than when I asked the question.......

So, I'm kind of sold on some sort of "next gen" to replace my 25 lb CQR, type still to be determined. But, as I ponder what to get, I do have another issue to consider (and it isn't a "holding" issue, hence the new thread). I do not have a windlass, and don't expect to get one. My boat is a 12,000 lb 34' sailboat, sailing the Chesapeake Bay with no intentions of ever leaving the Bay, at least in this boat.

So, here's the question. My 25 lb CQR is an absolute DOG to get on the roller. I usually end up reaching over the bow, grabbing that messy thing, and manhandling it onto the roller. Granted, I've only anchored on this boat a handful of times so far, but that's the way it's been playing out. Are there any "next gen" anchors in the 25-35 lb range that play nicely on the bow roller without a windlass? And related to that, are there any tricks I'm missing to make it easier? The anchor comes up to the roller, but when the shackle hits the roller, the applied moment (sorry, I'm a mechanical engineer) is essentially zero and the anchor won't rotate toward the horizontal.

Given that Spade, Sword, and Raya are essentially unavailable in the US, and price unfortunately plays into the fray, the strong players right now are Delta, Manson and Bruce (probably used, or a knock-off), if that helps the answers.

I grew up on a boat with a bowsprit and a Danforth, and we stored the anchor hooked on the bobstay. That was easy!

Harry
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Old 16-11-2009, 20:05   #2
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I've got a bruce knock off, and it exhibits the same applied moment anti leverage problem you've experienced. FWIW the bruce knock off I've got isn't worth the price.
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Old 16-11-2009, 23:43   #3
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If you are going to stay in the Chesapeake and won't have a windlass, get a #23 Fortress. Light enough to make manhandling relatively painless but with enough holding power, in mud, for the Queen Mary. These aren't all around anchors but for the mud of the Chesapeake they essentially are and will hold their own with any of the new anchors at 3 times their weight.
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Old 16-11-2009, 23:51   #4
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Thumbs up Manson Supreme

My Manson Supreme has no problems coming aboard and righting on the (Windline URM-3 (or is it a 4?) roller. I don't have a windlass either.
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Old 17-11-2009, 00:56   #5
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I haven't fondled the Chesapeake seabed but if it is mud as roverhi suggests a Fortress or similar would be a good call. If you like pretty blue coloured anchors Manson have made a Fortress variation that is a lot cheaper also made of alloy. I think West Marine has them.

Danforth patterns do like soft bottoms and work well.
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Old 17-11-2009, 05:01   #6
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GMac,

The Chesapeake is indeed soft sticky mud. I hadn't seen the Manson Racer -- West has a *new* tag next to it. Interesting product. But, here in the US, it isn't cheaper. The R6, listed by Manson as 10lb (but listed by West as 13 lb???) and the anchor for my boat, is $255. The 10lb Fortress, also the appropriate anchor for my boat, is $245. Strange....

The Fortress Guardian is interesting, though. It's not annodized, but a 13lb anchor (size for my boat) is $200.

But, for all of these, how easy is it to get it onto the roller by simply pulling? They are much lighter, so I suppose they will "rock around" the roller easier for that reason alone. And, when there, how well do they store? I've seen more than a few boats with bow rollers that store their Danforth-type on a pulpit hanger.

Harry
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Old 17-11-2009, 05:49   #7
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Harry,
I have a genuine Bruce that has held well on all bottoms except soft mud. 40+ knots on sand for 4 hours and we didn't move an inch so I held the Bruce in quite high regard until one night with an estimated 30 knots on soft mud. We had anchored in 10' of water with only a gentle breeze but a prediction of the wind increasing during the night so I let out plenty of chain (about 60' from memory) and retired for the night. The wind picked up at about 3am and as always happens my sleep became more disturbed and I popped my head out of the hatch above the bunk every half hour or so. At around 5am I popped up for another look and to my horror we were about 500yds from where we had anchored and now in 40' of water and rapidly (well at the time it seemed like rapidly) getting deeper. I won't bore anyone with the details of how ones mind works really fast in a situation like this but the body is still trying to wake up but we re-anchored on a slightly more sheltered area (very slightly), set the anchor alarm and got no more sleep. A google search later revealed that someone (can't remember who) had tested some different anchors for holding and discovered the Bruce held reasonably well in all conditions except soft mud. We now have the anchor alarm on whenever that chunk of steel is in the water. Anyway to get to the real point of this post, maybe a Bruce is not the ideal anchor for your sailing/anchoring grounds.
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Old 17-11-2009, 07:02   #8
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Hi:you might try adifferent shackle or a splice ,I use the same 25# cqr and have same problem,but am old and have a bad back.Using a chain pawl helps immensely,slow and steady is the trick here and if anchor still is uncooperative you can just let anchor hang from the pawl while you sort all out.But the danforth holds superbly in mud here in Hudson riv. and worked the same in various cruises in the Chessy.I too am looking at other anchors but would never be without a mid sized danforth
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Old 17-11-2009, 07:09   #9
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Fortress doesn't like all mud

We have firm mud bottoms in our area and we tried a Fortress. No matter what we did with it, it would not set. I mean it would not set. We tried every conceivable option of chain length, rode, palm angle, set fast, set slow, wind set, glide down, straight drop down. In 8 hours of fooling with it, we did not get one set. It went back to the store. On that same bottom a Delta sets instantly. We are getting a Manson Supreme as well as the Delta.

BTW, we had always used Danforth type anchors up until the experience with the Fortress, but once we tried the Delta that was it. It comes up on our bow roller without an issue without windlass. Hoping for the same from the Manson.

Is it real squishy, oozy, loose mud that the Fortress likes?
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Old 17-11-2009, 07:57   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdoe71 View Post
We have firm mud bottoms in our area and we tried a Fortress. No matter what we did with it, it would not set....
Where was this?
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Old 17-11-2009, 13:34   #11
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One problem with a Fortress

The only problem I had with a Fortress/Danforth in the Chesapeake was getting it out of the mud, NEVER had a problem with it not setting or dragging. If you take a hard pull on the anchor, like in kedging off after running aground, the anchor will bury itself real deep. If you are in a protected area with no wave action, it will be nearly impossible to break the anchor free without serious muscle. We would run the anchor rode back to the primary winches, crank the bow down as far as we could and wait for the tide to pull the anchor out. More than once, had to dive in, dig down to the anchor, and physically muscle it out backwards when we couldn't wait for natural forces to break the anchor free. This was only a problem where we had taken really have loads on the anchor like anchored out with high winds or using both primary winches, simultaneously, in an effort to kedge off a grounding. That was a Danforth 20H on a 35' sailboat.

If I was ranging further afield, would and do have a Manson as a primary anchor with a CQR and Fortress as back up. Pound for pound, nothing beats Fortress in mud, however. IIRC, the Fortress is less than half the weight of a similarly rated Manson. When you get a hard bottom, weeds, what have you, the Fortress won't dig in like a Manson or reset as well with a windshift. Your question was about getting the anchor back aboard when anchored in the Chesapeake for which bottoms the Viking is ideal.

FWIW, if you want to save money, might look around for a used Danforth or Danforth Copy. They are all over the place on the used market and CHEAP. The reason I reccomended Fortress is the Aluminum construction doesn't rust and is lighter, so easier to pull onto the bow roller than the steel Danforths. Both the Danforth and Fortress are way easier than the heavier, for equal holding power, other anchors to muscle around.
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Old 17-11-2009, 15:08   #12
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Mine 22 Bruce. I just grab the chain and pull up and pop comes the weasel.

Easy. But can be more complicated if you have a winch.

b.
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Old 17-11-2009, 16:32   #13
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Harry -
If your problem is mainly caused by the shackle, you might consider using a swivel. I'm not a particular fan of them but the relatively streamlined shape may help you get the anchor on the roller. Just do some research and get a strong one.
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Old 17-11-2009, 18:04   #14
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All Chesapeake sailing?

Fortress FX-23. Or Danforth original HiTensile (not the one with the bendy shank).

Nothing better, certainly not for the price.

Setting problems with a Danforth? Not on the Chesapeake Bay! Possible exception: weedy anchorages...there are a few.

Bruce is fine, too, but doesn't have the ultimate holding power of either Fortress or Danforth.

I've used both (Danforth's and Fortresses) on the Chesapeake Bay for over 50 years.

But, when I exit the Bay for cruising further afield, I generally replace them with my 45lb CQR on an all-chain rode, which works well in most locales I've sailed (from Maine to Grenada).

Bill
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Old 17-11-2009, 19:22   #15
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I'm enjoying what I'm reading, but I do want to re-focus the discussion. I'm looking for input on manually pulling various anchors over the roller -- I've got lots of input (all over the web!) on what anchors are best for what areas. My question has to do with tips, tricks, and anchor-specific input on pulling that damn thing over the roller, preferably without getting my hands all muddy and leaning out over the bow pulpit (with my less-than-accomplished first mate back at the helm...).

Oh, and any input on anchor experiences, this thread or others, would be helped a lot if you mentioned the boat size and the anchor size!

Thanks,

Harry
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