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Old 10-03-2019, 07:03   #31
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

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boatman61,

I do too, and have two windlasses, but where I am there is much fouling and have come to believe I will not drop unless I can dive IF I have to. Hopefully I can come to gain your confidence and experience. I may just choose to anchor next to you and hook you chain so I do not have to worry about mine )
Okay, then where are you, and what area are you talking about? Your signature space and block don't say.
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Old 10-03-2019, 19:51   #32
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

Mat Jam, do you mean free diving for recovery, or scuba? If the former, unless you are superman it sure limits your anchoring venues. Plenty of places where anchoring in 45+ feet is commonly required, and few free divers can do useful work at that depth... and getting a jammed anchor unstuck ain't always easy!

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Old 10-03-2019, 20:18   #33
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

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Mat Jam, do you mean free diving for recovery, or scuba? If the former, unless you are superman it sure limits your anchoring venues. Plenty of places where anchoring in 45+ feet is commonly required, and few free divers can do useful work at that depth... and getting a jammed anchor unstuck ain't always easy!

Jim
Free diving for recovery, so I try to limit myself under 20m. I realize I am limiting myself to where I can anchor but I also do not want to carry too much weight high up. I recently bought 70m of chain and if required I also have 150m of 3-strand but would do anything to not use it. I would rather locate places where I can anchor safely within my limits instead of thinking there are must visit places. Safety is always my first thought.

CptCrunchie,

I am located in the eastern Med now and after I have had my fill of the Med will be heading to the pacific via the southern route so am interested in this topic, and the weather will dictate which way to a degree. Have heard of people having to abandon anchor/chain after deploying too deep and not being able to recover.
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Old 10-03-2019, 20:34   #34
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

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Free diving for recovery, so I try to limit myself under 20m. I realize I am limiting myself to where I can anchor but I also do not want to carry too much weight high up. I recently bought 70m of chain and if required I also have 150m of 3-strand but would do anything to not use it. I would rather locate places where I can anchor safely within my limits instead of thinking there are must visit places. Safety is always my first thought.

CptCrunchie,

I am located in the eastern Med now and after I have had my fill of the Med will be heading to the pacific via the southern route so am interested in this topic, and the weather will dictate which way to a degree. Have heard of people having to abandon anchor/chain after deploying too deep and not being able to recover.
Not sure if that would be here, as most of our anchorages are between 8' and 40' at LLM. Only reason around here to anchor that deep is if you lose propulsion and want to make sure you stay out of the rocks, .....or for halibut fishing like I do. Is that what you are referring to?

By the southern route, do you mean out the west Med and south, or .....?
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Old 10-03-2019, 23:24   #35
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

There are some who can free dive and work at 25 meters, but my ears won't clear that well. I remember retrieving a fouled anchor on another boat at 15-20 meters somewhere in the South Pacific, but I used a tank. I took a light signal line with me--2 pulls meant let some more chain out, 3 pulls meant bring it in one pull meant I didn't mean it.

I was lucky enough to never have to dive to retrieve my own fouled anchor, but there were several times when it took half an hour of maneuvering and pulling with the engine. Most of the time the visibility was good enough that I could snorkle and direct the admiral.
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Old 15-03-2019, 06:38   #36
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

200 metres. Simple rule 5:1. Have had to anchor in 40m when on a rally and the other boats took all the closer inshore spots. PNG. Volcanic. Very steep drop offs. Was bad that one, snagged bommie. Took 4 hours to get anchor up by hand after clutch gave up.
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Old 15-03-2019, 06:39   #37
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

As it happens we carry 100 meters of chain and a chain / rode secondary.

Before you get carried away with how much chain you need though consider this.

In some few anchorages you need depth but the other and more important consideration is not anchoring in a depth deeper than you can snorkle to. Bombies abound in most anchorages. Loosing all that chain is a reall PITA.
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Old 15-03-2019, 06:46   #38
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

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200 metres. Simple rule 5:1. Have had to anchor in 40m when on a rally and the other boats took all the closer inshore spots. PNG. Volcanic. Very steep drop offs. Was bad that one, snagged bommie. Took 4 hours to get anchor up by hand after clutch gave up.
Your post isn't exactly a good endorsement of 200M of chain ....without recommending a much larger windlass.

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Old 15-03-2019, 08:53   #39
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

The attached link may help you understand chain versus nylon arguments better:

https://www.petersmith.net.nz/boat-anchors/catenary.php
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Old 15-03-2019, 09:00   #40
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Mat Jam...
I knew what you meant, I was joshing.
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Old 15-03-2019, 09:15   #41
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

In 53,000 miles in 6 years through out the Oz great barrier reef, New Guinea, the Solomons & many atolls north, if my boat was not sailing, 95% of the time it was lying to a 30Lb CQR anchor, with 50Ft of 3/8 chain & up to 400 Ft of 1.5" silver, [polyethylene] rope.


Most of the anchorages were between 60 & 100 Ft of water over sand. When I could not find sand clear of coral, or in cyclonic weather, a rare occurrence, I used a 45Lb CQR with up to 300 Ft of 5/16 chain, with a minimum of 50 Ft of 1.5" silver rope spring to stop snatching. The rope was always wrapped in 12 once canvas at the bow roller to prevent chafing.


I always kept a full scuba tank for emergencies, & needed it to free the all chain from coral about once a year, usually in about 80 to 100 ft. of water. In those clear waters you could usually clear the chain in less depth by steaming around.


I never had a problem using this gear, & rode out 2 cyclones on the 45Lb CQR. This was successful, but I much preferred getting up a mangrove creek in cyclones.
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Old 15-03-2019, 10:00   #42
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

75 meters for the cat. Most tried to stay farther offshore in anchorage then necessary at first. With shallow draft you can get closer to the beach. Carry a kellet for additional peace of mind when you are anchored deeper than you would like.
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Old 15-03-2019, 11:00   #43
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

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What is the minimum length of chain would you consider having for crossing the pacific. I'm assuming an all chain rode is prudent.
I've cruised for ten years in the Pacific on two boats, MY 32' sloop and MY 51' cutter. In my opinion, all chain rode is the only safe way to anchor. On one occasion we had to slip our 325' 3/8" chain rode over the side buoyed to pick up later, as it was blowing 35, chain wrapped around coral heads and we could not pick it up. That was in Easter Island. We ran around to the back side of the island, used one of our 4 spare anchors with 50' chain and the rest 3/4" nylon. we buoyed the chain with a small fender to keep it off the coral bottom. Next day when we retrieved the anchor, the nylon was chafed almost through about 20' from the shackle to the chain because when the wind abated, it sank to the bottom at that point. LESSON: THERE IS NO SAFE WAY TO ANCHOR IN CORAL WITH ROPE RODE.
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Old 15-03-2019, 11:24   #44
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

A polypropylene rode would likely have prevented this though not guaranteed.
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Old 15-03-2019, 11:55   #45
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Re: Minimum chain length for the pacific

I have 225' chain followed by 250' of nylon rode. There were a couple of anchorages in French Polynesia where it was 100' deep in mud, those were the few times all of the chain was run out plus rode (i kept nylon rode length released to be slightly less than depth so the nylon should not have touched the bottom), otherwise all-chain was sufficient in typical 20-45' depths. I typically try to anchor in 30' of water. I use a 35' snubber on the chain.

I have a small oil-free compressor that i use as a hookah settup for cleaning the bottom of the boat. I added 150' of air hose (210' total) and that makes it easy to set the compressor on the foredeck and hop in to pull myself along the anchor chain to check the set, also good for departure when the chain was fouled on a bommie. In French Polynesia i would dive the anchor to check its set (the water is warm, visibility is good).

And use floats to keep the chain up off the coral - i found 5 floats that i can attach to the chain as it pays out. A big pain when retrieving, but worked very well to keep chain up and avoid wrapping on the bommies. I got the floats in Fakarava, the hard plastic floats do not compress as they sink therefore the bouyancy of the float remains constant despite increasing depth.

That's what has worked for me so far.

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