Originally Posted by Fitsthebill
If anyone wants to advise, I have always prided myself in that I ask...
I think you have thought about your anchoring gear
very carefully. I am sure your system will work well.
However, forgive me if I point out why I think your smallish new generation anchor combined with different anchor alternatives and a manual anchor winch
it is not ideal.
Manual winches create a few problems:
1. There is a reluctance to re anchor. This should not be the case. The boat comes first etc, but it is fact of life. There are many situations where it is prudent to move. The easier it is, the more you will do it
2. There is a tendency to minimise the size of the ground tackle.
3. There is is reluctance to anchor in deeper water
. Sometimes this is the best place.
4. If you do drag it is a very slow recovery to retrieve the anchor.
The fisherman and Norhill cover the the biggest weakness of new generation anchors. New generation anchors are much better than their older cousins at coping with weed, but a specialist weed anchor is still sometimes better. One way to overcome this problem is go large with the new generation anchor. A big heavy anchor will cut through weed better than a smaller anchor of the same design. With the specialist weed anchors they need to be very big anyway.
One of the great advances with the new generation anchors is that they are good in most substrates and even in weed they are OK. This eliminates the problems switching anchors. Switching anchors is not just frustrating it always a dilemma which anchor to use.
As an example I am just about to sail to new anchorage. The pilot book says thick weed is a problem here. Other cruisers have reported poor holding, but some believe this is due to soft mud.
I have anchored there once before and the anchor came up very deeply buried in soft mud with lots of weed on top so they are probably both right (I did not dive when I was here last time as I usually do as the water
is deep, murky and it was winter)
The specialist weed anchors are very poor in soft mud, but this anchorage also has thick weed which is the very reason for carrying anchors like this.
A complicating factor is that the wind
is predicted to change rapidly 180 degrees about 3am tomorrow. The specialist weed anchors are prone to catching chain around a fluke in these circumstances.
In your situation I would probably put out both the Rocna and Norhill in the hope that one will work better, but with the forcast this anchorage will be crowded especially in the shallower areas. Two anchors will make you swing differently with 180 degree change. ( I plan to anchor in the deep away from other boats, but I would not like to winch
up that chain by hand)
This is where putting all your resources into large new generation anchor helps. This will still give good performance in weed and once through the weed it is the best anchor for soft mud.
There is no perfect anchoring philosophy, but a big new generation anchor with an electric
anchor winch comes as close as I found.