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Old 25-11-2014, 15:14   #1
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Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

Been cruising my Orana for six months now. All the Fountaine Pajot and quite a few others (Leopards too I think) has the anchor coming up just in front of the maststep and not at the forward beam.

When retrieving the anchor, especially when its windy and anchored in shallow waters, its so easy that the boat turns 90 deg and the chain come up and touch the bottom on one of the hulls. Not good.

One night a thunderstorm come into the anchorage. 25+ knots wind, unprotected anchorage. Most boats dragged but fortunately not me. Retrieving the anchor in the middle of the night, in that wind and waves, would have been a nightmare with the anchor coming up where it is. I was very nervous to be honest.

Also, when on a Med mooring when you cannot use the bridle, the load on the anchor is much higher than if it would be mounted on the forward beam.

I understand the benefit, lessen weight forward. But there is 600 liter of water around the mast on my boat. Talked to an owner of an Antares, and on that boat the generator is in a forward compartment in one of the hulls. Where is the consistency.

I saw on a big Fountaine Pajot cat the other day, they put an additional anchor roller UNDER the forward beam, with the chain then going under the forward netting and into through the original anchor roller.

Thinking of doing the same thing. Cannot think of any drawbacks on top of the weight forward issue.

Being new to catamaran cruising, have I missed something.
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Old 25-11-2014, 15:24   #2
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

I don't like that arrangement either. Just finished running an instructional charter on a Leapord 47 with the same style set-up (deploy from locker). Not only does the boat pivot further aft, meaning a lot more activity at the helm to keep boat into wind during set or retrieve, but if you need to work your ground tackle by hand it would be very difficult (like if windlass failed).

Makes it a challenge to teach anchoring too when newbie students have to deal with that issue. Fun when they drop the bridle...they get to fish it all the way back under the safety nets.

I think underslung on the fwd beam is a better solution and a number of boats are set up that way.
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Old 25-11-2014, 15:25   #3
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

A common problem that I see all the time if there's a bit of wind. Lots of scraped hulls, even sometimes with cats that have a roller on the cross beam.
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Old 25-11-2014, 15:52   #4
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

Agree completely. Our chain all feeds back to a locker much nearer the mast, but the anchor and bridle are from the front. Makes emergency retrieval and general handling of things like moorings much easier. We don't find the anchor weight up front to be a problem.


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Old 25-11-2014, 23:28   #5
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

I have the same problem. The underslung anchor is an interesting idea but I'm guessing you would have to support the chain in such a way that it cannot slam around at ail in a heavy sea - maybe through a PVC pipe. I've also seen them over the top using a delrin(sp?) "track" to deal with the chain's abrasion. While more unsightly it seems like it would be easier to get to and lash down.


Windlass control and wash down should move forward too I think. At least to the point you have a remote control and longer hose.
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Old 26-11-2014, 05:47   #6
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

One advantage to over the top vs under slung is that it is much easier to work the ground tackle by hand if necessary. On my boat I have a nice wide sturdy cat walk to the forward beam, two big cleats on it, rode runs a roller on forward beam. Much like a monohull arrangement. I much prerfer this basic traditional set up to all the clever, and less practical, arrangements that so many cats have (deploying from the actual bow of the hull being the worst of these).

My anchor rode goes into locker near the mast base so most of the weight is well aft. Just anchor and a bit of rode forward...less weight than me walking to the bow.

Another down side of deploying directly from the locker is poor visibility of the rode. Its often hard for foredeck crew to see the angle of the rode...especially at night...if you turn on the deck light then the rode is obscured in shadow.
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Old 26-11-2014, 06:01   #7
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ostinato View Post
I have the same problem. The underslung anchor is an interesting idea but I'm guessing you would have to support the chain in such a way that it cannot slam around at ail in a heavy sea - maybe through a PVC pipe. I've also seen them over the top using a delrin(sp?) "track" to deal with the chain's abrasion. While more unsightly it seems like it would be easier to get to and lash down.

Windlass control and wash down should move forward too I think. At least to the point you have a remote control and longer hose.
Saw a nice new big Catana anchored recently with an underslung arrangement. No tube for the rode. Pulled tight on the roller I dont think it would be an issue and there was good clearance between it and the tramps etc.

I did see a Lagoon with a similar set up which had taken a lot of damage from the anchor. Dont know the details of what happened, just saw contractor making repairs. Looks like it must have gotten loose in rough conditions. A simple lashing or pin would take care of this. I use a caribiner (sp?) and on a length of small 3 stand nylon to pull mine tight in the roller.

Underslung also makes it much easier to angle the roller so anchor can be dropped automatically. Over the top, most will need to be eased over by hand.

I now have a wireless remote for my windlass which sure is handy, no bungeeing around the foredeck with a wired remote...which always seem to be just a bit too short. Eliminates the issue of where to position the windlass control on the foredeck. I just have this remote and a control switch at the helm.
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Old 26-11-2014, 06:49   #8
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

This is a good example of the compromises that often have to be made in boat designs. In the end, all designs have their poisons.

My boat has the "underslung on the cross beam" set up, with the chain locker with windlass located just to port of the mast. The chain runs to/from the cross beam under the tramp. There is no center line structure dividing the tramp such that a topside "chain track" could be utilized ala Lagoon and others for an "overhung" arrangement on the crossbeam. This design has the compromises of having the anchor being stored under the crossbeam (weight forward) AND - not insignificantly - requiring me to lay over the crossbeam and reach down to attach and detach the bridle to/from the chain. That can be a real pain in the ass. The pros are that it's easy to aim and drop the anchor in that sand patch, the boat doesn't sail badly when the bridle is off, and there is no tramp-dividing structure adding weight and taking up space.

So it seems there is no perfect set up. Pick yer poison...

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Old 26-11-2014, 07:02   #9
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

As others have said, it's a trade-off.

Anchoring is always a 2-person job on our boat. Only in the calmest of conditions are we able to weigh anchor with nobody at the helm. We use hand signals to communicate and only pull in chain when it's slack. We're very aggressive at the helm to keep the chain off the hulls. Anchoring 1000s of time, I would guess the chain has only 'touched' a hull a few times.
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Old 26-11-2014, 10:34   #10
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

Thanks for all the inputs. Really helpful.


I'm going to give underslung a shot. Most of the time I'm anchoring alone, so the visibility aspect alone is almost worth doing it, not having to run to the front and see where the chain is pointing, and then back to the throttles to adjust, and at the same time pushing the "up" button when possible.


Guess there is no "upside down" anchor roller in the chandleries but I will have to have one made up. Not a biggie though.
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Old 26-11-2014, 10:37   #11
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Re: Challenges with anchor roller at maststep

One thing that you can take off your mind and stop worrying about is the additional weight at front. Divide the change in the moment caused by moving the weight of the anchor (2m x 30kg?) by the weight of the boat and you"ll find that the result is negligible. I believe that you do not worry about weight distribution when water or fuel tanks change state from full to empty during a cruise.
By all means move the attachment point to the front beam!
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