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Old 19-08-2018, 02:36   #1
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Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

Hi,

some of us in the multihull community choose not to go all chain on our ground tackle for various reasons.
May it be the lack of a windlass, the cost of chain or the weight of all chain.

In this thread let's focus on this choice having been taken (=not a discussion on all chain or not!).

Now that you have chosen not to have all chain, how does your ground tackle look like.
What did work, what did not? Have you had failures in coral or rocky waters?
What type of boat do you have, where do you anchor?

Interested to hear your experiences.

On our boat, a Woods Mira 35 cat , we use so far all rope (25mm dia three strand nylon) in sand and (occasionally) combine this rode with 15m of 8mm chain in rocky waters.
Usually I let out a lot more scope than one would with all chain.
Tends to be no issue, we anchor in more shallow areas than the monos.
So far this worked fine.


Out of curiosity there is for example one thing I was wondering, how Dyneema fairs for some of us.
Has someone combined it with rubber dampers to adjust for its lack of stretch?
Did you achieve the same with a riding weight?
How does its chafe resistance hold up in coral or rocks?
Do some go for all Dyneema despite the missing stretch?

Will be great to hear experiences, especially from those who have really gone a far.

Thanks already for all contributions, Franziska
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Old 19-08-2018, 03:45   #2
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

I wouldn't use dyneema for rode. Big reason is that it floats.


We're not all chain, but we do have about 70 metres of it before the three strand rope.
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Old 19-08-2018, 04:30   #3
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

I have used 3-strand spliced to a boat's length of chain as a primary rode on a small, lighter displacement boat than I have now, and my current kedge is set up the same. The chain does most of the dragging around the rubble on the bottom, leaving the nylon pretty unscathed. Boats on nylon rodes tend to 'sail' around on the anchor quite a lot, which can look alarming viewed from the nearby seawall when it's blowing hard.
If I were to do it again, I'd use Anchorplait or one of the other 8-strand nylon braids. Those are a huge improvement over 3-strand.
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Old 19-08-2018, 04:32   #4
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

Good point Stu, that's why I would use a riding weight in case of Dyneema.
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Old 19-08-2018, 04:52   #5
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

On our cat we have 35m of chain and 100m of 20mm 3 strand. There isn't many occasions when we have more than the chain out, if we do i don't think the rope had touched the bottom. The bridle is quite long and if we attach to the last link give us in effect 40m of chain
May be more of an issue in the eastern med but we will see.
We are a FP Make 36
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Old 19-08-2018, 05:03   #6
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

We have 25' of chain and then 300' of 8-plait rope.

Mostly we anchor in mud, ranging from hard pack to slime... so the short length of chain is, in our case, a way to decrease hosing-down time as we bring it all back in. The rope tends to not pick up too much mud, but the chain links are usually completely packed.

Elsewhere, I'd likely go back to all chain.

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Old 19-08-2018, 06:29   #7
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

In the Eastern med you'll often be anchoring in over 10m so that calls for a good amount of rode out.

I have 60m of 8mm chain, and no rope rode. I also have a further 40m or so of 10mm chain that doesn't fit through the windlass, so in super deep anchorages it just gets hauled out and joined manually.

For weight, I should probably get rid of the 10m chain (which is old anyhow) and replace it with Octoplait.
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Old 19-08-2018, 07:28   #8
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

OK, not all chain for a cat? Then I would suggest that the shorter the length of line in your rode, the better.
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Old 19-08-2018, 07:34   #9
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

Sorry, but I don't get that Daniela.
As stated at the first post this is not about all chain vs. not all chain.
It's about not all chain and experiences of those who actually do it that way.
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Old 19-08-2018, 07:58   #10
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

I’m an oddball. I use 120’ of 1/4” G70 with 300’ of 1/2” Sta-set polyester. I have climbing line I use for a bridle, that I can let out to 40’ legs. I’ve yet to put out more than the chain, with the bridles attached to the shackle joining the chain and rope. I use a Fortress FX-23 anchor.
Did I mention I am the windlass?
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Old 19-08-2018, 08:14   #11
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

Stretch comes from chain catenary. You want to avoid stretch as it has the bungy effect. You can go Spectra/Dynema why not. But then you will end up with something more pricey than all-chain rode too. Wet Spectra is VERY slippery too.

In our (monohull) we have a 100ft chain 'leader' and then a 150ft polyester 'snubber'. I hate to ease too much of the rope though as this tends to send our boat everywhere, while sitting on chain only lets us stay more or less put. Boats with plenty of rope on anchor rode are hated by their neighbours as soon as wind pipes up.

We have another 100ft of chain down in the bilge. This one can be either used on our second anchor or else shackled to the main rode in haste. As we do not have a windlass here, shackles on chain are no problem.

We use fat line - 16 mm multiplait design. I find less diameter than 16 mm is hard to hold on to / pull / handle (for me - medium size hands).

We never had any serious chafe problems nor any rope cut. Yes we did snag wrecks and rocks and there was some limited chafe. I think chafe is a factor only when you leave the boat to her own devices and the weather does something crazy and you cannot correct things as they happen.

In summary:

- boat: a monohull, 26ft,
- an oversize Bruce, 100ft 8mm chain,
- followed by 150ft of polyester multiplait rope,
- never ever any problems due to using the rope,
- we avoid using the rope part in an attempt to limit the boat sailing at anchor.

We anchored anywhere from rocks of Sweden, thru the lagoons of French Polynesia, the Great Barrier Reef, to garbage littered anchorages of Spanish and Portuguese rias. Hundreds of anchorages and thousands of days at anchor. Never ever any trouble because of having a chain+rope kit.

I would opt for all chain if it were an option in our boat. All chain is less hassle, easier to handle and to stow.

Cheers,
b.
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Old 19-08-2018, 09:41   #12
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

We have a heavy boat with a high bow. Once she gains momentum, she often pulls out the anchor. We have all chain rode and use 5-10 X water depth as scope. We have a snubber line connecting to an eye at the waterline on the bow. The snubber has a large rubber bit to soften the shock when the momentum of the boat stretches the chain taught.
We look for sand when anchoring and often dive on the anchor to ensure the hook is in. We will always use 10X depth when there are no other boats in the anchorage or when we are first to anchor.
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Old 19-08-2018, 11:01   #13
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

I appreciate the multihullers who anchor in shallow water, thereby leaving the slightly deeper areas for the monos. Even if it's for just their own benefit, its a good example of "just getting along".
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Old 19-08-2018, 11:46   #14
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

We're at anchor 99% of the time. On MOJO, all steel, 85,000 lb displacement, 50' length x 15' beam, we use 50' of 1/2" chain coupled to 200' of 7/16" wire rope, with a 110 lb Bruce anchor. Our windlass has a horizontal spool so that both wire rope and chain stay above decks. Once deployed, I use a 5/8" snubber tied to the chain with an icicle hitch. The snubber is attached to a ss hook welded a couple inches above the waterline at the bow.

Here's a picture of the windlass w/chain:
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And here's a picture of the windlass with the chain run out and the cable on the drum (doing some maintenance - clutch wheel is removed and on the deck):
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Old 19-08-2018, 11:49   #15
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Re: Ok. Not all chain, what do you use?

Timely topic
I just scrapped the main anchor which was a 45lb CQR, dont know where Im going next so Im reading with interest. Ive been offered an aluminum Fortress.

The secondary is kept in the lazarette (legally required to have 2), its a tiny for our weight but it fits in the locker. 16lb Danforth copy with 12m 5/16" chain and 30m of 16mm nylon 3 strand. The nylon rode is detachable for the utility of 'other purposes'.

The purpose of the secondary is for having lost the engine in a river of channel or at a marina it can be dropped off the stern quickly while things are sorted out. In that situation the sea bed is relatively weed free, the major failing of Danforth pattern anchors.

It will stop the boat but Ive only tried it out in soft sand and fairly gentle conditions.
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