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Old 15-04-2006, 18:22   #1
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Home-made Anchor Kellet

I copied-and-pasted this from another board I frequent, as I didn't want to type it again (one-finger typing is not terribly efficient). This is not my design, but was posted on an Australian site. Its author/ designer encouraged others to copy the idea. So I did.



There's no originality here, as I shamelessly copied the above-referenced "anchor Angel" or "anchor friend", but I' thought I'd list the various components that I used to construct this home-made kellet. FWIW, it looks like this will work very well, and is definitely a good alternative to a $250 product, or rocks in a bucket.

I opted to go a bit heavy, as I am motivated to protect my T-48 as best as I can. I'm sure the main weight, and hence the other items, could be downsized somewhat, but I felt it was false economy to skimp here. As it was, I'm in this for only about $65.

Ingredients
A 35 lb free-weight (from a sporting goods store)
5' of 5/16 chain (I used galvanized BBB, from a local home-store)
3' of 1.5" ID reinforced water hose (from the same store)
3 each 1/4" galvanized shackles
50' of 3/8" nylon as the control-line

The free weight is cast steel, so I liberally coated it with rustoleum. Yes, it will still rust, and yes, plastic-coated would be better, but this is what I had to work with. Additionally, I couldn't find a plastic-coated weight greater than 25 lbs. YMMV

OK, run one end of the chain through the center of the weight. Shackle this end back onto the chain, forming a captured-loop (IOW, capture the weight in the loop of chain you just formed). Use as short a length of chain as you can for this.

Next, slide the hose over the +- 3' of chain remaining. Again, shackle the end of the chain (the other end this time) to itself, roughly where you attached the first end.

At this point, you have a figure 8...the bottom half is the weight, and the top half is the chain-in-the-hose, which has been looped to form a circle.

The basic kellet is now done. Time to connect the control-line. For this, I cut a 1.5" x .5" rectangle out of the reinforced hose. This hole is located at the apex of the hose-loop, on the outside bend. The purpose for this is twofold. Primarily, it allows you to work the 3rd shackle onto the chain inside the hose, so you can tie the control line to this new lifting point (I used a bowline for this).
2nd, it allows air, and thus unwanted flotation, to escape the hose once submerged.

That's about it. Everything stores in a space equal to the footprint of the weight, and can be stored below until needed.

HIH,
John
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Old 16-04-2006, 11:08   #2
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personally prefer to have a sufficiently heavy piece of chain as that will also increase the safe working load of the cable, and the more scope you let out, the heavier the catenary, whereas your "friend" or "chum" or "angel" merely adds more strain to the lighter chain, and gets in the way during recovery operations.
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Old 16-04-2006, 12:10   #3
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In my case, the primary rode is 300' of 3/8 hi-test. I'm not concerned that the kellet will impose any undue "strain" to the primary chain. As for the catenary that the primary chain creates, that is one of the benefits of the kellet, as it serves to increase the catenary, and requires ALOT more force (wind) to eliminate this catenary. Thus, the "spring" effect of the catenary remains in play in much higher wind conditions. This is a good thing.
As for making recovery more difficult, my thought is that the kellet may prevent me from NEEDING to make a recovery during a storm. When conditions are good, or when its time to up-abchor, its no big deal to bring up the kellet before weighing anchor.
John
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Old 16-04-2006, 13:05   #4
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That appears to be the big difference between UK and USA anchor techniques.

USA likes heavy anchor and relatively light chain.

UK prefers reasonable anchor weight but heavier chain.

You talk about 3/8 chain as if it is heavy for your boat. I reckon it is far to light for you and would have at least the next size up if not more. I have 3/8 chain on my 9m catamaran!
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Old 16-04-2006, 18:15   #5
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Why making things simple when.... You can make them complicated?? :0)

They are some confusions about « kellets » . You can use them for tree different purposes.. but unfortunately not the tree at the same time..

- 1°) To increase the holding of the anchor.. then the kellet should be as close as possible to the shank of the anchor… this is perfectly mathematically demonstrated on Alain Fraysse’s web page (http://alain.fraysse.free.fr/sail/rode/rode_b.htm) and there is no possible discussion about this point..

- 2°) To increase the “dampening” effect.. and then the ideal position will be on the middle of the mooring rode.. but what is the interest to increase the dampening effect??
- If you have an all chain rode, you MUST use any kind of snubber.. and the dampening of the snubber should be enough..
- If you are using a mixed line with Nylon rope.. then the elasticity of the Nylon will be enough.. then forget about the kellet..
- If the surge in your anchorage start to increase and to be too big.. there is only one solution.. to leave to the open sea or to a more protected anchorage.. otherwise, sooner or latter, the DYNAMIC forces will be so big that you will either drag your anchor or break something on the deck.. kellet vor NOT!
- The last use of a kellet will be to reduce your swinging area.. and then the kellet should be attached at a lenght a little bit longer thant the water height.. but also then, two solutions.. If you are alone in your anchorage.. you will not care.. (and no kellet) if the anchorage is packed with other anchored boats.. you will better “swing” together with others boats (and also no kellet.:0) )

Or perhaps a solution would be to use tree kellets at the same time.. :0) :0)

The kellet seems to work well in calm situations but what can make a kellet (20 kg) against the force generated by strong winds (more than one ton) The kellet is only a psychological help for those that doesn’t trust their ground tackle system..

And please don’t tell me “I’ve use a kellet in such and such situation”.. - To make a valid comparison you should test AT THE SAME TIME and under same conditions, a rode with a kellet and one without the kellet..

As a live aboard sailor, I’ve spend 13 years anchoring in half the world; I had a kellet on board, I NEVER use it and I will never do. (and I’m still alive)

Take a good anchor and you will never feel using a kellet..
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Old 16-04-2006, 19:14   #6
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Thx for your opinions about my situation, but I don't think of, nor refer to, my chain as "heavy". I do think it is more than adequate. Further, my reference was in response to your statement that the kellet chain would "strain" the primary chain.
And whether I fit your over-simplified generalization about US vs EU/ UK chain-and-anchor choices (nice blanket statement BTW), please explain the benefit, or the difference, in the catenaries of overly-heavy chain, and properly-sized chain with an auxilliary kellet.
John
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Old 18-04-2006, 20:06   #7
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I am almost scared to jump in here. My comment is I thought a catenary was a the natrual curve a chain make while hanging, but weighting it it know longer is a catenary curvre.

Just a thought!
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Old 23-01-2012, 01:16   #8
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Re: Home-made Anchor Kellet

This is an old thread, but the kellet may help to stop chain getting wrapped around your bulb or wing keel would it not? Which is just what happened to us on the weekend. It took a quite a bit of motoring in circles to get it unfouled. I would hate to have to untangle this with an increasing wind on a lee shore.

I agree it wont increase the holder power of your anchor much by giving more catenary, since an anchor chain wont have catenary when you need the most holding power anyway. IE in strong wind and chop it will be bar tight often no mater what the size of the chain. How is 150lbs of chain going to lay with a curve when 15000lbs is jerking on it?
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