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Old 27-11-2019, 08:44   #1
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Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

Most of the anchorages in our area are typically single anchor.

There are a few spots I have visited where a stern anchor is also used.

I had a stern anchor left over from a previous boat that didn't work very well and gave it away.

I need to get a larger one for the current boat (45 ft. LOA, 45K lbs.).

Conditions: 20 to 40 ft. depth (mostly 25 ft. deep), sand, tucked inside coves, mostly mild-moderate conditions with other boats, sometimes in close proximity.

A few questions for people who have experience using stern anchors:
-What size are you using, and your boat size?
-Anyone using a Fortress (Personally, I wouldn't as a primary, but for a stern anchor they are lighter weight, and appear to be easily taken apart for storage).
-How much chain do you have in your rode?
-What size chain link?

Thanks in advance for the feedback
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Old 27-11-2019, 09:07   #2
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

Hi, I've got a 52' MV so our boats are about the same size. I have a 105# Mantus on the bow and a Fortress 55 in the cockpit. I have never used the stern anchor as there is always lots of room in the Sea of Cortez. If needed, the Fortress would work fine as a stern anchor. I have a nylon rode for it with about 15' of chain. You might also pose your question on Trawler Forum, which is a sister site to CF.

Cheers, Bill
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Old 27-11-2019, 09:08   #3
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

The aluminum Fortress anchors are great choices for a stern anchor. Easy to dinghy out and set. Use their sizing charts as a basis.
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Old 27-11-2019, 19:40   #4
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

I posted on TF and got the same feedback re the Fortress. I’ll go with the FX23. Thanks.
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Old 27-11-2019, 21:00   #5
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

Quote:
Originally Posted by montenido View Post
Hi, I've got a 52' MV so our boats are about the same size. I have a 105# Mantus on the bow and a Fortress 55 in the cockpit. I have never used the stern anchor as there is always lots of room in the Sea of Cortez. If needed, the Fortress would work fine as a stern anchor. I have a nylon rode for it with about 15' of chain. You might also pose your question on Trawler Forum, which is a sister site to CF.

Cheers, Bill
I have a 52 foot sailboat, and exactly duplicate the anchor kit quoted above. Nothing I'd change about it anchoring 300 days a year in conditions up to hurricane strengths.

For a 45 foot trawler, you might go down a size for each.
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Old 27-11-2019, 22:00   #6
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

SDPaddler,

Years ago, we anchored at Santa Cruz often and almost always used bow/stern anchors (Catalina 30 mostly and others in that same displacement range). Bow was a ~30lbs danforth knock-off (or real Danforth, it's been years) Stern was a ~20lbs danforth knock-off.

Bow and stern rodes were about the same, ~30' chain with ~200' line. Water depth was usually 30' +/- 15'. Sometimes dragged and those drags were mostly the stern when the sundowners blew down the canyons. The stern anchor should have been a better/bigger anchor. That was 35 years ago, so memory is a bit foggy and anchors were Danforths or Plows (no Mantus, et. al back then). We did have a lot of rode because we'd circle in, drop the stern, then motor seaward to drop the bow, winch the boat back into position, then use motor to set the anchors.

A Fortress will probably be fine especially in the sand bottoms you mentioned, but a FX23 might be a little small for your boat. I am also not sure if a Fortress will be heavy enough to bite into the gravelly/rocky sea bottom at Santa Cruz. I don't know which port you are sailing out of, but reckon it's San Diego. If so, Catalina will probably be the closest island to you and I'm not familiar with the holding ground around that island.

It's also handy to have 3rd anchor to deploy off the beam to kedge away from shore, an encroaching boat, or adjust to new swell direction. The FX23 might be a good kedge anchor for your boat. Some of the anchorages get crowded with not more than a boat length between each other and not all of them now how to set an anchor.

Why don't you look at getting a Mantus/Spade/Rocna for a stern anchor, sized for your boat, then use an FX23 for a kedge? I'm on the Gulf Coast now and we rarely use a stern anchor, but out at Santa Cruz, a stern anchor was used everywhere, except Smugglers and Yellow Banks. With your windage, you'll want a decent-sized stern anchor to hold during the high winds that howl down the canyons at night. Having a good-sized stern is also a backup in case you lose your bow anchor to the sea bottom.

I'm a little biased towards larger and multiple anchors. On my 20,000 sailboat, I have a 55 lbs spade (on bow), two 45 lbs mantus (one spare stored below, one on bow or stored below), an fx23 (kedge), FX37 (stern), FX85 (hurricane, stored below).
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Old 28-11-2019, 05:45   #7
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Sdpaddler.

I agree with the recommendations to use a Fortress as a stern anchor; but suggest an FX37 (or larger) might be better sized, for your boat. At only 21 Lbs, it’s still light enough to handle with one hand, but has 60% more holding power than the FX23.

I’d pair the FX37 with 10' to 20 Ft of 3/8" chain, and around 200 Ft of 3/4" three-strand nylon rode (assuming maximum anchoring depth, at stern, of ± 35 Ft -- longer is always better, as is practical).
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Old 28-11-2019, 09:54   #8
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

If you are the lone boat at anchor maybe. Never liked it even at the end of a cove. Strong wind from aft in the middle of the night boat goes sideways...a mess.
Anchored with other boats you would be the problem. Mayhem.
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Old 28-11-2019, 19:32   #9
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

Thanks for the feedback. We are based in San Diego. Next trip is to Santa Cruz Island in late March. Windy time of year, but I will be monitoring the weather for windows to cross over from Channel Islands Marina.

Unrelated question: I was hoping to get a guest slip in Santa Barbara for a few days when we are there this March, or early April. The last I heard, no reservations are given for guest slips and you have to literally cross the Harbor entrance before the marina office will talk to you about one? Do I have a decent shot offseason?
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Old 29-11-2019, 23:03   #10
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sdpaddler50 View Post
Most of the anchorages in our area are typically single anchor.

There are a few spots I have visited where a stern anchor is also used.

I had a stern anchor left over from a previous boat that didn't work very well and gave it away.

I need to get a larger one for the current boat (45 ft. LOA, 45K lbs.).

Conditions: 20 to 40 ft. depth (mostly 25 ft. deep), sand, tucked inside coves, mostly mild-moderate conditions with other boats, sometimes in close proximity.

A few questions for people who have experience using stern anchors:
-What size are you using, and your boat size?
-Anyone using a Fortress (Personally, I wouldn't as a primary, but for a stern anchor they are lighter weight, and appear to be easily taken apart for storage).
-How much chain do you have in your rode?
-What size chain link?

Thanks in advance for the feedback
I can't say enough good things about the Fortress, which is mounted on the stern rail of our heavy 46' Morgan ketch. We use the stern anchor many times, and sometimes in places where the wind and current will reverse on us. Mostly mud and sand bottoms. It has never dragged when set properly. The rode is 50' of 3/8 BBB chain followed by at least 150' of 3/4" nylon three strand. It's light enough to lower into the dinghy, then the chain, and I row it out to where I set it.

Can't tell you the exact anchor size since I'm not at the boat, but it would be the one properly sized as a primary anchor for our boat. But the weight of it is almost negligible, so you do want some heavy chain on it to make it work.
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Old 30-11-2019, 04:09   #11
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

The Fortress design is the default choice for a stern anchor. This is for a good reason. The light weight is enormously beneficial in this role and the biggest drawback of this design (namely its relatively poor response to a shifting direction of pull) does not often apply in this role.

It does have some limitations even in this role. The Fortress design is not as versatile as most modern anchor designs and I think it tends to struggle in firmer or weedier substrates.

In terms of size, beaware the Fortress anchor size table is only the recommended size for under a relatively low 30 knots of wind. You need to increase the anchor size for stronger conditions. However, while the weight of even a very large Fortress models is not an issue, the large physical dimensions especially combined with the “finger biting” aspect of the pivoting fluke mean that if used strictly for a stern anchor smaller sizes can be a wise choice.

Give some consideration to the similar, but cheaper Guardian model. Lewmar have also released a very similar design: the LFX. Until more details become available and user reports are forthcoming, I think the Fortress and Guardian are the wiser choice, but the LFX is worth watching.
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Old 30-11-2019, 06:36   #12
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

Hmmm. Maintaining the same proportions (LOA, beam, height) makes a 52' boat a little over 1.5 times the volume of a 45' boat. Weight must be close to the same proportion. Is holding force in an anchor proportional to anchor weight? Choosing anchor weights gets tricky.
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Old 30-11-2019, 09:29   #13
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Re: Stern Anchor, 45 Ft. Trawler

As noted, the majority of our anchoring is single for the places we frequent. The few times I used a stern anchor, I probably knew enough to be dangerous, but learned a lot in the process.

The Fortress definitely sounds like the ticket for a stern anchor. I ordered one, and will put about 50 ft. of chain on the rode, the remainder line.

Has anyone used a trip line for their stern anchor? I have never used one for either a bow or stern anchor, but see them fairly often to mark the stern anchor for others which can be helpful when navigating through a crowded anchor field. Figured I would run a line with a bouy to mark the location for others. Does it also help to dislodge it if its dug in deep when retrieving the anchor from the Dink?
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