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Old 20-02-2020, 14:03   #1
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Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

I originally dismissed the Excel as a Delta copy until I was encouraged to take a closer look. After researching this anchor I was convinced enough to purchase one and let go of my trusty Rocna Vulcan.

I posted a side by side photo of my new Excel and my older, smaller Delta on another thread and decided this would be a fun topic on its own. I just got it and it'll be another couple of weeks before we continue cruising so I haven't been able to test it yet, but this is intended to address the confusion of some (including myself) who at first glance think they are similar designs, which now I see is far from the reality.

In brief, the Delta is clearly a plow and the Excel is a 70/30 concave/convex hybrid, but more about that below.

Scroll to see a photo of my Delta and Excel side by side.

They are different sizes but their differences are readily apparent.

Here's some (non-expert!) observations and opinions:

- They both have a triangular shape (I know, that's just a gimme)

- The build quality is dramatically different. The Delta appears to be a simple design, easy to manufacture, and very affordable. The Excel seems like a work of art to me with so many purposeful details. It is NOT a simple anchor.

- The shank angle appears to be similar by eye (I didn't measure and don't know how!)

- The Excel has concave ears and flat surfaces all along both edges, while the Delta is clearly a plow that has its ears sticking out. Sarca denies the Excel is a plow and says it's 70/30 convex/concave. A really interesting design that I think might amplify holding power.

- The Delta has a straight tip and sits flat on the ground. The Excel has a tip that curves downward that I imagine helps it set faster and dig deeper.

- The tip of the Excel is SS welded on and can be sharpened to retain its effectiveness.

- The Excel has cut outs with its name, etc and I imagine that's intentional and not for branding (a sticker or stamping is cheaper and what the others do), or to save weight or manufacturing costs, but I don't know.

- The Excel has a long shank, longer than a Delta of the same size. I imagine that helps fast setting and digging as well, but don't know for sure.

- The Delta "ears" are flat and rounded, while the Excel's are squared and bend up at the ends, which I imagine might help with diving deep and holding, but that's just a guess.

- Both the Delta and Excel have a cross bar that I imagine is for strength. The Delta cross bar is a narrow rod and the Excels is a much larger tube.

- Both have a steel weight welded underneath near the tip.

And that's everything that I can spot. Please feel free to add your own observations and experiences with either or both of these anchors.


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Old 20-02-2020, 16:59   #2
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

Here's a couple of links for you, SV_Grace:

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...ng-126073.html

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...ng-155412.html

To me, both threads are interesting. The Photos one, because of all the pictures which show the Delta having difficulty in popular Mediterranean anchorage bottoms; and the videos comparing so many modern anchors.

Ann
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Old 20-02-2020, 23:59   #3
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

Not two hours ago I changed a Delta for a 30 kg claw type. I found that the Delta performs poorly in soft over hard bottoms and was having problems getting it to take a set. The claw won't hold as much as the Delta but my past experience is that they much more reliable set and reset which is important when you use wind against tide or current direction reversing anchorages such as tidal rivers.

From the look of the images I tend to the opinion that there will not be much difference in performance as they are both basically plough type anchors.
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Old 21-02-2020, 00:08   #4
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

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Not two hours ago I changed a Delta for a 30 kg claw type. I found that the Delta performs poorly in soft over hard bottoms and was having problems getting it to take a set. The claw won't hold as much as the Delta but my past experience is that they much more reliable set and reset which is important when you use wind against tide or current direction reversing anchorages such as tidal rivers.

From the look of the images I tend to the opinion that there will not be much difference in performance as they are both basically plough type anchors.
Having owned a 20 kg delta "dragomatic " and now with a 20 kg Excell I can tell you the difference is chalk and cheese. There was a Rocna 15 in the middle (the Rocna rep was insistent that it would do the job perfectly ) I can assure you that the performance between the delta and the Excell, in my experience is dramatically different.
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Old 21-02-2020, 02:09   #5
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

That's certainly what Panope's videos show.

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Old 21-02-2020, 04:16   #6
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

Not disputing the comparison but I also had two hinged type plough type anchors and whilst they did an excellent job of holding in mud bottoms they were fairly useless in the hard clay bottoms prevailing in many anchorages in the north of Australia. The Bruce anchor the claw types were modeled on was originally developed as anchors for floating oil rigs for hard clay bottoms found in many places in the North Sea.
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Old 21-02-2020, 05:24   #7
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

Design-wise, the Excel pretty much looks like a Delta that grew up and became a real anchor.
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Old 21-02-2020, 05:56   #8
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

So, Grace... since you're probably one of the few who actually own both a Delta and an Excel...

Your next mission is to do some comparison tests, setting and holding, various substrate, etc.

With underwater pics, please.



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Old 21-02-2020, 08:04   #9
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

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Originally Posted by Uncle Bob View Post
Having owned a 20 kg delta "dragomatic " and now with a 20 kg Excell I can tell you the difference is chalk and cheese. There was a Rocna 15 in the middle (the Rocna rep was insistent that it would do the job perfectly ) I can assure you that the performance between the delta and the Excell, in my experience is dramatically different.
Thanks Uncle Bob, your experience is reassuring to me.

As a full time cruiser in PNW who loves anchoring, I have high standards for my primary bower. If the Excel doesn't beat the Rocna Vulcan that it replaced it's getting returned!

Thing about soft mud is that there's usually something firmer to hold onto underneath, so an anchor that dives deep and can penetrate harder substrates would be cool, and this design seems promising for that. My Fortress can be adjusted for soft mud as well, but it would be cool if one anchor did it all.
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Old 21-02-2020, 08:08   #10
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

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Originally Posted by ranger42c View Post
So, Grace... since you're probably one of the few who actually own both a Delta and an Excel...

Your next mission is to do some comparison tests, setting and holding, various substrate, etc.

With underwater pics, please.



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Steve on S/V Panope already did that better than I ever could!
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Old 21-02-2020, 11:01   #11
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

Iíll attempt to explain some of the subtle differences and answer SV_Graceís questions, unfortunately not until I get behind a laptop. Fat fingers, poor eyesight and a mobile should not be used in unison.
Steve was prompted to test the Delta and itís #70 of the series. He also dropped an Aluminum Excel during that test for comparison. He also repeated another Excel vid and believe itís the latest.
Thanks again Steve from all of us that want to know whatís going on down there.
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Old 21-02-2020, 13:08   #12
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

7 years ago I was preparing to take delivery of a new Lagoon 400. By default it came with a, I think, 20kg Delta anchor - too light and wrong brand. At that time I researched this issue.

At the time the Sydney boat show was on and there was a booth for Sarca anchors. I talked to the man himself. I bought a Sarca Excel one size heavier than proposed by Richard Francis. I shipped it from Sydney to L'Sables D'lononnes in France where my boat was being commissioned. I installed it together with a 17kg Guardian for a kedge anchor. I don't regret the trouble I went to.

With very few exceptions it set very easily. The exceptions were:

Very thick weed (I went somewhere else nearby)
Flat rock (I went somewhere else nearby)
Thin soupy mud (This is a bit harder because the thin soupiness is often quite extensive. This happened in Le Marin Martinique. The nearest sand anchorage is about 5nm away. I had to try to anchor 12 times before I got a just-adequate hold. And even then I only tested in reverse at 1/4 throttle. I normally test at 3/4 throttle. The next time I came to Martinique I chose the sand 5nm away and dinghied in)


In 6 years the anchor has never dragged once set. BTW I never used my Guardian kedge/second anchor.

I vote for the Sarca Excel!

Cheers

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Old 21-02-2020, 13:28   #13
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

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Originally Posted by SV__Grace View Post
After researching this anchor I was convinced enough to purchase one and let go of my trusty Rocna Vulcan.
Interested as to why you would get rid of a trusted and proven anchor in favour of another.

As an addition to maybe if needing a second anchor.
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Old 21-02-2020, 14:28   #14
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

We swapped out a Manson supreme for an Excel. Significantly better holding.
Now I can sleep....
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Old 21-02-2020, 15:04   #15
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Re: Comparing design of Delta and Sarca Excel anchors

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We swapped out a Manson supreme for an Excel. Significantly better holding.
..
How did you test that?
Methodology and results?
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