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Old 04-02-2015, 10:09   #1
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Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

We have a 2014 Oceanis 45 that we plan to take to the islands. It came with 90 feet of chain and 150 feet of rode. We recently bought a new Rocna 55lb anchor and want to add chain. What is recommended for cruising in the Caribbean?


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Old 04-02-2015, 10:15   #2
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

I carry 200 feet of chain and rarely put out over 125', and this is likely overkill as when I dive on the anchor more often than not it's way too much. Typical depths are rarely over 20'. We always can find less than 25. This has been the case for us in the E Carib from Spanish Virgins to Grenada.

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Old 04-02-2015, 10:29   #3
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

From a friend's cruise trip report:

"The Rocna. All 20kg of it with 100ft of chain. The rest of the world can debate all they like. When I pull into a place like Bodega Bay at midnight and the fog is so thick I can't see the jetty 50 feet away to make an entrance, I drop my hook in the rolling ocean swells with the surf crashing (Foster says it's like staying in a cheap Best Western beside the highway), and I sleep. And in the morning I have a windlass to pull the beast up and I wouldn't trade it for anything. (I also wouldn't add more chain - this works perfectly in 25 to 30 feet of water - you let all the chain out and you tie off nylon at the preferred scope and don't bother with snubbers and chain hooks and all that stuff...)"
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Old 04-02-2015, 10:29   #4
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

We sail the Caribbean and US East coast. We carry 250 feet of chain and rarely put more than 200 in the water.
Our main anchor is a 44 lb Rocna. Great anchor.
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Old 05-02-2015, 09:14   #5
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

Thanks all. I presently have 90 ft of chain and 150 ft of nylon rode. Should I add the new chain to the existing rode or is it recommended to replace all at once?
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Old 05-02-2015, 09:46   #6
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

I was just reading up on the C-link to add chain. The jest of what I am seeing is that if you get a quality c-link like an acco it is just as strong as the chain. Make sure you get a quality name brand link
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Old 05-02-2015, 09:55   #7
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

We typically anchor in ~20' depths. 20'+~5' to the bowsprit at a 5:1 scope=125' We often have 150'out, but rarely more than that. We have a 25kgm Lewmar Delta on the other end; we've seen winds to 30kts, and haven't slipped yet. But we have been in some anchorages with 30'+ depths......we carry 100m, but I would not want to go with less than 200'. And we do put a nylon snubber on after it is set. It works for us, and we sleep through the night (with the anchor alarm set); your mileage may vary
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Old 05-02-2015, 10:08   #8
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

Assuming you have a windlass go at least 150 ft chain, best to just do 200 and be done with it.
Keep the old rode for a backup and buy one piece all new.
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Old 05-02-2015, 10:17   #9
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailcrazy View Post
We typically anchor in ~20' depths. 20'+~5' to the bowsprit at a 5:1 scope=125' We often have 150'out, but rarely more than that. We have a 25kgm Lewmar Delta on the other end; we've seen winds to 30kts, and haven't slipped yet. But we have been in some anchorages with 30'+ depths......we carry 100m, but I would not want to go with less than 200'. And we do put a nylon snubber on after it is set. It works for us, and we sleep through the night (with the anchor alarm set); your mileage may vary


Same here. I have 400' but never put more than 120 our in the Bahamas
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Old 05-02-2015, 11:55   #10
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

I cruised the eastern Caribbean and anchored all over with 150' of chain backed by 175' of nylon rode. The nylon never saw the light of day. 150' of chain is plenty.
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Old 05-02-2015, 14:15   #11
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

Interesting, I saw another thread where a few were saying that in the Carib and west Mexico all chain rode was essential.

I have been anchorages where the best I could do was 40'. One place I could NOT get a 66lb spade do even slow down. It must have been loose mud on a rock ledge or something.

Just now going throug this myself. This I'll get 300' of 3/8 BBB for the 44 and put the old chain on the33'er. That will give me about 430' total the big boat and a similar amount on the small.

Problem is, I don't yet know where I'll be using each boat.
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Old 19-03-2015, 18:38   #12
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Re: Recommended chain length for a cruising boat in the Caribbean

I would not use rope here in the Caribbean. To much coral. Use all chain, 200 to 250 is way more than needed, but if a big storm comes it is nice to have


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