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Old 15-12-2014, 22:42   #1
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Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

I've decided to buy a Sarca Excel #5 and wonder if anyone else near Vancouver, BC wants something from Anchor Right?

Let's see those hands

Neil
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Old 17-12-2014, 22:01   #2
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

I daresay if folks knew how good the Excel was, there would be some takers.

Is this to reduce the shipping cost? AS in more is cheaper?
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Old 17-12-2014, 22:42   #3
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

Might I suggest putting up a picture of one as well as a link to it, & also perhaps a link to a few reviews. As I don't think most folks know what they are. If I were in the market (or find some extra coin)...
Out of curiosity, what size are you going with, & for how much (ball park)?
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Old 17-12-2014, 23:03   #4
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

SARCA in Action - anchorright.com.au
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Old 17-12-2014, 23:23   #5
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

SARCA Excel has SHH (Super High Holding) rating from independant testing & certification organisation here in Oz.

It is also proof tested for strength & you can see certificates of same on website Downunder posted.

Here is a Youtube of holding in steady 50 knots with bullets higher than that.



It has a geometry that on the surface looks like a Delta, but has significant differences, and this results in it biting into and sticking with hard bottoms, coral rubble and weed very well. It has a very good reputation here in Oz, but it seems relatively unknown elsewhere.
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Old 18-12-2014, 23:47   #6
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

Late reply due to computer problems but fixed so:

Found out today that savings would only be there if we got at least 12 at a time. Otherwise, Rex tells me, its cheaper and easier by air as there aren't the same incremental savings as there are by sea. So I'll go it alone unless something comes up.

The freight for a #5, 22KG is 395 AUD and the anchor is discounted to 470 AUD because there aren't any Canadian dealers. Getting the anchor at wholesale is what makes it worth while.

Here is the site:
SARCA in Action - anchorright.com.au

The #5 is suggested for boats of 12-15 m and 7-15 T.(15,400 to 33,000 lbs)
Our Day is 12 m with a designed weight of 18,000 lbs, so probably 20,000 lbs laden, well within recommendations. Should let me sleep soundly

I'll sell my 35 lb CQR and use a Fortress FX-37 for backup. Overkill but I got it off Craigs list thanks to a tip on a CF forum. At about $125 CAD landed, that's probably the best buy I've made this year.

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Old 19-12-2014, 01:00   #7
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

Well done

I'd love to cruise the BC-Alaska coast. What is the anchoring like? Mostly rocky with kelp?
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Old 20-12-2014, 09:55   #8
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

I'm new to this area but, so far, most of my anchoring has been in sand or mud.

Neil
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Old 05-01-2015, 20:16   #9
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

I have used a Sarca Excel on my current and previous yacht, both X-yachts, an X412 with #4 Excel and currently a #5 Excel on our XC42 coming in at about 12 tonnes. Sets first time every time and stays set. Recent experience was in 35+kts in hard shell and sand with seagrass. Dropped anchor immediately to 2:1 scope and as anchor started to pull up fed the 10mm chain to about 3.5:1 and stayed firmly stuck, we have proven this on many occasions and find it to be an agressive, fast setting, no fuss, no bother anchor. Sextant
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Old 05-01-2015, 22:57   #10
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

Sextant

Thanks for confirming my choice.
From what I've been able to find out the Excel grabs and holds at least as well as any of the new generation hooks.
Rocna are the most popular new generation anchors in this area, but the roll bar doesn't make sense to me as it will slow the burying.
A big bonus for me is being easy to clean.

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Old 13-01-2015, 09:31   #11
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

My wife and I purchased a 2008 production year Seawind 1160 (38' x 21') catamaran in 2013. It was equipped with the factory standard CQR 45 pound anchor. We surveyed various members of the owners group and learned that many had abandoned that anchor due to issues with dragging in difficult wind and wave conditions. I'm sure the CQR was considered a fine anchor in its time. . .

Anyway, we looked at a variety of new generation anchors, including Rocna, Mantus, Manson Supreme, Spade and Ultra. Fitting a "roll bar" equipped anchor proved to be an expensive and heavy proposition, as the standard anchor roller configuration on the Seawind would have required a good bit of modification to accommodate the roll bar. After 28 years in the aircraft industry, I'm no fan of "useless load", so adding weight to the bow simply to accommodate the roll bar didn't make sense.

The Spade anchor had such a curve to the shank that it would have created another opportunity to trip or stump my toe at the bow of the boat, or even to snag a sheet during a sail change.

The Ultra was bloody expensive, but I think would have fit without modification.

We contacted Andrew Crawford at Seawind (Factor on this forum) for his thoughts. Andrew has vast racing and cruising experience and owns a Seawind 1000 - and we've had more than one beer with him; he has high "street cred" with us.

Andrew noted the reputation that the Sarca Excel line of anchors has gained in Australia, and that it would fit very nicely and securely on the Seawind bow roller without any modification. He also pointed out that with its convex design, the anchor isn't laden with mud or other debris upon retrieval.

I contacted Rex and Joy Francis, manufacturers of the anchor to learn more. They were kind enough to direct me to additional information resources, including the folks that tested the anchor. We discussed the anchor as part of a system, how much chain our boat carried, the windlass and bridle, swivels; all the integrated components of the anchor system.

Traditionally cruisers seem to ignore the anchor manufacturer's recommendations of anchor and upsize to at least the next largest/heaviest available. Catamarans are weight sensitive - and anchor test and evaluation methods have improved a lot.

Ultimately we put our trust in the engineers and sailors who developed and use the equipment. We purchased and paid air freight for a galvanized steel Sarca Excel #5 as well as an alloy version of the same. The steel anchor is our primary anchoring device, currently integrated with a galvanized steel swivel and 53 meters of 8mm galvanized steel chain, and a Muir Cougar 1200 windlass. The alloy anchor is an exceptionally strong design and is quick to assemble. It lives very nicely in a bow locker. We always use the factory supplied bridle when anchoring.

We departed Ensenada, Mexico in late November and have anchored in mud and sand along the Pacific coast of Baja California, Cabo San Lucas, and various anchorages on the East side of Baja as we made our way up to La Paz. We have about three weeks of experience anchored in La Paz - including several absolutely crazy days doing the "La Paz Waltz", where strong winds combat even stronger tidal currents and cause boats of various displacements, keel designs and windage to do 360's and charge at one another. It's unnerving to say the least, and we saw several boats move and reset their anchors on one of the craziest days.

Our Sarca Excel #5 never budged. We were at 4:1 scope, but generally prefer more scope in wide open anchorages - because "why not"?

The Sarca Excel anchor recovers to the bow roller virtually spotless even in muddy bottom conditions. It fits beautifully, doesn't create a trip or line snagging hazard on our bow, and as time goes on we have continue to develop confidence in our decision to go with a #5. There is a lot of evidence out there to suggest this is an exceptional anchoring device, and that body of evidence continues to grow.

We believe the cheapest insurance any boater can purchase is high quality, high performance ground tackle. If you are on a tight budget, look somewhere else to save some money.

Folks in Australia and New Zealand commonly operate in conditions that might be considered rare in many parts of the world. They are a great proving ground for what works, and what fails. Oddly enough we've ended up with a Takacat 3.1 m hypalon dinghy and Beach Master dinghy wheels - both from New Zealand. We did our research, and simply couldn't find comparable equipment anywhere else.

You won't be disappointed with the Sarca Excel anchor, and you will be delighted with the service and level of professionalism you experience with the company. Selecting an anchor is a huge decision with a lot of variables - good luck.
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Old 13-01-2015, 16:56   #12
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

Thanks JollyDogs, good feedback that helps me in my decision process on ground tackle.

I completely agree that if the anchor is an excellent design, the "bigger is better" mentality might need some reconsideration, particularly with multihulls.
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Old 13-01-2015, 20:57   #13
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

Something you should be looking out for -

The next generation of anchors from the concave folks will "bet my ass on this" NOT include a roll bar. That device has precluded the use on their products on a number of types of anchoring systems. . . and at the end of the day, manufacturer's stay in business by selling enough product to support company growth. The more bow rollers they fit, the more anchors they'll sell. The spin doctors will develop a pitch for why the "roll bar less" anchor is just as effective as the previous model . . .

Sarca Excel anchors might be expensive, but keep in mind it costs a lot of money to prototype, develop and certify a high quality product. The price of the anchors must reflect an effort to recover all those costs, and to provide a living wage to the people that risked their time and money to create the product in the first place, as well as the cost of production and distribution.

I like to think about WD-40. 39 tries that failed, and 1 that finally succeeded. Gotta pay the man for the efforts that got him across the finish line. . .
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Old 13-01-2015, 21:56   #14
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

You make some good points. The Excel costs more outside Oz & NZ because Rex does not have the international distribution sorted out so he can surface ship. He has had some goes at it, but he is very quality focused & things have not measured up, yet.

When folks understand how good the anchor is, his sales will rise accordingly in this consumer market i.e. cruisers. He is real busy in the commercial sector as it is, because THEY know they can rely on the SHH rating and proven strength testing to protect their ships when needed. Word spreads quick in the commercial world.

I hope I'm not flamed for thread drift, but how do you like your hypalon Takacat? Do you have the Sport model & what size motor are you using?
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Old 14-01-2015, 19:20   #15
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Re: Sarca Excel in BC - Anyone else?

Hi BigBeakie!

I'm comfortable with the knowledge that nobody cares what I think, hence no one will read what I write. Except perhaps you.

Our catamaran was equipped with a Achilles 3.1 m dinghy and Honda 20 hp 4-stroke outboard when we purchased her. We found the arrangement heavy and cumbersome, and we weren't impressed with the performance in big seas or by the top end speed. As we were preparing the boat for cruising, I was adding weight in the form of solar panels and support structure, etc. As I spent my career in the prototype helicopter development business, I became infinitely familiar with SWAP (size, weight and power) principles as applies to all mission oriented, weight sensitive vehicles. Believe you me, there isn't an ounce of spare weight available in the type helicopters I worked with. It better either be fuel, bullets, pilot armor, or the machinery necessary to haul all that around.

The Achilles weighed around 162 pounds. The Honda outboard was around 104 pounds.

The Takacat sport weighs around 130 pounds. We equipped it with a Yamaha 9.9 hp 4-stroke outboard that weights around 88 pounds. The smaller outboard is new and not only does it use a lot less fuel than something twice as powerful, it has a really kick ass feature - you can hook a fresh water hose to a fitting on it and flush the salt water out without even running then engine, and you don't have to screw with one of those clampy things.

So we didn't lose a huge amount of weight, but we did lose some and we don't have to carry a lot of gasoline to keep it fed. As we have only limited vented locker space, there isn't an infinite amount of space to store gasoline, and I don't like fuel containers on deck.

What we really got from the deal is a dinghy that will absolutely scoot with the two of us on board, with only 9.9 hp! While I haven't measured the performance side to side, I'm pretty darn convinced that we're going faster with half the horsepower. Reason being, the Takacat hull remains clear of the water and even though the pontoons are larger in diameter, overall the drag is much reduced. The Takacat is ridiculously stable in very rough conditions and ingress/egress is much easier. It's also a good platform to stand up and spin cast from. (do me a favor and don't go off on that old "end the sentence with a preposition" joke). Altogether my wife feels a lot safer operating the Takacat in rough conditions. As we all know, if our wife is happy, we get to go cruising; although oddly enough my wife was the impetus for going cruising. Single hander crusty old guys refer to me as "lucky bastard". . .

I'm mission oriented. Isabel and I gross out at under 300 pounds. We might have 100 pounds of parts, food and beer/wine to hump back from a shore excursion. That means for about 95% of the time I want a dinghy that will haul 400 pounds at planing speed. If we have two additional passengers on board we do slow down a bit, and we do need to be more careful in bigger chop to avoid taking any water over the bow. The Takacat does not have the same buoyancy (obviously) as conventional inflatables, but for the most part rearranging the load - i.e. having folks move a little more aft - cures the problem pretty well.

The Achilles/Honda arrangement was good kit, and the new owner is happy.

The Takacat/Yamaha is the kit that works best for us - it satisfies our mission requirement. We love our Takacat, and were very happy with the gentlemen that demo'd and then sold it to us. Apparently they sell mostly PVC ones in SOCAL, and we bought the only hypalon one they had. We're planning on enjoying a bit of sunshine . . .

Best,
Mark
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