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Old 14-03-2011, 05:04   #16
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Re: Storing Chain / Rope Combo Rode

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Originally Posted by Sea Jay View Post
Greetings all,

This is my first post on Cruisers Forum although some of you may know me from BoatDesign.net. I have a 46' motorsailer under construction and have spent a couple of hours today trying to research a design issue with limited success. Maybe someone here can point me in the right direction.

I have a Lofans windlass with a combination gypsy that fits 3/8" HT chain and 5/8" or 9/16" rope. My plan is to carry 150' of chain with 200-300 ft of rope behind that. I expect that the vast majority of my anchoring will be done on 100% chain (w/ snubber). The default arrangement is to have the rope spliced on to the chain and let the rope lie at the bottom of the chain locker, getting all crudded up for years until it is finally put into action.

Alternatively, I could keep the rope rode separate and shackle it to the chain only for the limited occasions when it is required. This requires a bit more gymnastics around the windlass during deployment and retrieval but isn't an insurmountable obstacle.

I do like the self-tailing / storing notion of having the rope drop through the spurling pipe. However, I donít have any experience with this type of set-up and wonder if Iím off in la-la land thinking the rope is going to simply come to rest in a tangle free pile at the bottom of the anchor locker. I am interested in hearing how others have dealt with this situation.

Best Regards,

Sea Jay

If your normal anchorages are shallow enough that you will be laying to all chain, 98% of the time, I agree with your rope / chain proportions. Otherwise, 50' more chain wouldn't hurt.

If you use Platt/brait rope, I'd let it just live in the bottom of the locker with chain on top. It falls in a pile like chain, and is SO much better than three strand, which falls in large hockles & coils, which can foul the chain on its way out the haws pipe.

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Old 14-03-2011, 05:21   #17
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Re: Storing Chain / Rope Combo Rode

I had 150' of chain spliced to 175' of three strand nylon. In all our travels around the eastern Caribbean, Bermuda, Bahamas and Chesapeake Bay, I never actually needed to use the nylon. It was there for a big storm, if a lot of scope was called for.

My windlass dropped the chain onto a sloped table in the anchor locker. The nylon rode was stored flaked under the table. The chain slid down the table and dropped about 18" into the bottom of the anchor locker, aft of the nylon rode. That kept the nylon from getting wet and muddy, mostly.

Do you have room to install a sloped table?
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Old 14-03-2011, 07:00   #18
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Re: Storing Chain / Rope Combo Rode

Rope and chain flake fine together atop one another. Yes, the rope will get muddy. So what? Splice it nicely. Renew the splice often. My PO used a thimble and shackle...I never figured out how he got it thru the pipe and windlass ... but then he did many strange things.
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Old 14-03-2011, 15:34   #19
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Re: Storing Chain / Rope Combo Rode

Well it seems that there are two basic schools of thought on this one. First, just let the chain lay on top of the rope and second, place the rope on a shelf of some sort up and away from the chain. I'm glad to hear both options are well proven. I suspect I'll start out with the second and end up with the first! Thanks for all of the input.

(Hud - sloped table probably doesn't work in this situation but maybe some sort of variation.)
(Mark - I do plan to use brait and I'm fairly confident about my depth of anchorage assesment but will give it one last "look-see" when I'm ready to write the check for the chain)
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Old 03-04-2011, 08:08   #20
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Re: Storing Chain / Rope Combo Rode

Hi; u might try installing a inspection port above your chain locker. not much money and a easy install. With cover plate off you can reach inside and adjust any tangles that prevent deployment and shove chain to lowest aft part of locker to keep weight out of the bows. These inspection ports are availaple with screw in vents that will keep all sweet smelling and dry below, in fact ,your rode can be feed below through the ventalator. I installed one years back on the port side of my foredeck since I am left handed and you may want to get one large enough to get the better part of your shoulder in if the bottom of your locker is a ways below deck level.
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Old 04-04-2011, 00:27   #21
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Re: Storing Chain / Rope Combo Rode

The rope will be fine even if a bit mucky, sitting chain on it won't hurt the rope but does leave a nice saltwater laden bed for the steel chain to sit on, something worth thinking about. If the rope will get used very little sitting it up to one side isn't a bad idea.

A thimble won't go through the winch and if you try there is a high chance it could cause damage to the winch or the rope, possibly both, we see it more than we should.

2 options now - 1, put a thimble in and manually tweak it around the gypsy each time. A bit of a pain but it would mean you have a nice long spare line should you require it. 2, splice it to the chain and it will go thru the winch well, assuming it's done right. Poor splices are real easy to do, the right splice is no harder.

The good rope to chain splice done right is perfectly fine and no weaker then a equal thimble splice, that's been well and truly proven.

On a Lofrans running 10mm (3/8") chain 5/8" 8 braid (octiplait) works damn well and is a good match. Try to buy a T66 grade Nylon version, it will cost a little more but easy outlast lower grades. Think 'lifetime' cost rather than purchase price it will save you money over time. That's now also well proven.

As always, there are rope and chains and then there are ropes and chains, the above is talking good stuff and may change if you buy nasty stuff.
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