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Old 22-05-2012, 09:10   #1
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Suggestions for Marking Chain

Im looking for good ideas on how to mark my anchor chain. My plan was to spray paint 6" sections every 50 feet but then the admiral suggested using an alternate color every 25, so say green at 25', red at 50', green at 75', red at 100'...

What works well and is easy to remember? I guess I could use different colors and laminate a cheat sheet to the bottom of the anchor locker door?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 22-05-2012, 09:27   #2
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

No way is full proof... We have used paint, line and zip ties.

We are cruising fulltime and use our anchor frequently. Painting requires being at a dock and the paint tends to last only a couple of months.

Now we use neon colored zip ties. You can purchased them in bulk at Costco or just about anywhere.

We place them every 25', using one tie for 25' two ties for 50' and three ties for 75'. Then we change to a different color at 100' and start the sequence over. The same for 200', 300' etc....

They usually last about 4-6 months and don't fall off all at once so you can replace them as needed.
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Old 22-05-2012, 09:29   #3
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

I have the same variety of information with just two colors at each 50' interval. White.......Red........White/Red........Red/White. In addition, I accent the presence of these marks with addition of some nylon wire ties that easily pass over my gypsy.
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Old 22-05-2012, 09:35   #4
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

So the gypsy doesnt tear off the wire ties? I would think it would but if they last 4-6 months that would be okay by me and beats the pants off painting sections of the chain and waiting for the paint to dry... Ill keep listening. Thanks all.
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Old 22-05-2012, 09:40   #5
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

I think you are on correct path. Ideas:
  • Spray paint will wear off very fast. Recommend carefully brushing on laquer paint to links.
  • Hard to tell red from black etc when it is dark. Recommend using patterns in combo with colors. e.g., one black link at 25', two at 50', three at 75', black-white-black at 100', white-black at 125' etc.
  • Kind of depends what paint you have in the locker. I used green and yellow, but no magic there.
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Old 22-05-2012, 09:44   #6
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

This is how we do it on the big(ish) boats.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...RzY52xEQ-hzmTA

See page 3 and 6-9.
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Old 22-05-2012, 14:43   #7
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

I use these aboard - Fisheries - Product Detail

So far so good.
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Old 22-05-2012, 15:02   #8
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

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I use these aboard - Fisheries - Product Detail

So far so good.
Didn't last a season for us; neither did rescue tape on the links. I'll try zip ties next fall.
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Old 22-05-2012, 15:39   #9
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Plus 1 for zip ties. Yes they pass through the gypsy fine. Easy to replace when they show signs if deterioration.
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Old 22-05-2012, 15:53   #10
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

I use the colored plastic chain markers that can purchased in the local marine stores. Every 50 feet, start with 2 green, then 2 yellow, then 2 red, 4 green, 4 yellow, finally 4 red. I carry 250 of all chain. We have a lot of reefs, coral so could loose the boat with rope. Only go out 250 if a big storm is expected or anchoring in very deep water. Had it all out once and was glad I did.
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Old 22-05-2012, 16:03   #11
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

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Originally Posted by rodney_k View Post
I use these aboard - Fisheries - Product Detail

So far so good.
I have used paint, zip ties, and now these plastic inserts for the past several years. Here is my expierience:
1. Paint lasts about four years. If you have galvanized chain it is important to get paint that is suited for galvanized.
2. Zip ties also last about four years, but some of them drop off each year so annual maintenance is required.
3. The plastic inserts have not failed in three years. It is important to get the right size for the chain. Mine fit rather tightly, and I expect that they will stay put forever because they do not make contact with the gypsy.
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Old 22-05-2012, 16:21   #12
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

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Originally Posted by St. Elsewhere View Post
I have used paint, zip ties, and now these plastic inserts for the past several years. Here is my expierience:
1. Paint lasts about four years. If you have galvanized chain it is important to get paint that is suited for galvanized.
2. Zip ties also last about four years, but some of them drop off each year so annual maintenance is required.
3. The plastic inserts have not failed in three years. It is important to get the right size for the chain. Mine fit rather tightly, and I expect that they will stay put forever because they do not make contact with the gypsy.
Sounds right.

My gypsy (Lawrence vertical) hates zip ties. Don't even bother.

I've used the inserts. Some popped out over time (heavy mud was the cause), so I just went back to paint, which lasts about until I need to work on the chain for some purpose anyway (trim ends, splices, etc).

And the eaiest way to do the painting:
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Old 22-05-2012, 17:03   #13
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I marked mine at 33 feet or 10 meter increments. Trying to get metric. I have a very old vertical ideal windlass. No issue with zip ties.
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Old 22-05-2012, 17:25   #14
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

I painted at 15M/50 foot increments. Three colours (and the order) I could remember RED, WHITE and BLUE. Each painted mark was 3'/1M long. Enough paint to see and no little cheat sheets to remember the secret code!! I have all chain so I painted a 2M/6' white about 10' before the end. After I stop at that mark there is enough chain left in the locker to attach my snubber. Tried all sorts of other systems but this is the one that works for us. Good luck.
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Old 22-05-2012, 17:33   #15
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Re: Suggestions for Marking Chain

My system is also red, white, and blue at 50 foot increments. I put yellow zip ties in between at the 25 foot points, but I always seem to stop paying out chain at a fifty foot marker. Now that I have the plastic inserts, there are one of each color for the first 150 feet, then two for the next 150 feet, and then three. This is working for me, and I think it will last as long as I do.
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