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Old 22-05-2022, 07:54   #1
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Advice on ground tackle

My windlass is shot. Chain is past the point of being able to be galvanized again. I believe the anchor is too big (a first for me saying that on any boat I've owned.)

Out of the past 3.5 years cruising, we've spent about 700 nights on anchor.

I'm looking for advice on replacement of these systems.


Current situation:

My boat is 43ft long, 25 ft wide, and displaces about 13 tons. She does have more windage than a mono but not as much as some (like Lagoon, etc).

Current gear: 40kg Rocna (Gen 1), 150ft 5/16 HT chain, Lofrans vertical 1000w windlass

The current windlass is 1000w, so if I go up to a higher power motor, I might have to run new wires which is a MAJOR job on this boat. So preference to keep with 1000w or less.


My plan:

I've done a lot of homework on this. Right now my plan is for the following:
Maxwell RC Series RC10-8 Vertical Windlass
8mm G43 chain 200ft
5/8" 8plait rode 200ft
Rocna Vulcan 35kg

Questions:

I've looked at all the charts from various manufacturers and I'm right on the cusp between 8mm and 10mm chain sizes. I've never seen a chain be the point of failure and the boat is 20+ years old with 5/16th chain. Do you think 8mm is "good enough"?

The Rocna Vulcan appeals to me as a modern Spade-like anchor but may not have the rusting and galvanizing issues of the Spade itself. Do you think this is the correct size for a full time 43ft cat?

Your thoughts are always appreciated.
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Old 22-05-2022, 08:01   #2
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

Your estimates sound good to me. Possibly that is more anchor than size of chain, but it's a better match than my chain and anchor.
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Old 22-05-2022, 08:19   #3
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

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Originally Posted by tkeithlu View Post
Your estimates sound good to me. Possibly that is more anchor than size of chain, but it's a better match than my chain and anchor.
Yes, in theory the anchor could out hold the chain in this setup. But I think having that bigger anchor is still beneficial if we're not talking about the ultimate holding power of the overall setup.
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Old 22-05-2022, 08:37   #4
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

Your anchor is too big and 8mm G43 is fine for the chain. I'd go with about 20KG-25KG on the anchor. My 42 cat was fine with about that.... and my anchor was old school in the Caribe 3 years.
You certainly dont need an 88 lb anchor on a 43 ft cat. I thought about an 88 lb on a 36000 lb displacement mono and opted out of that idea.
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Old 22-05-2022, 08:46   #5
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
Your anchor is too big and 8mm G43 is fine for the chain. I'd go with about 20KG-25KG on the anchor. My 42 cat was fine with about that.... and my anchor was old school in the Caribe 3 years.
You certainly dont need an 88 lb anchor on a 43 ft cat. I thought about an 88 lb on a 36000 lb displacement mono and opted out of that idea.
I was taking a look at Rocna's anchor sizing chart to arrive at the 33kg anchor. I am right between their 12 and 14m boat length, so went with the 14m line. Then I'm 13t which puts me in the 25kg range, however, the chart says for a multihull to go one size up, which is how I arrived at the 33kg anchor.



Thoughts?
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Old 22-05-2022, 09:51   #6
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

Our cat is 42' and 23' beam. Slightly lighter, paperwork says 16,500 lbs.
We have the spade s120 (55lb) and 5/16 g4 chain.
We have had huge success with this setup. It sets well and usually instantly. After setting we have not had it drag. Roughly 800 night's on anchor over the last 3 years.
I have no experience with the rocna Vulcan. I'm not sure how it compares. Being that it is a spade copy, I would personally spend the extra $350 and get the actual spade.
Eventually you (and I) will need to deal with rust but spade does also carry a lifetime warranty.
Good luck with whatever you decide, good ground tackle sure makes for easy sleep
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Old 22-05-2022, 10:08   #7
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

I don't know anything, you have more anchoring experience than I do. Keep that in mind. Nonetheless here are my fool's comments:



Quote:
Originally Posted by ThereAndBack View Post
I've looked at all the charts from various manufacturers and I'm right on the cusp between 8mm and 10mm chain sizes. I've never seen a chain be the point of failure and the boat is 20+ years old with 5/16th chain. Do you think 8mm is "good enough"?

I would use 8mm. Many authorities with extensive cruising experience, some with engineering and naval design backgrounds, believe that the standard chain size recommendations are overly conservative.



Quote:

The Rocna Vulcan appeals to me as a modern Spade-like anchor but may not have the rusting and galvanizing issues of the Spade itself. Do you think this is the correct size for a full time 43ft cat?

I have no advice on size, you know your boat and have been using the 40 kg hook for years.



Depending on your location (and local availability) you could also look at the Sarca Excel. Testing shows it consistently outperforms the Vulcan although the differences are slight. I think you would be happy with either.
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Old 22-05-2022, 11:05   #8
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

Personally, I think 8mm G43 chain is not enough for a 43 foot cat anchoring frequently.
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Old 22-05-2022, 13:57   #9
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

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Personally, I think 8mm G43 chain is not enough for a 43 foot cat anchoring frequently.
Would love to hear more about what informs your opinion. Anecdotes, first hand experience, or based on manufacturer charts?

The problem I have with moving up to 10mm chain is that Maxwell makes an RC10-8 model rated at 1000w but the RC10-10 model is 1200w (which means I'd have to upgrade wiring - a big project for me).
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Old 22-05-2022, 14:48   #10
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

I've got the 33kg/73lb Vulcan on my 38 foot powerboat. 14 foot beam, about 27k lbs. It's 1 size up from recommended and I wouldn't consider it too big. Either the 33 or 40kg would be reasonable on a cat like that with the 40 being borderline overkill.

I'd match chain size to the maximum expected load from the boat in the worst conditions you want to plan for. It doesn't matter if the anchor can hold more in optimal conditions, as the anchor is sized for bad bottoms, short scope, etc. I've been happy with 5/16 G43 chain for my boat despite Rocna wanting 3/8 for this size anchor.
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Old 22-05-2022, 15:47   #11
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

Quote:
Originally Posted by ThereAndBack View Post
Would love to hear more about what informs your opinion. Anecdotes, first hand experience, or based on manufacturer charts?
I am rather sceptical of the charts produced by anchor manufacturers so I would have to say experience of anchoring over 300 days year for the last 15 years and noting what works and what does not.
Quote:
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The problem I have with moving up to 10mm chain is that Maxwell makes an RC10-8 model rated at 1000w but the RC10-10 model is 1200w (which means I'd have to upgrade wiring - a big project for me).
What is the wire size and run distance?

Windlass wattage ratings are very nominal figures. For example, my windlass draws over 4 times its nominal wattage rating at full load. This is not unusual.

Thus a motor rated at 1000 w may be quite different to another motor rated at 1000 w.

While for most marine electronics the circuit protection (circuit breaker or fuse) is designed to protect the wiring, this is not true of anchor windlasses. Here the circuit protection is designed to protect to windlass motor. Thus the normal rules of circuit protection do not apply. Hopefully your boatbuilder has left some reserve capacity in the wire size.

On a cruising boat it is a shame to compromise important anchoring gear because of limitations in the wire size. As I note above, your concerns about a modest increase in nominal motor size may be unjustified. Even if this not the case there are other solutions. If the wire size is inadequate, and this cannot be upgraded, options such as installing a 24v windlass and battery may be a better option. Some more details would help.
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Old 22-05-2022, 15:49   #12
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

Just a thought. Put an AGM battery close to the windlass. You'll be able to use a bigger windlass and not have the voltage drop of a long cable run. AGM Battery is spillproof, vibration proof and can be mounted sideways if needed. You would need an CAR or echo charger to do it properly.

The set up I have can be switched to combine or to bypass the stater battery.
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Old 22-05-2022, 17:14   #13
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

Maxwell recommends the same 135a breaker for both the 1000w and 1200w motors from what I've seen. My HRC10-8 is wired with 2ga (acceptable for my wiring length according to the Maxwell instructions) and I've had no performance issues.
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Old 22-05-2022, 18:54   #14
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

So you have anchored out 700 nights with the existing set up. Why not just replicate it, it works does it not? If it was me I would get the original Rocna re galvanized and stick to replacing the 8mm HT chain. Get a replacement windlass motor/or gearbox - whatever is shot and use same gypsy. The problem with 25% bigger chain is that it bunches up more in the same size locker space and takes up a lot more room than you would think. A more powerful windlass may be nice, so as stated by another poster have a dedicated AGM up front with short cables with the existing wires connected to the house system via a DC DC charger or Cyrix combiner. You might even find that the voltage loss regained improves the 1000W windlass performance in any event (from shorter cables). If you have a generator up front, maybe that start battery could be used. Anyway some food for thought.
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Old 22-05-2022, 19:00   #15
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Re: Advice on ground tackle

Gotta say it’s rare to have someone complain that their (modern design) anchor is too big!
Are you sure you can’t just replace your chain & have the motor rebuilt if necessary, possibly upgrade the wiring if long runs or poor connections?
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