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cool beans 09-06-2018 04:24 PM

Anchor Rode Suggestions Chesapeake Bay
Yes I've finally had a chance to do some anchoring in my Bayliner :lol:

Yes, the anchor rode is old and missmatched rope/chain and doesn't work with my windlass. I'm looking to replace it. I picked up a closeout 45lb Manson Supreme that I've been using and quite like it :smitten:

I have a Muir Cougar Windlass with a 5/16" BBB chain gypsy on one side and a drum on the other and foot buttons on deck. The easiest, but not cheapest solution would be all chain. Probably wouldn't need more than 200 feet. It just seems overkill and then I would need to rig a snubber, correct? Plus side would be the windlass would do all the work.

The other solution would be a new rope/chain combo. Prior experience was with my light weight Ranger 33 sailboat. After extensive internet searching I ended up with a Rocna 33lb with 50 feet of 3/8" chain and 5/8" line. I'd say it was total overkill and a pain to haul in by hand. My atomic 4 didn't have enough power to even set the anchor :lol:

Just not sure how much chain I might want to use or even no chain at all? How do I use my windlass with a drum on one side and chain gypsy on the other? And this would be for the Chesapeake Bay and tributaries only so mostly shallow mud, some hard pack, and occasionally sand if I go to the beach.


djmarchand 09-06-2018 05:19 PM

First of all in the Chesepeake 20' is about as deep as you will anchor in. Add 5' for your bow height and a 6:1 scope and 150' of rode will do it. For my money all chain is the easiest to use. So buy 150 of 5/16" BBB and you are good to go, unless you want to also replace the gypsy and go to 3/8" G4 chain for more strength.

Your anchor probably hasmuch more holding power than 5/16" of BBB.


oscar 09-06-2018 05:39 PM

Used to hang a Catalina 42 (28,000#) on 100' of heavy chain and another 100' of line. All over the Chez including in exposed waters during a few "stoppa da motion :eek:" situations. More than plenty.

ranger42c 09-06-2018 05:44 PM

After we came back to the Chesapeake from Florida... we switched from all-chain rode to mixed chain/rope... because it takes too long to clean out the mud from the chain links.

We only use a 25' leader of chain, now, still takes 20-30 minutes of hose-down sometimes.

FWIW, the rope we use is 8-plait, specifically recommended for the gypsy in our particular rope/chain windlass.

Not a recommendation, just some data points.


O C Diver 09-06-2018 06:25 PM

Personally, I use 7:1 all chain with a snubber and sleep well at night. There are many places I anchor that have sticky mud and it take a while to clean it up in the morning. Reality is that most of the time when you anchor, you will be cleaning away mud the next morning. I'd rather do that in the morning than wonder why I didn't put out enough chain when I had the opportunity. Anchor like you're expecting bad weather and you will seldom be disappointed.


Nomad Willy 09-06-2018 06:30 PM

I’m with Ranger.
5/8” 8 plait and 5/16” chain.
Couple that to a good mud anchor. I’d be think’in Max or Boss. Both have huge fluke area.

caltexflanc 09-06-2018 07:45 PM


Originally Posted by Nomad Willy (Post 696493)
I’m with Ranger.
5/8” 8 plait and 5/16” chain.
Couple that to a good mud anchor. I’d be think’in Max or Boss. Both have huge fluke area.

He's got as perfectly good anchor already. Me, I'd go with all chain that fits his current gypsy and call it done. Install a good raw water wash down if need be. The very fact that you need to wash mud off your chain is a good thing. A good deal of the time in the Chessie, you will end up laying to the chain, not the anchor.

cool beans 09-10-2018 10:02 AM

Thanks for the replys everyone! The easiest thing just might be all chain and a washdown pump up forward. I'm leaning more and more towards quick and easy and all chain is looking like that. Need to let my credit card cool off a bit though, first.

Thanks all!

Nomad Willy 09-10-2018 10:36 AM


Originally Posted by caltexflanc (Post 696518)
He's got as perfectly good anchor already. Me, I'd go with all chain that fits his current gypsy and call it done. Install a good raw water wash down if need be. The very fact that you need to wash mud off your chain is a good thing. A good deal of the time in the Chessie, you will end up laying to the chain, not the anchor.

The Supreme is not a good mud anchor. I have one and I’ve not had the mud problems but there’s too much evidence to ignore. The Max or Boss would probably be better due to larger fluke area. Any of the three would probably hold the boat if large enough to deal w the mud. But the very concave fluke of the Supreme would likely scoop up way too much mud. Did you see Steves vids?

But in view of the shallow depths I would consider all chain myself. :confused:
Actually that gives me an idea. Use a Danforth and a chainpipe w the anchor mounted on the hullside the way many older and larger vessels do. Put the washdown nozzle in the chainpipe (perhaps more than one) and a very good mud anchoring system would would be had.

psneeld 09-10-2018 10:48 AM

My supreme has worked fine in mud...less so in soupy mud/silt but then even super dooper fortress types have issues too.

Where is all the evidence condemning Supremes?

If one expecs to hold in that bottom tyoe no matter what type anchor one uses, may want to reconsider ones captain skills.

But just regular old slimey, sticky mud...a decent sized manson supreme will hold just good as the pack....but yes, less total holding power than a Danforth type...but at some point for every day anchoring....who cares ONLY about max holding?

caltexflanc 09-10-2018 11:19 AM


The Supreme is not a good mud anchor.
Oh baloney! If you take a little time to set it (like say , 10 or 15 minutes) it will be two feet under in a few hours along with a whole bunch of the chain. You'll spend more time hosing it and the chain down than you did deploying it. The evidence is the experience of multiple boaters using that or the Rocna in those waters.... or horror of horrors, a Delta!

I carried a big Danforth HT on my bow ready to deploy instantly, which came with the boat as the main when I bought it, and used it as we slowly cruised down from Baltimore on the maiden voyage. When I got to North Carolina I changed it out for a Delta simply because I was used to using them or CQRs (!!), and felt comfortable with the Delta in reversing currents (and mud!) I experienced in the California Delta area. In subsequent years as we cruised up and down the Chesapeake, anchoring every night, lingering here and there, I kept telling myself to switch out the Delta for the Danforth. Never did get around to it despite some very sporty conditions and clocking winds and current. Sure used the hell out of our raw water washdown pump though...

sdowney717 09-10-2018 04:59 PM

6 foot of 3/8 chain, a Seachoice 22 Danforth anchor and couple hundred foot of 3/4 with 5/8 spliced on at the end. With that have anchored with no problem all over the lower Chesapeake bay. Boat weighs 20,000lbs.

BruceK 09-10-2018 06:50 PM

It`s about rode not anchors.
All chain is simple,strong and eliminates rope/chain joins.
Fitting your credit card with a heat exchanger might be the hard part but once it`s done, it`s done for a long while.

DDW 09-10-2018 07:02 PM

I'd a lot rather hose the mud off of chain than cordage. Mud oozes into the lay of rope, you can wash the surface but it's very difficult to get it out of the lay. That mud ends up in your forepeak, festering into a science experiment. With a good foredeck washdown pump you can wash the chain clean and it doesn't take that much time. If you do not have a good washdown pump, then yeah, chain will hold more mud.

FF 09-11-2018 06:09 AM

Very little (if any) chain is needed.

The simplest is to use a nylon line with heavy chain between the anchor and the windlass, if chain is desired by the anchor assembler.

That way the few ft of chain can be heavy , as it will stop short of the windlass,so need not match the chain drum.

Going too big say 3/4 inch chain may be too hard for the anchor to bury .

5/8 line and 3/8 chain should do it.

Too heavy line ( like 1 inch) can be a disaster as it will not stretch , to give shock absorbing in normal use.

Flaking the anchor line on deck in a figure 8 will allow it to dry and is easy to set if you have a few length markers.

Gray Dog 09-18-2018 04:26 PM

Anchor Rode
I have a Muir Cougar with 3/16 BBB. 150' of all galvanized chain worked well for us in the Chesapeake and many other places. Let out more chain than you think necessary. Install a raw water wash down system with oversize water pressure, wash the chain as it comes out of the water and I predict you will be happy.

wkearney99 09-19-2018 01:54 PM

I second the recommendation to use all chain and to add a hose down to clean it when you weigh anchor. I've had both and much prefer how readily the chain can be cleaned as opposed to nylon rode

Shrew 09-20-2018 10:48 AM

Moved from "General Discussion" to "Anchors and Anchoring"

Shrew 09-20-2018 11:25 AM

All chain isn't about strength. You can easily find a Nylon line with comparable breaking strength. Chain introduces catenary. You benefit far greater form the horizontal pull that all chain provides.

This is one of the reasons why the recommendations are typically:

Line/mixed rode: 5:1 - 7::1
Chain: 3:1 - 5:1

7:1 all chain rode is more like 10:1 mixed rode.

If running a mixed rode, I would recommend a minimum of a boat length worth of chain.

Shrew 09-20-2018 11:29 AM

Something else to consider. I've had a boat foul my anchor line in their running gear (He was searching for a spot in a tight anchorage in 20+ kts of wind and wandered too close to my bow due to distraction). I encourage someone to try that with my all chain rode.

Similar situation a friend of mine had (same anchorage in fact) and the boat parted his anchor line accidentally.

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