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Old 10-10-2014, 09:46 AM   #1
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Anchor Windlass

I have an issue with my anchor windlass and or my rode set up.

I often anchor to fish in water around 300' deep. This isnt for long term or storm anchoring, just to stop and fish for an hour or two.

The issue is that my Muir Cougar windlass doesnt handle rope rodes well. It does chain just fine, but not rope nearly as well.

This leaves me considering a 600' all chain rode.

The problem with this is twofold. First is my anchor locker. 600' of chain is allot of chain. Moving it around the locker if it piles into a chain pyramid would not be that easy.

The second issue is that while the manufacturer says that my Muir Cougar windlass right out of the box brand new would easily break out and lift a 105 lb anchor and 300' of 5/16HT chain, he says that as a older windlass that might not be the case. He recommended a new motor to make sure it was up to snuff, good advice.

So, this leaves me thinking, why not replace the windlass with a unit that does chain and rope rodes?

So, looking into this I fell in love first with a open spool type windlass until I measured the boat and realized it would not fit on my anchor pulpit without serious modifications. Serious enough to eliminate it from the idea mix.

Then I started looking at windlasses and realized that large horizontal windlasses that handle mixed rope and chain rodes are not all that common.

I did find one that appears to do the job well, and contacted the manufactiurer to verify this. According to them it will do everything I want. The windlass is made by a company called Maxwell and it is the model HRC10-8

Here's a photo



and a link to the manufactirers web site Horizontal Rope and Chain Range

This model seems on the surface to be perfect. It will do what I want it to do, it will work with my existing 100 amp breaker and 2/0 DC cables just fine, etc...

So the question of the day...

Does anybody here on TF have any experience with this model? Any other ideas or suggestions?

Thanks!
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Old 10-10-2014, 10:00 AM   #2
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Kevin...any thought of going with the vertical setup instead??? (similar model but vertical?)

I have had several situations where warping off the windlass was comolicated by mine being horizontal...fortunately I have a snatch block that I can rig for some situations..just that the vertical is handier.
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Old 10-10-2014, 10:27 AM   #3
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Kevin we have Maxwell's RC 10-10, so different orientation... but in any case the chain wheel does indeed handle our rope well. We use 8-plait rope (behind the leading 25' of chain) as recommended by Maxwell, and in fact we had them make up the whole rode when we installed the windlass.

FWIW, I would have gone for their model with the extra capstan, too, but didn't have clearance under the hatch cover that's over our windlass and anchor locker...

Another FWIW, I haven't had much luck calibrating their rode counter for the rope section. It's good on the chain, but doesn't count rope well at all. (So we've simply marked the rope with a few zip ties, anyway...)

-Chris
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Old 10-10-2014, 11:36 AM   #4
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We had the Maxwell HRC-10-8 on our previous boat and it worked flawlessly with 5/16 chain and whatever brait size Maxwell recommended on their site.

We went with 150' chain and 250' brait; the few times that we ever saw the brait there was no slippage whatsoever. Keep in mind that the brait would have been pulling up 33 pounds of anchor and approximately 150 pounds of chain.

Our vessel was a 12,000 pound 32 footer; you might want to consider the HRC-10-10, which is a bit more substantial, eg it uses 3/8 chain.

But we were very happy with ours.

(Please note that I did not mention the anchor type.)
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Old 10-10-2014, 11:38 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ranger42c View Post
Kevin we have Maxwell's RC 10-10, so different orientation... but in any case the chain wheel does indeed handle our rope well. We use 8-plait rope (behind the leading 25' of chain) as recommended by Maxwell, and in fact we had them make up the whole rode when we installed the windlass.

FWIW, I would have gone for their model with the extra capstan, too, but didn't have clearance under the hatch cover that's over our windlass and anchor locker...

Another FWIW, I haven't had much luck calibrating their rode counter for the rope section. It's good on the chain, but doesn't count rope well at all. (So we've simply marked the rope with a few zip ties, anyway...)

-Chris
Thanks much!!!
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Old 10-10-2014, 11:45 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Conrad View Post
We had the Maxwell HRC-10-8 on our previous boat and it worked flawlessly with 5/16 chain and whatever brait size Maxwell recommended on their site.

We went with 150' chain and 250' brait; the few times that we ever saw the brait there was no slippage whatsoever. Keep in mind that the brait would have been pulling up 33 pounds of anchor and approximately 150 pounds of chain.

Our vessel was a 12,000 pound 32 footer; you might want to consider the HRC-10-10, which is a bit more substantial, eg it uses 3/8 chain.

But we were very happy with ours.

(Please note that I did not mention the anchor type.)
Thanks! Your positive review helps my decision.

I thought about the 10-10 but it is a 120 amp machine.

The 10-8 is a 85 amp machine, which matches the wiring and breaker I already have. I could easily use a higher amperage windlass but would have to install a helper battery. I have a place in my anchor locker to do that, and could actually install it very easily, including protection of it and its cables. Still considering that option.

In my research I did find out that 5/16 HT chain has the same working load as the 3/8 BBB chain that I currently use.

I wont tell my anchor type... only to say that is is not one of the new fancy high tech anchors... OK here it goes. I use, and have used Bruce type anchors on all of my boats with great success.
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Old 10-10-2014, 11:50 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
Kevin...any thought of going with the vertical setup instead??? (similar model but vertical?)

I have had several situations where warping off the windlass was comolicated by mine being horizontal...fortunately I have a snatch block that I can rig for some situations..just that the vertical is handier.

Thought about it... I dont know, I have a horizontal unit now and the boat looks good with a substantial looking windlass on the bow
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Old 10-10-2014, 12:04 PM   #8
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Haven't read the whole thread but have you considered a special rode just for deep? Probably w 90% line?

Ask the halibut charter boats what they use. Up there you probably need the long rode to deal w King Crab pots ..? I miss eating fresh King Crab.
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Old 10-10-2014, 12:09 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ksanders View Post

I wont tell my anchor type... only to say that is is not one of the new fancy high tech anchors... OK here it goes. I use, and have used Bruce type anchors on all of my boats with great success.
We have an (expletive deleted).
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Old 10-10-2014, 12:50 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by manyboats View Post
Haven't read the whole thread but have you considered a special rode just for deep? Probably w 90% line?

Ask the halibut charter boats what they use. Up there you probably need the long rode to deal w King Crab pots ..? I miss eating fresh King Crab.
I have

The windlass I have has a capstan and a gypsy. Pulling 600' of line with the capstan is a pita. My arms hurt when its done.

Then we fish deep, and reel up allot. Thats hard on the arms.

Then pull the anchor and do it again.

Last fall we got into a bunch of orange jellyfish. Their juice on the line made my hands burn.

Hense my desire for a hands free approach.
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Old 10-10-2014, 01:15 PM   #11
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Kevin,
Two things to consider:

1: Re; windlass size - if with age you feel the present one is weakening, consider the stronger one now instead of just a replacement motor.

2: Re chain pile-up and topple - I have seen it suggested to install a cone in the locker directly under the chain-fall (like a traffic cone) to cause the chain to spread out.

As with all ideas, may not work(be applicable) for you but may make you think of something that will.

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Old 10-10-2014, 01:52 PM   #12
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I had a Maxwell on my last boat. I also had 2 hooks. One on the starboard side all chain. That is for anchoring out normal stuff. The port was a short piece of chain with 300' of 5/8 rode. That spool is great. But it also won't go in the anchor locker w/o some help. So, it lays on the deck until you put it up. Not a good situation. They do sell windlasses for exactly what you want. They have a large wheel and the rode goes into a box of some kind. Google it. It's made for fishing holes and wrecks where the water is very deep. Supposedly, it will retrieve 600' of road in a few minutes??
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Old 10-10-2014, 02:35 PM   #13
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For this application I would definitely go with a horizontal windlass. A vertical one has to make a 1/2 turn around the gypsy and then a 90 deg turn downward. Too much for a smooth retrieval, particularly of stiff line.

Consider an all chain 1/4" grade 70 rode. 1/4" G70 chain has the same working load limit as your 3/8" BBB chain and it weighs half, about 0.7 lb/ft. So you may get by with a smaller, cheaper windlass that will lift the anchor with 300' of chain.

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Old 10-10-2014, 03:06 PM   #14
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A reel winch w cable and a level wind reel.
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Old 10-10-2014, 03:09 PM   #15
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My windlass gave up on me, so I've also been searching & researching for the best option. I can understand your frustration and trying to decide on the perfect winch, that fits your boat and your needs.

One comment that was made to me re slipping windlasses:

A vertical chain/rode gypsy tends to slip less, due 180 degree contact with the anchor line, rather than 90 degrees of contact with a horizontal winch.
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Old 10-10-2014, 04:00 PM   #16
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Thanks for the comments and suggestions guys

I've looked into the drum type windlasses. The problem is that in order to hold the line I need the wildlass is too wide to fit on my anchor pulpit. Adding anything up there would be custom fiberglass work, just not available in my boats location in Alaska.

I like the traffic cone idea. I actually like it quite a bit, and will give it a try.

I like the smaller stronger chain. That would be lighter and store in less space. If I can get a gypsy for it for my current windlass that would be perfect. I'm going to check on that.

*** edit *** just chhecked and the grade 70 chain is not the correct link size to work in a windlass. It was a great try and idea though, Thanks!!

Thanks again for all the help!
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Old 10-10-2014, 09:02 PM   #17
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For deep water, just fishin' purposes, an all rope rode, using an anchor buoy retrieval method is easiest and fastest.
For example:



Anchor Ring | Anchor Retrieval
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