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Old 02-23-2018, 08:41 AM   #1
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Using Two Anchors Question

All,

I've got a double slot for two anchors at my bow, and wondering how other folks use them together.

When I do use them, the second one has to be raised and lowered manually and it's pretty heavy and a PITA. Looking for a solution to use help to get the second one up.

Is there a way to use the windlass easily? Guess I'd have to disconnect the first anchor chain....

Or, could I mount a winch, like the sail boats have (but tight)?

I've got a third anchor for the stern but smaller and fairly easy to handle.

Thoughts?
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Old 02-23-2018, 10:35 PM   #2
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In 10 yrs of full time cruising, we have had occasion to use both anchors... NEVER! The primary anchor, the Rocna has been down hundreds of times, the secondary is a Delta Quick(not)-Set(hardly ever), so it's mostly up on the pulpit to impress non-trawler folk who walk by in the marina.

Seriously, there's little to gain by setting two anchors if you have an anchor that you can count on. We've had the Delta down exactly 3 times since 2006. Once in the Chesapeake when we dragged it all over the anchorage, a second time in the Jumentos when we rigged a stern anchor at 3 in the morning because the surge came around so strong we were nearly tossed out of the bed! We rigged a Bahamian moor once just for the experience. Once was enough. What a PITA.

With the Rocna, setting a second anchor is just extra work and no benefit. Set your gear up to handle a single anchor that's up to the task. The second anchor can be a backup, just in case. It's been demonstrated that two anchors rarely split the load, one anchor or the other carries nearly all of it, so why put out two? So I wouldn't lose much sleep over having a dual anchor setup for routine use.
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Old 02-23-2018, 11:44 PM   #3
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Yeah, there's a recent thread that contains a lot of discussion on this topic: One anchor or two?
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Old 02-23-2018, 11:55 PM   #4
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Seevee,
I have had similar experience as Steve on Maerin. Our bow has two separate windlass, each supporting a different anchor. Ten years ago, we had a CQR and a Fortress aluminum Danforth style anchor. We gave the CQR away - it did not like setting and usually took several tries. The Fortress worked well in the Chesapeake but we were not impressed with it in harder bottoms. So we installed a Rocna and have used it from Florida to Canada with happy results.
As far as using two anchors - we have not used two off the bow at the same time. When we had a windlass fail behind Sandy Hook NJ, we jumped the chain to the "other" windlass and retrieved the Rocna.
We have dropped a stern anchor a few times. We learned we did not want to do that, because we do not have a windlass in the stern and muscling up a well set Danforth anchor is very difficult to do. The last time, I dropped our dinghy anchor (only 8 lbs) to slow our swinging.
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Old 02-24-2018, 12:02 AM   #5
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there are reasonable reasons to deploy 2 anchors....one or many ways....

just because someone has never done it does not make them experts at deploying only one. or more...
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Old 02-24-2018, 02:19 AM   #6
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I think your primary anchor should be sufficient for 90% of your anchoring situations. If its not, you need a better primary.

A second bow anchor should be a rare occurence and not something worth settin up windlasses and procedures for.

Just my 2 cents...and its probably over priced.
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Old 02-24-2018, 02:27 AM   #7
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Read your windlass operating manual. You should be able to un-clutch the chain gypsy and use the warping drum to pull in a rope rode for the secondary anchor.
The system showed in the pic looks like a really bad design with no proper leads to the drum. But that might just be the angle of the pic.
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Old 02-24-2018, 04:31 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McGillicuddy View Post
Read your windlass operating manual. You should be able to un-clutch the chain gypsy and use the warping drum to pull in a rope rode for the secondary anchor.
The system showed in the pic looks like a really bad design with no proper leads to the drum. But that might just be the angle of the pic.
McGillicuddy,

Could you explain that?
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Old 02-24-2018, 07:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seevee View Post
All,

I've got a double slot for two anchors at my bow, and wondering how other folks use them together.

When I do use them, the second one has to be raised and lowered manually and it's pretty heavy and a PITA. Looking for a solution to use help to get the second one up.

Is there a way to use the windlass easily? Guess I'd have to disconnect the first anchor chain....

I've never used both of our bow anchors at the same time.

When we installed an electric windlass, I first shopped on models with a gypsy (chainwheel) and capstan (for rope) with separate clutches. Lots of those around. Unfortunately, our windlass is under that hatch that covers the chain locker, and the windlass models I preferred were too tall. But ou could conceivably replace your current windlass with something like that.

Given our second anchor requires manual retrieval... I picked a lightweight anchor (Fortress FX-37) and only use a short chain segment with the mostly-rope rode. At least lifting all that manually isn't all that difficult.

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Old 02-24-2018, 10:05 AM   #10
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Thanks for the replies.

My gut feeling is to primarily go with one, but like the option should it drag.

I have a I have Fluke Danforth for primary and a plow for second. I've had the Danforth on other boats, but about half the size of my Mainship, but they worked well with only one anchor in stiff winds. I've never faced stiff current, much more that about 2 knots.

Just looking for options and backups.
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Old 02-24-2018, 10:13 AM   #11
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I second Maerin. If our 55kg Rocna can't hold us we shouldn't be anchoring there. Our second anchor, a ~40lb Danforth, goes on the tender now so it wont move when we anchor it. The old CQR doesn't even get that...
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Old 02-24-2018, 12:59 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seevee View Post
McGillicuddy,



Could you explain that?


A windlass with both a warping drum and a chain gypsy will have a clutch that can be disconnected so that the warping drum turns without turning the gypsy. This allows you to use the drum to haul in a rope for mooring purposes or a second anchor on a rope rode.

The drum should be clear to take in a rope from any angle (for mooring, if used for that purpose) and the outhaul should also allow a clear horizontal (or near) tail. With the drum recessed in a locker, I donít see how the tail can be well maintained. But as I said, there is not a clear view in the pic.

I wonder how many people think of using the windlass drum to haul in a mooring line at the bow during mooring when it it is blowing hard off the wharf? Makes it really east to control a line. Really saves an aching back, especially on a bigger boat.
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Old 02-25-2018, 06:46 AM   #13
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"Really saves an aching back, especially on a bigger boat."

Many lazy folks will prefer a vertical drum windlass , as the line can be lead from more directions.

Used sailboat winches mounted P&S aft are a frequent choice to make docking a lot less effort, especially for short handed crews.
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Old 02-25-2018, 07:19 PM   #14
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Thx for the info, getting to understand this stuff.

What's the difference between a capstan and a drum? Thought they are the same or similar? And what does the term "warping" mean?
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Old 02-25-2018, 08:57 PM   #15
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A capstan has a vertical shaft and stands on its end. Really handy little device. Many anchor windlasses have a horizontal drum that somewhat limits the direction of pull.
Warping is just a fancy nautical way to say pulling the boat along with a rope on some sort of winch.
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Old 02-26-2018, 08:26 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seevee View Post
Thanks for the replies.

My gut feeling is to primarily go with one, but like the option should it drag.

I have a I have Fluke Danforth for primary and a plow for second. I've had the Danforth on other boats, but about half the size of my Mainship, but they worked well with only one anchor in stiff winds. I've never faced stiff current, much more that about 2 knots.

Just looking for options and backups.
When you cruise into Canada you will want a "plow style" anchor as your primary. Canada is weedy and when we cruised there I had to swap my anchors cause the Danforth wouldn't penetrate.
That's my opinion.
Also my secondary anchor is set up with 20 ft of chain and the rest nylon, so pulling it up manually is not too bad.
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