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Old 10-22-2012, 11:01 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by FlyWright View Post
Why don't you use chain? What anchor do you use? I know of no anchor manufacturers who recommend no chain with their anchors. Maybe this contributed to your close calls.
My close calls were due to OTHER boats dragging.

I've spent over 1,000 nights on the hook. It's my belief that when things are at their worst, it's the anchor that does the holding as any rode can be totally off the bottom and a straight line to the bow. How much good is chain doing then?

Why does every anchor manufacturer recommend chain? Because it aids in setting and in average conditions gives one a sense of security. I like to think about the holding of an all chain rode when the wind/sea take out the catenary and the rubber bands that are used as snubbers only complicate one's ability to GET THE ANCHOR UP in an emergency.

Why don't I like chain? Chain comes up dirty and cones in the chain locker. It can complicate the job of the windlass due to a chain to nylon splice. Chain adds weight to the bow -- to name a few.

I'm not trying to convince anyone to go chainless, just letting you know that it works for me. Weigh a boat length of chain and get an anchor that weighs that much more. For me, chain will never be a substitute for scope.
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Old 10-22-2012, 11:48 PM   #22
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For me, chain will never be a substitute for scope.
It is when you can't let out much scope which is often the case in this area. When the water is 100' and going down fast three or four boat lengths from shore, all-chain can be a real benefit. Other times bays and harbors can be too crowded or too small or both to let out much scope. We typically anchor with a 5:1 scope and even that can sometimes be hard to achieve. So the catenary you get with all-chain can play a pretty significant role in how much rode you have to let out and how well your anchor stays set.

What you use depends on a whole lot of variables and there is no one-size-fits-all solution.
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Old 10-23-2012, 09:19 AM   #23
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What you use depends on a whole lot of variables and there is no one-size-fits-all solution.
My point exactly. Also depends on what you want to rig for...are you lunch-hooking or ashore overnight? But I still feel that in the severest conditions it's the anchor that
ultimately does the holding, and if there's the slightest chance that those conditions might come to pass, relying on your chain catenary vs scope and anchor size can be a mistake.
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Old 10-23-2012, 12:45 PM   #24
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Our 275ft of chain is securely bolted to lower end of the Samson post, I like the idea of a line warning when the chain is running out, although I hope not to see it. Would a anchor and rode left with a fender to mark it be considered salvage ? I'm just curious, it would be a low blow to take it knowing the owner already had some bad luck.
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Old 10-23-2012, 01:06 PM   #25
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I don't remember where we got the idea to attach the all-chain rode to the securing ring in the top of the chain locker with a length of line that appears on deck when the chain is run all the way out so you can cut it in seconds with a blade. I think it might have been in Earl Hinz's book but someone may have told us about it, too.

I have no idea if I'd have the presence of mind to tie a large fender on the end of the chain before I cut the line. The one time I came within seconds of cutting the line I know I did not think of the fender. We just wanted to get the hell away from what we were being blown into.

However--- and I learned this from a member of our club who's done it at least once for someone--- if you're dragging into a lee shore and are out of time and have to cut the line the chain will be laid out in a pretty straight line across the bottom. So the chances are pretty good that if you come back later to the same location and drag the bottom with a grappling hook you'll snag the chain so you can haul it up. If the problem is the anchor is fouled on something that is preventing you from hauling it up and the conditions are such that you need to leave you can do the same thing--- let the boat drift back to the end of the rode and then cut the line.

If your fenders are marked with the name of the boat and a phone number it might at least prompt someone who hauled it and your anchor rode and anchor in to let you know they have it. And of course it should be covered by your insurance.
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Old 10-23-2012, 01:33 PM   #26
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If you are dragging anchor and in danger of being blown onto rocks or something. Just go.
Put her in gear and drive away from danger. Chances are the anchor will come with you and if she catches you still are out of danger and can deal with the anchor in a more calm manner.

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Old 10-23-2012, 02:17 PM   #27
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If you are dragging anchor and in danger of being blown onto rocks or something. Just go.
Put her in gear and drive away from danger. Chances are the anchor will come with you and if she catches you still are out of danger and can deal with the anchor in a more calm manner.

SD
Not a good idea in our boat. The chain will go up against the hull and the angle will put it right back where the prop(s) and rudder(s) are. Letting the chain run out takes a few seconds and cutting the line at the end of the rode takes a few more. That's it, you're done, and you can be safely on your way without the worry of this thing dragging behind you and potentially chewing up your hull and running gear.
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Old 10-23-2012, 04:16 PM   #28
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I understand but better a few scratches than a hole in the hull from rocks.
Just saying.

It happened to me and a friend on his boat.
The windless jammed and we were heading for the rocks.
I told him just go.
We did.
It worked.

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Old 10-23-2012, 05:00 PM   #29
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I don't think polypropylene line has much stretch at all so I'm very surprised to hear of anyone using it for anchor line. I would think that ther'e would be no substitute for nylon. To experience the wonderful stretch of nylon tie off 30 or 40' of nylon line and pull hard on it. You'll be amazed at how much it stretches.

As for chain the only reason it's used is to keep the anchor shank low so the anchor has an better chance to set. The catenary close to the anchor reduces the angle of pull ... closer to horizontal and helps to set the anchor. What else could it possibly do to help anchoring?? If one anchored at 20-1 scope in 10' of water chain would be absolutely worthless.
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:24 PM   #30
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wet nylon in the anchor locker can easily weigh equal to a great portion of chain depending what you have in the way of chain...

never connect chain directly to the boat...use about 50-100 feet of poly...if you need to release in a hurry...you don't even have to attach a buoy....the poly will float fro a later recovery.

And no....salvage rights don't exist unless you abandoned it forever...
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:32 PM   #31
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While we're sitting at our desk in front of the computer it's easy to not consider how things can really be out there.

It's blowing 40 in a crowded anchorage. The seas are only 2-3 but the wind is blowing them over the bow. The rain stings your face... You can hardly keep your eyes open. There's a massive boat dragging sideways down on you. If you loose your grip on the bottom, you might end up on the rocks. What do you do?

Power towards the drifting hulk, hoping your motor can dislodge your well set heavy anchor before the hulk makes contact?

Go below to fetch a rusty hacksay and low battery flashlight and try to hack your all chain rode loose under load and blinding rain?

Stand on your head in the dark pounding rain and try to untie your nylon rode's bitter end from something in the chain locker?

I'm just sharing my experiences. They may be of no value to you, but others may appreciate the perspective.

My MO to date:
A Rocna Fisherman for retrieving a conservatively sized fouled lunch hook.

An 'local' anchor about twice the recommended size for overnight or unattended anchoring. Neither scenario uses any chain.

My 3 strand nylon rode is sized at the recommended diameter for the first 150 feet. That bitter end is spliced onto 250' of double that diameter, following that is poly that I have tested to float in 50' of water.

My 'windlass' is a manual sailboat sheet winch. On my boat I can haul in the rode with one hand on the shifter...bumping her as I go. I get a kick out of crewing for my buddy with his electric winch...someone has to be forward to clear it when it jams.
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:43 PM   #32
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While we're sitting at our desk in front of the computer it's easy to not consider how things can really be out there.

It's blowing 40 in a crowded anchorage. The seas are only 2-3 but the wind is blowing them over the bow. The rain stings your face... You can hardly keep your eyes open. There's a massive boat dragging sideways down on you. If you loose your grip on the bottom, you might end up on the rocks. What do you do? Get fenders and boathook ready

Power towards the drifting hulk, hoping your motor can dislodge your well set heavy anchor before the hulk makes contact? Not until I have to

Go below to fetch a rusty hacksay and low battery flashlight and try to hack your all chain rode loose under load and blinding rain? No..if that is your backup plan you deserve what you get

Stand on your head in the dark pounding rain and try to untie your nylon rode's bitter end from something in the chain locker? No let it run free if you have the engine running and a sysnthetic tie off at the end of your chain that is easily cut with a knife

I'm just sharing my experiences. They may be of no value to you, but others may appreciate the perspective. It might to those who panic in foreseeable and fairly simple problems when cruising..

My MO to date:
A Rocna Fisherman for retrieving a conservatively sized fouled lunch hook.

An 'local' anchor about twice the recommended size for overnight or unattended anchoring. Neither scenario uses any chain.

My 3 strand nylon rode is sized at the recommended diameter for the first 150 feet. That bitter end is spliced onto 250' of double that diameter, following that is poly that I have tested to float in 50' of water.

My 'windlass' is a manual sailboat sheet winch. On my boat I can haul in the rode with one hand on the shifter...bumping her as I go. I get a kick out of crewing for my buddy with his electric winch...someone has to be forward to clear it when it jams.
Use what you like but there are many ways to skin a cat without a lot of fuss...
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:50 PM   #33
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[QUOTE=manyboats;109335]

As for chain the only reason it's used is to keep the anchor shank low so the anchor has an better chance to set. The catenary close to the anchor reduces the angle of pull ... closer to horizontal and helps to set the anchor. What else could it possibly do to help anchoring??[/QUOT E]
The chain section between the anchor and the rope of a mainly rope rode copes better with the potentially abrasive effects of the sea floor which could damage an all rope rode. BruceK
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Old 10-24-2012, 08:42 AM   #34
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What do you do? Get fenders and boathook ready

Slip more scope ,

Power to angle on your anchor line , and watch the tub pass by.


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Old 10-24-2012, 11:24 AM   #35
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What do you do? Get fenders and boathook ready

Slip more scope ,

Power to angle on your anchor line , and watch the tub pass by.


And he catches your rode with his dragging anchor and takes you with him.
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Old 10-24-2012, 12:36 PM   #36
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Story Time:

We had recently bought our new-to-us trawler in RI and were shaking her down in Narragansett Bay with about 10 knt winds and a one foot chop. We picked up a mooring ball a couple of times for practice then decided to practice anchoring. We went out to the middle of the bay at least a mile from any markers, buoys, floats, etc. and dropped the hook in about 25 ft. of water. We set the anchor and retrieved it 2 or 3 times but by then the wind had come up and there was 1 - 2 ft. waves. Since the dog was getting seasick and my wife was getting a little queazy anchored in these waves, I decided to call it a day and head back to the marina. With some difficulty, I raised the anchor the last time and found it hooked under a stretched-out half inch nylon line which was in pristine condition. It gave a fair amount of resistance so there must have been something connected to at least one end of it. Thinking only of getting back to the marina, I lifted the line off the fluke and headed home. I don't know how many times since then I have kicked myself for not pulling in that line to see what it was connected to.

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Old 10-24-2012, 12:54 PM   #37
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I anchor in deep water alot. Usualy well over 100 feet in depth. To do this I run a stern line or lines to shore to pull the boat back towards the shore so the anchor has a good bite in the ground.

So one morning after a so so windy night I awoke to a different sound hitting the hull. That drum effect you can get while laying in the bunk.

I get up and take a look out the front window. Wa la that aint the site I went to bed with, while looking at shore. Take a look around the boat at where the drum stick is. Well I had tied off the stern line, to logs on the beach. I mean there be 20 logs in this log jam I tied off to. Big , heavy logs.

The tide had come up along with some wind driven waves and the beached logs simply came off the beach pulled by the oldfishboat.

Took about two hours to unwind the logs from the boat. Yup they had a few lines of there own just to make the deal a little more interesting, along with my stern lines. I must have spun several times through the night when it calmed out.

The boat held on the anchor off the shore. I took the stern line back to shore and secured it to a rock.

Pleasure cruising. Just love it.
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Old 10-27-2012, 08:43 AM   #38
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As for chain the only reason it's used is to keep the anchor shank low so the anchor has an better chance to set.

Ogg the creator of Danforth anchors did not use chain for 20 years.

"And he catches your rode with his dragging anchor and takes you with him."

With 2 anchors out most evenings ., just resetting one is not that big a chore.
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Old 10-27-2012, 10:01 AM   #39
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Not a good idea in our boat. The chain will go up against the hull and the angle will put it right back where the prop(s) and rudder(s) are.
Wow! That's either some super light weight chain, water shallow enough to walk in, or the boat is going fast enough to leave the anchor skipping in the wake.
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:02 PM   #40
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Wow! That's either some super light weight chain, water shallow enough to walk in, or the boat is going fast enough to leave the anchor skipping in the wake.
GBs have nearly vertical stems and in our vintage a very short pulpit. When we have dragged anchor (with the old Bruce) and we started the engines to idle forward while I brought the anchor up, we could only go forward in short bursts because as we went toward the anchor the chain would quickly go into the hull if we didn't go into neutral.

During our last and worst dragging which finally convinced us to get rid of the Bruce we nearly went aground because our old windlass was so slow and we didn't want the chain to go into the hull, we could only go forward in short bursts which meant we were slowly losing ground in the wind and waves. For this reason I had decided to let the chain run and cut the line at the end of it so we could get out before we hit what was behind us. The anchor finally cleared the water just as I got my Leatherman out and my wife was able to put power in and get us out into the bay.

Below is a shot I took during our cruise to the Gulf Islands last month. When vertical the chain is very close to the stem. It takes very little forward movement of the boat to put it into the hull.

It may not be as big an issue, or any issue, on boats with longer pulpits and raked bows. But our boat has neither.
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