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Old 09-12-2014, 02:30 AM   #361
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Exactly No mater what happens here it has to be suspect. If the funding is by one of the contestants and conditions are limited or selected in any way by a financially interested party only the na´ve could consider the testing unbiased. Now if Fortress established a blind fund earmarked for anchor testing by a independent third party selected for objectivity and not knowing where the $ came from then maybe we have unbiased testing. When it comes to companies selling products and claims related to the same in our society it pays to be a major skeptic. This in no way makes a statement about the quality or ability of the anchor but says much about the likely value of the intended tests.
In general I might agree that the results of testing conducted by the anchor maker might need viewed critically especially when the anchor makers product is shown to be better - as currently, or for the last few years, this has meant 'a bit better'. In the case Fortress, at 45 degrees, their product stands out as being factorially better and I fail to see how that can be fudged.

It is in one seabed type but Fortress are making no claims of superiority, in relation to these tests, for other seabeds.

One could completely ignore the results and next time you are in Chesapeake and a 40 knot wind is forecast you could deploy one of those other anchors, say a Delta, Claw or Supreme - but I'm not sure that anyone other than you (if they are aware of these tests) would applaud your courage.


There is an alternative, go to Chesapeake, take a Rocna and a Fortress and you show us, with some independent witnesses, you can fudge the opposite results - making the Rocna factorially better than a totally non-performing Fortress.


You are correct in that having sponsored the tests and chosen the seabed then one would expect Fortress to perform best. Possibly you could look beyond this and consider, assuming Fortress have no financial association with CMP, Lewmar, Manson etc, that there is a fair comparison of other anchors - so drop Fortress from your vision and simply look at how the others stack up - in this seabed. Surely there is another lesson in there - unless you think Fortress for some reason (possibly you can articulate?) why they fudged Ultra to look 'less bad' etc.
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Old 09-12-2014, 06:54 AM   #362
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Sooo... I quickly devised another anchoring technique that included the nearly unlimited availability to small islands' above water land mass in conjunction with a stern anchor in muddy bottom for nearly negated swing.

Interesting, Art. So the purpose of your fore-and-aft technique is simply to hold the boat safely, as close to the island as you can? How do you get from boat to island when you're going ashore? Swimming? Or dink? Or...?

-Chris
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Old 09-12-2014, 08:50 AM   #363
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Exactly No mater what happens here it has to be suspect. If the funding is by one of the contestants and conditions are limited or selected in any way by a financially interested party only the na´ve could consider the testing unbiased. Now if Fortress established a blind fund earmarked for anchor testing by a independent third party selected for objectivity and not knowing where the $ came from then maybe we have unbiased testing. When it comes to companies selling products and claims related to the same in our society it pays to be a major skeptic. This in no way makes a statement about the quality or ability of the anchor but says much about the likely value of the intended tests.
I welcome all skepticism of this test and I also firmly stand by the results. The boating media, several of whom had vast boating and anchoring experience, offered no objections to the testing methodology which was conducted fairly and with complete transparency.

Every anchor was given the exact same opportunity to perform, or not.

Additionally, many of the models tested performed similarly to what we have heard from local boaters during the past 15 years while exhibiting at the US Sailboat Show in Annapolis, so there were few surprises other than the performances of the "new generation" models which have only been recently introduced to the market, within the past 10 years or so.

Specifically, we have heard that the Danforth anchor was a beast in the local soft mud, and when it set well, it absolutely was. We have heard that the plow-type anchors "plowed" in soft mud, and they often did.

So in essence, the test results had already been independently confirmed, and prior to this recent testing.

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Old 09-12-2014, 09:41 AM   #364
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How I see an accurate, unbiased, virtual “blind test” can be accomplished regarding anchor types, models, and manufacturers:

1. Locate fifty (50) mariners with minimum twenty (20) years of often successfully anchoring boats
2. Make sure none chosen know each other and that all are in differing topographical regions/water/bottom locations and conditions of at least three (3) nations
3. Participating manufacturers provide each mariner with their recommended anchor of choice for the mariners particular boat
4. Mariners are all held to the same standards for time to complete the testings as well as having the same log-test-book and forms to fill out regarding each anchor’s test results
5. Have the mariners test each anchor five (5) times with need to stay anchored minimum of twenty four (24) hours each time before hauling anchor
6. Mariners are completely free to utilize the chain/rode and anchor setting/hauling techniques they have through years of practice learned to use and prefer
7. Manufacturers pay each participating mariner $100 for completion of each 24-hour (or somewhat longer anchoring time span if they like) anchor test they perform. For mariner to get paid - all five (5) tests on each participating anchor must be completed and documented into the log-test-book's forms
8. At test end the mariners are paid-in-full and get to keep their favored test-anchor.

Approximate cost to each manufacturer:

50 anchors and shipping charges. Returned anchors can be donated to charities and used as tax deductions. Estimated initial cost – 50 x $200 = $10,000
5 test per anchor x $100 per test x 50 mariners = $25,000

Total cost to each manufacturer = $35,000 for hardware and mariners’ pay plus extra expenses (say $35K equally paid by each manufacturer) set into an escrow account that is used for an independent unbiased company to officiate and oversee this anchor test “pattern-program” = $70K total advertising expense for internationally available anchor-product promotions that will last for years of repeat mention!

Talk about priceless advertising for the winning / best referenced anchor manufacturer(s) upon completion of tests!

Mr./Miss/Mrs. Anchor Manufacture… Just how good do you feel your anchors really are regarding real life anchoring conditions by real life anchoring by real life guru-status mariners who have anchored all sorts of stable boats in all sorts of conditions for two decades or more???

If you really believe in your anchor - Step up to the plate!

Nuff Said!
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Old 09-12-2014, 09:47 AM   #365
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Geez Art, where were you earlier in the year with this brilliant suggestion.....we might have saved a fortune!

Brian
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Old 09-12-2014, 09:52 AM   #366
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Geez Art, where were you earlier in the year with this brilliant suggestion.....we might have saved a fortune!

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Right here running three businesses wherein I put together other plans and suggestions! Ain't life FUN!
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Old 09-12-2014, 10:35 AM   #367
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Interesting, Art. So the purpose of your fore-and-aft technique is simply to hold the boat safely, as close to the island as you can? How do you get from boat to island when you're going ashore? Swimming? Or dink? Or...?

-Chris
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Each island is not used for on-land recreation where we get R&R by double anchoring our boat. We don't go on land there. We anchor in those locations for swimming and party aboard boat in nearly complete isolation from other boaters and the world. Most SF Delta islands' vegetation and topography and life forms along edges of back-ground sloughs are not generally conducive to human enjoyment. A very few have some limited beach area... but those are nearly always overtaken by young party-animals in fast-boats with mega-speakers. Been there / done that - decades ago. Taint in our plans now - LOL!!

There are many small bays that permeate the islands and many locations where persons or groups "rent" an island portion to do with as they like. In these locations there are often some nice camp sites that have been cleared with party-structures-platforms-buildings erected and floating docks placed along shore edge. We belonged to one of those for years... years ago! Problem with the bays is that water is usually not too deep (2 to 3 feet deep at low tide), bottom growth that reaches surface is consistent problem (even at high tide - providing 6 to 7 foot depth), and water is not always well flushed by currents. Whereas, in Delta sloughs there is great current action that keeps water clean, makes lee side of slough deep (15 to 30 feet deep - within just several feet from island edge), and removes bottom growth. Really fun swimming in warn fresh water!

For off-boat enjoyment we tool around in our classic runabout and visit people we know in island bays with campsites all set up! We also travel distances to mariners and towns/cities for enjoyments as well as to dine at nice restaurants. What could be more fun!!

This use of our off-boat runabout is why having the correct anchors for conditions at hand is of super importance to us. While staying away some times for 12 hrs. or more there is no telling when some unusual wind or other action may come up. And, God forbid, if we had a personal problem while away I need to feel secure that our Tollycraft tri cabin will remain securely anchored under any conditions for any length of time.

We love boating, swimming, relaxing, playing!

Happy Life Daze! - Art
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Old 09-12-2014, 10:37 AM   #368
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We should not loose sight of the fact (correct me if I'm wrong) that this Fortress test is the most objective anchor test that has come along.

Admittedly no manufacturer is going to invest money in large amounts into an anchor test that probably won't show his product well. I don't know of any stupid anchor manufacturers.

Before we had these tests all we had was dock talk. Marin has said for as long as I can remember how there were more and more Rocna's showing up on his dock. I trust Marin so perhaps that's objective information. But how the number of Rocna's increased may not be predicated on objective events.

One of the best tests I've seen was performed by Motor Boating, Yachting Monthly and Sail magazines. It appears to be about as objective as a test could be but included is a full page plurb by Peter Smith (Rocna) referring to design features of other manufacturers as "gimmicks" or other anchors as "copies" or "variations of original types". One of these "gimmicks" he is presently marketing. And he has the brass to say this when it's more than obvious that his roll bar anchor is exactly a variation of a German anchor called a Bugel. The Bugel was even in the test along w his comments. It's hard to believe the magazines allowed him to be there. Smith said one of the features of his design was "clarity of design" whatever that is. It was clear he copied the Bugel.

But despite the almost repulsive Rocna contribution the test seemed to be very good and fairly unbiased. However this test has been harshly criticized by others but all or close to all others seem more biased.

But short of dock talk the tests are all we've got and if they were bad enough we should ignore them but I don't think they are that bad.
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Old 09-12-2014, 10:56 AM   #369
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Geez Art, where were you earlier in the year with this brilliant suggestion.....we might have saved a fortune!

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Just in case no one has realized it, Art is an Idea Man. Always check with Art before preceding.
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Old 09-12-2014, 11:45 AM   #370
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Just in case no one has realized it, Art is an Idea Man. Always check with Art before preceding.
AWWW Shucks!! Blush, Blush...

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Old 09-12-2014, 11:47 AM   #371
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Just in case no one has realized it, Art is an Idea Man. Always check with Art before preceding.
"In Art We Trust" ???
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Old 09-12-2014, 11:52 AM   #372
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"In Art We Trust" ???
Stop it guys!!!
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Old 09-12-2014, 12:25 PM   #373
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This was my original two cents. I didn't mention Hurricane Sandy Danforth, never leave home (port) without one
I still use the original Danforths my boat had in 1967. The off shore oil rigs in the gulf use Danforths. I think that says a lot.
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Old 09-12-2014, 01:29 PM   #374
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I and the people at Fortress know from multiple previous testing that a fortress anchor will do very well against others in soft mud. Anyone who does a little anchor research would also find that out. So why this test since the conclusion regarding Fortress anchors is pretty much preordained? I personally see it as a form of advertising. I see nothing wrong with advertising so long as it is properly labeled as such. Its a little like a full page write up in a magazine about a product not looking like advertising. Some more ethical magazines will have small print somewhere (advertising or add), others will not. Many automobile and boat test articles in magazines that write about their customers products fall in the later category. I believe the Fortress anchor to be a good product with some very strong performance in selected areas soft mud being one of them. I gunk holed 10 years on the Chesapeake and I know soft mud. The Fortress is a very good specialist based on multiple testing but not a all around athlete. If you check out the picture of my boat you will see a good all around performer my primary anchor. The aluminum secondary is stowed out of sight.
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Old 09-12-2014, 02:11 PM   #375
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I'm all for advertising if it brings anchor testing that at least keeps one or more variables more or less fixed. If you keep reading the anchor tests you can see through the foggy bottoms and unethical jerks and see many truths. Different bottoms, different scopes, different rodes and many other variables eventually emerge into information that's usable.

If they always tested in hard bottoms for maximum dramatic effect we would be led astray and before the Fortress test that's basically what happened. Magazines owe it to their advertisers to support their product. But ethical publishers owe it to their readers to publish written material that will benefit their lives and not lead them astray. The boating magazines have indeed led us astray.

What's really sad is that the readers of the magazines have a really skewed and false conception of what anchors do. We have a much more enlightened group here on TF but clearly many to most of us (probably including myself) don't see anchors clearly. Are we up to our nipples in BS? And then there are many that won't buy an anchor unless it's pretty and/or says something about the owner of the boat that is positive ... like being able to think for himself and stand above the crowd .... whereas the opposite is frequently the case. I used an anchor that I learned was wonderful in an anchor test and found over time it was wonderful in one situation and mostly worthless otherwise.

This isn't the first time the Rocna put in a very weak performance at an anchor test and I don't recall that ever happening to Fortress. But like any other anchor Fortress isn't perfect either.

But I like the tests and believe I have the ability to "read between the lines" but know that ability is limited. I look fwd to the next test but can' t imagine who would have enough to gain to foot the Bill. The power of anchor tests is directly proportional to the value of the anchor market.
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Old 09-12-2014, 04:39 PM   #376
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Chris

Each island is not used for on-land recreation where we get R&R by double anchoring our boat. We don't go on land there. We anchor in those locations for swimming and party aboard boat in nearly complete isolation from other boaters and the world.

...

This use of our off-boat runabout is why having the correct anchors for conditions at hand is of super importance to us. While staying away some times for 12 hrs. or more there is no telling when some unusual wind or other action may come up. And, God forbid, if we had a personal problem while away I need to feel secure that our Tollycraft tri cabin will remain securely anchored under any conditions for any length of time.

Interesting... Are you saying if you anchored further out an a single hook, with enough scope to swing 360░ if it were to happen, you'd be out far enough so there'd be other folks anchored there, too?

Or that you wouldn't trust any single anchor to the conditions there, since you're often gone (off the Tolly) for long periods?

Or both? Or neither? Or...?

Have to admit, I'm usually trying to be "creatively lazy" and all the work associated with a stern anchor doesn't entice.

-Chris
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:03 PM   #377
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If I where producing an anchor other than the Fortress that had a fast set and good holding in harder and weedy bottoms would this recent test be my queue to test against the Fortress under those conditions? Or would I just ignore the test and assume that most boaters understand that different anchors have different abilities? What I like about the Practical Sailor anchor tests is that they made a good effort to measure multiple aspects of anchoring over many years and it is an ongoing process. They also pointed out where each unit was strong or weak and which had the better all around performance. While there is information to learn from this recent test it was designed with a very narrow scope which certainly favored Fortress as I suspect it was meant to do. So now you know that Danforth type anchors once set(not always easy)especially with 45 degree pitch hold well in soft mud and sand and that many other anchors do not do as well. If you have been following pervious test and had personal experience you should have known that, if not now you do. It will be interesting to see if this sparks a little advertising(testing)war.
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:21 PM   #378
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Hopefully it encourages some more credible detailed testing by other anchor makers in different substrates. Equally interesting would be testing by other anchor makers in the same substrate. Apart from Fortress at 45 degrees other anchors look questionable in the chosen substrate, Fortress at 32 degrees and Danforth look marginal (little safety margin) the rest, none of which are 'fluke' anchors look downright useless.

Fortress has set a new standard for testing by anchor makers, namely having the media on board. Anchor Right often have 'independents' at their testing why do the others keep their testing secret, until we see the videos?

The results of the Fortress testing in the Chesapeake would be ignored at ones peril, though it seems there are enough on this forum who will happily ignore (but maybe they are just being provocative?).
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:30 PM   #379
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It might be worthwhile to have a "resetting" comparison test in the future. Take a set anchor and reverse direction of pull 180* over the top and see how these anchors fare.
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:35 PM   #380
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It might be worthwhile to have a "resetting" comparison test in the future. Take a set anchor and reverse direction of pull 180* over the top and see how these anchors fare.
that is a factor one of many the practical sailor tests included. There are multiple tests over the years to get a good idea of what's what a good idea to review all.
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