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Old 05-24-2012, 12:23 PM   #1
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Dreadnought Anchors Still Working

I was in Craig yesterday and talked to several owners of the old Dreadnought anchors. One guy said he dragged in the winter in a 60 knot gale but all other comments were positive. Their boats are, of course considerably bigger than mine and so are their anchors so the results may be similar.

With it's relatively heavy weight and wide throat angle short scope performance may be excellent. I really don't understand why the throat angle is so important in the Danforth anchor. Read it many times but it could be a well established old wives tale that has no credibility or the result of exhausting research in a big lab up in the sky. Dunno.
In Craig there's probably a dozen of these old guys still working. I wonder when the last Dreadnought was made and I wonder about the name. As I recall WWl battleships were called Dreadnoughts (perhaps a certain class) and I wonder if the anchor was the choice of anchor for these battleships. Perhaps the anchors were made much later and have no relationship to the warships. The only anchor that seems to be as old as the Dreads is the Kedge and you can buy them new from several sources.

Mark, you're the history rep here ..........what say you?
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Old 05-24-2012, 12:55 PM   #2
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Eric--- The HMS Dreadnought was the first all-big-gun battleship. She was launched in 1906. She had no smaller guns (remember, aircraft were not a factor at the time). So the name dreadnought became the name for the all-big-gun warships of this type. They were more powerful and faster than the battleships of their day. Dreadnoughts were the nuclear weapons of their era and the huge (and economically crippling) arms race between Great Britain and Germany to rapidly build up their fleets of dreadnoughts--- which they viewed as deterrents to war in the same way we and the Soviet Union viewed our nuclear weapons--- was one of the contributing factors setting the stage for WWI.

Here is a photo of the HMS Dreadnought. Her anchors are clearly visible. Note how long the shank is on the anchor that's hanging. From many photos I have seen of warships of this period this was the standard anchor used by the Royal Navy and the German Navy at the time on all their ships. So I don't think the HMS Dreadnought introduced a new type. My guess is that the anchor you have is called a "dreadnought" simply because it is so massive and "mean" looking.

Anyone interested in these ships and their influence on the events leading to WWI and the account of the British and German navies in WWI should read two outstanding books that I've mentioned before. Both by Robert K. Massie, one is Dreadnought and the other is Castles of Steel. Dreadnought deals with the dreadnought arms race and the events and people that led to the war. Castles of Steel is the blow by blow story of the British and German navies in WWI. Both are equally well written and (to me anyway) fascinating, but if you're primarily interested in the ships, strategies, mistakes, and battles, Castles of Steel is the one to read.
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Old 05-24-2012, 07:14 PM   #3
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Haha it seems your'e a good history buffer too.

Didn't know about the all gun aspect of the battleships.

Yes I agre w you that some anchor manufacturer just thought "Dreadnought" was saying the anchor was the king kong of anchors. Like this is the big boy. Oh well ..... I doubt if we'll ever know.

About the anchor on that Dreadnought in your picture I'm sure that isn't like the anchor that I have and what most of the guys in Craig call a Dreadnought. It looks to me as though the Danforth was a direct descendent of the Dreadnought. Probably in the interest of building a lighter anchor. Interestingly the anchors in the picture on the Dreadnought are almost exactly as the megayacht anchors Manson offers and calls a Kedge. To me it's not a kedge at all but they use the term. Actually Manson's "Kedge" is most like a Forfjord especially since their flukes are spread apart like a man sitting and the Danforth's flukes are tucked in as a lady's legs. But it is clear to me that the Dreadnought, the Forfjord and Manson's "Kedge" have a lot in common. The smallest Manson Kedge is 112lbs.
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Old 05-24-2012, 07:44 PM   #4
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Question for Dreadnought historians: In the photo, what's the purpose/function of the dozen or so forward- angledattachments outside the hull? That's a lot of boarding ladders, but cannot think of any other use.
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Old 05-24-2012, 07:59 PM   #5
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They are booms that were swung outboard when the ships were at anchor and were used to suspend anti-torpedo nets around the ship. These steel mesh nets were designed to detonate any incoming torpedos before they reached the hull. US battleships had these as well although by the start of WWII they were no longer being used.
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Old 05-24-2012, 08:41 PM   #6
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Here is the link to the Manson Kedge:

http://http://www.manson-marine.co.n...es/galvray.htm

Can't seem to make it live but copy and paste in a search window and then click on "Kedge" up at the top.

The anchor on the battleship is also a lot like the Navy anchor.
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Old 05-24-2012, 09:47 PM   #7
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The anchor on the battleship is also a lot like the Navy anchor.
I think the anchor on the battleship IS a Navy anchor
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:20 PM   #8
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Yes .......I agree. But it is'nt the Navy anchor we see most of the time. The anchor in my pic on this post is what I call a classic Navy anchor fairly popular on large vessels at this time. But I think the anchors on the battleship are more like the Kedge from Manson. Except for the straight flukes like the Navy. All the Navy anchors I've seen have straight flukes like the one in my pic. And the anchors on the 1906 battleship have straight flukes so I'm inclined to say you're right ....it's a Navy anchor. But the classic Navy anchor (the ones I've seen) are all the same except the size and weight.

On the Dreadnought the pad is very different from the Navy or the Manson Kedge. And I think the Dreadnought was the inspiration for the Danforth and the reason for the pronounced pad on the back of the Danforth. But I think it's more effective on the Dreadnought. On the Dreadnought the heavy shank transfers at least half of it's weight to the shaft on the end of the shank and in turn transmits a great deal of that significant weight to the flukes because of the pads location fore and aft and it's elevation ........so a lot of weight is transferred to the fluke tips. If the throat angle was narrow like a Danforth penetration may not take place but w the weight of the Dreadnought the flukes steep angle and the wide throat angle the Dreadnought flukes may penetrate well ...... up to a point.

But I don't expect any anchor tests of the Dreadnought.
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Old 05-25-2012, 09:10 PM   #9
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I have one exactly like the one in the picture....except it is only 8 pounds. It's a "deck ornament" at home and I can honestly say my deck has not drifted so that's my proof that it's a great design.
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Old 05-26-2012, 03:14 AM   #10
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I believe these are also called Navy anchors or Forfjord anchors. You can still purchase them. The Forfjord is the closest to what you are calling a Dreadnought.

Here is a link to them. http://www.seanet.com/~julie321/anchor_info.html
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Old 05-26-2012, 07:33 AM   #11
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SAFETY: with bendable carbon-steel body of greater strength than its mild-steel Shank; which can be straightened cold if bent, an improvement for your benefit.
Interesting sales pitch.
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Old 05-27-2012, 12:08 AM   #12
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Drifting decks........OMG.

PC,
The Navy anchor is quite different from the Forfjord. In Alaska the Forfjord is by far the most popular anchor on fish boats. Never seen a small one on a boat probably because they do'nt work unless oversized. Charlie it sounds like you're saying the Dreadnought is'nt a Dreadnought. Well if it is'nt I'd like to know what it is. I did some search research on Dreadnought anchors and found quite a bit of reading on the anchor I've been referring to. Not pic'in a fight ...... just searching for truth. I'd like to know.

Chip,
Finding anything reparable these days is of enough value to be a good marketing asset.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:54 AM   #13
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Manyboats,
I am not an expert on anchors. I have done a little research and find that there seems to be anchors that are very similar to others. No doubt derivatives of. Most likely my comment grouping them into one category is due to my lack of specific knowledge.

As for the Forfjord, I have several friends with them for their primary. According to them they are the best thing since white bread. Expensive though. I have the Danforth on ours. Had very good luck with Danforth but but if I had an extra 3/4 of a boat buck I would get one.
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Old 05-27-2012, 02:23 PM   #14
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Papa Charlie,
Yes I'm seeing more Forfjords on pleasure boats. On a trawler it makes sense especially if one minimizes the amount of chain and can carry a heavy anchor. Or one could use smaller HT chain and retain all chain. I personally think the Claw is just as good in most ways or better. I've seen Claws on fish boats in Craig that are badly bent/deformed but I've never seen a damaged Forfjord.

On the Forfjord the pad (or what passes for one) probably dosn't stand the anchor up for an aggressive angle of attack. Also I suspect the edges of the flanges on the outboard edges of the flukes lay on the bottom reducing the tendency of the fluke tips to dig in. The one time I've launched a Forfjord it failed to set so I'm inclined to think this as I look at the Forfjord. But the fishermen think they're bomb proof. Get one Charlie and report back.

PS....I do'nt think white bread is so good.

Chip,
I'm not a fan of bending anchors as repair but we do bend props on a regular basis and trust them as new. So perhaps they are using an alloy that performs like the metal in a prop. We've had threads on bending anchors for repair if you're up to reading on the matter.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:33 PM   #15
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Papa Charlie,
Yes I'm seeing more Forfjords on pleasure boats. On a trawler it makes sense especially if one minimizes the amount of chain and can carry a heavy anchor. Or one could use smaller HT chain and retain all chain. I personally think the Claw is just as good in most ways or better. I've seen Claws on fish boats in Craig that are badly bent/deformed but I've never seen a damaged Forfjord.

On the Forfjord the pad (or what passes for one) probably dosn't stand the anchor up for an aggressive angle of attack. Also I suspect the edges of the flanges on the outboard edges of the flukes lay on the bottom reducing the tendency of the fluke tips to dig in. The one time I've launched a Forfjord it failed to set so I'm inclined to think this as I look at the Forfjord. But the fishermen think they're bomb proof. Get one Charlie and report back.

PS....I do'nt think white bread is so good.

Chip,
I'm not a fan of bending anchors as repair but we do bend props on a regular basis and trust them as new. So perhaps they are using an alloy that performs like the metal in a prop. We've had threads on bending anchors for repair if you're up to reading on the matter.


On my last boat, 36ft.Willard aft pilot house. I had both types of anchors in the rollers,A Bruce #44 and Forfjord of equal size all chain and The Bruce worked a lot better. It would out hold the Forfjord hands down.

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Old 05-28-2012, 01:56 PM   #16
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Don I love the W36.
Great input Don. I suspected as much but the fishermen have such big anchors it prolly dos'nt make much difference what type they use. While veering I think the Forfjord rolls over always keeping at least one fluke buried. And if they have another type or brand of anchor sometimes I hear them say "I'm going to get a Forfjord". It's hard to tell how good they really are but they seem to be keeping a lot of fishboats off the rocks and beach up here. And the fishermen that have a Dreadnought all say they like them. And a lot like Claws too but that's about all the anchors the fishermen use. One sees a Danforth now and then. I asked this fishboat owner how they liked the Danforth and why they had a Danforth and they said "it came w the boat". Fishermen use mostly low performance anchors and do very well w them. So it appears that bigger is better ....unquestionably ....as far as anchors go. "new generation" dosn't seem to mean squat to them.
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Old 05-28-2012, 02:07 PM   #17
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Manyboats,
I agree with you on the size. Almost all the commercial fishing boats I have seen have a really over sized anchor on them. I rarely see anything on them but they heavy type of anchor like the Forfjord or what I now know as the Dreadnaught.
Most fisherman are not interested in fancy gizmos, but what works. I would say that they believe these to work. Most commercial fisherman will be anchored in conditions that would have long sent us to the safety of the dock. They must have something that they can rely on and this is what they chose.
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Old 05-28-2012, 04:12 PM   #18
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Fishermen use mostly low performance anchors and do very well w them. So it appears that bigger is better ....unquestionably ....as far as anchors go. "new generation" dosn't seem to mean squat to them.
More and more rollbar anchors appearing on commercial fishboats I've seen on the lower Fraser River in BC. Course the Canadians have always been more forward thinking than Americans....
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Old 05-28-2012, 07:28 PM   #19
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They must have changed the laws as I thought only traditional anchors were allowed on Canadian fish boats. Either that or doz guys just saw the light.
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Old 05-28-2012, 09:46 PM   #20
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Papa Charlie,
Here's the Harbor Master's new 1938 double end troller. I sold my Forfjord (25lb) to him for $50. This Forfjord came w his new boat and of course is much larger ........ probably 125lbs ..... or so. I hope I get to see it on the grid before we leave.
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