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Old 04-22-2015, 01:21 AM   #21
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I know I shouldn't. I know I really shouldn't. But I'm going to comment.

I have anchored out countless times over the last 15 years. I have only dragged anchor once, and that was early on in a wind/current situation where I had only 15' of chain on a rope rode in a situation with current and wind combined. My sailboat spun around and wrapped the rope rode around the fin keel and ended up broadside to a 2kt current. I dragged and hit another boat. Minimal damage. After than I went with 100' of chain and never had a problem again.

So here are my observations. Once again I'm sorry - I know I shouldn't take the bait:

1) Danforth - amazing holding power in sand a mud - not so good in grassy/kelp bottoms
2) Bruce - great all around anchor - be careful in rocks - could get stuck - us a trip line if it makes you feel more comfortable
3) CQR - good all around anchor
4) Scope - use lots of scope - plenty - more than you need. You only have to worry about swinging room in a crowded anchorage. Otherwise, go for it
5) Chain - the more the better - as long as you are ok with the weight in the bow. I'm sure there are purist opinions about how it's not always needed. However I have found that having it has never been a problem
6) Setting the anchor - technique here (or lack of it) can totally eclipse your choice of anchor. I see people let out their anchor with minimal scope and then start backing up immediately to "set" the anchor. Don't do this. Ever. Anchors set best if they are allowed to settle on their own. This is especially true if there is any kind of grass or kelp on the bottom. I almost never back down on my anchor any more. You should be drifting slowly when you drop your anchor so that you don't pile the chain on top of the flukes and foul the anchor. Other than that - just let it do its thing - in mud or sand or any kind of grass/kelp it will set much deeper if allowed to settle on its own.
7) Use a good anchor drag alarm and pour yourself a nice drink.

That's it. Let the mud slinging begin.

Richard
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Old 04-22-2015, 02:01 AM   #22
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That's it. Let the mud slinging begin.

Richard
I agree with most of what you say except about the Bruce which I think is one of the crappiest small boat anchor designs on the planet. But that's just me.

However, one cannot let a rollbar anchor "just sit." The design is what I call pro-active and it must be pulled on to make the design work. Otherwise it will just lie there on its side and not work.

With ours, we get the boat drifting backwards either naturally with the wind or current or with a shot of idle reverse on one engine. Once that's happening, we deploy the anchor and then pay out the amount of all-chain rode we want as the boat moves slowly backwards. When we've let out the desired rode, we use a short setting line to connect the rode to one of our heavily backed bow cleats. This line and cleat take the pull of setting, not the windlass gears.

Then when all the slack comes out of the rode as the boat continues to move back the rollbar anchor on the bottom does its thing, with the sharp fluke knifing down sideways into the bottom and then the anchor turns to present the entire width of the fluke to resist the pull at which point it immediately comes to a dead stop, usually stopping the boat hard enough that it yaws around a bit on the end of the rode.

The weight of the chain pulls the boat back forward, so whoever's driving, usually my wife, puts in some idle reverse to pull all the slack out of the rode again at which point we both use objects on shore to confirm the anchor is set firmly and we're not moving backwards.

This is why we are such huge fans of the rollbar anchor. It has a designed and defined process by which it first enters the bottom and then stops the boat and it follows this process every single time because its geometry and the rollbar force it to; it has no other choice. Other anchor designs are what I call "drop, drag, and hope anchors" as they depend somewhat to a lot on luck to have a fluke, or the fluke in some designs, catch and dig into the bottom.

Over the years I've watched boaters with Bruce/claw types, Danforth/Fortress types, and plow types drag their anchors around quite a bit before they finally caught, dug in, and set. Not a lot of times, and granted, the bottom may not have been suited for that particular anchor type, but so far--- so far being the operative words--- we have never experienced this with the rollbar anchor in the eight or nine or whatever it is years we've had had it.
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Old 04-22-2015, 02:29 AM   #23
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Interesting comments. I've never used any of the rollbar anchors and so I have to defer to your technique and the ineffectiveness of letting them sit. I've only used "old school" anchors and so my comments only apply to them.

Have you had bad experiences with the Bruce? I had a 33lb Bruce on my 36' sailboat and never had a problem in a wide variety of situations. I now have a 110b Bruce on my current boat and haven't had any issues so far (only about 6 nights on the hook). In Alaska and BC I anchored in 120' of water which is a new experience.

My concern with backing up is that with many (older design?) anchors they are prone to skip when backed up. This is the most apparent with grassy bottoms, where the anchor needs time to settle down through the weeds and find the mud below. This is most true of the Danforth in my experience.

In the end we all develop techniques that work for our boats and our common anchorages. I still would argue that developing the right technique is more important than picking the optimal anchor.

Good discussion

Richard
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Old 04-22-2015, 07:08 AM   #24
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Someone dared to state technique is more important than brand in an anchor thread!!!

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Old 04-22-2015, 09:57 AM   #25
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In the end we all develop techniques that work for our boats and our common anchorages. I still would argue that developing the right technique is more important than picking the optimal anchor.

Good discussion
YES!!!!!

Thank You Richard!!!
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:17 AM   #26
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I use a modified setting technique. My windlass is wired to a switch at the helm. So to anchor I push the switch into the down position until I am happy with the amount of rode I have out. Then I flip the switch that raises the cocktail flag. Simple.
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:39 AM   #27
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Greetings,
I'm NOT DISCUSSING ANCHORS but Mr. TD's post brings up a question. One can not be intoxicated whilst underway. NOT being underway, in my mind, means either anchored, docked or hard aground. Soooo....If one drops anchor and proceeds to become legally intoxicated and starts dragging anchor, can one be charged with DWI?
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Old 04-22-2015, 12:26 PM   #28
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Have you had bad experiences with the Bruce?
Yes, which is why we now have a rollbar anchor and the Bruce is residing in an Oregon landfill (which is where King County, WA sends most of its garbage these days).
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Old 04-22-2015, 01:22 PM   #29
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Soooo....If one drops anchor and proceeds to become legally intoxicated and starts dragging anchor, can one be charged with DWI?
Nope BUI
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Old 04-22-2015, 01:41 PM   #30
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I still would argue that developing the right technique is more important than picking the optimal anchor.
I don't agree with that. I believe that technique and type are equally important. Putting the emphasis on technique is like being an excellent Formula 1 driver and trying to win a race with a Yugo. Putting the emphasis on type is like giving a Formula 1 Ferrari to a teenager with a learner's permit and expecting him or her to win the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

In my opinion anchoring a boat successfully time after time is no different than doing anything else successfully time after time. It requires the best tool for the job, and it requires using that tool the correct way.
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Old 04-22-2015, 01:48 PM   #31
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Anchors are like azz holes, everybody has one, but mine doesn't stink!
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Old 04-22-2015, 02:32 PM   #32
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This entire thread should be in anchoring, not General.
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Old 04-22-2015, 02:50 PM   #33
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Agreed. The moderators should be able to move it.
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Old 04-22-2015, 03:38 PM   #34
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Yes, which is why we now have a rollbar anchor and the Bruce is residing in an Oregon landfill (which is where King County, WA sends most of its garbage these days).
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I don't agree with that. I believe that technique and type are equally important. Putting the emphasis on technique is like being an excellent Formula 1 driver and trying to win a race with a Yugo. Putting the emphasis on type is like giving a Formula 1 Ferrari to a teenager with a learner's permit and expecting him or her to win the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

In my opinion anchoring a boat successfully time after time is no different than doing anything else successfully time after time. It requires the best tool for the job, and it requires using that tool the correct way.
Gosh, I don't know... It might be technique

You had a problem with your bruce, on several occasions it seems.

I on the other hand have used Bruce anchors of various sizes, on several boats, in a variety of sea beds, for a very long time, and never had a problem. So have zillions of others.

Seems to me the only difference is technique.


Yes I know you are going to say that I just bought a SARCA EXCEL, and why then???


Well, thats simple... I'm getting older and fear my skills are diminishing, so I needed a new fangled anchor to make up for the loss of mental capacity I am experiencing.
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Old 04-22-2015, 03:46 PM   #35
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Seems to me the only difference is technique.
... and the bottom,
... and the conditions,
... and one's definition of success vs problem,
... and the boat itself, steady eddy vs wondering while on hook,
... and more.
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Old 04-22-2015, 03:51 PM   #36
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Oooooooooo Kevin.

You know you are going to awaken Marinzilla with that post.

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Old 04-22-2015, 04:34 PM   #37
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Perhaps Marin is saying if one's anchor is good enough technique isn't necessary. But he says he sets the anchor so his faith in the Rocna must be incomplete. He's applying some technique but setting it and also announcing that his Rocna may fail without setting. Good anchor but must be lacking something.

When I was a very young man I thought setting anchors was for people that just didn't understand. Any fool can see what's going to happen. And perhaps by Richard's way of thinking (taken to an extreme) re setting .. an anchor left to it's job unmolested may be actually best. Most think setting is some kind of assurance the anchor will hold the boat. Actually IMO it's not testing the anchor but testing the bottom. And there's where this conversation has gone astray .. forgetting the biggest variable in anchoring .. the bottom. We all have seen what happened when the hottest anchor on the market (Rocna) entered into an anchor test w many other popular anchors in slimy mud bottom. The mud decided most of the anchors wouldn't work and all of the anchors wouldn't work well.

So technique is most important. Including choosing where to anchor. A 50 knot gale was forecast and there was no float or dock within a days run from where we were so I choose Patterson Inlet to anchor. Good choice. My anchor held. But one could say part of my technique was choosing what anchor to use. HAHA. But for this conversation I spoze it isn't.

But Marin has a point w the Yugo. However Marin's Bruce failure was w an undersized anchor. And that was the failure .. not the anchor brand or type. Could have gone up one size to a 44# and probably anchored for 20 years w/o a mishap. Marin could have easily gone to a 55# Claw w the kind of assurance he was apparently looking for .. almost absolute. That would have been 10 extra lbs and $700 saved.
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Old 04-22-2015, 06:39 PM   #38
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You had a problem with your bruce, on several occasions it seems.

I on the other hand have used Bruce anchors of various sizes, on several boats, in a variety of sea beds, for a very long time, and never had a problem.
Seems to me the only difference is technique.


.
Kevin---

I would agree with you but......

We use exactly the same technique for setting the rollbar anchor today as we used with the Bruce in the past. The same boat, the same places, in the same bottoms, under the same conditions. There have been only two differences.

One, the rollbar anchor sets the moment it starts being pulled on and it sets hard and it sets fast. As opposed to the Bruce which always had to drag along a bit on the bottom before it caught, dug in and set.

Two, the rollbar anchor has never dragged (yet), even in the same locations, same bottoms, with stronger winds and bigger waves than we had when we experienced dragging with the Bruce.

We do not believe in short-scope anchoring, and always use a minimum ratio of 5:1 and more often 7:1. This was as true with the Bruce as it is today with the rollbar anchor. The all-chain rode we use today is the same one we used with the Bruce.

The windlass is different but like fish and a fishing reel, the anchor has no clue when it's on the bottom what kind of windlass it's attached to.

So... after one too many instances of the Bruce letting us down by not holding (don't know why were were surprised, every anchor test on the planet puts the Bruce at or near the bottom of the list in terms of holding power) we went in search of a better anchor.

To say we found one is an understatement.

So to us, the same technique in the same boat in the same places under the same conditions with same rode and the same ratio with an anchor that was prone to dragging and an anchor that isn't tells us that the anchor that was prone to dragging has rightfully earned its place in the landfill. May it rest in peace.
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Old 04-22-2015, 06:42 PM   #39
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... and the bottom,
... and the conditions,
... and one's definition of success vs problem,
... and the boat itself, steady eddy vs wondering while on hook,
... and more.
No!

If it were a one time situation then maybe I'd agree...

We're talking about a product, the Bruce style anchor that is far and away the most popular anchor in the Pacific Northwest. In Pacific Northwest conditions. On Pacific Northwest boats.

If it sucked so bad then guess what... Everybody would throw them away.

If a small percentage of people have challenges using a product with such widespread long lasting popularity, sorry, but the problem is with the people not the product.

Its like standing up in a room where everyone is eating soup and saying Campbells soup sucks and Progresso is great. Its so far from being the truth that its not even worth considering.
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Old 04-22-2015, 07:04 PM   #40
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Kevin---

I would agree with you but......

We use exactly the same technique for setting the rollbar anchor today as we used with the Bruce in the past. The same boat, the same places, in the same bottoms, under the same conditions. There have been only two differences.

One, the rollbar anchor sets the moment it starts being pulled on and it sets hard and it sets fast. As opposed to the Bruce which always had to drag along a bit on the bottom before it caught, dug in and set.

Two, the rollbar anchor has never dragged (yet), even in the same locations, same bottoms, with stronger winds and bigger waves than we had when we experienced dragging with the Bruce.

We do not believe in short-scope anchoring, and always use a minimum ratio of 5:1 and more often 7:1. This was as true with the Bruce as it is today with the rollbar anchor. The all-chain rode we use today is the same one we used with the Bruce.

The windlass is different but like fish and a fishing reel, the anchor has no clue when it's on the bottom what kind of windlass it's attached to.

So... after one too many instances of the Bruce letting us down by not holding (don't know why were were surprised, every anchor test on the planet puts the Bruce at or near the bottom of the list in terms of holding power) we went in search of a better anchor.

To say we found one is an understatement.

So to us, the same technique in the same boat in the same places under the same conditions with same rode and the same ratio with an anchor that was prone to dragging and an anchor that isn't tells us that the anchor that was prone to dragging has rightfully earned its place in the landfill. May it rest in peace.
The only think I can think of, is perhaps your anchor is not of adequate size to penetrate the substrate, and achieve the desired performance.

What size anchor did you have anyway?
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