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Old 09-07-2021, 06:57 PM   #1
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Anchor chain washdown from pulpit?

Has anyone come up with a decent 'automatic' washdown setup for the anchor chain on an Eastbay?

Chesapeake Bay mud is annoyingly messy. I'd love to have some sort of high-pressure washdown nozzles on the pulpit that could hit the chain while it's being raised.

Using a hose just doesn't cut it.

A friend's Azimut has a nice high-pressure/flow nozzle that blasts the chain while it's being pulled up. The difference being, and it's an important one, is that the pulpit arrangement on a Magellano slopes downward.

On an Eastbay it's just the opposite. There'd need to be some sort of scheme to blast at the chain from either the very front of the pulpit aimed downward, or underneath.
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Old 09-07-2021, 07:14 PM   #2
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In the near future when we get the lifepo4 setup we will install a gerni

Saying that, current Johnson pump with cheap garden hose and nozzle has worked fine for the past 5 years and we get some good mud here.
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Old 09-07-2021, 07:18 PM   #3
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No, I do not. I stand at the bow washing down the chain rode and anchor (controlling its recovery with my foot on windlass control) with fresh water as it is coming up. ... San Francisco Estuary mud is sticky.
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Old 09-07-2021, 07:55 PM   #4
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Useful for singlehanding,otherwise I believe it`s good to have someone on the foredeck for anchor recovery.
We also used a pump powered hose, directing th water jet where needed, on both anchor and rode, it worked well. Could be difficult to wash all areas of the anchor without a human directing the jet but, we have AI and self operating vacuum cleaners,anything is possible.
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Old 09-08-2021, 07:16 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by BruceK View Post
Useful for singlehanding, otherwise I believe it`s good to have someone on the foredeck for anchor recovery.
We also used a pump powered hose, directing the water jet where needed, on both anchor and rode, it worked well. Could be difficult to wash all areas of the anchor without a human directing the jet but, we have AI and self operating vacuum cleaners, anything is possible.
Ours is a polished stainless anchor. I can drag it a bit when it's just below the waterline to slough off most of the gunk. It's the chain that's the problem. Bay bottom mud tends to cling to the links and requires a lot more water pressure than dragging through the water provides. That and the risk of having the chain drag on the hull.

I don't expect it to be perfect and entirely 'automagic', but a jet focused at a point where the chain is vertical would allow running the chain up/down through it to clean the messier bits.

The added inconvenience here is the design of the pulpit on the EB47. It's nice looking, but the backward slope and lack of channels on the deck surface mean whatever gunk gets on the chain ends up on the deck. And then needs to be washed all the way back along the gunwales to the stern. Even if I bring the chain up quickly, full of gunk and ran it straight down into the locker, the vibration still throws chunks off the chain. Then those chunks gum up the windlass gypsy (which can't be good for it) and eventually break loose when the chain is piled in the locker and clog the drain holes. So if I'm going to clean it then it'd be best to do it before it comes up over the roller.

I have put some Dri-Dek grate tiles along the floor of the anchor locker (trimmed to fit), and that has helped with the chain drying and the clumps being less hassle to wash loose. This also keeps chain links off the drain holes.
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Old 09-08-2021, 07:37 AM   #6
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I've considered mounting a sprayer under my pulpit with a second washdown pump (keeping the existing hose). My existing washdown is pretty high pressure with quite a bit of flow (pump is a Delavan FB2). A well placed (angled down) nozzle under the pulpit would be able to blast most of the gunk off and run water down the chain before it hits the roller, then I can take care of the rest with the handheld hose. I'd want a way to turn the second spray off easily though, as it would need to be off before the anchor comes all the way up to avoid a splattery mess.

Currently when retrieving, I set the nozzle to a tight cone and point it through the pulpit slot as the chain is coming up. It's easier than trying to hit the chain over the side, and it still gets the gunk off pretty well (especially as some water runs down the chain). I do get a little gunk on the pulpit, but not much. A quick spray to push it off the front (pulpit is relatively flat, maybe a slight angle backwards depending on fuel load on board) and we're good to go.

If I drag anything through the water to clean it, I do it in reverse to avoid the risk of anything hitting the hull.
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Old 09-08-2021, 08:26 AM   #7
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You could certainly rig something up with a pump, switch, hose and nozzle.

It would be custom for your boat.
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Old 09-08-2021, 09:33 AM   #8
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The flow from my raw water wash down pump is rather anemic and while adequate for Lake Erie mud, probably won't cut the goop from the Chesapeake. I have been considering a power washer pump with a quick disconnect fitting at the bow for wash down. Anyone have such a set up?
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Old 09-08-2021, 09:57 AM   #9
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I would be inclined to design one myself. you can buy replacement nozzles for pressure washers. Not the color-coded plastic ones, but 3/8" stainless screw on ones. Three or four would likely be plenty... maybe even two. Then you could have a metal fab guy bend a horseshoe shaped stainless tube with sealed ends and a supply inlet fitting. Design a few tabs for mounting to your bow pulpit so you can still remove your chain without unbolting the whole deal and your in business. I would also be inclined make the supply inlet be a quick release fitting (again, from the pressure washer parts section at Northern Tool) to allow a hand sprayer to be put on for other cleaning duties around the bow. The rest is just simple marine plumbing; raw water intake, strainer, pump, and tubing.

My way is probably the hardest way to do it, but I have never seen an off-the-shelf system. Super yachts have them and they dump a ton of water thru the Haus pipe (sp?) as the chain passes thru it. I also saw a YouTube channel called 'Adventures Of A Lifetime' have one on a 60' Nordhavn. They glimpse at it being used in a couple of videos, but never discuss it in depth. Again, it displaces a bunch of water, so it is probably too much for your Grand Banks. Still, perhaps giving Nordhavn an email/phone call or looking around on their site would give you an idea on what their solution might be.


Good luck. If you come up with an idea, share it here. I'd love to see what you end up doing.
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Old 09-08-2021, 10:27 AM   #10
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This one looks interesting, it appears to be a high-volume nozzle on the hull itself, aimed out toward the chain.

https://youtu.be/5gvDAGklVeE?t=60
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Old 09-08-2021, 10:28 AM   #11
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Mine is home built.
I first routed a pex tube to the front of the under side of the bow plank, centered below the roller. That is T'd off the salt water hose bib, with a PVC valve on each side (hose and nozzle), so within easy reach while keeping my foot on the anchor up button.
Then on the nozzle end, I put a piece of 1/2" copper pipe in the vise and squeezed it flat, to form a nozzle that spays in a fan pattern. It took a few tries to get the squeeze just right, but since I was using a total of about 4" of pipe, was pretty quick and easy to do.
Last was to locate it correctly, and a U shaped strap holds it securely in place.
I generally leave this with the spray of water washing the chain once the clean portion has been hauled aboard, so that any chain that has been laying on the bottom will get washed, dirty or not, until the anchor is rising out of the water. From then on, the hose is better, as the anchor is too big for the fan spray pattern to get to the hinge or stock and the hose does a better job.
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Old 09-08-2021, 11:22 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wkearney99 View Post
Ours is a polished stainless anchor. I can drag it a bit when it's just below the waterline to slough off most of the gunk. It's the chain that's the problem. Bay bottom mud tends to cling to the links and requires a lot more water pressure than dragging through the water provides. That and the risk of having the chain drag on the hull.

Yep! That pesky Chesapeake mud, in those pesky chain links!

On the previous boat, I changed from all-chain to chain/rope rode for around here because of that. Still, the leading 25' of chain is a pain to clean.

I'm adopting a new retrieval process, after reading about it here or somewhere: starting well before actual departure time, bring the boat up closer to the chain... enough so the chain isn't laying on the bottom... so it does a little self-cleaning... while we do other preps. Not sure how useful, but it sounds good (to me) on paper.

And then I've recently seen there are battery-powered pressure washers, I think one of which works with our Milwaukee battery ecosystem... so I might give one of those a go. Should be able to draw raw water up through it, assuming it'll deal with whatever our head distance will be...

-Chris
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Old 09-08-2021, 12:49 PM   #13
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I have a hose coiled up at foredeck and hand spray wash chain as needed. By that I mean keep spraying a stopped retrieval until it is clear. I thought of the undermount, may still install one, and it may work well.
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