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Old 08-05-2022, 05:38 PM   #1
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Anchor and windlass questions

We have a couple of issues with our anchor and windlass setup that Iíd like advice about. Boat is a Defever 49, Maxwell 2200 vertical windlass, 110 pound claw anchor. I think we have 400í of 3/8 inch chain. I attached some pictures below, not sure why the one of the gypsy is upside down.

First, the chain stopper is shot. The pawl turns around the wrong way and catches occasionally when bringing in the anchor, jolting the windlass, which canít be good for it. I need to install a new chain stopper. There are a lot of different types, and Iíd appreciate some advice about the best kind.

Second, the chain slips on the gypsy when pulling it in, usually a handful of times if Iím pulling in 200í of chain. Iím not sure if the gypsy is worn or if Iím getting twists on the chain.

Third and possibly related, the anchor regularly comes up the wrong way around and itís really difficult to get it turned around so that it will pull in to stow.

Two possible fixes are a new gypsy or a swivel on the anchor. Either will cost a few hundred dollars so I want to try to figure out what the problem is before starting to spend money.

Does anyone have any thoughts?
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Old 08-05-2022, 09:15 PM   #2
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Yes u definitely need a new chain stopper.
Commonest cause for chain jumping Gypsy on my vertical Maxwell is the chain bunching up at the deck port to the anchor locker.
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Old 08-05-2022, 09:34 PM   #3
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WAG. The first picture looks like the chain is oversized, sitting high.
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Old 08-05-2022, 11:04 PM   #4
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Wrong chain or wrong wheel for sure
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Old 08-06-2022, 12:27 AM   #5
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always tough with pictures but looks like 5/16 gypsy with 3/8 chain
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Old 08-06-2022, 02:15 AM   #6
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Hi,

most anchors turn correctly when you drive a little backwards, with the anchor slightly in the water, when the anchor is turned correctly you lift up

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Old 08-06-2022, 06:22 AM   #7
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With boat hook in hand and foot ready on the rise button, I grab the anchor just before it enters the bow roller and rotate if necessary then raise it. A bit of foot, hand and eye coordination is required. Our DF foredeck setup is nearly identical to yours so reaching over the bow rail is easy and safe.
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Old 08-06-2022, 10:24 AM   #8
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The pawl on the stopper is broken. It would be turned upside down if not broken. The gypsie is the wrong size for the chain. I have a 120 lb vulcan anchor and use a ultra swivel which works great flipping the anchor. Expensive yes but solves handling a heavy anchor
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Old 08-06-2022, 10:34 AM   #9
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Wrong chain or wrong wheel for sure
Far less expensive to change the gypsy
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Old 08-06-2022, 11:02 AM   #10
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Wow, I have the same windlass and the same worn stopper that I don't use anymore. I'm about ready to replace it so looking for recommendations here.
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Old 08-06-2022, 12:08 PM   #11
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I have the same set up with 500 ft of chain. The chain stop is a ss bolt. I also have safety lines, one for the anchor, the other the chain.

As far as the chain gypsy, take the gypsy off. Flip it over and you will see a number imprinted. Call Maxwell with the number and they tell you the proper chain size for that gypsy. Click image for larger version

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Old 08-06-2022, 12:48 PM   #12
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I was trying to figure out exactly what size chain is on our boat. Formula sent me the original chain size. Acco sent me a chart with the measurements of the chain. None seemed to be correct. It sure appears to be the original chain since it is bolted up out of reach in the chain locker. HumÖ
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Old 08-06-2022, 02:41 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Comodave View Post
I was trying to figure out exactly what size chain is on our boat. Formula sent me the original chain size. Acco sent me a chart with the measurements of the chain. None seemed to be correct. It sure appears to be the original chain since it is bolted up out of reach in the chain locker. HumÖ
If the bitter end is bolted to the boat you might consider unbolting it and instead attaching it to the locker with a length of 3 strand long enough that you can cut it free if ever you need to lose your anchor/chain in a hurry. I'd hate to hook a submarine with my anchor chain bolted to the locker

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Old 08-06-2022, 02:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeaDogAK View Post

First, the chain stopper is shot. The pawl turns around the wrong way and catches occasionally when bringing in the anchor, jolting the windlass, which canít be good for it. I need to install a new chain stopper. There are a lot of different types, and Iíd appreciate some advice about the best kind.
As noted the flapper stopper is broken and has been jury rigged upside down so that the broken rough surface is acting as a stopper. You can remove the pin securing the broken stopper and simply replace with the same. If you can't buy the part buy the whole stopper and just use the pin/flapper parts.
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Old 08-06-2022, 03:21 PM   #15
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The chain looks like it’s stamped “3 8” or “3 B.” I suspect that means 3/8” but I’m not 100% sure. I couldn’t find any listing of anchor chain stamps and what they mean. Next step is to take the gypsy off and look for a number on it.
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Old 08-06-2022, 03:23 PM   #16
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If the bitter end is bolted to the boat you might consider unbolting it and instead attaching it to the locker with a length of 3 strand long enough that you can cut it free if ever you need to lose your anchor/chain in a hurry. I'd hate to hook a submarine with my anchor chain bolted to the locker

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Unfortunately it is way out of reach. I carry a cordless grinder in case I would have to dump the chain. This winter I will drop all the chain and cut it in order to splice in some line. Right now we are not anchoring so it would only be in case we lost all power that we would use the anchor.
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Old 08-06-2022, 03:28 PM   #17
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I agree with others about the issues that are visible.


1) The chain stopper is broken with the end that engages the chain broken off.


2) Your gypsy and chain are incompatible sizes. That's why the chain is skipping on the wheel.


As for the anchor orientation when bringing it back aboard, a swivel is one solution. But personally I have found that swivels allow the anchor to get twisted in the first place just as much as they enable you to untwist them afterwards. And as your anchor gets heavier, getting a hanging anchor to swivel back into alignment is much easier said than done. So I abandoned swivels a long time ago.


Instead of a swivel, have a groove cut in your bow roller so there is a slot for the vertical chain links to ride in as the chain goes over the roller. That will keep the chain straight from gypsy, to roller, to anchor. Then when raising the anchor, gravity will cause the anchor to align with the chain and it will always come aboard the right way around.


The only thing you need to do is make sure that when you are bringing the chain in, you keep the bow pointed towards the chain so it comes straight to the bow. If you let it get way off to the side, then you can roll the chain on the roller, and mess up the alignment. But it's not hard to do, and much better than a chain that is just as likely to come wrong as right because the swivel allows it, and much easier than trying get a dangling anchor to swivel on a joint that is packed with sand and mud and doesn't really want to swivel under load.
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Old 08-06-2022, 04:06 PM   #18
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If you do end up replacing the chain, and my guess is about 50/50 that it is the wrong size for the gypsy I would upgrade the chain. BBB chain is a common type and is made from normal tensile strength steel and has a maximum working load limit of 2650 lbs.

That is kind of light for a 49' boat with a 110 lb claw anchor. That anchor should hold at least 5,000 lbs in good setting conditions and you want your chain to approximately match the anchor holding capacity.

So I would upgrade to 3/8" Grade 43 (G$) chain and a new gypsy to match. It has a WLL of 5,400 lbs. Unfortunately, it will cost you about $1,200 at 1st Chain Supply.

Of course you could just replace the gypsy with one that matches your 3/8" BBB for a lot less and be done with it.

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Old 08-06-2022, 04:18 PM   #19
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We have a vertical maxwell on our boat. There were several series of them and it was not uncommon for unfamiliar 'technicians' to service them incorrectly. Basically assembling a later one using earlier model parts/instructions. That was what was wrong with ours. Once I got the correct parts it all went back together properly.

Get a look at the underside of the post from the windlass, where it goes through the gearbox mounted under it. There's a circlip that holds the post down. Mine rusted out and allowed the post to 'climb' just enough to cause the clutches to slip.

Proper periodic maintenance of the windlass is often ignored. If you're uncertain of the last time yours was done, plan on re-doing, the sooner the better. Doesn't take much, just some grease and possibly replacing some pads/spring parts inside the clutch assembly.

As for chain retention, I just use a snap clip and some dyneema cord attached to a d-ring in our anchor pulpit. Previous boats had those angled chain stops and I never really liked them. The 'least worst' one had a pin you had to pull to allow the 'shoe' to come out of the frame. But it had some flimsy stainless wires attached to the pin ring and shoe, and those tended to break and need replacing more often than I liked. I hated the flip-around kind for the reason you mention.

I wonder if you could get away with removing the existing 'axle' through the bracket on your stopper and replacing it with a snap-pin? Run a snap pin through an open part of a chain link. But I don't know if there's enough clearance inside the links for a snap pin that would hold in that frame if the existing bolt is too large.

We had the left type. The right type was one that gave me the snap-pin idea.
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Old 08-06-2022, 04:39 PM   #20
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personally I have found that swivels allow the anchor to get twisted in the first place just as much as they enable you to untwist them afterwards. And as your anchor gets heavier, getting a hanging anchor to swivel back into alignment is much easier said than done. So I abandoned swivels a long time ago.


Instead of a swivel, have a groove cut in your bow roller so there is a slot for the vertical chain links to ride in as the chain goes over the roller. That will keep the chain straight from gypsy, to roller, to anchor. Then when raising the anchor, gravity will cause the anchor to align with the chain and it will always come aboard the right way around.


The only thing you need to do is make sure that when you are bringing the chain in, you keep the bow pointed towards the chain so it comes straight to the bow. If you let it get way off to the side, then you can roll the chain on the roller, and mess up the alignment. But it's not hard to do, and much better than a chain that is just as likely to come wrong as right because the swivel allows it, and much easier than trying get a dangling anchor to swivel on a joint that is packed with sand and mud and doesn't really want to swivel under load.
Same for us
Simple solution
Simple fix
Carved the groove in ours with a grinder whilst onboard.

6 years of full time anchoring and twist is a non issue.
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