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Old 09-12-2022, 03:50 PM   #1
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BBB 5/16" chain vs HT 5/16" (G4) chain

BBB 5/16" chain vs HT 5/16" (G4) chain
- I am thinking about replacing my BBB 5/16" chain, will the newer HT chain work with my existing chain gypsy?

BBB
Chain Size (in) Wire Diameter (in) Inside Length (in) Inside Link Width (in)
5/16 0.328 1 0.5

HT G43
Chain Size (in) Wire Diameter (in) Inside Length (in)Inside Link Width (in)
5/16" 0.33 1.03 0.49

My Windlass is an old McMurray made in Seattle in 70's / 80's
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Old 09-12-2022, 05:03 PM   #2
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Don't know, but it might be worth looking at another manufacturer's anchor windlass to see if they use the same wheel for both types.

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Old 09-12-2022, 05:07 PM   #3
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No, the new G4 chain has a shorter link and won't work with your gypsy. Check with the manufacturer (if they are still in business) and see if they can sell you a gypsy for 5/16" G4 chain.

That is a substantial windlass and that tells me it is on a substantial boat. What anchor are you planning to use with the chain/windlass. It is generally important to match the chain strength to the anchor holding capacity.

FWIW 5/16 BBB is only good to about 1,900 lbs and 5/16" G4 is about double that.

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Old 09-12-2022, 05:12 PM   #4
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Get a 2 or 3’ section of the HT. Add a section of line hanging over the bow roller and attach your anchor plus some added weight. Play around using the the HT and see how it rides in the gypsy.
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Old 09-12-2022, 05:47 PM   #5
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My old Simpson-Lawrence windlass specified "5/16 G4 or 5/16 BBB". I tried G4 as it was listed first. The windlass did pull it in but it jumped and skipped badly. Looked dangerous. I swapped that for BBB and now it's smooth as silk. They both worked, just one better than the other. Why they listed the poorer one first is a mystery, that cost me some money.
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:16 PM   #6
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I don’t think you have listed the correct dimensions of the BBB chain. Check it again.

Also, refer:

https://www.anchoring.com/blogs/anch...oof-coil-chain
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:26 PM   #7
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It does depend on the specific gypsy/windlass: I went through this when I bought my boat, as it came with a 5/16" BBB rode. My Ideal gypsy was skipping - thought it might be worn or the chain stretched, but it turns out it was the wrong chain for the gypsy

https://www.schaefermarine.com/our-products/ideal-windlass/faqs-ideal-windlass/

Per the above link, the 5" Ideal windlass works for both BBB and G4, but the 7" drum specs a different gypsy for each.

In my case, the BBB rode was pretty rusty and the correct BBB gypsy cost (I think) around $500, so I went ahead and got a brand new 1/2 drum of G4 chain from Titan. Great decision - windlass works great & I sleep well at anchor.
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Old 09-12-2022, 09:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidM View Post
No, the new G4 chain has a shorter link and won't work with your gypsy. Check with the manufacturer (if they are still in business) and see if they can sell you a gypsy for 5/16" G4 chain.

That is a substantial windlass and that tells me it is on a substantial boat. What anchor are you planning to use with the chain/windlass. It is generally important to match the chain strength to the anchor holding capacity.

FWIW 5/16 BBB is only good to about 1,900 lbs and 5/16" G4 is about double that.

David
We have a Canoe Cove 41,(estimated 17 tons) we have a Bruce 33kg anchor. My current chain is just rusty, we rebuilt the electric 12 volt motor last season. The windlass works well. We have 300' of the BBB chain & often use our medium Mantus bridle/snubber system.
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Old 09-13-2022, 06:59 AM   #9
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With that Bruce anchor you have much more than 1,900 lbs of holding capacity in most anchoring conditions. So, to match its holding capacity with the WLL of the anchor chain, I would definitely upgrade to 5/16" G4, IF you can get a gypsy to match it.

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Old 09-13-2022, 07:06 AM   #10
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And then also a shackle to match that WLL.
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Old 09-13-2022, 07:31 AM   #11
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Personally, I don't size WLL based on the anchor. In a good bottom, you'd need huge chain to match the holding power of most generously sized anchors. I'd size the WLL of the chain based on how much force the boat in question can actually put on the chain in the worst winds, etc. you want to plan for.
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Old 09-13-2022, 09:54 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidM View Post
With that Bruce anchor you have much more than 1,900 lbs of holding capacity in most anchoring conditions. So, to match its holding capacity with the WLL of the anchor chain, I would definitely upgrade to 5/16" G4, IF you can get a gypsy to match it.

David
I think he meant 33lb, a size Bruce that exists, not 33kg, which size their website doesn't know. So I think his anchoring requires good, heavy chain to work properly.
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Old 09-13-2022, 01:14 PM   #13
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And then also a shackle to match that WLL.
Totally agree. I would also add to attach the shackle to the anchor correctly. Crosby shackle's would be my first choice.
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Old 09-17-2022, 10:25 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koliver View Post
I think he meant 33lb, a size Bruce that exists, not 33kg, which size their website doesn't know. So I think his anchoring requires good, heavy chain to work properly.


It is indeed a 33 kilogram Bruce anchor
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Old 09-23-2022, 10:03 AM   #15
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Get the correct wildcat for the chain. I had a mismatched setup and sometimes the chain would jump and then roar out.

Don't mismatch.

Ask your mfgr. if they have a suitable wheel

OR

If you really like the old windlass then consider getting a machinist to modify an existing G4 wildcat to fit the shaft. It may or may not be practical but don't just write it off before checking.
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Old 09-23-2022, 10:34 AM   #16
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It is indeed a 33 kilogram Bruce anchor
Good to hear that. I agree with DavidM that your equipment is more robust than you should need.
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Old 09-23-2022, 11:15 AM   #17
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Good to hear that. I agree with DavidM that your equipment is more robust than you should need.
I don’t think I said that. I think I said the anchor’s holding power should be matched to the chain’s strength. If you think that 5/16” BBB at 1,900 WLL is more robust than needed for a 17 ton boat, you haven’t anchored in really tough conditions.

Even though most anchor tests show the Bruce to have less holding power than other modern anchors, the Bruce has other good qualities like quick setting and good short scope performance. I think a 33 kg Bruce should hold at 3-4,0000 lbs in most anchoring conditions, thus the recommendation to use G4 with a WLL of 3,900 lbs.

You can’t have too much holding power. I size my anchor and chain to the max that will fit on the boat and if they laugh at my big anchor around the dock, then so be it. Someday I may have the last laugh.

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Old 09-23-2022, 03:05 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeep09 View Post
We have a Canoe Cove 41,(estimated 17 tons) we have a Bruce 33kg anchor. My current chain is just rusty, we rebuilt the electric 12 volt motor last season. The windlass works well. We have 300' of the BBB chain & often use our medium Mantus bridle/snubber system.
Before our GB 32 we had a 42 sailboat about the weight of yours. We had a 55 lb Delta with 3/8 bbb chain.
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