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Old 09-11-2021, 06:47 PM   #1
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How Much Rode & Chain For New England?

With a new boat on order, one of the many decisions to be made is anchor rode.

200 ft. of chain comes standard. Helmsman advises its not wise to add more chain in the bow, for weight. I can of course add rode, which adds little weight.

My use will be east coast, Maine to Florida and over to the Bahamas, and home port in the Chesapeake. From the Chesapeake south the issue is often too little depth, not too much. I don't perceive any real issue in the Bahamas.

But I have no experience from Long Island Sound to points north up into Maine. Looking at charts and just scrolling up various rivers and coves it seems in a lot of places its pretty deep. Especially into Maine. With a big tidal swing.

So a basic question: from practical experience from anyone who knows the waters, how much chain plus rode do you find you actually use? Yeah, more is better for options. How much do you find you actually use?

Or in practice, is it just cruising from marina to marina, or mooring ball?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-11-2021, 07:39 PM   #2
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With my 200 feet of chain and a five-to-one scope, figure I'm good for anchoring up to 35-foot depth, considering the rode begins five feet above waterline.
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Old 09-11-2021, 07:57 PM   #3
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Marketpiece, how did you mount your anchor ball? Any special fittings?
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Old 09-11-2021, 08:28 PM   #4
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Marketpiece, how did you mount your anchor ball? Any special fittings?
Attached to the bow flag pole, a part of the bow railing.
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Old 09-11-2021, 11:22 PM   #5
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I'd probably add 200 feet of line behind the chain. You won't need it in most places, but it gives the option of taking a deep anchorage that nobody else wants. Being able to anchor basically anywhere is nice.
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Old 09-12-2021, 12:48 AM   #6
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Wait...

The manufacturer does not recommEnding adding any more chain?

That makes little sense. A couple hundred more feet oF chain is like a good size guy standing on the bow.
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Old 09-12-2021, 09:35 AM   #7
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I'd probably add 200 feet of line behind the chain. You won't need it in most places, but it gives the option of taking a deep anchorage that nobody else wants. Being able to anchor basically anywhere is nice.
Yeah, there is always the "you never know" logic. Something to that, for sure. But I guess I'm trying to cut through that at the moment.

I'm asking for help because all I have to go on now is just studying charts online. I spent a few hours on it last night. I could not find anyplace in Long Island Sound up into Cape Cod where more than 200 ft would be useful.

But then I skipped past that into Maine, and saw in Bar Harbor there were two marked fields with 70-90 ft depths. An area that also has big tidal ranges. Wow. And so you go from 200 being plenty, to 400 ft maybe not enough. Or just accept that in those waters its marina or rented moorings.

Hence my request for local knowledge.
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Old 09-12-2021, 10:24 AM   #8
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Short answer is as much as you can. Depends upon your style of cruising. We like to avoid towns, marinas, mooring fields and established anchoring fields. We also like Maine. 200’ is barely adequate in many places. Like 300’ but would have more if I could. Switching from chain to rope is a PIA in my view and all chain means no chafe worries and having catenary. Don’t trust any chain links to be as strong as continuous chain. So as much as you can.
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Old 09-12-2021, 10:44 AM   #9
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Short answer is as much as you can. Depends upon your style of cruising. We like to avoid towns, marinas, mooring fields and established anchoring fields. We also like Maine. 200’ is barely adequate in many places. Like 300’ but would have more if I could. Switching from chain to rope is a PIA in my view and all chain means no chafe worries and having catenary. Don’t trust any chain links to be as strong as continuous chain. So as much as you can.
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Old 09-12-2021, 11:24 AM   #10
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Switching from chain to rope is a PIA in my view
This one is windlass dependent. If you expect to use both often, get a windlass that will pull rope with the gypsy and splice it to the chain. My Maxwell HRC 10 handles the transition pretty nicely, just need to slow down sightly when the splice comes through on retrieval in deep water when there's some tension on it.

I figure the ideal is enough chain to cover most situations and allow a decent depth without line reaching the bottom in anchorages where bottom chafe is an issue. But then add line after the chain (assuming it'll fit in the locker) to allow deeper anchoring. There's not much reason to carry around additional heavy chain if it'll only get used once or twice a year.
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Old 09-12-2021, 12:00 PM   #11
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You’re exactly right as with so many boating things -it depends. Have had it both ways through the years and still prefer all chain. Exception being a boat where weight or distortion of the gyradius would impede performance or safety. Don’t like kellets. Like having the kellet effect built in with all chain.
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Old 09-12-2021, 12:53 PM   #12
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Wifey B: Chain needed for New England.

Using google maps I came up with 1455 miles of chain. That would wrap it all in one package and then could be moved wherever one chose.
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Old 09-12-2021, 01:03 PM   #13
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Leave out Conn. save a few bucks. They’re all yankee fans anyway.
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Old 09-12-2021, 01:11 PM   #14
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Leave out Conn. save a few bucks. They’re all yankee fans anyway.
Wifey B: Ok, but this is my stat of the day.....my hso.

American League East Standings

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Old 09-12-2021, 01:36 PM   #15
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Wifey B: Ok, but this is my stat of the day.....my hso.

American League East Standings

Tampa Bay 89-53
Boston 81-63
Toronto 79-63
NY 79-63

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Boston $183 million
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Old 09-12-2021, 01:38 PM   #16
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Leave out Conn. save a few bucks. They’re all yankee fans anyway.
LOL

I have a house in CT.

Yankee fans down in the southwest corner near NYC. Boston fans to the east and north.

As small as it is, its really two states. At least. Which is not unusual. MD is really 3 states.
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Old 09-12-2021, 01:47 PM   #17
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There's not much reason to carry around additional heavy chain if it'll only get used once or twice a year.
Precisely my quandary, and even more so. With more focus south than north of the Chesapeake for me, more than 200 ft of anything is likely to be no more than during one or two trips in a 5 year period. For that small frequency, heck there are marinas.

The more I ponder this, the more I think go with the 200 ft of chain, period. No decision is permanent, even if more easily done up front.
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Old 09-12-2021, 01:49 PM   #18
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Just teasing. Grew up ( to the extent I did) in Manhattan. Lived most of my adult life in MA. Still a Yankees fan even though root for the pats and bruins. Son in law the same. Those grandkids wear Yankees or Red Sox depending upon who dressed or took out their clothes for the day.
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Old 09-12-2021, 02:07 PM   #19
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Precisely my quandary, and even more so. With more focus south than north of the Chesapeake for me, more than 200 ft of anything is likely to be no more than during one or two trips in a 5 year period. For that small frequency, heck there are marinas.

The more I ponder this, the more I think go with the 200 ft of chain, period. No decision is permanent, even if more easily done up front.
That's my logic in going for rope for extra length. Much cheaper and lighter than chain, so the penalty for carrying extra is much smaller.
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Old 09-12-2021, 02:15 PM   #20
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Just to argue the other side Using times in NE more 200’ would have been helpful. So you go to Block in season. All the slips are full. You don’t have a reservation. Forecast says it’s going to be snotty that night. You want at least 5:1. You can’t find a spot that allows enough swing except in 40’+ .
You left P’town heading for SW harbor. You get in and just want quiet and sleep. No couples fighting, rap music or listening to drunks being loud and laughing. Everywhere you drop is ledge. Need that extra but don’t want rope rode. Wind has dropped and is shifty but going to be sporty later.
rs is right. You’ll lug around that chain and use the first 100’ the vast majority of time. Sure you can reverse it every couple of years and get more life out of it if you’re carrying a lot of extra. But if you didn’t bring it with you you ain’t got it. And never skimp on ground tackle decisions. Have had times even in LI sound where going 3:1 would have meant a sleepless worrying night and was happy for the mostly unused part. Our routine is one side with all chain and the primary. Other side is chain and rope for a mud anchor. Cut out the good part of the all chain and move it to the chain and rope side or use off the stern or as a lunch hook as needed if the secondary still looks good.
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