Montauk Mooring

A conversation among Whalers
87montauknewbie
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Montauk Mooring

Postby 87montauknewbie » Wed Sep 26, 2018 8:50 am

I recently bought a Montauk and plan to keep it on a mooring on a creek off the Magothy River in the Chesapeake. In this creek it will be very well protected from storms and have little to no wave action. The creek bottom is thick mud.

Q1: What size and what type anchor should I get?

I see a good-looking 100-lbs mushroom on craigslist for $80. According to Jamestown distributors that should be good enough. But I am looking for some firsthand experience.

Q2: Are Dor-mor’s any better?

Q3: Is there another product I should be looking for?

Q4: If I’m mooring in five feet of water do I need 12-feet of heavy chain?

Q5: Is 1/2 chain heavy enough for heavy?

Q6: Will then I need another 8-feet of 1/4 light chain to go through the buoy?

Q7: Is this too much in shallow water?

Thanks for your help. This forum is admirable.

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Dutchman
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby Dutchman » Wed Sep 26, 2018 10:36 am

A mushroom anchor would be a good choice for a mooring buoy.

I'm not familiar with the Chesapeake bay. I thought there are tides that influence your river water levels.

I assume you kept [tidal change in water depth] in mind with your 12-feet chain.

The 100-lbs mushroom and 1/2-inch chain should be fine for the mud bottom you described.

The mushroom is slightly fancier than the Dor-Mor which might set quicker.

I would wait a week after dropping the mushroom to make sure it sets (sinks) in the mud. After you are sure of its holding power I would use a floating pennant to hook up your boat to. That line doesn't need to be long because no wave action.
EJO
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87montauknewbie
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby 87montauknewbie » Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:49 pm

Yes we probably have a 3-foot tide. That is what influenced my chain calculation. Thanks for the tip on waiting for [the anchor] to set before hooking up to it.

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Phil T
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby Phil T » Wed Sep 26, 2018 5:31 pm

When I designed my mooring hardware, I asked adjacent mooring owners in the same field what they were using for gear. I supplemented this information with product information from my local chandlery.
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dtmackey
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby dtmackey » Wed Sep 26, 2018 11:10 pm

I would go with the mushroom anchor mentioned and probably bump up to 150lbs and make sure the shank is parallel with the bottom so the "cup" part of the mushroom is buried in the mud to offer good holding power. Now when it comes to chain, local knowledge might be best since what we use up here with nearly 10' tides in salt water may be excessive for your area. Ask other boaters that moor to get a good idea, but based on what you've provided and not knowing anymore about swing room, etc.

Bottom chain of 1/2 is fine and I'd use the water depth + tide swing to determine my bottom chain length. It acts as a "shock absorber" so there is never a direct pull to the mooring anchor. I'd used 5/16th top chain since it adds weight, but also last longer than 1/4' you mentioned. Based on your info, I'd probably go with 10-15', but again local knowledge and understanding is best. What works in my area that is open to Nor'Easters and a near 10' tide swing may be very different than your area.

D-

GHMariner
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby GHMariner » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:14 pm

Mushrooms are a good out-of-the-box option, but my concern with any mooring anchor has always been the weak link of where the chain attaches to the mooring itself, and corrosion, which seems to be accelerated when submerged in mud (at least here in Puget Sound).

I use a 5-gallon bucket or a large truck tire, filled with concrete mixed with beach rock or pea gravel, reinforced with rebar. To attach the chain, I place a length of 3-inch pipe through the bucket or tire before pouring the concrete, which allows me to run a loop of heavy duty galvanized chain through it, which is removable and replaceable, and is not subject to corrosion and wear at the point of insertion in concrete. I then bury this into the mud at low tide (though with our soft mud here, it tends to bury itself in one or two tidal cycles).

It's very important that a mooring chain be attached to the ground tackle with a swivel, which must be whipped tight with stainless wire or a plastic zip tie. Scope on the mooring chain will depend on tidal variation, and wind and current conditions, as well as surrounding moorings. In my case I use 2:1 scope based on the high-tide depth. I'm a big believer in pass-through buoys versus relying on a galvanized rod set into a buoy. I use Taylor Made buoys only. They're far superior quality to the Jim-Bouy brand.

kwik_wurk
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby kwik_wurk » Sun Oct 07, 2018 9:27 pm

I suggest a small six-inch-diameter helix anchor for mooring a MONTAUK.

Screwing-in a helix anchor isn't that hard if the bottom land is really mud. You may need need a homemade extension, depending on water depth. I made an extension from pipe and rebar.

A helix anchor shank diameter is 3/4-inch or 1-inch, as is the eye. Helix anchors are not expensive: $80 to $100 for small helix anchors.

For my mooring I used over-size lower tackle that connects [to the anchor] and spends more time in the mud.

From my experience the upper six-feet of rope or chain will wear down the fastest due to motion, growth, and corrosion.

A mushroom anchor will work; but a helix will never move, and the helix anchor will work for your next and bigger boat.

jimh
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby jimh » Mon Oct 08, 2018 7:56 am

Use of a screw-in auger or helix anchor seems to be common among my several neighbors who have had moorings installed.

If you buy the helix anchor from a marine supplier, the price will be about three times higher than if you buy the helix anchor from a commercial utility supplier. Compare these prices for a six-inch diameter helix, 3/4-inch shaft diameter, and 66-inch long shaft screw-in anchor. I can't imaging that either of these vendors is the actual fabricator of these anchors. They are probably made by the millions for use with utility pole guy wires:

Marine vendor: Helix Mooring Systems, Inc. model H0666 = $88
Utility vendor: Comstar Supply, No-wrench screw anchor model BOLTANCHNWR06X663 = $25.75

Many years ago I installed three screw anchors for guy wires for supporting a 68-foot steel tower I installed in my back yard (for Amateur Radio antennas). To install these took at least two people, a bit of preliminary hole digging to get them started, and a long bar to turn them. Doing it underwater might be more awkward and complicated. I got the anchors for about $5 from my local utility. The ones I bought had a slight bend in the shank. This meant those anchors couldn't be installed by their mechanical drive system, so they were going to the scrap pile.

Ridge Runner
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby Ridge Runner » Mon Oct 08, 2018 8:36 am

For a helix anchor as described by Jim, does anyone have experience on what the life expectancy would be in Florida's warm coastal waters?
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dtmackey
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Re: Montauk Mooring

Postby dtmackey » Mon Oct 08, 2018 10:19 pm

GHMariner wrote:Mushrooms are a good out-of-the-box option, but my concern with any mooring anchor has always been the weak link of where the chain attaches to the mooring itself, and corrosion, which seems to be accelerated when submerged in mud (at least here in Puget Sound).

I use a 5-gallon bucket or a large truck tire, filled with concrete mixed with beach rock or pea gravel, reinforced with rebar. To attach the chain, I place a length of 3-inch pipe through the bucket or tire before pouring the concrete, which allows me to run a loop of heavy duty galvanized chain through it, which is removable and replaceable, and is not subject to corrosion and wear at the point of insertion in concrete. I then bury this into the mud at low tide (though with our soft mud here, it tends to bury itself in one or two tidal cycles).

It's very important that a mooring chain be attached to the ground tackle with a swivel, which must be whipped tight with stainless wire or a plastic zip tie. Scope on the mooring chain will depend on tidal variation, and wind and current conditions, as well as surrounding moorings. In my case I use 2:1 scope based on the high-tide depth. I'm a big believer in pass-through buoys versus relying on a galvanized rod set into a buoy. I use Taylor Made buoys only. They're far superior quality to the Jim-Bouy brand.


If the mushroom anchor is imported than I'd agree with the corrosion concerns, otherwise here in the N.E. we see 10 - 15 years on a mushroom anchor. Other options are concrete blocks, I use a 2000# block for my 21' boat and a 6000# block for my 32' boat and that includes a safety factor. I'd rather go heavy than have a problem in a bad storm.

As for stainless wire, I'd never use that below the waterline since different grades of stainless behave very differently and also vary from from location to location based on what other metals are in the water. I use non-corrosive zip ties or other material for lashing shackle pins. In the off season we drop our chain into the mud since it protects it from rusting and we can get an extra 2 years out of the chain.

Things vary based on salinity levels, other metals in the water causing galvanic corrosion, but after 40 years of mooring boats, I know what works in Marblehead MA and my suggestions are base on my local knowledge for my area.

D-