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  ANCHOR CHAIN "IS IT NEEDED?"

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Author Topic:   ANCHOR CHAIN "IS IT NEEDED?"
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 02-01-2002 09:54 AM ET (US)   Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR  
I just bought one of those all plastic tri-fluted anchors from bass pro shops(18lbs).Going to use it for my 15rage, do i need the chain on that or can i just tie the rope to it directly?
Bigshot posted 02-01-2002 10:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Take it back and get something more reasonable. 18lb? That will hold a 40' boat. I use a 4lb on my Montauk and it is perfect. You can use a 2.5 danforth, I did on my 15. Don't go by the rating crap unless you are anticipating a storm or offshore parking. I use a 4lb on my 24 Baja as a stern anchor, sometimes I use it as an anchor and she has never broken loose. If it will hold a 5000lb boat in a 10kt current, she hold a Rage.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 02-01-2002 11:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
I like it because it will not chip the inside of my anchor locker, or bleed rust onto the gel coat. Ive tried the rubber coated anchors, but they rust up around the end, and if dropped they chip the gel coat.I just dont know if it will dig in without the chain?
russellbailey posted 02-01-2002 12:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for russellbailey  Send Email to russellbailey     
Bigshot,

He's not talking about a typical saltwater anchor. The anchor he's referring to is like a lake-style mushroom anchor only with flutes on the bottom so it will hold better.

Bob, I have no idea if you need the chain or not on that style anchor. It is very different than the typical saltwater style where the chain holds a light long metal bar close to the bottom so the two flutes bite in.

I thought about trying one of those when we went to the ocean with our 15' Striper and the mushroom didn't do anything, but ended up with a traditional saltwater style (4 lb I think) - it is bulky for a little boat.

I'm curious to hear how that anchor works in the ocean.

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 02-01-2002 12:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
The ad claims it is ideal for rivers and high current conditions, ill have to give it a shot and see how it works. If it doesnt i still have the small danforth that came with the boat.
jameso posted 02-01-2002 01:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for jameso  Send Email to jameso     
Don't throw out the Danforth! My experience with the mushroom style is lake only, it will not take the constant tugging from waves and surf. And it is heavy as heck. I had my 15 fill with water when a mushroom gave way and the boat was abeam in surf. Not a pretty sight!
Jim Armstrong
Bigshot posted 02-01-2002 02:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Mushroom? We use them on flats boats or lake boats when you want to fish quietly. The mushroom will hold the boat and you do not need to set it, etc but that is calm conditions. In the bay or ocean...danforth only. Actually danforth with chain only.
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 02-01-2002 02:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Thanks guys, i think your right about the danforth being the only way to go.I will just have to be careful not to chip the gel coat.
Bigshot posted 02-01-2002 04:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Chip gel with an anchor? Nah! unless you use the boat to bang off the seaweed and mud. Most just dip in & out of the water a few times:)
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 02-01-2002 04:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Hey bigshot you dont know my fishing partners(Wife and my Father) they have been known to do some damage.
Tom W Clark posted 02-01-2002 07:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
BOB,

Yes, you need chain, but listen to these guys and use a Danforth style anchor. I suggest at least an 8 pounder used with 10 or 15 feet of 1/4" galvanized chain.

I used a 10 pound Danforth with my 18' and it was OK if I was keeping an eye on it, but it did drag a few times in strong currents or storms (I used it in salt water here on Puget Sound with lots of tidal movement). If you picnicing on some lake a mushroom anchor or smaller Danforth might be OK, but bigger is better.

Dick posted 02-01-2002 07:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dick  Send Email to Dick     
Bob

Where are you using your boat? Will you be anchoring overnight or just to fish?

The river style anchor works fine in lakes and rivers without chain. I have used them on several riverboats in Alaska rivers. That 18 pounder should hold your Rage with no problem.

Out in the salt, like everyone else, I would go for a Danforth 7 pound with 4 or 5 feet of chain.

triblet posted 02-02-2002 07:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
I'd say about a 7 pound danforth, maybe next
size down for a rage (15', right?), and
10' of chain. I wouldn't go shorter than
10'. The chain serves three purposes.

1. It keeps the anchor flat on the bottom so
it digs in instead of pulling out.

2. When the waves move the boat around, the
energy goes into lifting the chain a bit
rather than into pulling the anchor out.
(Some energy also goes into stretching the
line, which is why you want nylon).

3. It keeps the line from chafing on rocks.

Remember, I've SEEN my anchor on the bottom
maybe 500 times, because the first order of
business on a dive is to check it.

A river anchor will drag like crazy in sand
if the wind comes up. I started with an
18 pound river anchor. After following its
tracks a couple times at the end of a dive, I
got a Danforth.

Chuck

triblet posted 02-02-2002 07:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
One more thing: your back will appreciate
pulling the lighter, better holding, Danforth.


Chuck

jimh posted 02-02-2002 11:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
On my 15-Sport I have a 4-lb Danforth and about 12-feet of chain.

We used to wrestle with a 25-lb Danforth to anchor our 11,000-pound sailboat, but eventually we switched over to using the "lunch hook" (about a 10-pound Danforth). When well set it never failed to hold us, even in some middle-of-the-night thunderstorms.

--jimh

OutrageMan posted 02-02-2002 11:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for OutrageMan  Send Email to OutrageMan     
This summer I routinely used a 12lb danforth with 10 feet of chain. Almost always in sand. After my anchor wench (Kate) would make the line fast I would back down and "set" the anchor. It would hold so strong that I could not break it free by hand and would have to drive over the top of it by about 2-3' and pull it from the other direction to get it to break free.

I have generally had a more difficult time setting this type of anchor in a rock bottom, but eventually it would always catch.

My uncle Eagle man uses a 40lb danforth that he salvaged from a 41 Chris Craft Commander, on his 22 OR (those at the Door County Rendezvous may have noticed it). I think he would be able to talk about holding power.

Brian

kingfish posted 02-03-2002 08:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for kingfish  Send Email to kingfish     
Brian-

I guess your uncle *could* talk about holding power with a 40# Danforth! I know those and even larger are out there, but I've never seen one that big - does it fit in the anchor locker in his 22', or does he have to stow it in the live well?

Inquiring minds...

OutrageMan posted 02-03-2002 10:27 AM ET (US)     Profile for OutrageMan  Send Email to OutrageMan     
Yes, it does fit in the forward locker if memery serves. He says the weight helps keep the bow down when he gets that 235 cranked up :)
WSTEFFENS posted 02-03-2002 12:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for WSTEFFENS  Send Email to WSTEFFENS     
Bob:

Yes you need the chain under most conditions. Rivers are the only exception I can think of off hand, as there is more to get hun up on such as trees roots etc. The chain is necessary so you can use a reasonable amount of line (scope) to keep the fluks digging in. The West Marine advisor has a really good explanation. I would suggest a "Fortress" brand aluminum anchor as it is light and can be knocked down for easy storage. You may need to make up some sort of custom hold downs. As for the chain I would get a plastic coated one as it is easier on your gelcoat and is easier to clean.

Best

mjd65 posted 02-03-2002 03:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for mjd65  Send Email to mjd65     
In my Rage I have a 7 pound danforth with a 4 ft chain works great on lake Erie when ever needed. I have a piece of wood cut to fit and carpet in locker to protect it now.

I did put some nice chips in the locker with a mushroom anchor that was totally usless in winds or current.

Lake Breeze Rage

triblet posted 02-03-2002 10:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
To stow a Danforth in the bow locker, see
[url]http://www.garlic.com/~triblet/whaler/[\url]
down near the bottom. Actually, that's a bad
picture because the chain fits in the bucket.


Chuck

David Ratusnik posted 02-04-2002 07:59 AM ET (US)     Profile for David Ratusnik  Send Email to David Ratusnik     
Fine discussion of anchors-I've picked up alot. My contribution. Neighbors brother recently picked up a nice clean 21'Laguna. Real proud of the boat. A couple miles off shore he proudly thru in the anchor-guess it was a Danforth- weight unknown. Remember, Remember that regardless of the type of anchor, or length of chain- you must tie off the rope to the boat or the anchor goes bye bye. David
David Ratusnik posted 02-04-2002 08:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for David Ratusnik  Send Email to David Ratusnik     
Fine discussion of anchors-I've picked up alot. My contribution. Neighbors brother recently picked up a nice clean 21'Laguna. Real proud of the boat. A couple miles off shore he proudly thru in the anchor-guess it was a Danforth- weight unknown. Remember, Remember that regardless of the type of anchor, or length of chain- you must tie off the rope to the boat or the anchor goes bye bye. David
Arch Autenreith posted 02-04-2002 08:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for Arch Autenreith  Send Email to Arch Autenreith     
3 years ago I pulled the anchor out of the bow locker and noticed a shackle pin in the bottom. For an instant I wondered where it came from at the same time I was throwing the anchor.

Had to buy another 4 pound Danforth and chain.

Clark Roberts posted 02-04-2002 11:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for Clark Roberts  Send Email to Clark Roberts     
Another function of the chain is that it acts as a shock absorber and gentle tugging as well as sharp tugs (from that nasty steep chop) on anchor line will simply raise the chain a little... Happy Whalin .. Clark
triblet posted 02-04-2002 11:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
The end of the anchor rode away from the anchor
is called the bitter end because you'll be
bitter if you don't attach it to the boat.

I'd recommend a spliced eye and a SS carabiner
so you can unclip from the boat, clip to a
buoy (say, a fender), and GO in the event of an
emergency. Do both ends of the line the same
(SS thimble, etc.), so you can turn the line
to equalize wear.

Shackle pins should be tightened with a wrench,
then secured with a small marine grade tie
wrap. Some people use safety wire, but you'll
end up sticking yourself real good with it.
Check the tiewrap periodically.


Chuck

John from Madison CT posted 02-04-2002 12:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for John from Madison CT  Send Email to John from Madison CT     
Chuck,

I thought about adding a SS Caribiner but was wondering how well that spring holds up under saltwater conditions.

John

Arch Autenreith posted 02-04-2002 12:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for Arch Autenreith  Send Email to Arch Autenreith     
Chuck.

I was looking at your web page yesterday and noticed the caribiner and thought it wasn't necessary...until you just said 'in an emergency'.

Last year while in Fla my son (12+ yrs) tried swimming to shore only a 200' or so. Why I didn't have him take the throwable or wear a life jacket is beyond me. I guess it was a combination of things. I was busy casting and not really thinking about anything and there was no wind or waves and I was drifting. As soon as he jumped in and started swimming I realized the ebb was coming away from shore. (We were drifting next to the Sanibel Causeway, for those of you that know.)

I motored over to him and took him to shore. He would have NEVER made it. I still wake up at nights sometimes and think the unthinkable. What ifÖ..!!!!!?

So hereís where your statement comes in. I was thinking what if I was anchored and needed to get somewhere in a hurry? Of course Iíd cut the line but in a panic I might not find it. Thanks for the suggestion. Iíll add that to my Spring to-do list.

(Did I tell this story another time here? Still scares me. Iíve been boating all my life and missed such a simple bad situation.)

Arch

newboater posted 02-04-2002 01:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for newboater  Send Email to newboater     
Great idea about the SS carabiner. I just checked and West carries them. When I tow the 13' behind our sailboat I use the stern anchor rode, and a carabiner would make the transition to and from towing a lot quicker.

I get a kick out of the "light weight" ground tackle talked about here. It's funny how different applications have such different needs. On our sailboat we run a 45 pound CQR plough anchor, 250' of 3/8" chain, and 300' of 3/4" line (about 500 pounds of ground tackle). The 13 just needs a small rock with a piece of stringÖ

Dave S.


OutrageMan posted 02-04-2002 02:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for OutrageMan  Send Email to OutrageMan     
A caribiner is just asking for trouble. Last year I had to pull a Whaler off the beach (twice) that used a caribiner to attach to a mooring (hello Russ).

That is unless the caribiner has a threaded lock.

What can happen is that if pulled in a certain way, either the rode or the device the caribiner is attached to can flip the caribiner so that the gate is against something that with another pull can open the gate.

That is exactly what happend to that beached whaler.

Brian

triblet posted 02-04-2002 03:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
In four years of every weekend boating, the
carabiner has never come undone. Now, since
nothing is ever tugging on it unless I'm "at
the end of my rope" (which I almost never am),
it has no opportunity to get pushed open. And on
the rare occasions when I use all 200' of scope,
I still tie the line off to the Norman pin, and
leave the carabiner as a backup.


Chuck

OutrageMan posted 02-04-2002 04:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for OutrageMan  Send Email to OutrageMan     
Chuck,

Sorry, re-read and realized that it was at the end of the line, not connected to your chain/anchor.

Brian

Samars posted 02-04-2002 04:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for Samars  Send Email to Samars     

Bob,
Getting back to your original question and thanks for letting us know why you are asking...I too had the problem of rust bleeding into the locker, and yes I have a short length of chain (3-5 feet) for my two anchors...danforth (5lb). What I did was purchase the plastic coating paint you can get at any Walmart and sprayed the anchor and chain...the paint may peel by the end of the season, but it keeps the boat cleaner.
By the way I am in freshwater 100 % of the time.

just a thought/idea

Samars posted 02-04-2002 04:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for Samars  Send Email to Samars     

Bob,
Getting back to your original question and thanks for letting us know why you are asking...I too had the problem of rust bleeding into the locker, and yes I have a short length of chain (3-5 feet) for my two anchors...danforth (5lb). What I did was purchase the plastic coating paint you can get at any Walmart and sprayed the anchor and chain...the paint may peel by the end of the season, but it keeps the boat cleaner.
By the way I am in freshwater 100 % of the time.

just a thought/idea

jameso posted 02-04-2002 10:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for jameso  Send Email to jameso     
Once again triblet is right, I have 4 SS caribiners on my rig and would not be without them, the one anchor rode has been on for about 3 years with no problem. I also keep one a short piece of line with a loop, need be I can rig it really fast to a longer line. As a note on any piece of equipment that vibrates (even the pics on your walls vibrate)use some method of thread lock, if nothing else is avail use a punch, screwdriver blade, plier jaws or what ever to distort a SMALL portion of one of the threads of the bolt outboard of the nut. Yes this is crude, does not compare with safety wire, lock nuts and washers or Locktite, but after losing numerous bolts and fasteners on a farm tractor I tried this and it works. This was a quick/combat fix used in military for some times. I have done this on my anchor pin for years and never had one lost yet.
Jim Armstrong
jimh posted 02-05-2002 01:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I don't have a SS Caribiner at the end of the anchor rode, but I do have this in its place:

The end of the anchor rode is made fast by tieing it to the Eye-nut in the anchor locker (which is fastened to the bow towing eye). The rode is tied in a large bowline so that the bowline knot is well above the deck level. This makes it easy to untie the bowline without having to reach down to the bottom of the anchor locker.

Another technique we used: when setting we would employ a very generous scope, like 10:1. This helped to set the anchor better. Once set, we would shorten scope to something more appropriate for the anchorage and the amount of swing that could be tolerated. Having 10-feet or more of chain helps in the shorter scope situations, too.

larimore posted 02-11-2002 11:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for larimore  Send Email to larimore     
I have 22 outrage, saltwater only.
I use an aluminum Fortress anchor with 5' stainless chain. Wonderful lightweight anchor.
I also have a 20lb plow that I use overnight in the Bahamas and lee shore type areas where I can not risk dragging anchor.
I use the Fortress always during the day and I would not want anything different. The plow is overkill, but a life saver.
For rivers and lakes, a danforth might get hung-up too much. I once got hung-up on a reef, then broke a fluke off(under full power), Fortress express mailed me a new one free. Not a cheap anchor, but a good one !
JohnJ80 posted 02-16-2002 10:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for JohnJ80  Send Email to JohnJ80     
Couple of thoughts and from experience:

1. Murphy's law - if it can go wrong it will.
2. When you really need an anchor, you need it bad. Don't scrimp on the anchor. I personally use a 11 lb alum fortress with 10' of galvanized chain, attached with oversized shackle safety wired with monel wire, and the last few threads bent with a pliers. Its small enough, lite enough and oversize enough to be fine.
3. Tie the end of the anchor rode to the boat - frequently done to a pad eye in the storage compartment (if practical).
4. store a knife aboard in a spot accessible to the rode.
5. plastic coated mushrooms won't hold a boat in pretty much any significant wind and current. Good for fishing but shouldn't be primary anchor.
6. Each anchor type has its strengths. Evaluate your bottom conditions and select accordingly.

Whenever I think about cutting back on the anchor i remember a news story with a helicopter rescue of a couple whose engine conked out upstream of St. Anthony falls in Mpls. A good anchor might have made the outcome not quite so expensive or dramatic.

just my $0.02

triblet posted 02-17-2002 10:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
With some regularity, I hear an exchange on
the VHF that goes roughly:

Boat: Mayday, Mayday, Mayday, we are off the
point, the motor won't start, and we are
drifting towards the rocks.

CG: Vessel calling mayday, do you have an
anchor?

Three quarters of the time, the answer is NO.
The other quarter of the time there's a long
silence and the boat comes back and says
they've dropped the anchor.

And they always say they are off "the point".
Any idea how many points are within VHF
range of CG Group San Francisco? ;-)


Chuck

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