Having drug the stock anchor this past weekend in a thunderstorm blow I'm wanting to upgrade my ground tackle to a 55lb Rocna anchor and more chain.
Can anyone tell me if I can safely add chain to my existing chain and still use the windlass?
Wayne, as long as the link you use to join the two sections of chain together will run through your windlass you should be fine. I'm thinking of the type that comes in two halves that you connect then peen the pins so they can't fall out. Keep in mind most links have ratings much lower than the chain your connecting them with. So may be introducing a weak link in your anchoring system. BTW you'll love the Rocna 55lb. It's what we have on our 43. We also have 200' of 3/8" HT chain. I'm very pleased with how well it holds.
Mike, you're right about the weakest link. I was wanting to save some money by adding to my rope chain rode rather than all chain. Not to mention lugging it in and out of the truck and then down the dock. But definitely sounds more secure. But surely worth it in the long run.
Wayne, lugging it down the dock was easy.....I paid a dock hand to do it for me. Worth every penny haha.
LOL, you're killing me!
I went thru this same thought process about a year ago. After quite a bit of research I decided on the peace of mind of not introducing a "weak" link into the system. Some people advocate taking the the coupling link to a welding shop and having it secured that way. In the end, that seemed like more hassle of getting off the boat, to a shop and back, than just getting new chain and rode.
Originally we had 30 ft. of chain and 100 of rope, for the west coast of FL that is enough length but we had the rope section nearly chafe thru when pinned in by a couple of days of 40kt winds down in Cayo Costa. On inspection 2 of the 3 strands were nearly sawn thru. That made me a believer and we switched to 100 ft. chain connected to 100 foot of new line.
You will need to come up with a snubber to take the shock loads off the chain and windlass. (that is another discussion that is well handled by a recent practical sailor article)
p.s. you will love the Rocna, we call ours the One Stick Bitc%$#. It has never drug on us.
Peter, thank you for your input.
Last night I ordered the 55lb Rocna and 200' of 3/8"HT chain for peace of mind. (I hope that's 3/8"chain on my 40's windlass) So, there will be no weak links in the system. Now I will need to educate myself about snubbers and bridles.
We carry 100ft 3/8 ht chain spliced to 150ft of rode with original 45lb Delta quickset anchor and snubber . Have not drug since installing chain. In my humble opinion, proper scope is as important as ground tackle. Addition of height, from deck to water, in determining scope is equally important.
We considered 200ft of chain. Additional weight in bow (200lb vs 100lb) was a significant factor we considered, also, planned travel destinations. We've anchored from Bahama's to Massachusetts in many disturbing weather situations without incident using this ground tackle equipment setup.
I use a bridle set up for a snubber which works well. We do swing at anchor and either side of the bridle takes the load. Lots of options and opinions out there. Pick the one you feel comfortable with and use it every time you anchor.
BTW once anchored I turn on Tracks on the chart plotter. I leave it on for 20 mins or so based on conditions. Longer in bad weather, shorter in benign conditions. I watch it etch a sketch a semi circle as we swing about the anchor. As long as there aren't any long lines extending out of the semi circle I know we haven't drug. At that point I shut off the plotter but do random range checks. So far so good.
On Longhawk we use a Rocna 20KG. I changed out the chain gypsy when new to one that handles 5/16 high Test chain. Then I went with 175 ft of 5/16 HT chain tailed with 200 ft of three strand.(overkill, but I had the rode as supplied new).
For a short stay (lunch or very caml anchorage conditions expected ) I use a single chain hook on a 1/2 inch three strand nylon line, routed over the bow roller with the chain. I then have a snatch block that I attach over the snubber line (where it runs over the anchor locker) and attach it to the opposite cleat form the side the snubber cleat line is attached and pull the snubber line so it is centered over the foredeck. Simple and quick.
For a lengthier stay or when conditions are heavier I use a bridle. The bridle connects to the chain by a mantus anchor bridle plate.
Sam, we are the essentially the same. Using the same mantus bridle as you. Quick question to you and any others using a bridle. We had the bridle rubbing the sides of the bow in a recent storm and it ended up snapping off the plastic clam covers of the anchor drains. Do you get this? Wondering if I had too much slack in the chain and thus too much downward pull toward the bow? Any tips appreciated. I just bought replacement covers but actually wondering if I will install them.
Yep, I too have snapped a couple of the clam shell drain covers off. I have a couple of spares, but may or may not replace this time. The slack didn't seem to be the ultimate cause. Seems that wind/tide shifts and wake surge would cause the movement as well.
I chalk it up to "Stuff happens"
Hope all is well in your area.