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Anchor rode...

Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 3:15 pm
by MarkRyan1981
I'm rethinking my current anchoring system (and old CQR with 25 meters of chain, meaning I struggle to get to just over 3.5 scope for most of my anchoring leading to lots of sleepless nights). I'm looking at a Rocna 15 plus 50 meters of Grade 40 chain, although this seems awfully heavy to have in the chain locker in the bows?

Does anyone else have this level of rode in that for'ard locker? Does it cause any issues?

Re: Anchor rode...

Posted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 4:19 am
by Bob McGovern
Hi, Mark. What sort of bottom & depths are you normally anchoring in? Is there a reason (like coral) you need all chain rode? Are you using a power windlass? & what size Grade 40 (G4) chain are you planning?

One nice thing about the new anchor designs is how quickly & deeply they dig in -- a function of geometry rather than weight. So they can be lighter than a CQR or Bruce & still give better holding power in a broader range of bottoms. And they are less dependent on the catenary made by lots of heavy chain.:) If you are using Grade 40 (Hi Test), its working load is twice that of BBB or Grade 30 (G3 proof coil); most people move down one size, which represents a 30-50% weight reduction. For instance: 50m of 5/16" BBB chain has a working load of 1900lbs (862kg) & weighs 180lbs (82kg). 50m of 1/4" G4 chain has a load of 2600lbs, weighs just 126lbs, and is recommended for boats up to 40'.

Our plans for the Ballad right now (may change) are a Manson, Rocna, or Mantis anchor -- probably 33-35#, which is slightly oversized for this boat. Similar to your Rocna 15. Then about 15m of 1/4" G4 chain, then 50m of 1/2" nylon rode (~7500lb tensile). We'll have extra nylon to add if needed. Total weight of rode is under 50lbs (23kg); no need to mess with snubbers. We'll add more chain if sailing to French Polynesia.;)

Would love to hear what others are using!

Re: Anchor rode...

Posted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 10:02 am
by MarkRyan1981
Hello there,

I was definitely going to go for G40 if I purchased new chain, Rocna recommend 8mm for their 15 anchor. Although thinking about it, my current 25 meters of G30 (I think) 10mm chain I could splice on some nylon 3 strand of similar breaking load adding no appreciable weight (and it would be a whole lot cheaper than replacing the whole rode!). I will have to confirm if my current rode is 10mm, as then at least the 8mm G40 rode would not add masses of weight to the bows...

Thanks :)

Re: Anchor rode...

Posted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 3:46 pm
by Bob McGovern
Yeah, not sure why Rocna advises such large chain. One chart I saw suggests 5/16" (8mm) G4 Hi Test chain for the Rocna 15kg; you could really get away with 1/4" (6-7mm). This other chart from Rocna suggests 1/4" is adequate for 30' boats weighing up to 5000kg:

Even with the larger anchor, the smaller chain should be fine: its breaking strength is generally 5x WLL, or ~6000kg. Forces on the boat dictate rode strength, more than anchor weight. Many people just use 2-3m of chain, & that may be why you see oversized chain recommended, to maximize the catenary.

I'm usually fond of overkill, especially with anchoring. But the Ballad's long bow overhang, fine entry, and reputation for pitching a bit has us worried (like you) that a fat, all-chain rode high in the forepeak might be a bad idea. You could carry some heavy chain in the bilge, maybe, for use in deep anchorages or storms? Our other concern is being able to raise the anchor by hand. An extra 5kg in the anchor itself isn't likely to hurt our backs; an extra 50kg of chain might kill us. :|

Re: Anchor rode...

Posted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 4:04 pm
by Nicholas Koligiannis
Hi to all:

In my part of the world, the Aegean's traditionally windy anchorages normally require anchor/chain combinations heftier than normal. Although the bays are normally protected, there can be severe gusts, sometimes exceeding 40knots. Over the years--and with a few minor mishaps--I've had the opportunity to re-think the anchoring system on Moments of Clarity. I've gone from a 10kg Delta to a 15kg Delta to a 15kg Rocna. The latter digs in almost instantly and the only time it failed to set was in thick, deep weed off the island of Patmos. However, it would have probably kept me safe as every time I'd take it up to re-launch it, it'd surface with a sizeable chunk of the seabed attached.

This year, I bought 60 metres of Maggi G40 chain for the several instances where I have to anchor in 12+ meters of water. For me the extra weight isn't much of a problem since I've relocated the anchor locker to the space under the V-berth (as some Ballad Exchangers may remember from my posting a few years ago). About a year ago, I made a very stout anchor platform with twin rollers--which also serves as an attachment for the gennaker tack. The second roller helps to launch a second anchor in a V formation, on a 15-metre chain/30-metre rope combination which is normally stored in the starboard locker. My second and third anchors are a Fortress and a 10kg Spade, one stored in a locker, the other on the stern roller. It may sound like an overkill, but with the wind gusting down in Serifos or Sifnos (this year they recorded gusts of up to 50 knots) it gives you peace of mind--and the chance to go ashore and really enjoy a meal.

The stern roller is also pretty stout since it gets almost as much use. When approaching a quay or pontoon and I'm sailing solo, I normally go bows-to and launch the stern anchor; that way I have more control over the throttle, tiller and rode and more privacy since the companionway doesn't face the strolling public.

All this has served me well over the years and although it represents lots of extra weight--and cash--it has been worth it. I've attached a photo of my well-dug-in Rocna in an admittedly easy bottom.

Nicholas Koligiannis
Moments of Clarity no. 334
Rocna (low).jpg
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