Anchor Geekdom

IStream

Super Anarchist
10,784
2,970
I have been watching all Steves awesome videos and charts for some time and learned a lot but when I then go shopping online for anchor and chain and parts I still get confused. On my prior two (old, smaller) boats each came with a Bruce which worked pretty well when I used them, which wasn’t a lot, and mostly stopping for lunch in tame conditions, so I had no need to buy an anchor. 

I think I want to get one of these Sarca Excels. It looks like I need a #4. I now have a 35’ Beneteau that came with a delta that I was told is 35lbs, but looks smallish, and it has 20’ of chain and 180’ of rope. I am not comfortable with this. 

I was on a friend’s boat for 5 days that had an ultra and that was a revelation, worked really well, and the tests here look good. I thought I would get one but now I’d prefer not to spend that much money. 

At this point I kind of want somebody or a vendor to work with that can just tell me what the hell to buy. Yes I am lazy, and have no business leaving the dock unless I can do every last goddamn thing independently, but I don’t want to get a phd in anchors and then still pick the wrong setup for myself and have it not work. Its just a one and done purchase because I plan to keep the boat a long time. Use case is coastal cruising in Maine.

Can anyone tell me a vendor who sells sarca excels in US? Haven’t found online. I need to also identify the optimal chain/rope setup, swivel, and whatever other parts I need here. Usually I figure these kinds of things out myself but in this case which should be straightforward I’m failing. View attachment 475367
FWIW, Mantus is based in the US (Texas) so availability isn't an issue. Their M1 gets good all-around performance scores in Steve's tests. If you prefer no roll bar, the M2 is very good too. I've owned both (previously an 85lb M1, now a 65lb M2) and have been very satisfied with Mantus, both their products and their customer service. They're currently running a 20% off Black Friday promotion on everything in their store through the 29th. Use coupon code "BFSM2021".

The way things are these days, I feel compelled to mention that I have no financial affiliation with Mantus and haven't received anything from them for promotional purposes. Just a satisfied customer.

 

loneshark64

Super Anarchist
1,449
1,279
Midcoast Maine
FWIW, Mantus is based in the US (Texas) so availability isn't an issue. Their M1 gets good all-around performance scores in Steve's tests. If you prefer no roll bar, the M2 is very good too. I've owned both (previously an 85lb M1, now a 65lb M2) and have been very satisfied with Mantus, both their products and their customer service. They're currently running a 20% off Black Friday promotion on everything in their store through the 29th. Use coupon code "BFSM2021".

The way things are these days, I feel compelled to mention that I have no financial affiliation with Mantus and haven't received anything from them for promotional purposes. Just a satisfied customer.
Thank you. I was also Looking at the M2 before the good things I was seeing on the excel. I will reconsider and call them on Monday.

 

Ishmael

Yes, we have no bananas
50,802
11,171
Fuctifino
There's a place in Canada, so there might be a looney discount. 

This Winter I'm moving over to a Spade S140. My bad conversion maths -  the Bruce is 73lbs - but I'm thinking the Spade will more than make up for the loss of 7lbs. 
The Excel dealer in Canada is about 500 feet away from my boat, when I can walk again I'll get a loaner #4 to see if it fits my roller setup. I'm generally satisfied with most anchoring with our 35 lb Delta but I have woken up to find us in a different place after setting in thin mud, even when there was no wind. 

 

Elegua

Generalissimo
4,382
1,947
Lower Loslobia
The Excel dealer in Canada is about 500 feet away from my boat, when I can walk again I'll get a loaner #4 to see if it fits my roller setup. I'm generally satisfied with most anchoring with our 35 lb Delta but I have woken up to find us in a different place after setting in thin mud, even when there was no wind. 
I like the Excel, but leaning spade because I think it will replace the Bruce more easily.  I'm a bit nervous to give up the Bruce....it's never failed me yet. 

 

robtoujours

Member
451
259
Somewhere
At this point I kind of want somebody or a vendor to work with that can just tell me what the hell to buy. Yes I am lazy, and have no business leaving the dock unless I can do every last goddamn thing independently, but I don’t want to get a phd in anchors and then still pick the wrong setup for myself and have it not work. Its just a one and done purchase because I plan to keep the boat a long time. Use case is coastal cruising in Maine.

Can anyone tell me a vendor who sells sarca excels in US? Haven’t found online. I need to also identify the optimal chain/rope setup, swivel, and whatever other parts I need here. Usually I figure these kinds of things out myself but in this case which should be straightforward I’m failing. View attachment 475367
I will assume you have a Beneteau 351 from the 90s. She should be about 5.3t displacement. (11.6k lbs) 

My boat is smaller than yours but similar tidal range issues and use. Not anywhere near Maine though. 

Alain Poireaud wrote a definitive book on anchoring and also designed the Spade. Therefore I first follow his recommendations.

Jimmy Green in the UK specialise in this stuff and have a really useful site with custom build options - fun to play around with. I’m using them for pricing etc but Maine left the Empire in a fit of pique. So my prices are likely off. Any decent chandlery should have all you need. 

Except for the Sarca, it seems you have to ask some Canadians for it? Google says groundtackle.com is the NA distributor. 

So, your use case is coastal cruising in Maine and existing 60m (200ft) rode is insufficient (agreed - that’s my secondary which is a Fortress). Existing rode is 90/10 rope/chain (ditto).

Maine has tides up to 3.5m (12ft) approx. Thus if you typically anchor in 5m (16ft) of water you really want at least 80m (260 ft) for a 10:1 scope in storm conditions. 

If bluewater (Pacific island hopping etc) then I’m sure you would want at least 150m (500ft) but I think here 100m (330 ft) is sufficient. 

Poireaud recommends a rope/chain mix. The proportion is attendant to your circumstances. Pros and cons are obvious. I’d aim for a 60/40 rope/chain mix. 

The nylon rode should be spliced directly to the galvanised chain. 

The galvanised anchor should be connected to the galvanised chain via two galvanised bow shackles back to back (I.e. one pin goes through hole in anchor -> other pin goes through chain link) - no swivels! Mouse the shackles with Monel seizing wire. 

You would therefore want 40m of 10mm (3/8“) G40 chain. Here, about $17 per metre. 

The nylon rode in a tidal area should be of octoplait as it won’t “cockle”. Thus 60m of that in 16mm (5/8“) diameter. $8.50 pm here. 

Two shackles rated for the load, here that would be 11mm with 13mm pin diameter. (Pin is where the shackle will break; weakest link and all that). $10 each. 

Online quote here with all that done for you is about $1200. That includes a version of your “state tax” which in Europe is referred to as VAT. 

Anchor - Sarca Excel #4 ($650) or Spade S80 (€730) and you’re good!

Don’t forget to make a snubber if you haven’t already. 

However, bear in mind I am just some idiot on the internet! 
 

 
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Max Rockatansky

holy fuckfarts!
3,680
898
I’m so far continue to be impressed with the Excel. Sets quick and deep. Have not yet tested its holding though. Wx has been too good

 

TwoLegged

Super Anarchist
5,665
2,091
I expected that the responses to @loneshark64's request for guidance would deteriorate rapidly into competing certainties, with everyone first denouncing each other's recommendations and then denouncing each other.

The calm reasonableness of the responses is helpful to shark, but also a little disappointing.  A proper anchor war would be fun.

 

loneshark64

Super Anarchist
1,449
1,279
Midcoast Maine
I expected that the responses to @loneshark64's request for guidance would deteriorate rapidly into competing certainties, with everyone first denouncing each other's recommendations and then denouncing each other.

The calm reasonableness of the responses is helpful to shark, but also a little disappointing.  A proper anchor war would be fun.
I was waiting for you to respond. Something like “just tie a rope around your keel so when it falls off you can use that as an anchor.” ;-)

 
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loneshark64

Super Anarchist
1,449
1,279
Midcoast Maine
 Maine left the Empire in a fit of pique. 
This is super helpful. That is the kind of thing I needed, I have printed this out.

And for the record, Maine was largely loyalist but was a captive part of Massachusetts then, and was manipulated into going along with rebellion by Sam Adams and the Committee of Correspondence. There are probably a few loyalists still lurking.

 
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Ishmael

Yes, we have no bananas
50,802
11,171
Fuctifino
I reluctantly use a swivel, because without it the rope and chain hockles and binds in the windlass. I do use two shackles back to back at the anchor to stop the swivel from binding at the anchor. The lack of that extra shackle cost me a Delta 35 when the swivel failed internally, probably from major off-axis pull.

swivel.jpg

 

Elegua

Generalissimo
4,382
1,947
Lower Loslobia
I was waiting for you to respond. Something like “just tie a rope around your keel so when it falls off you can use that as an anchor.” ;-)
It's a Bendyslow, so you needn't worry about anchoring in the first place. One of those DZR seacocks will sink it and keep it from drifting away. . 

Better? 

 

Saw Q

Member
109
2
I will assume you have a Beneteau 351 from the 90s. She should be about 5.3t displacement. (11.6k lbs) 

My boat is smaller than yours but similar tidal range issues and use. Not anywhere near Maine though. 

Alain Poireaud wrote a definitive book on anchoring and also designed the Spade. Therefore I first follow his recommendations.

Jimmy Green in the UK specialise in this stuff and have a really useful site with custom build options - fun to play around with. I’m using them for pricing etc but Maine left the Empire in a fit of pique. So my prices are likely off. Any decent chandlery should have all you need. 

Except for the Sarca, it seems you have to ask some Canadians for it? Google says groundtackle.com is the NA distributor. 

So, your use case is coastal cruising in Maine and existing 60m (200ft) rode is insufficient (agreed - that’s my secondary which is a Fortress). Existing rode is 90/10 rope/chain (ditto).

Maine has tides up to 3.5m (12ft) approx. Thus if you typically anchor in 5m (16ft) of water you really want at least 80m (260 ft) for a 10:1 scope in storm conditions. 

If bluewater (Pacific island hopping etc) then I’m sure you would want at least 150m (500ft) but I think here 100m (330 ft) is sufficient. 

Poireaud recommends a rope/chain mix. The proportion is attendant to your circumstances. Pros and cons are obvious. I’d aim for a 60/40 rope/chain mix. 

The nylon rode should be spliced directly to the galvanised chain. 

The galvanised anchor should be connected to the galvanised chain via two galvanised bow shackles back to back (I.e. one pin goes through hole in anchor -> other pin goes through chain link) - no swivels! Mouse the shackles with Monel seizing wire. 

You would therefore want 40m of 10mm (3/8“) G40 chain. Here, about $17 per metre. 

The nylon rode in a tidal area should be of octoplait as it won’t “cockle”. Thus 60m of that in 16mm (5/8“) diameter. $8.50 pm here. 

Two shackles rated for the load, here that would be 11mm with 13mm pin diameter. (Pin is where the shackle will break; weakest link and all that). $10 each. 

Online quote here with all that done for you is about $1200. That includes a version of your “state tax” which in Europe is referred to as VAT. 

Anchor - Sarca Excel #4 ($650) or Spade S80 (€730) and you’re good!

Don’t forget to make a snubber if you haven’t already. 

However, bear in mind I am just some idiot on the internet! 
 
Why 10mm or 3/8th" chain, is that not a bit hefty (and unnecessary if there is a decent snubber)?

 

valis

Super Anarchist
3,782
608
Friday Harbor, WA
2.  Arrows are at different heights because the anchors have different weights (also, two different test boats, with slightly different bollard pull, were used).
Steve, regarding that chart with the "couldn't pull hard enough to drag" arrows, I agree with IStream that the arrows should not be scaled according to anchor weight.  Since the "drag" pull is unknown it's sort of like dividing by zero -- regardless of the numerator the result is always undefined.  If you scale something by Not-A-Number, the result is Not_A_Number.

But regardless, I love your work -- thanks!

 

thinwater

Super Anarchist
1,033
132
Deale, MD
Steve, regarding that chart with the "couldn't pull hard enough to drag" arrows, I agree with IStream that the arrows should not be scaled according to anchor weight.  Since the "drag" pull is unknown it's sort of like dividing by zero -- regardless of the numerator the result is always undefined.  If you scale something by Not-A-Number, the result is Not_A_Number.

But regardless, I love your work -- thanks!
No, I think Steve is correct if you think about it for a moment.

His result is not "unknown" when an anchor did not drag, it is a "greater than" some value, in which case it is completely logical to scale the arrow to anchor weight. Steve was correct. This is common practice, similar to drawing error bars.

This is not easy data to present and there is no perfectly simple way to present it. Anchor testing is a tough business.

 

TwoLegged

Super Anarchist
5,665
2,091
I was waiting for you to respond. Something like “just tie a rope around your keel so when it falls off you can use that as an anchor.” ;-)
Haha!    I did actually think of posting exactly that ... but I decided to take a day off teasing you about the BendyToy.

Now that the don't-tease-Shark day is over ... what part of the BendyToy is strong enough to attach an anchor to?

 

TwoLegged

Super Anarchist
5,665
2,091
 Maine left the Empire in a fit of pique. 
This is super helpful. That is the kind of thing I needed, I have printed this out.

And for the record, Maine was largely loyalist but was a captive part of Massachusetts then, and was manipulated into going along with rebellion by Sam Adams and the Committee of Correspondence. There are probably a few loyalists still lurking.
Doing something big in a fit of pique can be cathartic but hazardous.

But doing something big in somebody else's fit of pique seems to exclude the upside.

OTOH, the result of that 18th-centiry pique is that Maine doesn't have any part of this: 


 

Elegua

Generalissimo
4,382
1,947
Lower Loslobia
This is super helpful. That is the kind of thing I needed, I have printed this out.

And for the record, Maine was largely loyalist but was a captive part of Massachusetts then, and was manipulated into going along with rebellion by Sam Adams and the Committee of Correspondence. There are probably a few loyalists still lurking.
If you go to Castine, there's an empty street where the loyalists barged their houses to New Brunswick. 

The Brit's didn't let go of the fort there until 1784 and then came back in 1812 and didn't leave until 1815. 

 

loneshark64

Super Anarchist
1,449
1,279
Midcoast Maine
Haha!    I did actually think of posting exactly that ... but I decided to take a day off teasing you about the BendyToy.

Now that the don't-tease-Shark day is over ... what part of the BendyToy is strong enough to attach an anchor to?
The espresso maker is pretty robust.

Was walking the dog today and my wife asked what I was thinking about. I said anchors. She said oh, I thought you were thinking about me. I laughed. Minutes later she said, tell me you weren’t thinking about me…

 
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