Re-galvanizing chain

mckenzie.keith

Aspiring Anarchist
2,378
1,091
Santa Cruz
My anchor chain is a little rusty. Thinking about having it re-galvanized by Pacific Galvanizing in Oakland, CA. Any tips, secrets, special things to ask about or experiences with Pacific to share? It is 5/16 G43 chain. Over the phone they said it is US$ 1.60 per lb. This chain happens to be close to 1lb per foot so it is about 1.60 per foot. That is around US$ 3.50 per kg for you metric people. Or $5.30 per meter.
 
Make sure you have it quoted for full blasting and tumbled after. It's pretty labor intensive to get blasted right and will be a mess if not cleaned right. If they don't tumble it you get a brick back. If you can take it out in the sticks ahead of time and drag it around behind a truck, that does a good job cleaning it. We did ours in Panama and they did a good job, was about 70% of new plus shipping. There was a South African guy who did boat services and acted as agent, he was a stickler for quality and made them re blast it twice before galvanizing.
 

Zonker

Super Anarchist
11,572
8,404
Canada
Do they regularly do chain? That's pretty key. You need to have it done properly so the links don't stick together as it cools. Good prep is important as well. We dragged ours on a sandy/gravel road for about 10 km, end for ending it a few times. Came very shiny and we immediately drove it to the galvanizing facility and had them acid dipped right away.
 

mckenzie.keith

Aspiring Anarchist
2,378
1,091
Santa Cruz
When I called I told them it was anchor chain from a boat. I asked if that is something they do. He was very parsimonious with his words. He just said "yeah." No elaboration. I said can you clean it first because it is kind of rusty. Again, "yeah." They definitely advertise that they do anchor chain. They have a picture of it right on their website. Maybe I will try to find a place to drag it behind the truck for a bit. Or I will go visit the place and try to talk to someone who is more generous with words. If it doesn't cost too much I might prefer to have them blast it. I can't think of anywhere I can drag it behind the truck. My property isn't that big. Its not legal to drive on the beach anywhere around here. Can't outrun the cops dragging 200 feet of chain.
 

El Borracho

Bar Keepers Friend
7,714
3,635
Pacific Rim
 

El Borracho

Bar Keepers Friend
7,714
3,635
Pacific Rim
The caustic bath should remove painted chain marks….but maybe those should be addressed directly first. I wouldn‘t think sandblasting is required for the rust, old zinc, and salt crud.

A galvanizing shop is likely a different world. Expect gruff. Probably no concierge service option. Leave the Tesla at home.
 

fboats

Member
454
177
My anchor chain is a little rusty. Thinking about having it re-galvanized by Pacific Galvanizing in Oakland, CA. Any tips, secrets, special things to ask about or experiences with Pacific to share? It is 5/16 G43 chain. Over the phone they said it is US$ 1.60 per lb. This chain happens to be close to 1lb per foot so it is about 1.60 per foot. That is around US$ 3.50 per kg for you metric people. Or $5.30 per meter.
Nothing wrong with re-galvanized chain.

Most places experienced at chain can do a better job prepping it than you and your F-150 can.

Maybe ask them to show you a few photos of their work or go to the shop and let them show you around.

Worst case is you are out a few hundred bucks. Best case is you have a brand new chain for pennies on the dollar.
 

mckenzie.keith

Aspiring Anarchist
2,378
1,091
Santa Cruz
The caustic bath should remove painted chain marks….but maybe those should be addressed directly first. I wouldn‘t think sandblasting is required for the rust, old zinc, and salt crud.

A galvanizing shop is likely a different world. Expect gruff. Probably no concierge service option. Leave the Tesla at home.
I will take my beat up '99 tacoma pick-up truck. I am expecting gruff. But I think they should be able to say something like yeah we do anchor chain all the time. Or, we haven't ever seen an anchor chain before but how hard could it be? (In which case I will say seeya). The PO of the boat used those little plastic pieces that stick in the links to mark the length. No paint on the chain. So I will take those plastic things out. Otherwise it is just rusty and crusty.

The place is close to where the boat is so that is good. Probably like 10 minute drive.

Looks like I have other stuff to do for the next couple weeks but I will come back to this thread and follow up.
 

Hale Moana

Member
174
146
Morro Bay
If the chain has been used much which I would doubt on your boat I would look to see how worn the chain is on the end of the links. I know that there is a spec for the wear on chain but I don't know what it is.
 

accnick

Super Anarchist
4,483
3,395
When I called I told them it was anchor chain from a boat. I asked if that is something they do. He was very parsimonious with his words. He just said "yeah." No elaboration. I said can you clean it first because it is kind of rusty. Again, "yeah." They definitely advertise that they do anchor chain. They have a picture of it right on their website. Maybe I will try to find a place to drag it behind the truck for a bit. Or I will go visit the place and try to talk to someone who is more generous with words. If it doesn't cost too much I might prefer to have them blast it. I can't think of anywhere I can drag it behind the truck. My property isn't that big. Its not legal to drive on the beach anywhere around here. Can't outrun the cops dragging 200 feet of chain.
At some point, you just replace the chain. If they won't tell you exactly what they do, you can't really trust them to do the right thing.

I had the chain on my last boat re-galvanized in NZ while we were there, because it was dramatically cheaper than replacing 400' of 3/8" (10mm) G4. I also had the 60 lb CQR re-galvanized, which apparently is a bit more tricky because of the ballasted tip on that one.

On my current boat, the 200' of 5/16 G4 was rusty when I bought the boat. Turned out that it was virtually impossible to get it re-galvanized where I live in S Florida. It wasn't that expensive to replace it, and the seller accidentally gave me a 250' piece. When I figured that out while marking it, I went back to him to offer to return the extra 50'.

Turns out that it was a special order, and he was only charged for 200', so he just told me to keep it. In the end I cut 25' off for a leader on my spare anchor, and kept 225' as the primary rode, since we aren't doing "serious" cruising in this boat.

On most boats with all-chain, almost all the wear is on one end of the chain. If you end-for-end it yearly, you get a lot more mileage out of it.
 

charisma94

Fucking Legend
1,456
503
Palma de Mallorca
Is that measured by calipers on the turn of a link? Or by counting links per some length?
I use calipers on the turn of a link. Not every link, but I look at a link or two per foot or so of chain, you soon build a picture of how worn things may/may not be. It's rare that just one link degrades more than it's neighbour. Typically I'll try to find the shittiest looking links in that foot of chain and measure those.

I can't remember finding a link actually "worn" by 10%. The most common wear I find is when the galvanising is wearing thin and the link actually rusts badly, decreasing the diameter or heavy pitting.
 



Latest posts

SA Podcast

Sailing Anarchy Podcast with Scot Tempesta

Sponsored By:

Top