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  #1  
Old 01-06-2007
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Chain

After a year of looking, I've narrowed down my search to two boats:

1) A used (late model) Valiant 42, into which I will put roughly $50,000 to get it to near new condition, with all of the equipment that I want. All upgrades will be done at the Valiant factory in Texas.

2) A new Caliber 40 LRC very similarly equipped to the V42.

The Caliber 40's usual windlass is a Lofrans Project 1000, which only supports up to 5/16" high test chain. My primary anchor will be a 60# CQR. (I would respectfully appreciate it if everyone accepted this anchor choice, since I have spent a lot of time making this tough decision, and would rather not revisit the subject.) I would prefer to use, with this primary anchor, 300' of 3/8" chain, but that would require upgrading to the Lofrans Project 1500. I've researched the Lofrans Project 1000 on the Internet and used the standard formula for determining maximum pull weight, and this model will easily handle the weight of either setup -- it just canít grasp the 3/8" chain.

The Caliber 40 has a displacement of 21,600#, and every used one on the market (that discloses its chain size) is using 5/16".

I am planning a retirement cruise from San Diego to Ecuador -- and eventually perhaps into the Caribbean.

Could I please have your advice as to the adequacy of the 5/16" high test chain for this boat and my intended use?

Thanks,

Fritz
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Old 01-07-2007
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
Fritz...I think you are worrying too much!! 5/16 HT has a higher breaking strength than 3/8" BBB chain which is a windlass "standard" for boats much heavier than the Caliber...I use 3/8 bbb on mine which is 2x as heavy as the Caliber40 and it did not part even in hurricane Ivan (though the anchor pulled out at about 150 knots! )
Tough choice between the two boats!!

What are you gonna use for your secondary? For what it is worth...I have a CQR60 on my bow as well ( ...as my secondary)....my own experience is that is does not do as well with all chain as it does with a combination long chain/rope rode. Again...personal opinion but I think the shock loading in strong winds on a rigid chain is something that causes it problems but when you add nylon rode with the stretch factor to reduce the shock loads it performs just fine in even stronger winds. If I were setting up a CQR as a primary I would use 150' of chain and 150 of nylon. Again this is specific to MY experience with a CQR and is not meant to say this is best with other anchor types. If you decide NOT to do a combination rode based on my singular experience...let me suggest you at least put out really long snubbers to let the stretch work. With 60 lbs on the front of a Caliber...I don't think you're going anywhere anyhow!
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Old 01-07-2007
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camaraderie

Thanks for your much-respected inpute. I had planned to use long snubbers to secure the chain to cleats, but will consider your advice on using some nylon. My last boat (a Mason 33) had all chain and I loved the security of it. As to the endorsemrnt of the 5/16" chain for my boat size, you've made me feel much better.

Just out of curiosity, What does an experienced cruiser like you use as his primary anchor? I'm tentativeley planning on using some type of Danforth-type anchor as my the secondary with a combination of nylon and chain.

I WILL BE OUT OF TOWN WITH NO INTERNET ACCESS UNTIL THURSDAY, SO PLEASE DON'T BE OFFENDED BY SLOW RESPONSES.
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Old 01-07-2007
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
Fritz...I use a Delta on all chain and a long snubber as my primary. I find it very secure and think it sets much more quickly and reliably than my CQR's over the years (initially...I don't mean to imply anything about the CQR holding power once set). I can remember a time in the BVI's off Cooper island in some heavy grass and 20-25 knots when I just couldn't get my CQR to bite and got pretty tired of pulling and dropping it till it finally caught on the 6th attempt. A couple of years later with the Delta in about 15 knots it bit through on the first try.
I've only dragged twice with it in 5 years....once in very soft mud (like jello for several feet!) and once when I pulled up a ball of very spongy/grassy bottom up with the anchor in a blow. (The bottom dragged rather than the anchor!) In that instance...putting out the CQR with a nylon rode and 50ft. of chain stopped us safely. I will also admit to dragging when I anchored on debris instead of the bottom but that wasn't the Delta's fault.
Frankly, anchors have been discussed to death here and elsewhere and I don't care to start another thread on them either! But I will say that I believe that there is no one BEST anchor... I would be comfortable in most situations with a primary Delta, Spade or Rocna or CQR of suitable weight (two sizes higher than west marine recommends!) and a secondary of almost any type on at least half nylon. Danforth hi tensile is a good choice but I like the Fortress design better. I also keep a really big Fortress for emergencies. I see a lot more anchor dragging becasue people don't set them properly than because of anchor type!
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