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  #1  
Old 04-26-2010
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Critique this mooring setup!

Okay, now begins the part where I start second guessing our setup before moving our Pearson 35 to a new mooring ball. The mooring is sunk in a protected cove (off the Severn River in Md) with about 6ft MLW and 8+MHW. The bottom is mud/sand and the P35 weighs a dainty 13,000 lbs.

So, as you can see from my quick drawing, I have a Taylor TC3 ball (the kind where the mooring runs through the ball). The chain (3/4 I think) is connected to a 7/16 swivel shackle, that is then connected to two 5/8" shackles, and each of those are connected to identical 16' 3/4" Yale Maxi-Moor pennants. The whole thing is on a 300 lbs mushroom.

http://www.brandbureau.com/staging/Mooring_410.PDF

This is my first mooring ball ... so does this look right?
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Old 04-26-2010
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I never created a mooring, but I think you should have a swivel in there to keep the chain from twisting.
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Old 04-26-2010
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Just curious... why do you have a 7/16" shackle connected to a 3/4" chain? Typically, you go up a size on the shackle, which would be a 7/8" shackle IIRC. A 7/16" shackle is a weak point in your design—it has a SWL of only 3000 lbs IIRC. I don't even think two 5/8" shackles will fit through a 7/16" shackle.

The 5/8" shackles have a working load of 6500 lbs. or so.

The pendants have a BL of 23,000 lbs and are rated for boats 23-31' LOA... they're a bit undersized for your boat. Also, I'd recommend getting two of different lengths... so that one acts as a secondary pendant and will take the load if the primary, shorter pendant fails. Assuming a working load of 6500 lbs...these are not even 3:1 in terms of safety margin. You really should be going with a 1" pendant, which is designed for boats 27-41' LOA, and have a breaking load of 42000 lbs. or about 6.5:1.



Also, you should have floats on the pendants.

Ideally, the whole mooring system should be fairly well matched in terms of safe working loads and such. Having a 7/16" shackle and only 3/4" pendants in the system you've setup, with 3/4" chain and 5/8" shackles for the terminal end of the pendants is a bit odd. While I don't think you'll get really massive storm surge in your anchorage, if you're going to do this, you might as well size everything properly.

Just curious, what is the draft on your P35. With only 6' at MLW...any kind of storm swell or wave action is going to possibly cause your boat to bottom out, unless you've got a much shallower draft than I think you do.

BTW, I'd point out that I'm using 3/4" pendants on a boat that only weighs 4000 lbs. or so and is only 28' LOA and I'm using 1/2" shackles for the mooring attachment and the boat is moored in 10'+ feet of water but only draws 16" or so boards up.
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Last edited by sailingdog; 04-26-2010 at 03:15 PM.
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Old 04-26-2010
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Indeed! There is swivel component to the 7/16 piece ... sorry, I forgot to include that.
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Old 04-26-2010
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Sailingdog, I think you're right ... that's a 7/8" shackle not 7/16. It was big enough to fit the two 5/8" through it. Maybe I'll swap the 3/4" pendants and sell them on eBay. Can't I just cleat them differently to make one the safety?
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Old 04-26-2010
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Saildog, sorry didn't answer your other question -- The P35 draws 3'9" with the board up.
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Old 04-26-2010
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I would agree with Sailingdog's evaluation of your pendants, one should be ~2' longer and going up one size would probably be a good idea. If I remember correctly, MaineSail did a good writeup on here recently about pendants and their proper length, how to lash them, etc.

I question whether 3/4" chain will fit through the mooring ball that you have selected, you might want to check that. Usually, people use a really heavy bottom chain and then a lighter top chain so that it will fit through the buoy and won't pull the buoy underwater (not much of an issue in only 8' of water). Probably the most important thing that I didn't see you mention is how much chain you will be using. I would think that 15' of bottom chain and 10' of top chain would be good if you have the space for it. The more that you can use (within reason), the better off you will be. Most conventional moorings are at least 2.5:1 scope and some are 3:1 or more.

The size of mushroom that you have selected sounds small to me. If I were choosing it, I would go with an absolute minimum of 400lbs in a protected anchorage with the scope that I suggested above and it certainly would not hurt to go with 500lbs or so. Mushroom anchors have reasonable holding power but if you ever pull one out, they won't reset and have very little resistance unlike a deadweight anchor.

Your local harbormaster should publish regulations for minimum sizing of mooring components. You need to meet these requirements as well as the requirements of peace of mind for yourself.
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Old 04-26-2010
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We have always had our pendant spliced directly onto the swivel shackle instead of using an additional shackle to connect them to the mooring ball.
It has to be made by somebody who is better qualified than me, but it can be done. The thimbles first have to be placed onto the swivel and than the pendant spiced on to the thimbles. This eliminates one more area/part that could possibly fail. The harbor master in my previous marina made all the mooring harnesses this way. It can be done and usually requires a professional.
BTW, I would mention that your harness should be inspected regularly and should probably be replaced every two years. (In my opinion)
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Old 04-26-2010
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Oy! You New Englanders are tough! Klem, the bottom around here is pretty soft ... and those mushrooms go deep. But I hear you. Sounds like I definitely need to trade one of my pendants in for an 18' 1" line.

I called the marine service and am now re-educated on what is down below. There is a 1/2" inch mooring chain 12' of top chain, not sure what the bottom chain length is, a 3/4" shackle, a 1/2" shackle ... but until I row back out there, not sure in what order those are assembled. Above the ball, I definitely put my configuration of 7/8" to 2x5/8" setup ... that's all me.
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Old 04-26-2010
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Last year the ball came loose.. We never did find it May have lost the whole thing if the boat weren't on it. I now have my lines shackled to the chain below the ball.
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