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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 09-18-2010
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More Mooring Questions

As I am concluding my first year of being on a mooring, I am concerned about the mooring chain wrapping around the mushroom stem. My neighbors boat has wrapped the mushroom to the point that the mooring float is below the water except for low tide.

Today I hauled up my mooring chain and cleaned the float, and checked all the shackles, swivel and pendant. Thankfully everything looked like brand new but I noticed that I could not reach the heavy chain to top chain connection point.

I manned up and finally got the chain to come up (and my arms are sore tonight) but my suspicion is that it was wrapped around the stem of the mushroom- perhaps it still is?

After I finished my inspection I hooked the pendant to the rear cleat and drove the boat forward to try to get all the loose chain away from the mushroom. My scope seems to be correct but I am still worried I may be wrapped.

Any input on this would be great, I am leaving for vacation in a week and I just want to make sure my boat has no problems.
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Old 09-18-2010
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#1 If you can physically lift the bottom chain to the waters surface, and your boat is over about 20 feet, then the bottom chain is far to small & light.

#2 If your mushroom shank & bell are not buried in the mud then the mushroom is not set. You may be in an area that a dead weight mooring would serve you better if the mushroom will not fully set and disappear into the mud.

#3 What your friend is likely experiencing is chain twist due to the lack of a swivel. Without a swivel the chain will twist as the boat moves around it until the twisting causes the chain to get shorter. Let this go long enough and it can un-set the mooring.


I saw your other post and I would suggest you pay a professional to winterize and inspect your mooring. It is money WELL SPENT. When or if your boat breaks free you will have a document showing your mooring was 1- properly sized 2- properly installed 3- Had the right scope 4- was in safe and operable condition.

The first winter you lose your winter stick and you have to pay a diver for three or four hours time to find it, it is darn muddy around here and both the chain and anchor can 100% disappear into the mud once the winter stick is gone. You'll quickly see why paying a pro to winterize is a good deal. I have three moorings and have lost the sticks on two of them in the last four years due to sheet ice. I paid NOTHING to recover my moorings because I paid my mooring guy to do the winterizing.
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Last edited by Maine Sail; 09-18-2010 at 09:44 PM.
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Old 09-18-2010
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I am at Willard Beach in South Portland.

My bottom chain is 30' of 5/8" (4.25lbs per ft) and my top chain is 20' of 1/2", the boat is 25' on a 300lbs mushroom.

My mooring was set in May by an approved contractor and he filed the paperwork with the harbormaster showing all specs- no concerns here.

As far as loosing the mooring due to ice, I know that is an issue. What I find odd is that only two out of 40 or so moorings even had a winter stick installed, the rest were just left.

Last edited by CascoBay; 09-18-2010 at 09:53 PM.
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Old 09-18-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CascoBay View Post
I am at Willard Beach in South Portland.

My bottom chain is 30' of 5/8" (4.25lbs per ft) and my top chain is 20' of 1/2", the boat is 25' on a 300lbs mushroom.

Besides hiring a diver are there any tell tale signs that the mushroom is not buried- I assume chain wrap is a reasonable indicator?
A diver is the only sure way to know. If you find your mooing is not yet buried at the end of a full season i would strongly consider switching to a pyramid, screw or granite block. A chain wrap can be dangerous if the mooring un-sets. 5/8" is rather light for a 25 footer for bottom chain IMHO but people have used lighter. The idea is that the weight of it provides some caternary to prevent shock loading in a storm. At Willard you are both exposed to wind and wave action making heavy bottom chain fairly important.


This is the bottom chain on my Falmouth mooring for a 36 footer. It can not be lifted to the surface without mechanical aids. My Cumberland mooring, the one I use for storms, is USCG chain with the bar in the middle of the link. It weighs a lot more than the stuff pictured below. My brothers Mako, smaller than your boat, uses 1" long link bottom chain to 5/8" long link top chain. We can not lift the bottom chain to the surface without a winch.

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Old 09-18-2010
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I may have a diver check the mushroom, although its a mute point because I am not using the mooring next season and then in the spring of 2012 it will need to be inspected which will probably mean someone pulling it up

I can definitely appreciate the use of heavy chain on the bottom and probably could/should have gone with 3/4" or larger.

If you want a good laugh you should read the Portland Harbormaster's guide for moorings, they sized me at a 150lbs mushroom, 1/2" bottom chain, and 3/8" top chain.
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Old 09-19-2010
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It is also rather a moot point because if it was a mute point you wouldn't have much to say at all!
Mute means quiet or not able to speak while moot means it does not really matter what is said.
I know, I know, who the F. asked the language police to patrol here?
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Old 09-19-2010
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Originally Posted by CascoBay View Post
I may have a diver check the mushroom, although its a mute point because I am not using the mooring next season and then in the spring of 2012 it will need to be inspected which will probably mean someone pulling it up
A good experienced mooring inspector will dive on the mooring NOT un-set it or haul it to inspect it. One other reason for heavy bottom chain is that if heavy enough it can last as long as ten or more years. This helps avoid the un-setting of the mooring. My top chain is replaced about every four years but my bottom chain on Cumberland is now 11 years old and still "barely worn" according to my mooring guy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CascoBay View Post
I can definitely appreciate the use of heavy chain on the bottom and probably could/should have gone with 3/4" or larger.
It just works..

Quote:
Originally Posted by CascoBay View Post
If you want a good laugh you should read the Portland Harbormaster's guide for moorings, they sized me at a 150lbs mushroom, 1/2" bottom chain, and 3/8" top chain.
I've read it and it is a joke. Of course that is proabably why sooooo many boats in the Portland area go on the rocks in storms. Good friends of mine lost their boat at Willard. Fortunaly, we have some experienced moorng installers around and if you find one you won't have the problem of light tackle. I use John Blood who owns Coasta Barge & Mooring out of Harpswell. I know he works Cumberland and Falmouth but don't know about Willard.
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It is also rather a moot point because if it was a mute point you wouldn't have much to say at all!
Mute means quiet or not able to speak while moot means it does not really matter what is said.
I know, I know, who the F. asked the language police to patrol here?
Seriously?

Anyway- to everyone else, thanks for all the input.
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Old 09-20-2010
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As 'seriously' as you want to take it.
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