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  #1  
Old 07-07-2012
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Opinions on anchor swivels

I have a 45 lb. CQR with 200 feet of 5/8 BBB chain and 400 feet of rope anchor rode attached.
I have never used an anchor swivel before, but on the same hand I have never had to deal with so much chain and rode before, it's over 400 lbs dry.
I have a Lofrans vertical windlass with 880 lbs. of pulling force.
I am a believer in keeping it simple but with 200 feet of chain a swivel seems to make a lot of sense.
I don't anchor that much and most of my anchoring is in <50 feet of water. The extra rode is for a stern anchor, stern tieing, or an emergency bow anchoring.
The reason for a swivel is obvious but has anyone had problems with there swivels, ie; all out failure, falling apart, speading apart.
What designs are best, clamshell, dual rings with a bolt, dual barrels with an internal bolt? Some are stainless, some a galvinized.
What seems to work the best?
Constructive opinions please.
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Old 07-07-2012
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

There are lots of failures associated with swivels.

More chain isn't a driver toward a swivel. The biggest driver is a long periods at anchor in a reversing current. If you're spending a weekend in a river I don't think you need a swivel. If you're spending a month somewhere with reversing currents or shifting winds you might consider it. Alternatively you could just go sailing every few days and not worry about it.
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Old 07-07-2012
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

Ah, well that is the best reason I've seen for one yet, but I will never be anchoring in a river and the times we do anchor will be in sheltered bays and the like. So current won't be much of an issue and a lot of anchorages we have have the option to stern tie.
I understand the need to have some means of redirection based on the current swinging the boat around, but my main concern was removing the twist in the chain.
I have visions of the chain loading up and trying to untwist with the anchor flipping around or simply having difficulty setting it. I was thinking of putting about one on with about one foot of chain to the anchor to allow full movement without binding.
I just don't like the idea of a small bolt, that you can't really see, is all that is keeping the boat from a disaster.
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Old 07-07-2012
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dog Ship View Post
I have visions of the chain loading up and trying to untwist with the anchor flipping around or simply having difficulty setting it.
No, that won't happen, not with 50' of chain out.

What can happen is that the anchor will come up backwards, needing a 180 twist to set in the rollers. In this case, there is only 3-5' of chain between the windlass and anchor, and only inches between the anchor and the roller. Mostly, it depends on the anchor shank design.

I've had both set-ups on the same boat. That was the only difference I ever saw.

I don't have a strong opinion. If the anchor comes up OK, skip the swivle.
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dog Ship View Post
my main concern was removing the twist in the chain.
Where does the twist come from? From the boat making full circles. Why does that happen? Current reversals and substantial wind shifts over time. You'll find that the time it takes to get the anchor up is plenty of time for a few twists to unwind. For most (most, not all) people the swivel is a solution looking for a problem.
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

What ever you do, Don't buy Chinese!
Bad experience.

Dick
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Old 07-08-2012
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

I use an anchor swivel on my all chain rode to allow the anchor to swivel itself around and seat itself properly on the bow roller. The swivel also allows it to turn from side to side.

We were anchored in a cove on Friday when a line of intense storms extending some 200 miles moved across the Chesapeake. The weather service had a name for this storm. It was called a derecho. It was, thankfully, quite rare. It was easily the most intense storm I have ever ridden out on the waters. The NOAA weather radio reported the storm had a history of producing wind gusts between 60 and 80 mph! My boat is a heavy, full keeled boat weighing in around 18,500 lbs. when the storm hit, it hit with a huge blast of air from the starboard beam, healing us over and putting the rail in the water until the boat rounded up and faced into the wind. We spent the next 2-1/2 hours thrashing about from one side to the other at anchor. The anchor held marvelously and did not drag at all. It was VERY well dug in the next morning and was hard to pull up. There was NO damage to the swivel or any shackles connecting my chain to the anchor. I would, based on that experience, have no trouble recommending the use of a robustly built 3 way action, swivel on your rode.

Tod
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

When I say twist, I don't mean twisting in a rubber band airplane fashion as much as I mean applying rotational torque to the end of the fluke by means of a load being applied to the rode. It may only be enough rotational force to turn the anchor a 1/4 or a 1/2 turn, but that could be enough to drag anchor or cause difficulty in setting it.
This will happen when you have a chain or rope at rest. If you apply a pulling force to that, then it will load up rotationally as more pulling force is applied. When the load is removed then the twist returns to it's resting, unloaded position. All chain and three strand rope will do this to some extent.
Most of the boats in our marina have a swivel but I'm still not sold on it.
Tod, what type of swivel do you have and how do you have it attached?
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dog Ship View Post
I mean applying rotational torque to the end of the fluke by means of a load being applied to the rode. It may only be enough rotational force to turn the anchor a 1/4 or a 1/2 turn, but that could be enough to drag anchor or cause difficulty in setting it.
This will happen when you have a chain or rope at rest.
Certainly with three-strand. Not with octoplait or 12-strand and not with chain. You could talk me into a swivel between three-strand and chain.

One shouldn't need a swivel just to align the anchor. There is some other alignment or fitment problem if you do.
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Re: Opinions on anchor swivels

I thought about putting a swivel in between the rope and the chain, but that will cause proplems going though the gypsy.
My 400' of rope rode is made up of two pieces of line. One 200' piece of 7/8" yacht braid and the other is 200' of 1" 3-strand.
Maybe, I will put the 3-strand on so it comes out last, reducing the effects of twist as the 3-strand will twist more than the rest of it. The 3-strand is shackled on so I can also use it for my stern anchor.
There is no real fitment problem, as a matter of fact it probably has better range of movement with a shackle on the anchor rather than a swivel.
That's why I had thought of having about a foot of chain shackled to the anchor, and then a swivel, and then the rest of the chain.
I have about 5' between my windlass and the roller so there is room for that.
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