Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: somewhere south of civilization
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I think it really depends on where and how you intend to use the boat.
For weekending or the occasional week-long cruise, you probably are not going to be headed out when there is a possibility of severe weather, so you can scale your ground tackle back for that use. If you are going cruising, where you can reasonably expect some really bad weather early one morning (3 AM) that could put your boat and life in jeopardy, then you should have ample ground tackle for any eventuality.
I see no reason at all to spend the extra money on expensive high test G-4 chain. BBB is designed as marine anchor chain; G-4 is not! The safety of your ground tackle does not come from the strength of your chain, but rather from its weight (catenary action) and your snub line. I doubt that you will ever sail with any chain that is strong enough alone to hold your boat in big seas if the chain is tight from the anchor to the bow of the boat. That is why we use snub lines and the heaviest chain we can reasonably handle. At the same time, there is little point in a ridiculously heavy anchor. Your ground tackle is a complete system and should be matched to the boat and her use.
Again, depending on where and how you use your boat determines the length of chain to carry aboard. Most cruisers carry at least 200 feet in one length of chain. The idea of having an extra shot or two and connecting it to your main length is pretty unreasonable if one is using a windlass. A shackle will not go through the gypsy on the windlass and a soft link is not something you can just whip out and connect a couple of lengths of chain together in an emergency.
Much better is to have several complete sets of anchor tackle for emergencies if going on an extended cruise to unfamiliar waters. For instance, our #1 is an 88# Rocna on 200' of ˝" chain. Our #2 is a Fortress 55 with 50' of 3/8" chain and 350' of 1" braided nylon. I'll not bother you with the details of #'s 3, 4 & 5, but suffice to say that I expect that should we need to anchor in a hurricane, we will be OK if no other boat causes us problems.
"Any idiot can make a boat go; it takes a sailor to stop one." Spike Africa aboard the schooner Wanderer in Sausalito, Ca. 1964.
“Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows
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Last edited by capta; 12-26-2018 at 04:27 PM.