Not Getting the All-Chain Thing - Page 17 - SailNet Community
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post #161 of 535 Old 10-13-2017
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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

Know line takes up shock load but think without snubbers you are still loading the windlass. Itís been drilled into me the windlass is only for picking up the chain. Itís not for moving the boat nor for breaking the anchor free. Boatís engine or chop is for that stuff. Been told overloading the windlass sooner or later leads to failure. Even tie anchor to bow cleats (run is outside the boat) and dont depend on windlass to keep it in position for anything beyond reasonable coastal hops. With my luck failure will occur when Iím by myself so want to avoid it at all costs.
Just wondering if anyone takes the effort to get rode load when using rope off the windlass and if so how? Could see putting on a cleat but if blowing getting it off the cleat might result in a sudden jerk and getting a chafe free run might be difficult on some boats. Looking at my boat run from roller to windlass is chafe free but if I go over roller to a bowcleat it isnít. Thoughts?

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post #162 of 535 Old 10-13-2017
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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

In relatively shallow water, chain is actually a disadvantage because there will be no catenary and the strain will go straight to the boat in even moderate winds. If anchoring in shallow water, say 10', one should use a very long snubber, because that is the only part of the system that can provide any shock dampening.

So your points 2 and 4 are counter to each other.

It all depends on one's definition of shallow. We are often anchored in 5', while some consider 25' shallow.

As for point 5, why can't this also be the case with a mixed rode?

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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

10ft would be the absolute min we anchor in, but there are several anchorages around here that apply. Most would consider that a fairly shallow anchorage.

10ft, plus 4 to the bow, is 14ft, times 5 is 70 feet minimum. Why no catenary?

I would more likely put out 7x or 98ft, since the rope folks will be doing that anyway. If I have the room, I will put out even more, 150 ft usually. The Cuttyhunk anchorage is famous for this.

Granted, if one could fit in 5ft of water and say only had a 2ft freeboard, 5x scope would be 35 feet of rode. Still, that's got to have some catenary. It's still 7ft down to the bottom and 28ft of chain to lift. I'm sure I would put out more anyway.


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post #164 of 535 Old 10-13-2017
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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

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Originally Posted by outbound View Post
Know line takes up shock load but think without snubbers you are still loading the windlass. Itís been drilled into me the windlass is only for picking up the chain. Itís not for moving the boat nor for breaking the anchor free. Boatís engine or chop is for that stuff. Been told overloading the windlass sooner or later leads to failure. Even tie anchor to bow cleats (run is outside the boat) and dont depend on windlass to keep it in position for anything beyond reasonable coastal hops. With my luck failure will occur when Iím by myself so want to avoid it at all costs.
Just wondering if anyone takes the effort to get rode load when using rope off the windlass and if so how? Could see putting on a cleat but if blowing getting it off the cleat might result in a sudden jerk and getting a chafe free run might be difficult on some boats. Looking at my boat run from roller to windlass is chafe free but if I go over roller to a bowcleat it isnít. Thoughts?
Depending on the sea state and when using a mixed rode, I will attach a two leg rope 'bridle' to the rope rode with a 'many turn' (~6-8 turn) prusik knot. Prusik Knot | How to tie the Prusik Knot | Knots.
My boat has 'hawse holes', one each side and well back from the bow, so there's no concern about chafing the topsides with a 2-leg bridle; that prusik knot on the rode positioned 'under' the bow.
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post #165 of 535 Old 10-13-2017
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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

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Originally Posted by BryceGTX View Post
You will have to get on deck and retrieve your anchor. God forbid you are in 60 feet of water, all chain with a 75 pound Rocna and your windlass stops working. These are the conditions that you will lose your boat.Bryce
You see Bryce, as I'm sure you knew but have apparently forgotten, anyone using all chain has a line from the end of the chain that is secured in the chain locker and will allow this line and the chain end to reach the anchor roller. Then, given that for any reason the chain cannot be retrieved, one can secure a buoy to the end of the chain, cut this line and chuck the chain over the side for retrieval once the weather abates. So, in fact one will not lose the boat, but just clear the area until the weather abates.
As for you hauling aboard an anchor hand over hand on primarily line in winds that cause the rain to hurt when it hits your face, even on your 40 footer, unless you have the strength of the terminator, you aren't going to be pulling a pick (I'd guess 40 pound minimum), some chain and rope up all that successfully, never mind doing so in any seas.
Secondly, any proper electric marine windlass I've ever seen has a manual back up should the electrics fail.
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post #166 of 535 Old 10-13-2017
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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
In relatively shallow water, chain is actually a disadvantage because there will be no catenary and the strain will go straight to the boat in even moderate winds. If anchoring in shallow water, say 10', one should use a very long snubber, because that is the only part of the system that can provide any shock dampening.

So your points 2 and 4 are counter to each other.

It all depends on one's definition of shallow. We are often anchored in 5', while some consider 25' shallow.

As for point 5, why can't this also be the case with a mixed rode?

Mark

ummmm .....
Those methods, for me, have been quite successful for the past ~45-50k nMi. Also remember what I stated: "my method", not a one-size fits all/everyone.
If you'd notice my avatar you'll see a bowsprit and with the anchor roller about 6-6.5' off of the water, so that normal catenary in the chain will be over 12 ft. (vertical) even if Im grounded - plenty of up/down catenary movement for shock loads in most normal cases. In 'heavy' anchoring conditions one would expect that a longer scope run of chain would be normally encountered; thus, a greater length of catenary and mass of chain for that longer scope.
My points 2 & 4 are not counter for me on my boat or any other similar boat design.

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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
In relatively shallow water, chain is actually a disadvantage because there will be no catenary and the strain will go straight to the boat in even moderate winds. If anchoring in shallow water, say 10', one should use a very long snubber, because that is the only part of the system that can provide any shock dampening.

So your points 2 and 4 are counter to each other.

It all depends on one's definition of shallow. We are often anchored in 5', while some consider 25' shallow.

As for point 5, why can't this also be the case with a mixed rode?

Mark
This is why I think the best take-away from the Spade article is their recommendation of 25 meters of chain, then rope rode spliced in thereafter. And the writer, though perhaps not perfect in the grammar department, seems to have enough experience to be considered a "real cruiser"...

Quote:
During the last seven and half months, I spent 129 days anchored (out of 228) in 61 different anchorages. The mean water depth was 6.50 meters and the scope 5/1. The total length of the anchor chain was about 30 meters, of which 23.5 meters was lying on the bottom (30 – 6.50 m) Therefore, I believe a length of about 25 meters is perfect. If the water depth(sic) is less, then you will be anchoring with an all mooring chain line….
So, if you're a diehard all-chainer, you'll be on all chain in most anchorages you're in with this amount of chain. And that's been my point from the beginning. BUT then you have the significant added safety factor of the additional rope rode Spade recommends in this same article.

It really comes down to the length of chain you want based on your anchoring area. But the chain-only arguments for NOT going with a spliced rope rode behind whatever length of leading chain you set just aren't compelling from a strength or seamanship perspective. You're severely limiting your options and safety factors.

Convenience? Okay sure. But that's never been much of a factor in good seamanship in challenging conditions.
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post #168 of 535 Old 10-13-2017
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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

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Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post
Wow! There is definitely some strength in those snubbers! I have no doubt you've never broken one. I think the breaking strength of that rope is around 47K pounds. You could pretty much hang your entire boat off of one.

But as the Spade article says, make sure that you are using line that is sized to give you enough elasticity. That is the key. A 47K# snubber is going to transfer most all that load to the chain anyway, which will be FAR weaker. How do you attach the snubbers to the chain? That can have a negative impact as well.

BTW - how long was your trip? I assume your write up of it is in your blog link?
I forget what the working strength is, but it wasn’t 47K … I doubt if my standing rigging is that strong, let alone my chain. All I can tell you is they’re stretchy, but damn strong. I don’t want the snubbers to be the weak point in the system, after all. But they definitely take the shock load well.

We took about 60 days to go from Lake Ontario to Newfoundland. Most people do it in less than 1/2 that time. But trust me, my tag line is not simply aspirational. I live it

BTW, we only saw two docks the whole time. Anchored out the rest of the time, sometimes in rather tenuous locations.

Mark, your comment about shallow water and no catenary is true. At that point though, it is the friction of the chain on the bottom that provides the shock absorption and gentle loading. This is assuming you’ve got out the appropriate rode length (at least 5:1, and I usually go for more).

I like anchoring in shallow water b/c I prefer being close to shore. We draw 6’ so I’m fine with 8’ at low tide if seas are no issue, and as long as I can get a good set. Below 8’ I get nervous.

ADD: I’m not trying to argue everyone should be on all-chain. Rope/chain is clearly a fine choice, and is the best choice for some boats and/or some anchoring conditions. It was the best choice for my previous boat: a 34’ cruiser.

My experience has taught be all-chain is best for the widest possible range of conditions, but only IF your boat can reasonably manage the weight and the retrival. If it can’t, then it’s not the best choice.

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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

Not to quibble too much Mike, but the snubbers should be the weak point in the system. Otherwise, you're making the chain/shackles/etc. the weak point. If a snubber parts because of load, you can fix that pretty easily. If the chain parts because the snubber won't, you're screwed.

And don't forget that chain-hooks on snubbers can also weaken links. It looks like Practical Sailor now has some fairly good info on this - now far more accurate than what they first put out. They published some seriously flawed initial tests implying that the Mantus hook was bad, for example, then (likely thanks to my gentle questioning of the results) they tested again - correctly this time - and reversed their flawed findings on the Mantus hook. I even wasted $20 or something signing up to review their initial flawed article. The things I do for the sailing community. Heh-heh.

Anyway, their tests showed that this connection method is another potential weakening factor on the chain. So be careful!

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Re: Not Getting the All-Chain Thing

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Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post
Not to quibble too much Mike, but the snubbers should be the weak point in the system. Otherwise, you're making the chain/shackles/etc. the weak point. If a snubber parts because of load, you can fix that pretty easily. If the chain parts because the snubber won't, you're screwed.

And don't forget that chain-hooks on snubbers can also weaken links. It looks like Practical Sailor now has some fairly good info on this - now far more accurate than what they first put out. They published some seriously flawed initial tests implying that the Mantus hook was bad, for example, then (likely thanks to my gentle questioning of the results) they tested again - correctly this time - and reversed their flawed findings on the Mantus hook. I even wasted $20 or something signing up to review their initial flawed article. The things I do for the sailing community. Heh-heh.

Anyway, their tests showed that this connection method is another potential weakening factor on the chain. So be careful!
Oh come on Ö youíre just quibbling. Something has to be the weakest point. I donít think it should be the snubbers. And yes, you can have elasticity and strength.

I went through a lot of chain hooks. None of them performed to my satisfaction, although I never did try the Mantus hook. Iíve used rolling hitches for years now. Simple, direct. The only issue I have is that, b/c of my propensity to get in close and shallow, they very occasionally come loose due to rubbing on the bottom. I always use two in a bridle though, as backup.

BTW, I didnít answer your blog question. Yes, the journey is all there. Itís really written for friends and family, and mostly just an excuse to post pics, but weíre all friends here, right .
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