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post #21 of 47 Old 11-04-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

minne,

i would swag, many of us use a mixture. IE some chain and rope rode. What % of say 300-400' which is not an uncommon amount of rode to have onboard.....all chain vs 50-100' of chain, rest rope, vs say less than 50' of chain and the rest rope........

300' of all chain on my 6400 lbs boat, would be too big a %, but the thing bow down, even if I uses 1/4" chain, which I have about 20' of G4 on my cruise anchor setup. would prefer about 50, then another 250' minimum of 9/16" rope.. That would be enough for most places I would anchor farther north, along with a stern line for tying to a rock on shore, when in 200-300' of water less than 100' from shore......

We have to do some craxy techniques around here at times!

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post #22 of 47 Old 11-04-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

Here's some fairly valid info on the dilemma of the use of anchor chain ... or just "all rope"
https://www.spadeanchorusa.com/anchor-chain-or-rope

Rx: chain is the ultimate for use in an abrasive bottom. You need about 7:1 or greater scope with either chain or mixed codes or just rope if its blowing stink, 10:1 scope is even better.
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post #23 of 47 Old 11-04-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pdqaltair View Post
Yes, something like that.
Id be pretty sure there's an established ASTM test methodology for side to side abrasion resistance ... as there are plenty of established standards for just about every other possible mode of abrasion.
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post #24 of 47 Old 11-04-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichH View Post
Here's some fairly valid info on the dilemma of the use of anchor chain ... or just "all rope"
https://www.spadeanchorusa.com/anchor-chain-or-rope.......
I've seen that one before. It's pretty confusing, because it starts by saying that other than to avoid chafe on aggressive sea beds, anchor chain has "all the disadvantages". Then it goes on to say this about all chain rode......

Quote:
With light wind, it gives a perfect horizontal pull to the anchor and the best holding. With moderate wind, its weight and catenary effect give a perfect shock absorbing effect.
It sure reads like all chain is the best choice for light to moderate wind, especially when combined with chafe resistance. My point is that light to moderate wind is what most people choose to anchor in 95+% of the time.

Then the article fails to recognize the standard practice of attaching a snubber to a chain rode, when considering shock absorption in heavy winds. Strange disconnects for an article from an anchor company.


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post #25 of 47 Old 11-04-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

Consider that 'snubbers' only briefly extend the impact time (total force imparted by) of an all chain rode. In moderate conditions its the catenary that dampens the total time of impact - reasonable. In the quite rare extreme conditions and when there is essentially no catenary, a few feet of comparatively low elastic 'snubber line' isn't going to make any effective difference in the amount of impact - one of PDQ's rationale basis for this thread. During those times Ill probably be at 10:1 of greater scope (on rope or chain) ... there probably will be catenary, at least between the gusts. ;-)

The only rational way to do this is to perform repeatable experimentation in various bottoms, use various scopes and fluke angles, apply sufficient 'break out' force on the anchor --- pretty much all anchor manufacturers and USCG, etc. have published such data. And then, use such info and your personal experience as your guide.

Also know that double braid and three strand nylon continually hydrolyzes (weakens) when in constant contact with water .... a consideration for those who sit on their anchor a lot while doing 'extended' cruising. Certainly galvanized steel doesn't continually 'break-down' & weaken to the same rate as water-wetted nylon.
As one who uses both all chain and a mix rode .... after a few seasons anchored in 'de islands' and mud holes to and from these places, and well knowing the hydrolysis - material strength problem with wetted nylon, I will tell you that I certainly replace more nylon rodes than I replace all chain rodes. In industry etc., nylon(N6 & N66) begins to hydrolyze 'severely' and begin to significantly 'particulate' after about ~6 months of contact with water. Have you priced 'quality' nylon anchor line lately? ;-)

As regards the comparative weights of chain vs. nylon .... does it really matter to add an extra 1-200 lbs. to a cruising boat thats probably already 2 or more inches deeper in the water because of the typical stores aboard when long term cruising? I haven't cut the handle off my toothbrushes, etc. to save weight since I was actively backpacking; nor do I cruise with empty fuel (100 gallons) and water (100 gallon) tanks, only have 3 days of lightweight snack food, nor do I inspect and weigh everyone's 'permitted gym bag' for clothing .... all to save weight.
When Im PHRF racing my crab-crusher ... I might leave the all chain rode at the dock and have mostly empty tanks, etc.

For me, I prefer all chain so that when I inadvertently wrap the chain around a coral head or cochina rock (fossilized shells) during a real blow, I don't give a damn. ;-)

regards

Last edited by RichH; 11-04-2017 at 11:12 AM.
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post #26 of 47 Old 11-04-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

THe article Rich linked, shows where chain is at its best and worst. Lighter winds keeps the pull level. BUT, as noted by many in threads like this, over 25-35 knots of wind, you are hanging on the anchor, the rode be it chain, rope or a combo is straight. I can see how in higher winds a mixture would be better, as shown in many of the tests I have seen.
So the question still is, if you have a smaller boat as I recall the OP is looking at, what is the best, better, bestist rode option depending upon where one is anchoring? Under what conditions? I'll stick with the general recommendation I've seen is, 1 lb of anchor, 1 foot of chain, rest rope in appropriate sizing for task at hand per anchor size. That 1 lb of steel/iron anchor nets you around 60 knots of wind speed. 1/2 lb nets you around 40 knots. 1/4 lb around 20 knots. This is ratio's I've noticed trying to figure out anchor sizing for my boat. More importantly, trying to see what the minimum size for PHRF racing was netting me. That formula was getting me 1/5 lb per foot. Being as that ratio was to stop you from going aground in light winds as the current moved you into a bad situation, and not have to use the motor......Aluminum anchors are about 1/4 to 1/2 the wt of an equal iron anchor. Ratio works better from wind standpoint. But as noted by many, the fortress is harder to set than other styles of anchors. It does have a place once set! For me the proverbial storm anchor!
I would also increase chain to rope ratio if you moor in a know abrasive bottom as noted by many, including coral etc. Here where I am at, 25-75' of chain is plenty, rest rope.

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post #27 of 47 Old 11-06-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

I think it's ironic that some of these arguments are showing that chain is most effective in light winds, where the catenary effect can play out. But almost any anchor will hold in light winds. I fully agree that if you're around sharp rocks or hard coral, that chain is much less likely to chafe through. Chain is also less likely to wrap the keel in reversing current conditions, but a kellet can solve that problem.

The one thing that nobody has mentioned here is the practical matter of cleaning off the chain from a muddy bottom. A couple years ago we had a storm coming in and had to anchor in deeper water than ideal. We put about 200' of chain out. The storm broke up, so 170' of the chain was laying on the mud bottom the whole time. The chain came up totally caked, with the mud completely filling in the holes in the links. It took over an hour to hose down the chain as it came in. And by the time we got it all hosed off, another storm came in (which also broke up).

If you anchor exclusively in mud bottoms without rocks or other chafing hazards, I think the plus/minus balance of chain is much less favorable.

Rick S., Swarthmore, PA
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post #28 of 47 Old 11-07-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

An all chain rode, for probably most users, typically involves an electric windlass/gypsy and a high pressure washdown. The washdown cleans the chain as fast as you can retrieve it - most times (if you have enough water pressure and volume). One toe on the windlass' foot switch and one thumb on the wash down nozzle, the other hand is for holding the morning's coffee cup .... easy peasy .

With mixed rodes, you need two hands to retrieve hand-over-hand and with no way to use a wash down during retrieval .... OR pull up, stop, wash, pull more, stop, wash, ad infinitum; OR, use the rope portion of the gypsy and still have no means to operate the wash down because it still requires two hands to keep the rope tight on the rope capstan-gypsy as you retrieve.
And then there's (the occasional to rare): retrieve the rode and dump it into a big sodden slimy pile on the foredeck while you attempt to quickly move to find a spot that 'may' hold because the first mud hole 'just won't hold' the damn anchor, .....and then you have to wash the deck, 'the pile', your pants, your boat shoes, your face, your arms/hands/legs etc., ..... and several days/weeks/months later all the congealed goo thats now become a hardened evil mess in the bottom of your rope locker.

I prefer an all chain rode chiefly because with an elec. windlass + wash down - its MUCH cleaner, MUCH faster, etc. and I have less chance of losing a finger. If I was 'smarter', Id fix the wash nozzle to near the anchor roller, and put another windlass switch in the cockpit (next to the coffee cup), and maybe install a larger volume wash down pump .... .
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Last edited by RichH; 11-07-2017 at 12:22 AM.
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post #29 of 47 Old 11-07-2017
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Re: What if No-Chain?

Boy it seems very apparent that no one on this thread has any significant experience with line only.

First consider this issue of setting a Danforth with no chain. A typical 6:1 scope creates an angle of less than 9 degrees which easily sets a True Danforth. A Danforth even sets in mud or sand with a 3:1 scope. And the same goes for a reversing current such as a tide changes.

Second, consider if the case of stuff on the bottom cutting the line. If there is any wind or current, the line will never touch the bottom. Quite unlike chain that sits on the bottom in light wind. In the case that the line sits on the bottom, by definition, there is no load on it to cut it.

Third, consider the case that the line has wrapped something on the bottom. I guarantee, you have more to worry about than the line being cut by what it is wrapped around, you invariably will loose your anchor and rode if you cannot somehow unwrap it.

Fourth, consider the wash down issue. There will be no mud on the line if it is not on the bottom! Which will be the case if you have any wind. Even if it does hit the muddy bottom, mud does not embed itself on the line like it gets embedded in chain links. No way can I wash down my chain with one hand while drinking a coffee. The mud does not come out of the links fast enough even with my high pressure wash down.

Fifth, consider the issue of hauling in the line. If you have a drum on your windlass, it is no different than winching a sheet. Wrap it three times around the drum and it comes in easily. It never needs to be washed down, so don't waste your time. If you have chain/line, as it comes to the interface, the boat is moving forward you have slack in the rode that allows you to move to the chain reel of the windlass.

Sixth, if you do not have a proper anchor hatch to simply dropping your rode in, I feel very sorry for you. I would be cutting a hole in my deck to make one.

You guys are way over analyzing a none issue and coming up with excuses as to why plain nylon cannot be used.
Bryce
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post #30 of 47 Old 11-07-2017 Thread Starter
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Re: What if No-Chain?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichH View Post
Id be pretty sure there's an established ASTM test methodology for side to side abrasion resistance ... as there are plenty of established standards for just about every other possible mode of abrasion.
If there is, please guide me to it. I would b very interested. I have read other abrasion methods, but nothing that applies here.

I serve on a number of ASTM committees, and generally there are NOT standards for things that are not considered normal use. End-to-end over a guide is normal. Fiber-to-fiber wear is normal. Side-to-side over a rock is not. And sometimes things are simply difficult to standardize; how rough should the rock be? Unless a great majority of the members want the standard, and someone is willing to take on the research budget, it does not happen.

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