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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all, I have a question about the diameter of anchor chain. I just went on an overnight trip with my sons, and just before departing I switched my new (and very large, 1/2" maybe?) stern anchor chain with my smaller and rusting bow anchor chain. Once at our anchorage, I found that the new and larger chain barely fit through my bow roller, and was super heavy to deploy and retrieve. I would like to replace the bow anchor chain with something a bit lighter, but I don't want to give up strength. My C30 weighs about 12,000# and my anchor is a 35# bruce. I don't have a windlass (yet) but I sure wanted one last week.:laugher What size chain should I get? I am thinking of a length of 45' to go with my 250' of rode.

Thanks in advance, Bill
 

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I have a handy book called "The Boat Data Book" by Ian Nicolson that I frequently refer to. Going on the high side, for a 30-36 ft boat weighing 8-12 tons, 240' of 5/8" line plus 24' of 3/8" chain is recommended. I've also heard of a rule of thumb of 1' of chain for 1' ft of boat. Our boat is 36' and we went with 40' of chain. We have a windlass and acquired chain the conformed to the specifications for the windlass.
 

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Unpaid Intern
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It also depends on what type of chain. HT is much stronger than PC or BBB for the same size. So often you can "downsize" on the chain and still get the desired strength by moving up to HT. This saves significant weight (if you are looking to). Makes it easier if you don't have a windlass (we don't).

Honestly, if I was buying rode/chain for a Catalina 30, I'd go with 1/4" HT and 1/2" rode. Minimum 30' of chain, nothing wrong with more other than more weight. I probably wouldn't go bigger simply because I'd be looking to keep weight reasonable with no windlass. I'd use this for my every day anchor, then have a larger chain/rode/anchor combo for storm situations, if needed.
 

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Anchor Chain Size Question

What about stainless steel anchor chain. Is is acceptable and if so should I be buying a particular grade. It would be nice to avoid rust all over the bow of my 27 foot ship. Thanks
 

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Barking Dog
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Stainless really likes oxygen. It will eventually corrode if you use it as anchor chain. Being bunched up in a damp anchor locker along with wet nylon rode, etc is not good, when there are better choices.

I am almost certain that the welds in stainless chain are more brittle and will fail faster than galvinized.

My research suggests using G40 HT chain. I think that G40 and G4 are the same.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Edit

Hi all, thanks for the input. While at the boat the other day I looked at my Bruce anchor and it is 10Kg (22 lbs) not 35lbs! That means that my chain is HEAVY! I am going to go with 5/16 HT chain after reading the advice here and elsewhere. The 22 lb Bruce is good for a 35' boat so my 30' should be fine.

Thanks again for the great input.

Cheers, Bill
 

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Anchorsmith
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Rode & windlass

Bill, read the Q's & A's in your thread. I have an '87 C30 in Ventura Harbor and just installed a windlass, 300 lf 8-plait, and 30 lf 5/16chain. Am very happy with it. Will be replacing the anchor soon. If you are considering installing a windlass, you should look at the job done on my boat. No pix yet. The fellow who performed this extremely professional job is local and reasonable. Might have to wait for him, but worth it. Let me know.

Pat
 

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Stainless really likes oxygen. It will eventually corrode if you use it as anchor chain. Being bunched up in a damp anchor locker along with wet nylon rode, etc is not good, when there are better choices.

I am almost certain that the welds in stainless chain are more brittle and will fail faster than galvinized.
I've long accepted that stainless isn't good for anchor chain, but then I frequently see stainless seizing wire used on anchor and mooring shackles. Isn't that wire prone to the same failure?
 
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