Max, it''s tough to get everything you''re asking for...especially if we expand ''integrity'' to mean not only strength but also reliability (meaning the damn thing won''t come apart).
My vote is for a Mid Link, which comes in a size that is rated the same SWL as 5/16" HT chain. These are drop forged and easy to use. They are not galvanized and will rust faster due to their zinc-only coating, but using Boeshield or a similar spray every so often keeps rust at bay for a few years. Besides, they don''t cost all that much. They surely don''t fit smoothly over my windlass gypsey, but they''re short enough that the other links in the chain carry the rode past it.
You''ll find Mid Links illustrated on p 719 in the 2004 WM catalog, I notice.
BTW if you are using HT chain, do you use HT shackles? They are tough to find but necessary to avoid that same ''weak link'' issue you mention.
Thanks a LOT Woosh, that is exactly what I was looking for but never paid attention to “Mid Link” assuming that it will not pass through my windlass. And obviously “Connecting Link” won’t make it on the load side. Another idea is connecting chains by splicing short length of 3-strand nylon line, but splice will reduce somehow the strength + abrasion and rust rot that comes with the chain to line splice.
What kind of windlass do you have, mine is Lofrans Progress vertical windlass. Do you happen to know where can I find HT shackles?
Max, I don''t have a specific suggestion re: HT shackles. I bought some a few years ago from a firm up in RI as I recall; Google should get you what you need. If you find a source, it would be helpful to post the vendor''s name here. Why large retailers like WM (or Defender, or Sailnet) don''t carry these items when they sell HT chain is beyond me...
The normal method for building up a chain to rope splice involves protecting the splice thoroughly after it''s in place. To me, this suggests than any chain to chain splice will be cumbersome and short-lived. A Mid-Link is a much better, safer option. If your two shots of chain are different lengths, place the Mid-Link where it is least likely to see the windlass gypsey.
Titanium is approximately 40% stronger than Stainless Steel, and it’s corrosion resistance is excellent - due to a stable, protective and strongly adherent oxide film. The film forms instantly when Titanium is exposed to a trace of air or water.