Few items on board a ship carry as much import as the anchor and the rode. The hull itself, yes; perhaps the rudder.
The anchor and its chain are things of steel, they are embodiments of strength and security. The anchor is glorious in its engineering, the chain glorious in its simplicity. Once dropped overboard, gravity pulls the anchor to the seafloor where the sailor feels, once again, his primal connection to terra firma.
As long as man has floated on the water, he has faced the challenge of stopping his vessel. It is a challenge indeed when you must reach out and grab hold of the bottom of the sea, sometimes a hundred feet below you, and stay stuck for days through hurricane force winds. And then, at moments notice, you must be able to break free, should you need to sail on.
A ballet ensues as the mariner balances all the forces acting on the anchor, the road and his boat. The geometry of the acting forces must be perfect; length of rode, depth of water, and angle of attack of the anchor must be just so. Then, to make things interesting, the sea provides shifting tides, swell, gusty winds, foul bottoms, and corrosive seawater to make sure we don’t get too many nights of restful sleep.
Our sleeping pills must be made of steel. Good steel with heavy zinc to keep the rust at bay.
We currently have a 25# CQR on 60′ of 5/16″ hi test chain. We plan to move this setup to our secondary system and add either a 33# Rocna or a 35# Manson Supreme, on 80′ of 5/16″ hi test chain and 1/2″ 3 strand nylon for our primary anchor setup. As our third system we plan to add a hi tensile 20# Danforth on 30′ of chain and 12″ 3 strand nylon.
Any thoughts, comments or suggestions on anchor type, rode type or sizing would be much appreciated.