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36 foot Hunter Anchoring Questions - Chain and Rope Ratio

drm1

.
Sep 13, 2020
62
Hunter 36 50 Point
Hi. Our 2005 36 foot Hunter has a 35 pound Delta Anchor, and has the standard Simpson Lawrence Electric Windlass that was purchased when the boat was new. It also has 100 feet of 5/8 inch nylon rope spliced to 30 feet of 5/16 inch G4 chain. I've found it a little short for anchoring, preferring 200 feet length so I can get a good 7-10 times scope when anchoring. So I've decided to use this for my stern anchor and will replace it with new for my bow anchor.

So my question is this: I've heard that it's better to have more chain rather than less, but needs to have some portion nylon rope in case the anchor gets fouled and I need to cut it loose. Would 150 feet of chain (with 50 feet of rope) be better than 100 feet of rope and 100 feet of chain, or is there any benefit. Obviously chain is a lot more expensive than rope, so don't want to spend the extra cash if there's no benefit.

Also, are there any downsides to have the extra length in chain?

Any thoughts would be appreciated.
 
Sep 22, 2009
132
Hunter 36 Seattle, WA
The nylon rode is not a safety disconnect. Chain alone will not give you the elasticity you need to absorb shocks, much depends on where you are anchoring (depth) and what types of sea bottom you encounter. Here in the Pacific Northwest, for instance, I’ve equipped my H36 with 100’ of chain and 200’ of nylon rode on a Rocna anchor. Been anchoring for 10 years in mud and sand, dragging only when I snag an object or a kelp bed. Best non-biased advice and anchoring principles can be found at practicalsailor.com. Or you can read through the various opinions that invariably accrue when this question pops up.
 

drm1

.
Sep 13, 2020
62
Hunter 36 50 Point
The nylon rode is not a safety disconnect. Chain alone will not give you the elasticity you need to absorb shocks, much depends on where you are anchoring (depth) and what types of sea bottom you encounter. Here in the Pacific Northwest, for instance, I’ve equipped my H36 with 100’ of chain and 200’ of nylon rode on a Rocna anchor. Been anchoring for 10 years in mud and sand, dragging only when I snag an object or a kelp bed. Best non-biased advice and anchoring principles can be found at practicalsailor.com. Or you can read through the various opinions that invariably accrue when this question pops up.
Thanks Stuart
 
Dec 14, 2003
1,296
Hunter 34 Lake of Two Mountains, QC, Can
When using all chain you do not need as much scope as if all nylon. My H34 is set with 75 feet of 5/16 chain spliced unto 150' of 5/8 nylon rode. Anchor is a Bruce 17.5 kg (39 lbs). I frequently anchor in 25 to 30 feet and will deploy all the chain + 50 to 75 feet of rode depending on conditions. The lenght of rode provides the elasticity to absorb shocks. If anchoring in lesser depth where only on chain, I then also use a short rode with a snubber that I hook onto the chain to eliminate shocks.
 
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drm1

.
Sep 13, 2020
62
Hunter 36 50 Point
When using all chain you do not need as much scope as if all nylon. My H34 is set with 75 feet of 5/16 chain spliced unto 150' of 5/8 nylon rode. Anchor is a Bruce 17.5 kg (39 lbs). I frequently anchor in 25 to 30 feet and will deploy all the chain + 50 to 75 feet of rode depending on conditions. The lenght of rode provides the elasticity to absorb shocks. If anchoring in lesser depth where only on chain, I then also use a short rode with a snubber that I hook onto the chain to eliminate shocks.
thanks Claude.
 
Mar 3, 2003
710
Hunter 356 Grand Rivers
I’ve got the standard chain/nylon rode setup you do, but after dragging a few times, I changed my anchor to a 44 pound Delta. Only time I’ve drug since was in 30 knots of wind with less than 5/1 scope. Moved to less depth, 7/1 some and no more dragging. Heavy anchor and some chain is my answer to anchor issues - plus dog I’ve it 7/1 scope whenever possible, minimum 5/1 scope.
 
Apr 21, 2014
182
Hunter 356 Middle River, MD
Had a 35lb Delta but dragged and plowed a few times, now have a Rocna 44lb, big improvement as it grabs hard and does not drag...
Also only had 20' of chain before I installed the Windlass, and upgraded to 50' with 150' of 5/8" rope although wish I had 75' to 100'. I hook up a bridle which helps with the sailing and puts less strain on wiggling the anchor.
 
Apr 8, 2011
448
Hunter 36 Deale, MD
Chesapeake Bay, 35lb delta with 50 feet of chain and 100 feet of nylon rode. Typical anchoring here is in mud, and shallow water (less than 20 feet). I've used that setup for a year, and had no problems (but also no real tests).

I previously had a Fortress FX-16 or 23 (can't recall), which drug badly in a summer thunderstorm with 52kt winds, and failed to set 11 times in an atypically harder bottom in the Little Choptank one night after dark when expecting 40 kt winds overnight, which forced me to accept mediocre holding in an exposed position. Luckily I had recently purchased a FinDelta riding sail, which probably was the main reason we stayed put as I think much sailing at anchor would've pulled the anchor out (as happened in the thunderstorm at anchor). The Fortress is now my backup.

If your boat sails at anchor like mine does, more chain is good (and nylon rode is good for shock absorption), and an effective riding sail (the design of the sail, and how you hoist it) will work together to keep you rock solid. A good friend is now in the Caribbean with my first FinDelta that he borrowed for the ICW transit in his H41DS and he sent me a check rather than the sail back. It makes that much of a difference, at least on my boat.
 
Apr 21, 2014
182
Hunter 356 Middle River, MD
Chesapeake Bay, 35lb delta with 50 feet of chain and 100 feet of nylon rode. Typical anchoring here is in mud, and shallow water (less than 20 feet). I've used that setup for a year, and had no problems (but also no real tests).

I previously had a Fortress FX-16 or 23 (can't recall), which drug badly in a summer thunderstorm with 52kt winds, and failed to set 11 times in an atypically harder bottom in the Little Choptank one night after dark when expecting 40 kt winds overnight, which forced me to accept mediocre holding in an exposed position. Luckily I had recently purchased a FinDelta riding sail, which probably was the main reason we stayed put as I think much sailing at anchor would've pulled the anchor out (as happened in the thunderstorm at anchor). The Fortress is now my backup.

If your boat sails at anchor like mine does, more chain is good (and nylon rode is good for shock absorption), and an effective riding sail (the design of the sail, and how you hoist it) will work together to keep you rock solid. A good friend is now in the Caribbean with my first FinDelta that he borrowed for the ICW transit in his H41DS and he sent me a check rather than the sail back. It makes that much of a difference, at least on my boat.
I agree with the riding sail as I use a Sailrite riding sail plus a bridle (in my pic) to reduce the anchor sailing as much as possible...
 
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drm1

.
Sep 13, 2020
62
Hunter 36 50 Point
I’ve got the standard chain/nylon rode setup you do, but after dragging a few times, I changed my anchor to a 44 pound Delta. Only time I’ve drug since was in 30 knots of wind with less than 5/1 scope. Moved to less depth, 7/1 some and no more dragging. Heavy anchor and some chain is my answer to anchor issues - plus dog I’ve it 7/1 scope whenever possible, minimum 5/1 scope.
The reason I started looking at my anchoring system was because I had an engine failure late last summer in winds gusting 25-30 knts. Depth was 15 ft, so wasn't quite able to get 7:1 scope. With the 35 lb delta I kept dragging. So it's either get a bigger anchor, get more chain, or a combination of both. Figured I'd try getting more chain first
 

drm1

.
Sep 13, 2020
62
Hunter 36 50 Point
Had a 35lb Delta but dragged and plowed a few times, now have a Rocna 44lb, big improvement as it grabs hard and does not drag...
Also only had 20' of chain before I installed the Windlass, and upgraded to 50' with 150' of 5/8" rope although wish I had 75' to 100'. I hook up a bridle which helps with the sailing and puts less strain on wiggling the anchor.
Is a bridle and snubber the same thing? I'm going to invest in one this year. Previously, I've used a clevis hook to put on the chain, with two lines coming to either side of the bow connected to the forward deck cleats. I was going to do this more to prevent shock force on the anchor chain than to prevent sailing at anchor, but was also looking at a riding sail to prevent horsing.
 
Apr 21, 2014
182
Hunter 356 Middle River, MD
In my case I am using it as the same thing, probably should have called it a snubber. Have gone with a home grown piece of 1/2" 3 strand braid that will work on chain or rope, tie and run to each cleat. Allows for some stretch to soften a good yank or change of direction.
 
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drm1

.
Sep 13, 2020
62
Hunter 36 50 Point
Chesapeake Bay, 35lb delta with 50 feet of chain and 100 feet of nylon rode. Typical anchoring here is in mud, and shallow water (less than 20 feet). I've used that setup for a year, and had no problems (but also no real tests).

I previously had a Fortress FX-16 or 23 (can't recall), which drug badly in a summer thunderstorm with 52kt winds, and failed to set 11 times in an atypically harder bottom in the Little Choptank one night after dark when expecting 40 kt winds overnight, which forced me to accept mediocre holding in an exposed position. Luckily I had recently purchased a FinDelta riding sail, which probably was the main reason we stayed put as I think much sailing at anchor would've pulled the anchor out (as happened in the thunderstorm at anchor). The Fortress is now my backup.

If your boat sails at anchor like mine does, more chain is good (and nylon rode is good for shock absorption), and an effective riding sail (the design of the sail, and how you hoist it) will work together to keep you rock solid. A good friend is now in the Caribbean with my first FinDelta that he borrowed for the ICW transit in his H41DS and he sent me a check rather than the sail back. It makes that much of a difference, at least on my boat.
Yes I was thinking I would invest in a riding sail as well. How much do they run?
 
Apr 8, 2011
448
Hunter 36 Deale, MD
Yes I was thinking I would invest in a riding sail as well. How much do they run?
The FinDelta from Banner Bay Marine is pricey at $455, but it reduced my sailing at anchor by probably 80% much of the time, and substantially reduces the strain on your ground tackle when anchored. It only takes me 5 min to rig, and I've used it in winds up to 40 kts. It is SUBSTANTIALLY built, and would be just fine in much higher winds, I imagine. Practical Sailor gives this riding sail excellent marks, and it shows.

Others may have good experience with other less expensive riding sails. I figure its a relatively small price to pay to sleep better at night (literally) and I consider it part of my anchoring system. I spend enough time at anchor that constantly swinging back and forth got to be really irritating and couldn't be happier with the investment. Also, its cheaper than 200 feet of chain!
 
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drm1

.
Sep 13, 2020
62
Hunter 36 50 Point
The FinDelta from Banner Bay Marine is pricey at $455, but it reduced my sailing at anchor by probably 80% much of the time, and substantially reduces the strain on your ground tackle when anchored. It only takes me 5 min to rig, and I've used it in winds up to 40 kts. It is SUBSTANTIALLY built, and would be just fine in much higher winds, I imagine. Practical Sailor gives this riding sail excellent marks, and it shows.

Others may have good experience with other less expensive riding sails. I figure its a relatively small price to pay to sleep better at night (literally) and I consider it part of my anchoring system. I spend enough time at anchor that constantly swinging back and forth got to be really irritating and couldn't be happier with the investment. Also, its cheaper than 200 feet of chain!
All great points! I will check it out.
 
Oct 22, 2014
15,712
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
I have found that anchoring systems are very much based on where you plan to anchor.

7 or 10 to 1 with multiple anchors is likely a big storm even. 5 to 1 with a good designed anchor and adequate chain rode plus anchoring in a sheltered space will let you sleep under most conditions.

In the Chesapeake I used big fluke anchors like the Dansforth to grab the sand/mud bottom. Not much of a bottom to destroy the rode so a short length of chain maybe a boat length and 200 feet of good nylon line all was good.

Here in the Pacific NW we have a few issues such as rocks, and pebble bottoms, Kelp to ball up your anchor, sometimes deep anchorages. All this has me carrying a 35lb Mantus, with 105ft of chain and 250 of Nylon line on my 35ft LOA 17000lb displacement boat. I avoid getting caught exposed in serious storms. If I was to add anything int would be too step up too a 45lb anchor.

You can also get the effect of more chain with out the chain by using a sliding Kettle on your rode.

@drm1 You need to evaluate your likely anchorages and then build a system to meet those needs. Anchoring with a 10-1 scope will make you very unfriendly in a tight anchorage with several other boats.

Check out SV Panope videos on anchors.
 
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drm1

.
Sep 13, 2020
62
Hunter 36 50 Point
I have found that anchoring systems are very much based on where you plan to anchor.

7 or 10 to 1 with multiple anchors is likely a big storm even. 5 to 1 with a good designed anchor and adequate chain rode plus anchoring in a sheltered space will let you sleep under most conditions.

In the Chesapeake I used big fluke anchors like the Dansforth to grab the sand/mud bottom. Not much of a bottom to destroy the rode so a short length of chain maybe a boat length and 200 feet of good nylon line all was good.

Here in the Pacific NW we have a few issues such as rocks, and pebble bottoms, Kelp to ball up your anchor, sometimes deep anchorages. All this has me carrying a 35lb Mantus, with 105ft of chain and 250 of Nylon line on my 35ft LOA 17000lb displacement boat. I avoid getting caught exposed in serious storms. If I was to add anything int would be too step up too a 45lb anchor.

You can also get the effect of more chain with out the chain by using a sliding Kettle on your rode.

@drm1 You need to evaluate your likely anchorages and then build a system to meet those needs. Anchoring with a 10-1 scope will make you very unfriendly in a tight anchorage with several other boats.

Check out SV Panope videos on anchors.
Thanks John. Some good advice for sure.
 
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Apr 21, 2014
182
Hunter 356 Middle River, MD
Bought a Sailrite riding sail, already made but now they have a kit... spent around $130.

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Sep 20, 2006
2,804
Hunter 33 Georgian Bay, Ontario, Canada
The reason I started looking at my anchoring system was because I had an engine failure late last summer in winds gusting 25-30 knts. Depth was 15 ft, so wasn't quite able to get 7:1 scope. With the 35 lb delta I kept dragging. So it's either get a bigger anchor, get more chain, or a combination of both. Figured I'd try getting more chain first
I would try a better anchor first, like one of the new genration, Rocna, Manson etc. I have 50 ft. of chain and 15 kg. Rocna hold at 4:1 scope w/gusts to 52 knots. Chain will help reduce dancing around at anchor but in high winds your rode is straight line to the anchor and it's the anchor holding keeping you out of trouble.
 
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Mar 20, 2004
1,656
Hunter 356 and 216 Portland, ME
Had a 35lb Delta but dragged and plowed a few times, now have a Rocna 44lb, big improvement as it grabs hard and does not drag...
Also only had 20' of chain before I installed the Windlass, and upgraded to 50' with 150' of 5/8" rope although wish I had 75' to 100'. I hook up a bridle which helps with the sailing and puts less strain on wiggling the anchor.
Like Jeff I dumped the delta and switched to the Rocna - huge improvement! I went to all chain after our flotilla got hit by a downdraft storm that in seconds melted a 5/8" nylon rode on one of our boats. We carry 200 ft of chain and I use a nylon snubber when anchored