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Everyone loves to tout the benefits of their favourite anchor, John included, but this article is about much more: how to cut through all the claims to the criteria that really matter when selecting an anchor.
Colin’s in-depth, real-world test and review of the SARCA Excel anchor, based on a season of use in a cruising ground that is notoriously difficult to anchor in.
In the last two chapters we have reviewed the SPADE and SARCA Excel anchors. So which of the two is best, and are there other anchors as good or better?
When an anchor that thousands of sailors rely on has a dangerous flaw, we need to write about that. Also, some thoughts on the the Vulcan and the Mantus anchors.
John spent some time at the Ultra Anchor booth at the boat show. There were things he liked about the anchor, and one that he didn’t, and it’s a doozy.
How to select the size and material (galvanized steel, stainless steel or aluminium), for the primary anchor on a cruising boat.
The second most important anchor on our boats after the best bower is the kedge. What type should it be and how big? We make it simple.
After we have bought our best bower (primary anchor) and kedge, what should our third anchor be? The logical answer will surprise you…as it did me.
We sailors love to talk about anchor tests, and yes, they are useful, but never forget that they are all fundamentally flawed.
John starts with testing from “SV Panope”, adds a large dollop of experience, and comes up with his own best anchor table as well as demonstrating how you can do the same.
John explores a little-known selection criteria that every anchor buyer should know about.
There are probably more misconceptions and just plain wrong information circulating about anchor chain than most any other piece of cruising gear. For this chapter I went to the experts at Peerless Chain to get the real facts.
In the last chapter on chain we looked at the three grades of chain normally used for anchor rodes on cruising sailboats. In this chapter we carry on from that base and examine the trade-offs between the grades and the things that you need to know when selecting the right anchor chain and gauge for your boat.
There are two opposing views on chain catenary: those who believe that having a lot of chain on the bottom increases holding, and those who have observed an all chain rode being pulled bar straight in any winds above about 30 knots and therefore hold that catenary does nothing useful in anchoring. Who is right? Read on to find out, and also for John’s recommendation for the best chain grade to use.