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Anchors Aweigh: Choosing the Right Anchor (Yes, We Mean Right)

Posted by Schaefers Canal House on 8/1/2014 to Marina
For those who are new to boating or just have a certain curiosity to it, you probably understand  some things about boating and the choices you have  when it comes to finding the right boat for your wants and needs - whether it's just a family boat, a recreational boat for water skiing, a"party boat" or a pleasure trip boat. 

While you might have been doing the research into the type of boat you want and the equipment you need to be able to operate your boat safely, there is another safety item that too often can be overlooked or taken for granted:

The anchor. 

Yes, there is a reason that not all anchors are the same, even if they do the same job; it is important to understand where you will be using your boat to determine which anchor will be best for your boat. You can't just buy any anchor and have it work, because if it not the right fit for your boat and the water, it won't work. 

Here are some things to note when you are anchor shopping - and feel free to contact us if you have more specific questions about any of this:

  • Braided nylon anchor line is recommended for each anchor, and smaller boats are encourage to attach a section of chain (about 3/4 boat length) from the line to the anchor to add weight and help the anchor hold better. 
  • Always be sure to anchor far enough away from rocks and other boats. To minimize wader, make sure your anchor line is taut with a little wiggle room for wind or current direction changes.
  • There are basically thee designs of anchors that are in common use - the Danforth, the Plow and the Bruce.
  • The Danforth is good for fishing boats and holds well in mud and sandy bottoms. However, it may not be a good choice if you often anchor overnight or you frequently travel to new spots.
  • The Plow anchor (also called CQR) is better for moderate weather, wind or current changes in that it holds well when pulled in any direction - yet it comes out pretty easily when pulled vertically.
  • The Bruce anchor design was create for offshore drilling rigs. Scaled down, this design holds fast in virtually any pull direction yet can come loose on a vertical pull. 
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