Friday, February 25, 2011

Are New Generation Anchors Any Good?

They sure have promise, judging from the many comments I read on the forums. But, I have to caution that I believe there is a strong tendency to want something to be really good once you've spent a fair bit of money on it. It must be worth what you spent, right?

And there are a few questions still out there. As I noted in my last post I have not yet seen enough testing to come to any definite conclusion, especially in comparison to anchors like the Danforth, the Fortress, the CQR, and the Bruce that have not only been through numerous tests over several decades but have also been in continuous use throughout the cruising world by many experienced boaters. Evans and Beth Starzinger did some unusual testing down in Chile where they found that their anchor favorite, the Bruce type, still performed better than the new generation anchors in the rocky shale found in those waters. There have also been some soupy mud tests done by other manufacturers indicating that there might be some doubts about new gen. anchors in those bottoms. Plus, I have witnessed a big boat having trouble with his Spade in a hard-mud-weedy bottom where my Bulwagga bites in fast every time.

Other boats have problems dealing with the roll bar not working properly in their anchor roller set up. Another interesting thing is that the new gen. anchor folks are all quite conservative on their recommended anchor weights. In the past, anchor manufacturers all seemed to compete to claim the crown of lightweight champion, but today everyone seems to be conceding that point to Fortress, which is basically a Danforth design from 1939. I now see anchor weight tables suggesting I add ten pounds or so to what the leading anchor companies suggested 10 years or so ago.

Am I interested in new gen. anchors? You bet! Am I sold yet--No.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

My personal experience is with a 33lb Rocna on my 13k displacement westsail 28. I have been from one side of Florida to the other, anchored on the potomac River for 5 months, and weathered 50 knot winds with only the one anchor and have not dragged even once. I no longer pay attention to those anchor tests. Although, I will be trading my Rocna for a larger Manson Supreme.

Eric Olander

John J. Kettlewell said...

Eric: Glad you are happy with the Rocna, but that's a pretty huge anchor for that boat so I am not surprised. Have you been following the news about Rocna's problems with Chinese manufactured anchors not being built up to spec.? Worth investigating.