|1. Determine Your Holding Requirements.
Be sure that your anchor can give the performance you need. A “Lunch Hook” should be able to hold your boat in a 15 knot breeze. A main, or “Working Anchor” should hold up to 30 knots of wind. A “Storm Anchor” is for winds up to 42 knots. Remember that as the wind speed doubles, the holding requirement quadruples!
Use the handy “Horizontal Loads Table” above to determine in pounds your holding power requirements for different wind speeds. Note:This table assumes boats of average beam and windage. If your boat has above average beam or windage, refer to loads for the next larger size boat. THe numbers in columns for feet = lbs., and the numbers in the columns for meters = kg.
2. Use Adequate Scope.
Scope is the length of anchor line relative to the distance from the boat’s deck to the sea bottom. We recommend at least 5:1 scope.
At 10:1 the holding power will double, and at less than 3:1 you will give up a significant amount of holding power and may experience problems setting the anchor.
In crowded anchorages “Power Set” your anchor at 5:1 scope, then shorten scope as required. Remember that your depth sounder may be giving you the water depth under your keel, rather than from the true waterline, in which case you need to add your draft plus the height of your deck when calculating scope.
3. “Power Set” Your Anchor.
Know that your anchor is properly set! Back down very, very slowly. Then as the anchor begins to set, very slowly increase the load with your engine. Backing down at any speed at all may not give your anchor a chance to dig in and bury itself.
You can simulate the force of the wind by using your engine’s thrust to set your anchor to a predetermined load. Match your boat’s total maximum horsepower and hull type in the table above to determine how hard your boat can“Power Set” your anchor.
4. Anchor Resetting.
Don’t be fooled by some manufacturer’s claims about any anchor’s ability to dependably reset 100% of the time! Set two anchors if you expect a change in wind or current.
5. Anchor Retrieval.
6. Support Hardware.
7. Anchor Rode.
All chain anchor rodes lack the shock absorbing ability of nylon rope when the wind pipes up!
8. Soft Mud Bottoms.
Some soft mud bottoms have a sticky consistency which makes them difficult to set an anchor in. If soft mud setting problems occur, try setting the anchor initially at very short scope, e.g. 2:1. Then, increase the scope to at least 5:1 and “Power Set” the anchor. Special “Mud Palms” are included for both Fortress and Guardian anchors to aid setting in very soft problem mud. We recommend that you install the “Mud Palms” on your anchor, as they help the anchor set faster in any type of bottom.