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Old 05-05-2011, 02:10 AM   #1
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[font="Verdana"]Ahoy Yawl !

I've just learned a new trick and thought I'd share it with you... my fellow sailors.

Our ground tackle has been in hard use across the Caribbean & Pacific. The chain is seven years old and has lost much of it's galvanized coating. It's begun staining our deck with surface rust lately - so I've been searching for the most cost-effective way to re-galvanize our anchor, chain & shackles.

I've found three places to get the job done on the east coast of Australia and the best deal in Bundaberg.

Our anchor rode is made-up of a 66 lb Bruce anchor and 200 ft of rope with 200 ft of high quality, American-made BBB chain connected between the two.

The folks at Kenco Galvanizing do lots of chain and quoted a price of $1.20 AUD per kilo to clean, acid wash and hot-dip re-galvanizie steel using a special vibrating basket which will shake, rattle & roll the chain throughout the process... which they assure me will completely re-coat each link and prevent the links from bonding.

However - they said I'd have to remove all paint markings and loose rust before they'd accept it and suggested I have it sand blasted prior to delivery.

Turns out he labour cost of getting the chain sand-blasted here was going to bring the cost of the job up to about the same as purchasing NEW chain... which would be about the same as a month's pay... assuming I even had a job... which I don't.

It seems BBB chain isn't even made in this hemisphere and I'd certainly never find 200 ft of good chain in a dumpster... nor find a new gipsy to fit our windlass needed to handle a new type of chain. The strong Ozzy Dollar and shipping cost would also add expense to any tack I took, too. Galvanizing is affordable in the Land of Oz... but having someone sand blast each link isn't.

There goes a few month's supply of our cruising kitty.

But my friend - Sam - just came-up with a brilliant plan!

So - yesterday, we dis-connected and removed the anchor and off loaded the chain into two milk crates on the dock and hauled it up the ramp (at high tide) with two hand trucks and loaded nearly 400 lbs of rusty steel into the back of our pickup truck and steered for Bundaberg - 200 miles south of Rockhampton.

We turned off the highway toward the old coastal road and drove until the pavement ended, where we got out and unloaded the two crates of chain from the back of the truck. I tied a short piece of tuna cord to the last link of the chain, looped the string over our bumper hitch, locked the hubs and we took-off on a ten km detour along a hard-packed beach! We dragged the chain for about a half hour at speeds reaching 60 km/h while swerving and doing figure eights - reversed the chain and drove some more and by the time we were done all traces of paint & rust were gone and the entire length of chain was shinny metal when we arrived at the galvanizing plant! A poor man's sandblaster but VERY effective! The fellow on the fork lift got a big laugh when we told him what we'd done and said he's call us in a few days to come pick it up!

Those of you heading this way may want to note you can get hot dip galvanizing done in Brisbane, Bundaberg & Townsville... all three are official ports of entry into and out of Australia... but Bundy is the best deal, in my opinion.

Too easy. And lots of fun at the beach!

To Life!

Kirk ~~~_/) ~~~ s/v Gallivanter
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Old 05-05-2011, 03:48 AM   #2
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You are the king of cruisers! I love it when someone finds an inexpensive way to do something that's totally fun to boot! I bet you had a great time--free entertainment whilst getting something done.

Fair winds,
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Old 05-05-2011, 08:30 AM   #3
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Great idea Kirk. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 05-05-2011, 11:27 AM   #4
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What a great idea! Australia's the place to do that, I think. All those 4WD trucks, all those empty beaches, that Aussie do-it-yourself approach.

When we were traveling up the coast I remember a glorious white silica sand beach, but I thought it was much further north. Was this coral sand?

Cool.
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Old 05-06-2011, 07:01 PM   #5
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LOL - that rocks. You would have so gotten arrested in Canada!

/looks at moving to Oz
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Old 05-11-2011, 04:24 PM   #6
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Thanks, I've been wondering where to reasonably get chain re-galvanized, because it sure isn't possible in FL!
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Old 05-11-2011, 06:32 PM   #7
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That is very well done. Thinking on the fly and getting it done. Thanks for sharing that goes in the notebook of odd ideas that work.

Michael
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Old 05-12-2011, 02:12 PM   #8
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O K A Y !

I drove to get my ground tackle yesterday and am VERY pleased with the results!

We re-galvanized our 66 lb anchor, 200 ft of 3/8" BBB chain, two shackles and an engine bracket for mounting our water maker pump at a total cost of $245 Ozzy Dollars, three tanks of fuel, two days on the road plus one Speeding Ticket... and our precious metal now looks like new!

Replacing the chain with 10mm Chinese short link would cost over $1300 and may or may not fit our windlass gypsy.

The anchor looks especially good and I can read "3B" on the side of each chain link. Each link appears to be completely coated and none were "glued together" from the process.

One interesting fact is the first three links (on the anchor end) show extreme wear after seven years of abuse in tropical waters.

Tomorrow, I'll cut about a half meter off the damaged end and reverse the chain before re-loading it into the locker. I always use a rope-to-chain splice (as shown in my book by Brion Toss) which eliminates the need for a bulky thimble & shackle and allows the rope & chain to feed easily through the hawse pipe. I use electrical zip ties to mark the chain every 25 ft as they last pretty well and are easy to see as the chain is deployed.

We're now on our second circumnavigation and I can count on one hand the number of times I've ever needed to pay-out more than 200 ft of chain to anchor in deep water. Storms are another matter entirely.

I'm certainly no expert, but... I believe one should carry two complete anchor rodes. And I believe the minimum ammount of chain on each should be no less than three boat lengths. Our primary ground tackle is 400 ft overall with a Bruce anchor on the business end and our secondary one is 300 ft with a CQR anchor. Both are stowed on a bow roller but I have never felt the need to deploy both at the same time. Once, however, we were forced to cut the primary and run for our lives in the Philippines and having a secondary ready to deploy made it possible to recover the gear we'd cut by being able to re-anchor in a safer place nearby and go fetch it after the weather settled. We also carry a Fortress anchor dis-assembled and stowed in a custom pouch with 50 ft of chain... which is easy to assemble and deploy on an extra-long line at the approach of a cyclone.

As with weapons... it's better to have them and not need them - than to need 'em and not have 'em.

To Life!

Kirk
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Old 05-12-2011, 10:30 PM   #9
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Gooday U-3 - - 'Gallivanters' all. VERY good fundamental information you've shared here. I would rate it as 'CARDINAL' advice !! I'll sure be noting it in my 'basic survival information' as MUST CARRY !! Thank-you Kirk (to life)- mine, which you've help extend with safety. TNX, bloke !! Looking forward to seeing U-3 if you get up this far north. Some questions for you though. What weights are the 'Bruce' & 'CQR'? You mention that 'you can count' (ha) - how much chain & rode did you need to deploy in the 'worst case scenario'? Sure hope all our new cruisers pay lots of attention to your advice about carrying 2 complete independent anchoring systems, in a instantly ready to 'shoot-away' preparedness. Your use of a - rope to chain - splice is very good advice, so as you say - the feed-in - is smooth & without 'hick-up' especially when under load which is always in adverse conditions. While you claim - not to be an expert (X is an unknown quantity & spert is a drip under pressure) you have learned over many years & untold sea-miles far more that 90% of the rest of us in these forums. Thank you so much for shariing your knowledge which will I'm sure save many of us from imminent disaster. ciao, james - - To life, Kirk !!

PS; I do note that a qualified 'Captian' who sails @ 6 to 14 kts, twice round the world admits to geting a speeding ticket which was at what? - 100 or 120 kph, and that put a smile on my face & lets me take the 'micky' out of you, he he. jj

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Old 05-23-2011, 11:12 AM   #10
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Great writing, Kirk. I recently had to re-galvanise the main bow anchor as well as my little dinghy sand anchor. Found a place out west that would do the re-galv but they wanted sand blasting first. The sand blasting for the big boy was $50, well worth the cost I thought, but they wanted another $50 to sand blast the little guy as well, more than the cost of a new sand anchor! So the old sand anchor got relegated to club decoration and the big boy is happily sitting on the bow looking all grey and heavily zinc coated. Yes, zinc coating is pretty cheap here compared to other places, helps that we mine our own zinc.

In other news that windlass you sold me got a new gypsy and was doing OK except then I decided to get fancy with the electrics and fit a reversing solenoid to it. A few hiccups with that but hopefully sorted out in the next week or so. Muir were happy to sell me a remote control unit for the windlass too, a bit expensive but worth the bucks I thought as when I'm on my own it's often useful to be able to deploy the anchor from back in the cockpit where I can keep an eye on the depth gauge at the same time.
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Old 01-26-2012, 11:39 AM   #11
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Quote:
I'm certainly no expert, but... I believe one should carry two complete anchor rodes. And I believe the minimum ammount of chain on each should be no less than three boat lengths. Our primary ground tackle is 400 ft overall with a Bruce anchor on the business end and our secondary one is 300 ft with a CQR anchor. Both are stowed on a bow roller but I have never felt the need to deploy both at the same time. Once, however, we were forced to cut the primary and run for our lives in the Philippines and having a secondary ready to deploy made it possible to recover the gear we'd cut by being able to re-anchor in a safer place nearby and go fetch it after the weather settled. We also carry a Fortress anchor dis-assembled and stowed in a custom pouch with 50 ft of chain... which is easy to assemble and deploy on an extra-long line at the approach of a cyclone.

Absalutely agreed with comment from Kirk, thats really useful. Thanks for sharing.
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