Welcome to our e-commerce dedicated to nautical accessories: in this section we have collected all the best nautical anchors. Do you want some advice to choose the most efficient boat anchor? Do you want to know which types of boat anchors exist, and which ones can be useful to you? If you have doubts about this topic, or if you want to refresh your memory about the use of the anchors, then you've come to the right place: here we collect all the information you can look for about your nautical anchor.
Which and how many types of boat anchors are there?
There are different types of boat anchors: the one that's perfect for you may be completely wrong for someone else. The shapes, weights, dimensions and materials change and correspond to different needs in terms of type of seabed, size of the boat, use and so on. A sand anchor, for example, will never be able to work properly on a stony seabed, while a light inflatable boat anchor will in no way be a decent alternative to an admiralty anchor. Here, then, in extreme synthesis, are the types of anchors that exist:
The classic anchor, the boat anchor par excellence, so traditional that it is actually unused except in special cases: its considerable size, in fact, makes it impractical for pleasure boats. This unique but unavoidable disadvantage, however, is accompanied by many good features: the Admiralty anchor can be used on any type of seabed. In some cases, it is preferred to widen the tips of the flukes, thus making the sea anchor more suitable for use in muddy bottoms. In reality, as the most expert sea wolves know, this type of boat anchor also has a second notable defect: it sometimes happens that the chain ends up running aground at the level of the stump or the flukes. As you can imagine, on such occasions, the boat anchor will not make any real hold on the bottom, thus forcing a repetition of the operation.
The CQR anchor
There are many who wonder about the origin of this name: why is this boat anchor called this way? Well, it must be known that, in English, the combination of letters CQR represents the abbreviation of the term 'secure ', that is safety. Many, it should be noted, refer to the CQR anchor by the more familiar words 'plough anchor'. This anchor is the typical good à tout faire tool, but since it has no specific use, it does not excel anywhere in particular, making it a popular choice for sandy, pebble and muddy bottoms. Its creator was a mathematician, Geoffrey Ingram Taylor, who designed it in 1933 not as a nautical anchor, but as an anchor for seaplanes. It's not surprising, then, that we are dealing with a lightweight boat anchor that offers the possibility of finding a secure hold even after ploughing, something that - as we shall see in more detail in a moment - is hardly the case with a Danforth anchor. Its very lightness, however, makes it unsuitable for seaweed-covered bottoms, where it can hardly sink into the ground below.
The Danforth anchor
Here instead is an anchor that finds a specific use: the Danforth anchor, for its very conformation, is in fact excellent for sand and mud bottoms, reason why this boat anchor is among the favorites for those who sail our seas. The results for rocky bottoms, however, are not good at all, and for this reason the Danforth anchor cannot and must not be considered a universal anchor. And if the use on rock is not recommended, not even the use on vegetation is highly satisfactory: all in all, it can be said that a Danforth anchor is inferior to a CQR in terms of overall use. Owners of a Danforth anchor must remember to periodically check the joint, so as to free any encrustations: deposits, in fact, could block the rotation of the flukes, thus making this anchor completely inefficient.
The Hall anchor
Here is a variation on the Danforth anchor: the Hall anchor has shorter and thicker flukes. Six understands therefore that what it loses in length of the flukes must be gained in weight. Its hold is good, generally speaking, on any type of bottom. It performs very well on sandy bottoms, and its performance decreases instead in front of rocky bottoms or characterized by dense vegetation. Among its advantages - compared to the Danforth anchor - is the fact that, due to its small size, it can be easily stowed.
The Bruce anchor
This anchor was made in the early 1970s by Peter Bruce, who designed it as a special anchor system for oil platforms operating in the North Sea. However, it did not take too long for yachtsmen to realise that the Bruce anchor offered great performance in sandy or muddy bottoms, where it sank very easily, and for this reason it spread well beyond initial expectations. Its shape makes it immediately recognizable: it is in fact a boat anchor with a single fixed fluke, from which two lateral ears extend. Its stowage - despite being more compact than the CQR and Danforth anchors - is not easy. It should be noted, however, that it integrates perfectly into the bow locker.
Also known as an umbrella anchor, the grapnel anchor has four thin and folding flukes. This ease of stowage makes it ideal for use on inflatable boats. As you can imagine, the grappino anchor should never be used as a nautical post anchor.
The Delta anchor is the direct evolution of the already presented CQR anchor. Where is the difference? Compared to the classic plough anchor, the Delta anchor is made of much lighter materials. Good on any type of bottom, it gives its best especially on sandy and rocky bottoms. But that's not all: the Delta anchor, in fact, is particularly agile in regaining its grip in case of rotation, and has the not inconsiderable advantage of placing itself in the correct position once hoisted on the bow.
Floating anchors obviously deserve a separate discussion: we are talking about anchors which, instead of sinking towards the bottom, "float". Their purpose, therefore, is to slow down and therefore make the boat more controllable in case of difficult weather and sea conditions. In this way, thanks to the action of the floating anchor, keeping the stern or the prow in the direction of the waves becomes easier: in fact, it should be pointed out - just in case - that the boat's steerability is lost when the waves hit the hull at an angle greater than 20 degrees. There are two distinct types of floating anchor. There is the parachute floating anchor, which is generally dropped from the bow to create friction and keep the boat upwind and relatively stationary. And there is another type of floating anchor, the buoyancy anchor, which consists of a long line with many cones in series to be launched from the stern to slow the motion of the boat.
What should be the weight of the anchor?
As we have seen, there are anchors that, with the same weight, according to the type of use, present different levels of effectiveness. Nevertheless, in principle, there are tables that tell us what the minimum weight of a boat anchor must be, according to the size and displacement of the boat. We talk about minimum weight, but we have to pay attention also to the maximum one: to exaggerate, in fact, would mean to have on board - during the navigation - a not indifferent ballast. Generally speaking, a boat of less than 6 and a half metres in length, up to 1,000 kilograms, should have an anchor of 8 kilograms. A boat over 10 metres long, with a displacement of over 4,000 kilos, should instead have an anchor weighing at least 16 kilos. The weight of the nautical anchor, on the other hand, can exceed 60 kilograms in the case of boats of more than 25 meters or with a displacement of more than 30,000 kilograms.
Always keep on board 2 types of anchors: here's why
The wolves of the sea always say: it is better to always have on board two anchors of different types. It will then be the type of seabed, which may be full of vegetation, or instead characterized by sand, mud or rock, to tell us which nautical anchor to use case by case. If, therefore, the size and weight of the anchor to be used are decided on the basis of the boat in use, the type is linked to the type of seabed to be encountered, which, in many cases, is not the only one: an anchor for sand, in short, must be accompanied by an anchor for rock. And that's not all: in some cases, in fact, it is necessary to use not one, but two nautical anchors at the same time.