Choosing an anchor

Author: Chris Bright
Boat: Yindee Plus (43)

We spent a lot of time researching a new main bower anchor and finally decided on the Rocna. It has a fairly conventional spade type blade and a semi-circular roll bar. There are small wings which assist in forcing the blade tip down into the bottom. This means the tip of the blade doesn’t have to be weighted. The Rocna website gives sizing guidelines and Yindee Plus fell towards the top of the range for the 25Kg model. Needless to say, we specified the next one up, although we expected there could be some minor handling issues.

The stock rests easily in a conventional bower anchor roller. Our Lofrans Cayman 88 1000W windlass seems to be able to manage the Rocna (33Kg) plus the vertical 10mm chain in 25m of water (~50Kg). We often use the boat to break out the anchor because that can be a step too far for the windlass. Setting the anchor is done in the conventional way but probably less usual is the distance in which it sets. It is common for the anchor to roll and fully set in 2 metres!

Holding seems extremely good and we have had no problems in the 40kn+ gusts that we have experienced, admittedly anchored in mud or sand. Re-setting for wind shift seems excellent as well, although we have not anchored in reversing tidal streams. Once in, the anchor has proven truly reliable. The one proviso is weed. The thick, clumpy grass-like weed in the Eastern Med can be a problem and the only times we have not been able to set (and the one time we have dragged) have been when trying to anchor in very thick weed. We have used our 25lb Fortress with 5 metres of extension chain attached to the front of the Rocna on one occasion when we were expecting 30kn+ winds in a totally weed-covered anchorage and this worked well.

We are extremely happy with the Rocna 33 and would recommend it highly. We receive so many positive comments when people see it on the bow and several other cruisers have remarked how quickly we seem to get a good set when anchoring.

March 2013: We have now anchored many times in reversing tidal streams and the Rocna hasn’t failed to re-set.