Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Anchor Locker Reconfiguration

The "before" picture of our anchor locker.  This will NOT work for us!
Work on a sailboat is rarely straightforward.  It is not unusual to solve one problem, only to run into another.  Such was the case when we beefed up the anchor chain for this boat from about 100 feet to 275 feet.  It became very clear very quick that the current anchor locker configuration wasn't going to work (as evidenced in the above photo).

I looked at it for a while, pondered some ideas and came up with a plan.  I consulted my dad, texted back and forth with Scott and got TONS of great suggestions and feedback from you all on our Facebook Page.  After doing more research and consultation, I have decided how to remedy our little problem and make it even better than before.

As you can see, our current locker has a divider in it and a small compartment for the chain on the starboard side.   The idea is to be able to have two separate rodes for two different anchors.  It's a great setup, unless you have 275 feet of 3/8 G40 high test chain which takes up a LOT of space.  As such, it must be changed.  Another aspect of this locker that we dislike is the fact that any water that gets into the anchor locker drains down the length of the entire boat into the bilge.  This is no bueno in our opinion.  Because we will be full time cruising and will be anchoring 90% of the time, we need plenty of room for our anchor chain to sprawl out in and we'd prefer if it drained directly overboard, just because we have a bilge doesn't mean we need to fill it.

The divider and box has been removed, lots more room for our chain to live in now!
Here is what I have come up with: we are planning on glassing a complete "wall" of sorts a little aft of where the currrent compartment is. We will remove the existing divider and compartment, and re-paint with epoxy. The new "wall" will be high enough to contain the chain and prevent water intrusion into the v-berth, but not too tall that we cannot access the chain and/or windlass motor if we need/want to.  Furthermore, we will be drilling a 1/2 inch hole (above the waterline of course) on the port side of the anchor locker so water will be able to drain out.  We will then add a stainless steel "eyebrow" to the outside of the hull where the hole is to help deflect any water intrusion that might enter in a seaway.  I considered two holes, but I think we will start with only one and see how we do.  1/2" should do the trick.  This was the system we had on Rasmus and it never clogged up and worked great.
We will add an "eyebrow" like this (technically called a midget vent) to prevent water from coming in underway
In addition, we have a salt-water anchor wash down hose at the bow, so when I raise anchor I will always hose off the chain to free it from any debris and grime.

Any thoughts on this?  The work is being done as I type so speak now or forever hold your peace!


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great plan! One thing to think about is where the waterline will be when heeled over bashing into the wind - much higher than normal. Just try to make sure that drain hole is high enough that the bow doesn't flood and lose buoyancy when beating. Believe it or not that's pretty common. Beth Leonard has a good discussion of that in her guide.

David & Elena, svTigress

Anonymous said...

Agree with above--our old boat had a setup like that and a prolonged beat to windward set up some sort of crazy siphoning action and we filled the locker with water to well above the waterline--no idea how it worked...

Windtraveler said...

@Tigress - great point...we had this same set up on Rasmus and it worked great, but gosh - losing buoyancy would be AWFUL. I guess we won't really know how well this works until we test it, but hopefully we'll be okay. If not, we can always plug up that hole and try something else.
@Anoymous - yikes. That is bizarre? So many boats are set up like this but I guess if it's not *just* right, weird things can happen. I sure hope that doesn't happen to us but we'll have to wait and see I guess!

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