Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Delta Anchor 'Real Life' Test

I have just returned from six days sailing on the sailboat of a good friend of mine along the NSW coast of Australia. We had a fantastic sail north on the first day in a southerly blow of 35kts. gusting to 40kts. She is a 43ft. fast cruising yacht and with two reefs in the mainsail we were comfortably sailing at 8 - 9 knots plus.

My friend had recently purchased a new 35lb Delta anchor( it is a 43ft. yacht) and was keen to try it out 'in anger' so to speak. We anchored the following evening in a reasonably exposed bay in 7 metres of clear water and with a south east swell running into it. We ran out 30metres of chain scope.

Backing up, we could not make it set on our first attempt. On retrieving the anchor we discovered the chain scope wrapped around the anchor shaft - in our enthusiasm in dropping it, the chain had overtaken the anchor - there was no way it would ever set like that!

Correcting the problem we reset it and the anchor bit in immediately and held fast. Not satisfied, the inflatable was driven out and over the anchor position to check if it had set satisfactorily. The verdict was that although lying somewhat to one side it had bitten into the sandy bottom, no furrow, and was holding the boat.

She rode to the anchor very well all night in ten to twelve knots of wind and moderate swell.

The following is an extract from Lewmars website on their Delta anchors:

The Delta anchor leads the way in innovative anchor engineering. The high-grade manganese steel used in the construction of the Delta anchor gives it maximum tensile strength. Its unique shank profile and ballasted tip make the Delta anchor self-launching. The low centre of gravity and self-righting geometry ensure that the Delta anchor will set immediately. Consistent and reliable in performance, the Delta anchor has Lloyd's Register Type Approval as a High Holding Power anchor and is specified as the primary anchor used by numerous National Lifeboat organisations. Also available in premium grade Duplex/High Tensile stainless steel.

Manufactured from high grade manganese steel.
Self launching
Lloyd's Register Type Approval
Guaranteed for life against Breakage

For more detailed data on a range of anchors you can read a report on a very extensive test carried out on fourteen different models conducted by Yachting Monthly. This is in pdf format and you can find it on

reproduced courtesy Lewmar, Rocna and Yachting Monthly.

You can read more about anchoring incidents, good and not so good, in my ebook 'Voyage of the Little Ship 'Tere Moana' downloadable from my website

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