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Monday, April 30, 2012

Anchor and chain










With the engine operational and most of the wheelhouse instrumentation in place, it was time to test the engine driven hydraulics for our big anchor winch. Filled up the hydraulic tank in the engine room and the oil bath for the chain drive on the winch. Pleased to say that all operated as planned... no leaks and everything worked. The spool valve we got for the winch works really well, with infinite control over the speed of the winch in forward and reverse. We pulled the 3/8" G4 chain out of storage along with our primary anchor and brought everything down to the boat. After temporarily marking out the chain (10 shots, a shot of chain = 30ft) we hooked it up to the winch drum with a piece of nylon line (easier to cut free in an emergency) and started winding it up onto the drum. I had a vague recollection of doing some calculations when I rebuilt the anchor winch and figuring out that we could "probably" fit 300ft of 3/8 chain on the drum. Don't remember how I came to that conclusion but fortunately it was right on, and our entire batch of chain fit nicely on the winch. The anchor came up on our roller nicely as well. When we designed and fabricated this set-up a year and a half (?) ago, we made plywood models of the anchor and the roller and tested it on the boat. Much easier than having to experiment with the real thing. This was one of those rare boat building projects that worked as anticipated with no major bugs to work through. Wish it all came together this easily...

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