Cleaning Anchor Chain

Duane Siegfri


I wasn't sure how quickly the Zn would react with the HCL either.  Our chain has a zinc anode near the anchor, so to check I put that in first and let it soak for 10 minutes.  The zinc appeared unharmed (although bright and clean).  Keep in mind that the Muratic Acid sold at Home Depot isn't terribly strong.  

JWagamon is correct, be careful with the stuff!  I used chemical resistant gloves, safety glasses and long sleeved shirt and pants.

If your chain is in good shape (no rust) I wouldn't recommend this treatment.

It was a waste of time since now we've decided to have it regalvanized.

SM#477  Wanderer 


          Next time you are in a sandy or stoney anchorage, flake your chain across the bottom a couple of times and it will come back clean as a whistle.
Another little tip for when your are lifting your anchor and it won't retrieve into the bow roller the right way up, motor gently astern while hauling the chain.

Best regards,
SM 425

Gaffney, Drew <drew.gaffney@...>

You mentioned lots of sea grass in the locker and that your chain had 3' of rust at long intervals.  Perhaps the former retained seawater and the latter, piled in a heap, rusted at the part resting in the moist sea grass?
It's a good idea to avoid anything except chain going into the locker.  Sea grass, kelp, and mud eventally spoil, smell, and cause your chain to rust.
The anchor wash pump isn't very powerful and the "nozzle" is easily damaged.  Does your anchor wash work?
We have a high pressure sea water pump in the engine room: the switch and hose connection are in the stbd aft cockpit locker.  That washer system is very handy when the anchor wash is insufficient to clean the chain.  (It's also nice for cleaning the aft deck and fishing table after a nice catch has been cleaned.
Finally,it's worth emphasizing two aspects of re-galvanizing the chain.  First, if they can't "spin" it, you'll get many stiff links which will jam the chain coming from the locker.  Secondly, personally supervise or do the splicing of the 3-strand rode and the anchor chain.  
When we bought our boat, the owner had the chain regalvanized and the marina re-installed it.  Acutally, they put the chain back into the locker disconnected.  Sliding into the locker, I could see the rode well-attached to the U-bolt and the end of the chain buried under 80m of chain.  It was quite a shock to have finally escaped a gale by anchoring in a small bay near French Pass, NZ, only to watch the chain run out into 25m of murky mussel-farm water...  (Hopefully, you'll never need "Techniques for lost anchor recovery.")
Welcome to the Amel group.  You'll enjoy it.
Drew and Lili
S/Y Revelation SM2K390
Lying Rebel Marina, Norfolk VA

Duane Siegfri

Drew & Lili,

We've just bought the boat recently, so not much anchoring yet.  We have a freshwater hose connection under the helm seat, so that's a good idea for a muddy bottom.  

Now that the chain is clean, on inspection it looks mostly good, but there are no markings on it which concerns me.  It seems most chain intended for anchoring is marked with the grade of chain so I wonder...

The gyspy is marked for (Lofrans Tigres)  Ø 10 - 3/8HT / P30 and it fits well so maybe it is HT or Proof Coil?  There is a significant difference in the capacity of HT vs PC (PC is about half the working load limit of HT).  Now I'm thinking of just replacing it.  

On CruisersForum there is some disatisfaction with Acco chain (galvanizing has a short life) and several recommend Maggi chain.  Anyone have a recommendation on chain manufacturers?