Sunday, June 6, 2010

Anchor Project (cont'd)

The original plan
1. Add 200 feet of chain to the existing 400 feet, using a specially-purpose link to connect the two lengths. Check.
2. Mark the entire chain in 30-foot increments, for convenience in anchoring and retrieving the chain. Check.
3. Load the 600 feet of chain into the large, lower chain locker… nope, won’t go.

Chain tends to stack in a tall pile, going vertical instead of spilling over and spreading out to fill the horizontal spaces. While the lower chain locker is large, evidently it isn’t tall enough to accommodate the extra length. The Capt. separated the two lengths again, and thought about the problem and possible solutions. Oh my, such a variety of potential solutions.

The revised plan was to raise the floor of the upper chain locker, installing sets of aluminum brackets to support a newly designed two-piece floor, aiming to provide more stacking height for the main anchor chain down below. With the help of a friend, super pattern-maker Dave L., the design was a relatively speedy process. 

The aluminum bracket pieces have been cut, bent, drilled and installed. 

The plywood floor has been designed, cut, painted and installed. 

The project provided an opportunity to adjust the slope and placement of the chain guide (chain feed pipe, drop tube, whatever).

The chain is still on deck, waiting for the boat to return to the water. We'll off-load the chain to the dock, winch it up and see how it stacks and distributes. I'm thinking positive thoughts about the results!

I only did occasional “gopher” errands and handed a few tools in and out of the chain locker, but the Capt. did the work and spent a lot of time climbing in...

...and out of that awkward space. Wow, is he ever limber and fit! 

And now you know more than you ever wanted to know about our Chain Locker Project! The plan is to relaunch Rhapsody tomorrow, so Boatyard News will turn back into Cruise News soon.

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