Grapple anchor as primary?

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  1. #1
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    Grapple anchor as primary?

    So I picked up an aluminum grapple anchor (Mighty Mite) for reef fishing, but I'm wondering if it would work as a primary anchor for my bay boat in inshore channels, KW harbor, and Hawk Channel (outside patch reefs).? Do you guys with grapple anchors carry more than one anchor? Thanks.

  2. #2
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    It'll work great if you can get it set in some rocks, but in sand/grass/mud your holding power will be very low, and with a heavy current or wind you'll be drifting/dragging. I'd get a danforth as well for when you know you'd be fishing sand/mud/grass so you can feel secure in your holding power. If you lost power/were caught in a storm and needed to stay in one place, I wouldn't trust a grapple.

  3. #3
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    I use a grapple as my primary due to where I anchor but agree with swordslayer. I have a danforth but find that it wont set well in grass. A friend with a Lewmar Delta fast set uses that as his primary. That seems to set and hold well in lots of conditions and rigged "break away" always comes back up.
    Capt. Tom Urban, "urbanRenewal", Cudjoe Key, FL www.LooeKeyReefAdventures.com

  4. #4
    Senior Member Permit Rat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by urbanRenewal View Post
    I use a grapple as my primary due to where I anchor but agree with swordslayer. I have a danforth but find that it wont set well in grass. A friend with a Lewmar Delta fast set uses that as his primary. That seems to set and hold well in lots of conditions and rigged "break away" always comes back up.

    You're probably using a danforth "style" anchor that is poorly designed. I have seen and used these too, and they are a POS. But a true danforth will hold very well in grass. The problem with a true danforth, especially in small boats, is that the stock bars are so long and they take up a helluva lot of space, for what they are. Yet it is these bars that make a true danforth hold so well, since they keep the anchor from turning on its sides.

    Aside from that I advise against an aluminum grapnel anchor. Good idea in that if you bend a tine you can put it back, but aluminum will break eventually. My grapnel is stainless and I use a mauser breakaway with it. The tines will bend in an emergency and granted, they are a little more difficult to put back, but it can be done.

    Finally, if the OP ever plans on anchoring in the Gulf, he'll need one of these danforth type anchors. A grapnel is not going to make it in Gulf mud and sand.
    Last edited by Permit Rat; 03-01-2012 at 10:08 AM.

  5. #5
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    OK, thanks guys - sounds like I will have to carry both. Was trying to avoid that, as my anchor locker is pretty crowded, but that's life I guess.

    Didn't know stainless ones were available. Sounds good, but expensive? Previously I had one that was made of rebar, but never used it, and hated the idea of getting rust everywhere - so that's the main reason I went w/ aluminum over the rebar.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Permit Rat's Avatar
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    Truth is, you might have a hard time finding a production grapnel in stainless. Mine is hand made by "someone". I just saw it and bought it.

    There are two ways to go when choosing a grapnel. One is with very long tines (2 feet long or more and maybe 1/4 - 3/8 bar stock) that you can easily bend for release and then bend back. The other is with very short (3 inches long) and thick tines (3/4 " rod or thicker) and you always use a mauser release. With the latter, just one tine will hold a 60 ft. boat if you have enough chain and scope. The latter is also much more "storage friendly" in small boats.

    But in the presence of our delicate coral reef, I submit that a lot of chain and scope is not a good idea. Not only do you have a greater chance of fouling the chain and/or rode and losing everything, but you will also be doing potential damage to the reef when pulling chain and anchor. That said, I would opt for a middle-of-the-road approach and use something like 1/2 inch stainless barstock and 6-8 inch tines. (this is the length that actually points downward when the anchor is held by the shank and the tines on top) This will give you added holding power and not quite as much chain is needed. Ideally, nothing or almost nothing besides the anchor itself, rests on the bottom.

  7. #7
    Member Bill Welder's Avatar
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    FWIW
    We anchor a lot. In the last 12 years I have never lost an anchor.
    I use a galvinized 3/8" 7 LB. unreinforced grapnel with 8' of 5/16' SS chain for fishing the reef.
    For sand, grass, patchs, cuts with little or no structure or very heavy current I use an inexpensive Bruce type claw anchor with 20' of 5/16" SS chain.
    I never drag anchor even with a short scope.
    For a grapnel go smaller and for the Bruce go bigger.
    Rig your anchors properly with mono to leave no trash
    Use a ball for retrival

    Leave you Danforth anchors home
    www.CaptainBill.net
    305-395-0850
    "Key West...Where the weird turn pro"

  8. #8
    Senior Member Reel Tease's Avatar
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    Have two, if not get a really really long chain
    -Carlos Junior
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Holt's Avatar
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    Glad I saw this. I just put my danforth in the garage and rigged the grapple for an upcoming keys trip. Guess I'll be bringing both.

  10. #10
    Senior Member captdallas2's Avatar
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    Until this year I always carried both the grapple and a Danfort. This year a claw is doing the job but I still have a grapple in the cabin for a back-up. Instead of mono or zip ties for break away, I use 12 gauge solid wire twisted so that it will untwist if needed.
    Tight Lines,

    Dallas,

    fishing consultant

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