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How to choose Anchor Rodes?

Safety measures require sailboats to have anchors aboard, and of course, anchors are attached to the boat somehow. In the following technical article, we will teach you how to choose the right anchor rode to feel safe it won't break based on your boat dimensions.

Choosing the rope material

The preferred material for anchoring for most sailors is Nylon. This line is light, flexible, and has a high breaking strength. Additionally, it is very elastic; therefore, it offers good shock absorption.

About the rope construction, please consider the subtle differences between these two rope styles:

Braided Twisted

Less stiff and more flexible.

Stronger than twisted rope.

Fairly easy to splice.

Less expensive.

Has more stretch than braided.


Difficult to splice.

Less stretch than twisted rope.

Has a tendency to kink or hockle.

More stiff and less flexible.

Rope dimensions

In the case of the rope diameter, the rule is that for every 9 feet of boat LOA, you should have ⅛ inches of rope diameter.

For example if you have a Beneteau Oceanis 350, then the rope diameter is calculated like this:

35/9*⅛ = 0.4861 ≈ ½ inches

For the total length, you should multiply the deepest water you expect to anchor in by 8.

Chain dimensions

For the chain diameter, you should plan to have at least half the size of the rope you are using.

For the Beneteau case, the ½ inches diameter rope will need a ¼ inches diameter chain.

About the length, it is always less than the rope length. So, you can estimate it with the total LOA of your boat.

Finally, remember that the chain type needed would be different depending on the windlass manufacturer. The most common windlass gypsies accept G4 or BBB but double-check it first in your windlass manual before acquiring a new anchor rode. If you don't have that information, please let us know, and our technical support team will gladly advise you: Contact Us.

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