What's the best anchor for my C34?

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From a series of posts on the Message Board:

As you probably know, anchors don't conform so much to the boat (except in weight requirements based on size of vessel) as they do to the situation and the bottom. What follows is a series of posts from the Message Board, but if you're looking for the right anchor for your C34, you also need to talk to other sailors in your area with similar size boats.

We currently have two Danforths on our 34. One is about 25 lbs. and is our primary on the bow for all anchoring. We also have a smaller one, about 15#, which is stowed in the cockpit locker, and which we have used to kedge off (it can be thrown) and as a stern anchor while anchoring in narrow channel in a swamp. I almost considered buying a CQR35 that was on sale for a very good price ($125), but hesitated too long and lost it. However, later experience with a CQR35 in deep mud convinced me that I was just saved from a bad mistake. CQRs can really drag far in mud. OTOH, a Bruce 33 worked extremely well in the same conditions. If I were to upgrade from current state, first purchase would be Bruce 33, followed by CQR35, then by much larger Danforth-type. I did see the ultimate anchor toy at Annapolis last year - a solid titanium Danforth-type anchor. About as expensive, on a holding weight basis, as a regular hi-test Danforth. The biggest consideration is the type of bottom you are anchoring in. If soft mud, then Danforth. Other bottoms require other solutions.(Ralph Caruso)

I have an '86 #107. The larger hi-tensile Danforth has never let me down. I have spoken to many Catalina 34 owners and the 25 LB CQR is not heavy enough. Ron Hill, the tech talk editor, had a great article a few years back on installing an anchor roller. I followed his instructions and it works very well. I also purchased the lighter Danforth with a flexible shaft. I believe it weighs only about 13 lbs.-easy to haul and much more holding power.But this was the only anchor that dragged in a lot of years. (Lee Perloff)

After years of struggling with Danforth anchors including Fortress, I decided to do a major upgrade to my ground tackle. I added a 35 lb. Delta (it looks big in the store, but not on the bow). I choose the Delta over the CQR because of the shaft length. It is a better fit because the shaft will not cover the anchor locker. To modify the roller. I removed the existing stem fitting. Cut off one of the rollers and welded a Windline 26" roller to the stem fitting (part URM-3 in the Westmarine catalog). The anchor cleat was remounted behind the anchor locker and 2 chocks were added for docking. The holding power in sand and mud has been amazing. In SF bay I am subject to current shifts and strong wind. The holding thus far with 40' of chain has been absolute (David Aucella).

I have a 1997 C34 Mk II, #1366 with the following anchors: A Max 16 (36#) stored on the bow roller, with 3 feet of chain and 200 feet of rope. I also have a Danforth, deep-set, hi-tensile T-2500 (13#) with 6 feet of chain and 200 feet of rope stored in the anchor locker. The Max is similar to a Bruce, but with a more shovel type appearance. Detailed info on the Max can be found at www.creativemarine.com. It is not cheap ($380), but I believe it is a great anchor. It fits on the bow roller supplied with the new C34. At a recent raft-up of 8 C34s from fleet 12 in the Chesapeake, 3 of us had the Max anchor. My new C34 came with a Maxwell 500 rope-only windlass mounted horizontally at the back end of the anchor locker. There is 3 1/2 feet from the bow roller to the windlass. That is why I only have 3 feet of chain; so that I can use the windlass. (Louis Berman)