Wireless Anchoring a Winner
by Cruising Editor on 10 Apr 2006
Anchor safes three elements . ©
As every cruising sailor knows, getting the right scope when you are anchoring is vital, and it’s important to count the chain as it goes down. We’ve tried paint and we’ve tried cable ties. Paint wears off after a while, and the cable ties eventually catch on something and tear off. In addition, there are many things to distract the bowman’s attention, so the count can be lost. Chain counters are a great boon, but, depending on your boat setup, there are always disadvantages.
The idea of being able to operate the windlass from anywhere on the boat sounds like Anchoring-Heaven, and that’s just what ‘AnchorSafe’ promises.
The basic system comprises a sensor and a small sealed control panel with display(80mmX80mmX20mm), but for electric or hydraulic windlasses a wireless remote control can be used. It’s easy to use. Alarms can be preset, alerting you when only 5m of chain are left in the locker, for example. .
This is what the gear consists of:
1. The chain counter sensor: This is a very tiny, sophisticated, completely weatherproof and durable unit. In this system only one sensor is used unlike other systems that use multiple sensors to identify the chain direction (up or down). It is easy to install on all types of windlasses, and according to AnchorSafe, should take no more than 40 minutes. The unit is made from UV protected Polycarbonate material including the sun cover.
The sensor is fitted close to the windlass gypsy and is completely wireless so there is NO need to rewire the windlass system. (Usually the hardest part of installing such systems is wiring the sensors from the windlass to the flybridge as in existing chain counters, and the need to make a number of proper and weatherproof connections in this difficult area).
2. A control panel made from highly durable and long lasting materials. Any number of these units can be installed. They can be fitted anywhere you choose. These control panels let you wirelessly remote control the following operations: :
A) Precisely measure the amount of chain deployed or rewound.
B ) Automatically operate the windlass. This is very convenient as it now leaves you free to do other tasks.
C) Give an audible warning alarm when the anchor approaches the boom or on deployment when the chain is about to run out.
3. The wireless remote control, which releases or rewinds the anchor chain from anywhere on board. (This unit does not need any wiring to the windlass as in ordinary windlass remote control devices). . The effective range of the remote control and the wireless sensor (sender) attached to the gypsy is around 90 metres
For single-handers, deploying or upping-anchor can be done without crew assistance. Even when upping-anchor you can organize the stowage of the chain in the chain locker safe in the knowledge that the re-winding will automatically stop a safe distance from the bow.
If your boat has two windlasses you can have two separate units counting each side separately. If you need a repeater you can install additional units without any connection between them and the repeater will count automatically while the windlasses work
The retail price of the unit is 288.00 Euro per piece including one control unit with the display and control buttons, one sun cover, one internal built-in remote control receiver, one wireless gypsy sensor, and the remote control.
For further information about the system, including how to purchase it online (that's the only way at the moment), refer to their WEBSITE
www.sail-world.com/send_message.cfm!Click_Here!same to write to Sail-World Cruising about this article
If you want to link to this article then please use this URL: www.sail-world.com/22922