How to Choose the Best Sailboat Anchor
Choosing the best sailboat anchor on various things such as the type and size of your boat, the type of bottom where you're planning to anchor your boat on, the weather conditions, and many more. For example, anchoring a 24-feet sailing boat on a muddy bottom will not be the same when using the same anchor when anchoring a 49-feet sailboat on a rocky bottom. More importantly, choosing the best sailboat is all about finding the right balance in terms of the size of your boat, the type of the bottom where you're sailing at, the climate conditions, and the amount of time that you're planning to be anchored.
Here is what you need to consider.
The Size of Your Boat
The size of your boat will determine the type of anchor that's appropriate based on its weight and resistance. For example, a claw anchor can be great for boats measuring between 16 feet and 50 feet. In essence, having a bigger boat will require an anchor that is bigger and has more holding power. On the other hand, a smaller anchor with less holding power will be ideal for a smaller boat.
Your Anchoring Time
The holding power of your anchor can be affected by the amount of time you are planning to anchor your boat. If you're planning to anchor your boat for longer periods, it would make a lot of sense to have an anchor with high holding power. Differently, you can go with an anchor with less holding power if you're planning to anchor your boat for a few hours.
The Bottom Type
The shape and sharpness of an anchor will determine how good an anchor can hold your boat in different types of bottoms. For example, claw anchors can struggle in rocks and corals but work perfectly in sand and mud. On the contrary, grapnel types of anchors can work great in rocks but don't work in sand or mud. It all depends on the bottom type of the area you're planning to sail at.
The type of material used in manufacturing the anchor is of great importance in terms of its functionality, reliability, and durability. Most anchors are galvanized to prevent them from rust and also for a better price. However, stainless steel anchors offer better anchors in terms of quality and aesthetics.
7 Best Sailboat Anchors
Without further ado, let's jump straight in.
1. Lewmar Galvanized Delta Sailing Anchor
(Best for Larger Boats)
Although several modern types of sailboat anchors have taken the anchor industry by storm, some traditional anchor designs still hold their ground today and the Lewmar Galvanized Delta Sailing Anchor is one of them. It's designed with a single, sharply pointed wedge fluke that has a similar shape to a plow and really gets into the ground. It digs down and holds so secure for larger boats measuring over 21 feet.
This is a superb sailboat anchor that performs exceptionally well on most bottom types save for rocks. You'll love the fact that it holds extremely well in softer bottoms such as sand and mud. This anchor is made from high-grade manganese steel and is galvanized with a protective layer of zinc to prevent it from rusting. It's also more light than most anchors so stowing and transportation shouldn't be a problem.
Having been a hallmark anchor for many years, this anchor guarantees reliability and will hold excellently even in stormy conditions. Launching it is also easy thanks to its ballasted tip and streamlined shank and will set the first time thanks to its self-righting design.
- Perfect for larger boats
- Very durable
- Approved by several National Lifeboat Associations
- Comes with a perpetual guarantee against breakage
- Easy to launch
- Very secure
- Quite expensive
- Requires tripping line to release it from the seabed
- Not great for rocky bottom
2. Rocna Vulcan Galvanized Anchor
(Best for Changing Weather Conditions)
As the best-selling sailboat anchor currently available in the market, it's easy to see why the Rocna Vulcan Galvanized Anchor is the most highly rated anchor by multiple independent reviewers. Built for strength and versatility, this anchor works great with a wide range of boats, which is a very unique feature. Coming in sizes ranging from 9 to 606 pounds, this anchor is so versatile and gives you the option of choosing the right size for your sailboat.
This remains the most dependable anchor in the market, especially in the roughest of conditions. It holds all types of the seabed so fast and has a roll bar that's crucial in ensuring that your boat's weight is not only distributed appropriately but the boat sets at the right angle. Its Vulcan design and sharp tip allow it to snug fit on the bow and to get right into the seabed respectively.
This is an anchor that draws the best features from traditional sailboat anchors such as spade and bagel anchors to become one of the best modern sailboat anchors out there.
- Perfect for stormy conditions
- Great for all types of seabed
- Very versatile and available in a wide range of sizes
- Perfect for all types of boats
- It has an easy storage design
- It's designed by a well-known brand
- Very expensive
- Its shank is only perfect for bigger flukes
3. Manson Galvanized Supreme Sailing Anchor
(The Fastest Setting and Highest Holding Anchor)
If you're looking to purchase the best sailboat anchor from a well-established brand, look no further than the Manson Galvanized Supreme Sailing Anchor. This anchor has been in the market for the better part of the last two decades and still holds its ground as one of the best sailboat anchors out there. The fact that it is perfect for all types of seabed makes it a great option for sailors who are on a budget.
This sailboat anchor has an indisputable reputation all over the world as the fastest setting and highest holding anchor. This is because it's uniquely designed for extreme holding conditions thanks to its standard bow rollers and a dual operation shank that's designed with the utmost versatility in mind. Whether you're looking to anchor in mud, sand, or rocky areas, this anchor will never disappoint you.
- It has an extremely high holding power
- It's the fastest setting anchor in the market
- It's perfect for all types of seabed including rocky areas
- Its safety is guaranteed as it has passed multiple tests
- Comes with a perpetual guarantee against breakage
- It's very durable
- Designed for extreme weather conditions
- It's heavy, which can bring difficulties in stowing and transportation
- Very expensive
4. Danforth S-600 Standard Sailing Anchor
(Best for Smaller Boats)
At this point, you shouldn't have any doubt that some of the more traditional types of anchors still have a place in the anchor industry today. The Danforth S-600 Standard Sailing Anchor is a traditional fluke anchor that's extremely perfect for smaller boats but can also be used as a secondary anchor for larger boats. Having been developed in the US back in the 1940s, this type of anchor is similar to the modern CQR anchor and doesn't compromise on quality and reliability even in rough weather conditions.
It's lighter than most anchors, so stowing or transporting it shouldn't be a problem. In terms of its holding power, it has an excellent power-to-weight ratio and can hold quite fast in sand and mud. The fact that it is a fluke type of anchor makes it not perfect for coral, rock, or gravel bottoms.
- Perfect for smaller boats
- It's good for sandy and muddy substrates
- Lightweight and compact
- Has a holding power of about 600 pounds
- Constructed with high-strength galvanized steel
- Quite affordable
- Not ideal for rock, coral, or gravel substrates
- Can only be used as a secondary anchor on larger boats (over 27 feet)
- It has moving parts
5. Lewmar Claw Anchor
(Best for All Types of Seabed)
If you're looking for the best sailboat anchor that will serve you perfectly in all types of substrates, the Lewmar Claw Anchor can be an ideal choice. Previously known as the Bruce or Claw type anchor, this anchor has a three-pronged design that enables it to easily set in any bottom. It doesn't matter whether you want to anchor in an area with mud, sand, rock, coral, gravel, or grassy bottom, this anchor will hold its ground.
It can be a great option if you're on a tight budget and want to buy an anchor that doesn't have a complete design while going about its duty quietly. It's so versatile thanks to the fact that it's available in sizes ranging from 4.4 pounds to 44 pounds. What's more; it's made from high-grade steel and it's very durable. If anything, it draws inspiration from the anchors used in securing oil rigs in the North Sea.
- Excellent for all types of substrates
- It's very versatile
- It's durable
- It's very affordable
- Its odd shape makes it difficult to stow
6. Mantus Galvanized Sailing Anchor
(Perfect for Dense Grassy Bottoms)
The level of functionality that the Mantus Galvanized Sailing Anchor brings to the table is unmatched. This is an anchor that offers unparalleled holding power as it can dig a lot deeper than most anchors out there.
It's strongly built but can come apart to make it a lot easy to store and transport. Its sharp-headed nose gives it maximum penetration power, though it may not hold quite well in low viscosity sea beds. This anchor is highly dependable yet very expensive so it might not be an ideal option if you're on a budget. So if functionality is your top priority when going to an area with dense grassy bottoms, it can be your ideal option.
- Very functional and dependable
- Perfect for dense grassy bottoms
- Easy to store and transport
- Made from high-quality steel
- Comes with a lifetime warranty against breakage
- It has moving parts
- It's very expensive
7. Norestar Stainless Steel Delta/Wing Boat Sailing Anchor
(Highest Quality Anchor)
One of the most important things when in the market for a good sailboat anchor is quality. Well, the Norestar doesn't disappoint on this front as it's manufactured using the highest quality stainless steel. This stainless steel is strengthened with micron thick PVD coating that gives it a highly urbane appearance.
Its design is also one of the most popular anchoring systems in the maritime industry today. This is because it offers impeccable security and gives you the peace of mind knowing that your boat is safe at all times.
- It is self-launching
- Made from the highest quality stainless steel
- It sets easily
- Perfect for most bottoms
- It's lightweight and has no moving parts
- Not ideal for bottoms with hard sand
- Quite expensive
There you have it; these are the best sailboat anchors in the market. An anchor is one of the most crucial parts of safe sailing. Whether you're looking to moor at the harbor or to explore far-reaching areas in the water, a good anchor is your number safety and insurance while on the water.