W. AUSTIN (2005)
Hello I have an A100 Aluminium that I used during hurricane Ivan in
Pensacola Fl. .... That night I set my boat on the hook using a Spade A100
and 150 ft of 5.16 chain,...
We had 27 other boats in the safest Moorage in Pensacola.... that night the
winds reached 155mph then the eye passed over us and it was dead calm,...
and the the other side of the storm blew at 140mph at this time all the
boats turned 180 degrees and this is when the.... hit the fan,.... in the
morning the only boats left in the bayou,.... was mine and one other boat
using the same Spade Anchor,....25 boats were not there,....
I know that I will always use these anchors on my boats,.... I have a40 ft
sea - ray... and a 28 Wellcraft,.... My insurance company loves you, thanks
BARBARA POTTER « Ocean
Phantasy » in Alcudia Marine, Northern Mallorca
promised to send you any interesting incidents we encountered when using our
new Spade 100 anchor on our Moody 46 in the Mediterranean.
night of Wednesday May 21st., the night of the Algerian earthquake, we were
securely anchored in the cove of Porto Petro on the south east coast of
Mallorca in the Balearic Islands in hard sand and sea grass - our most
difficult anchoring type of bottom.
21.30 or so the eleven boats in our anchorage started wild gyrations as a
bore of water came racing out of the nearby marina. Yachts started tearing
past us as they dragged their anchors and then came racing back again as the
surge of water came back into the cove (or Cala as they are named in the
Balearics) from out at sea.
out over the VHF that this frightening happening was caused by the severe
earthquake 150 miles away in Algeria. For two hours were were swirled
violently in all directions, but, our new Spade 100 held firm and did not
drag one iota. We know this as we were monitoring our anchoring position
electronically as other yachts dragged all over the place. We could only
start the engine and steer around the anchor in order to avoid the other
boats most of which were totally out of control.
through this frightening night unscathed thanks to our trusty Spade which
stood up to its severest test yet, unmoved. Other yachts were not so lucky
as we understand since that there was quite a lot of damage in the coves and
marinas in the Balearic Islands that night. Hope this information is of
interest to you. As far as we could tell we were the only boat using a Spade
anchor that night.
My husband, Martin, spoke to you at the Boat Show this year. Last winter
we left our boat, Sapphire (47.5) in Rome. We bought a spade anchor from
you at the Boat Show and carried it out there ( before the sports goods
restrictions by Ryan Air). We spent 6 months cruising down the Italian
coast to the windy Aeolian Islands, Sciliy, Southern Italy, Corfu, the
Ionian Islands, Athens, Evia Channel, Sporades, Lesvos, Samos,
Dodecanese and onto Turkey.
We had always anchored "according to the book", but sometimes,
previously, it took a few goes to get it to take. However,our new Spade
anchor was a dream to use and we had an easy mind when it came to
One day, in Turkey, we had left Sapphire anchored in the bay amongst 6
or 7 other yachts. We went ashore to use the internet and were fairly
oblivious to the squall which had pipped up in the bay. Several boats
received extensive damage during this weather. When we returned to our
rubber dinghy, it was swamped by the large waves which had broken on the
previously quiet shore. All the other boats at anchor had made a run for
it. The bottom was a shingle sort of sand. In fact, the gullets had also
left the quayside as the winds were causing them damage as they bashed
against the concrete quay.
We were only concerned about the dinghy, but the engine still started
and, once the winds had died down, we motored back to Sapphire.
We changed our anchorage that evening and returned to a mooring bouy the
next morning. By coffee time another yachtsman rowed over. They had been
anchored near us at the start of the storm, but their anchor wouldn't
hold as their yacht shifted position. They were amazed that Sapphire had
not been washed up and wrecked. We invited the captain on board for a
coffee. He came on board and, instead of sitting down in the cockpit,
strode meaningfully to the bow of our yacht. He pointed at our spade
anchor and announced, "I want one of those!!".
I didn't think that there would be an anchor in which I could be so
confident. Should you want an agent in Turkey I would be happy to
reccommend the Spade anchor to anyone.
Jere Lull - September 2000
Damn, they're expensive!
but when you see one, you can see why: They're works of art with a lot of
The Spade dug right in and held against anything the prop could throw at it,
including simulating 180 degree windshifts. Yes, the Spade's become our
I have a
66 lb spade in aluminum and have never dragged. It is super 45 foot
trintella, dsp ~35,000 lbs. It brings up half the harbor when I bring it up,
so I see why it holds.
been using a 30kg=66lb galvanized steel Spade anchor for two years now. It's
fabulous. Used throughout the Bahamas as a single anchor in places many said
two. It resets within a few feet at most. Truly great anchor. By far the
best anchor so far as my very extensive research / talking with people in
the field, etc. can reveal.
http://www.morganscloud.com/stuff/deck.htm - John
Harries and Phyllis Nickel.
this anchor is the next best thing to sliced bread! It sets immediately and
holds in almost any bottom, including thick kelp. We like the SPADE so much,
we now have a 120lb as our bower anchor and a 66lb as our secondary anchor.
- John Harries
had a great deal of difficulty anchoring when we first arrived in
Norway--the *** we had as primary anchor just could not set in kelp, hard
clay or hard sand. When we switched to the SPADE as primary anchor, however,
anchoring became a joy again.
it's worth, we've anchored regularly on a Spade anchor with 50m chain, and
never dragged, or even had to re-set when anchoring.
used our Spade anchor. It was worth every penny (thanks everyone). It sets
fast, digs in quick and holds strong. We have yet to drag on it. I have
started diving on the anchor to check it set,
We cruised with a spade
anchor on our PDQ36 cat for more than a year. We had the aluminum one too.
here's what we thought. The spade is a GREAT anchor! It held like a rock in
ALL conditions and all bottoms. The aluminum was good because we could
easily raise it even when it was really buried and we could set it by hand
when we dove on it if necessaryThey are worth the investment. It's amazing
to watch them set in clear water, you see why they work so well!
Location: Ft. Lauderdale Cruised on a friends boat and anchored with a Spade
(Alu) .I drove the boat and set the anchor in a very familiar spot.(Half
sand, half mud)The spade set right away, and I gradually went full power in
reverse and held the power at full for a little, just to "check" the Spade
out. I was impressed, it did not budge.
Chuck Hawley from West Marine. I've been testing anchors for over a decade
in the same location off of Santa Cruz Harbor. The smallest alloy Spade is
able to withstand almost full power from a 170HP Yanmar and a 16" propeller
on Showtime, our Fortier 26 test boat. It has only failed to hold over 1,000
lb once, and in that case it held 800 lb. Our veering test was to set it at
1,000 lb, then slack the line and to run the boat at 6 knots perpendicular
to the previous direction of pull. The anchor did not release, and slowed
Showtime so violently that most testers were knocked off their feet. This is
a superior anchor design, and it's what Randy Repass, West Marine's
Chairman, selected for his new cat-ketch
replaced a CQR with a Spade three years ago and am 100 per cent satisfied
with the Spade. It holds exceptionally well, much better than the ***. Also,
I have watched others drag whilst we remained firmly in place. The Spade has
always remained firmly set in all conditions although the highest wind speed
I have experienced has only been gusting 40 knots.
and I have carried a 22kg Spade Anchor aboard our yacht for more than four
years and 11,000 miles of international cruising, and we consider it to be
the ULTIMATE anchor! It launches more easily, sets faster, holds better,
breaks out more quickly and stows more conveniently than any other anchor we
Alain, I would just like to
thank you for inventing such a great anchor.I have a 35 foot racing/cruising
catamaran, a Tek 35, and a few years back, when equipping the new vessel, I
ordered two 15 pound spade aluminum anchors, to keep the weight on the boat
to a minimum. I put them on 20 feet of chain, and then 5/8" line. I always
dig them in using the boats backwards momentum, as I cannot generate any
appreciable pull using my motor. They always catch and hold, and this is a
good thing, as I am singlehanding with my 5 and 8 year old sons for my only
crew. As I often like to anchor in close quarters, either with other boats
or rocks nearby, a missed set with an anchor would lead at best to a serious
scramble to keep out of troubleand at worst to damamge! Their holding power
has also been useful when a 55 foot powerboat drifted down on us, or when we
sat out Hurricane Isabel I write this sitting out 25 knot winds (for a
week!) in the Bahamas, the second time this winter we have had such extended
times of strong wind. We have gone to help other boats who have dragged, but
are secure in knowing we are staying put.
impressed with the small galvanised SPADE, in particular the "spade" shape
which is designed to penetrate and lock into the soil, compared with the "plow"
shape of the *** and ***** anchors which are designed to move through the
ground. I have nothing but praise for this 20 kg Spade anchor. It has almost
invariably penetrated immediately (I motor back very slowly at first to give
the point to go down into increasingly harder seabed) and with one exception
over the past 3 years it has held our full reverse power of 140 hp through a
600 mm 3 bladed Gori prop. The single exception was in a marina in New
Caledonia where I knew the bottom was of very soft mud, but there was still
ample holding for engine revs equivalent to around 40 knots of wind.
Obviously one can hold almost any craft in almost any conditions. In our
case we have been able to go from a 40 kg ***** to a 20 kg Spade, with a
substantially better performance, and a weight saving of 20 kg.
to drop you a quick note of thanks. On Friday the 13th of August our little
piece of paradise here in Punta Gorda Florida had a visitor from the south.
Hurricane Charley came to town as a Cat 4 with sustained winds of over 145
mph and gusts to 200 ! I had prepared our boat ( Lagoon 410 cruising
catamaran) by putting out our Model 100 Spade anchor forward, one more line
off the bow to a dock across the canal, one off starboard side to a
neighboring dock, a 35# *** aft and 4 lines to my dock standing off about 30
feet. Just before the eye got to us, to my amazement my 4 pilings we gone !
! ! My boat was swinging over and nudging a boat across the canal. When I
could see through the rain and wind the other bow line was gone (later to be
found cut by debris) The only thing that kept our boat from being a complete
loss was your great anchor ! She drug about a hundred feet through the ooze
on the bottom until she hit the solid beneath. To give you an idea of how
strong the wind was, about 300 feet in front of us a Manta 40 cruising cat
was lifted and did a 360 degree roll over the bow and landed on a 26 foot
power boat on a lift. They both later sank when blown off by cradle with the
wind shift. Oh yes the *** on the back end dragged and let my boat get
damaged on the port side with the wind shift. I have about $3500 dollars of
fiberglass work, but all else said we were very fortunate, thanks to your
great product ! And yes I will be replacing that *** with another Spade in
the near future.
you for designing such a great product ! ! !
- Lagoon 410 #78Punta Gorda, FLto dock -N 26° 53.471'W 082° 03.515'to Corona
Locker -N 26° 53.472'W 082° 03.516'
Spade holds us securely in Caleta Beaulieu, in 20m of water at 54.47S
069.37W. We sleep very well with it and it has served us all the way through
the Chilean Canales. In the next month it will have the chance to taste the
waters of Cape Horn!
A friend of mine, Peter Skillen, also has an Amel , Pure Magic, which he
took to Antarctica last month and is now en route to S Georgia, with his
Spade on my recommendation. Very pleased , not least with its performance on
the rocky bottoms of Antarctica.
Ian and Judy Jenkins, Pen Azen,
we had 14 days of force 8/9 winds and 8 of these were spent swinging at
anchor. The SPADE never faltered and we felt very confident in it in such
Theresa & Mike
We have a new Outbound 44
which we cruised for three months last summer around Vancouver Is., BC. We
have a Spade 140 (66lb), a **** 45. We used the **** several times and it
worked well-quick set and hold. But once we put the Spade on the roller we
never wanted to change. In about 80 sets it failed to set only 1 or 2 times
on the first try, and held fine in up to 30 kn of wind. Most of the ground
Not only does the Spade set quickly, it holds like a bear -- on several
occasions we had to winch the chain (5/16" HT) vertical and let the boat
ride to the chop for a few minutes to break it out.
to you about a year ago to tell you how happy I was with me Spade.
I've travelled 14,000 miles since then, stopped in many many anchorages in
all kinds of conditions, and love the product even more.
Langkawi: 2nd January 2005
We were away from our base
at Telaga Harbour, Langkawi, Malaysia, cruising in Thailand.
Sunday morning we spent on the beach snorkeling and were just returning to
our boat in the dinghy under oars when we became aware of a very large
breaking wave moving along the rocky shore towards us. The current surged
violently preventing us getting back on board. By rowing vigorously We
managed to keep on the back of the wave.
Our catamaran stayed put although the current must have exceeded 15 knots
and the depth have increased to about 40 feet. A lot of credit must go to
the designer of our anchor -- a design known as the 'Spade' (20kg) It held
in extreme conditions on what became a very short scope.
Dennis & Dorothy Noble from Dorset, England
have a Spade anchor and have been cruising for two years now. Anchor has
never let us down. Held perfectly in 60kts for three hours one night.
Hurricane Delta over the Canary Islands (2005)
Spade A-100 anchor saved my Catamaran from disaster
in hurricane Delta
morning 28 Novenber on anchor with my catamaran “ We Two Are One” behind the
breakwater of Arrecife Lanzarotte.
navtex gave a hurricane warning for Madeira and Canarische islands. Because
the anchor place was open to the southwest, I decided to go to the harbor
Naos on the another side of Arrecife to find some shelter for the oncoming
was not the only one all the yachts who were on anchor behind the breakwater
left for Naos for shelter, by the time I arrived there, the inner harbor was
full of boats, and no safe place to anchor for me and my cat. The two
jetties from the Marina were totally full and quite a few boats were on
anchor inside the harbor , and the danger that anchors with their short
anchor scoop will break out if it really started to blow, did not appeal to
me at all.
choose a place behind the breakwater from the outer entrance from the harbor,
with plenty of room in all wind directions.
hours the wind speed became well over 40 knots, (beaufort 9) but I was
laying on 2 anchors a Spade A-100 and a Fortress 27 and was laying ok.
from me was a heavy German multi chine steel yacht and his anchor started to
drag and he motored up and down and anchored a couple of times, but kept on
breaking loose and when he finally did anchored again his boat kept on
swinging to and fro on his anchor. Of course that did not last long. His
anchor started to drag again and came closer and closer to my cat and to my
anchor lines who were very tight but kept holding.
So I did
shine my torch on him to warn him off.
hours wind speed now well over 50 knots ( beaufort 10) my anchors were still
holding ok and to be sure I did put my third anchor out a fortress 37, the
wind was screaming and the waves outside the harbor were about 2 meters
German couple with their steel boat and still motoring up and down made me
understand that I had to go away, now that was impossible with this wind of
over 50 knots and on 3 anchors.
impossible to look into the wind with all this black vulcan sand blowing
into my face. Also the glass kept falling down and the wind kept on
increasing all the time. Later I heard that the wind speed was well 60 knots
started my two outboard engines to lessen the pull on my anchor lines, and
all of a sudden I noticed that we were drifting backwards quite rapidly so
it looked that the anchors were loose, and we were going at quite a speed
backwards and I thought did is the end of my catamaran, then to my relief
just quite close to a big red steel buoy and near the entrance of the harbor
one of the anchors gripped again and we stopped going backwards, but we were
now with the noses into the high waves near the harbor entrance. The 2
anchor lines from the fortress anchors were loose so we were only laying on
the Spade, so I did put out a very heave old fisherman anchor hoping to get
some strain off the Spade .
Germans i think were happy to get rid of me.
with a laud bang we were loose again and hit the big red steel buoy
broadside with my starboard hull and were more or les surfing towards the
concrete harbor wall from the container wharf, the waves were about 3 meters
or so high and I realized that this was the end of “We Two Are One” we will
smash to pieces any moment now and my wooden Catamaran would not have any
change what ever to survive that at all.
Are One” did not give in as yet, somehow the anchors dug themselves in again
and made us swing around with the noses into the wind and waves again, at
about 2 or 3 meters from the concrete wall.
was screaming thru the rigging and then off all things the jib started to
unroll itself and was flapping like mad, I fought with the jib and managed
to roll it up again and managed to put the spinnaker halyard round it.
noticed that my portside outboard engine with the mounting bracket system
was torn away and was hanging under water on its throttle cable so I did
managed to put a rope round the engine and with a sheet winch pulled it
against the boat.
realized that my position was very dangerous if the chain breaks of the
out again then we will hit the wall within seconds and that would be the end
passport and ships papers and some personal gear into a waterproof bag ,
ready to throw ashore, because this could not go on forever, with this wind
and waves nothing can stand this for long.
some flares but that was no success at all the first one burnt my hand the
second one fel into the cockpit and kept on burning there and the third one
did do nothing at all. Got out my flare pistol shot some flares of, and
realized that is also hopeless in this weather. Finally called a mayday on
channel 16 hoping to reach the Naos harbor board, it took a while but they
answered, and told me that a lifeboat will be on its way.
anchor line of the fisherman anchor was hanging down so the line had broken
so we were again hanging only on the Spade and chain but for how long!!!!!!
what I thought a long time the lifeboat came alongside off me downwind and
the crew yelled to me to jump, no I yelled tow us to the harbor, but the
Spanish lifeboat crew told no go, you will have to jump, so I did and 3
pairs of strong hands pulled me unto the lifeboat.
I was sitting on the cockpit floor of this lifeboat going at full speed
towards the safety of Naos harbor, shocked ,dazzled, troubled and very
worried the starboard engine was still running and all the lights were still
on, when I jumped ???.
lifeboat moored into her box and it seems to me that the wind was degreasing
in force, I did asked the Captain to take me back to my boat, he said no, we
will go at first light in the morning we will go and have a look, your life
is more important than the boat.(...the next morning...)
Manuel’s little fishing boat and 3 man we went towards my boat, and went
alongside we saw that the engine had stopped because of lots of plastic bags
where stag on the propeller, batteries completely flat,
portside engine who was still hanging under water, and with the 4 off us
hoisted the engine on board, and we managed to started with the pull cord
the starboard engine.
made the catamaran’s portside fast on Emanuel little fishing boat and went
anchor up, the big fisherman anchor had not been holding anything at all,
the Spade anchor was really dug in and took quite some effort with the 4 of
us to break it out, the Spade blade had got stuck behind some rocks and with
the 8 mm extra strong galvanised chain kept the cat from disaster. The shank
of the Aluminum Spade was totally twisted but it did hang on. And thanks to
my 9 KG aluminum Spade anchor who realy saved my Catamaran. “We Two Are One”
from being shipwrecked.
day’s later with Emanuel and his little fishing boat and a Englisch
sailorfriend we went looking for the anchors, water was clear so we
snorkeled it took us about 15 minutes to find the anchors the line of the
small Fortress had been worn through, big Fortress the pin came out of the
shackle, which we found also. I did not put safety strap on the shackle at
the time of the storm, which I normally do.
we heard that a lot off damage had occurred all over the Canary Islands,
especially on Tenerife where windspeeds off wel over 120 knots was measured.
There occurred the most damage now 4 day’s later there is still no electric
power as yet.
everybody is working hard to repair the damage and trying to get rid off
this black vulcan dust. So gradually I will get my Catamaran shipshape
again, and hope to, in a week or two to go sailing again and try to forget
this terrible experience.
(Editors Note: We no longer recommend an
aluminium anchor as a main anchor because it can bend in extreme conditions
or with all chain rode - but this still shows the holding ability of the
Michael Barrett OBE
Lots of dramatic stories
in customer reports but the really great thing about the Spade is its
complete reliability in regular use in all sorts of conditions. Until we
bought a Spade, our cruising on the West Coast of Scotland was constantly
marred by dragging over kelp, rock and even sand in even moderate
conditions, and sleepless nights as the wind rose or the tide turned. For
the last three years we have never had to reset and have never dragged. It
bites quickly and stays set. The Spade is a brilliant design and gives total