Chain Links, also known as Chain Connectors, provide the means to connect two lengths of anchor or mooring chain.
Please note that Jimmy Green Marine does not recommend joining chain where the connection is load critical or a matter of safety.
The methods used for joining chain depend on whether the connection needs to pass through a windlass gypsy.
Where calibration is not an issue, two tested shackles fitted back to back, i.e. linked shackles with the pin through the end link of each chain, will ensure a joint as strong as the chain.
Shackle pins should be nipped up tight with leverage for peace of mind. In addition, it is advisable to use a thread locking agent, e.g. LocTite and/or monel seizing wire to ensure that the pin can’t work loose.
Quick links can also be used in this situation. Rated quick links are as strong as the chain. Loctite should be applied to the thread, and the hex head nut should be tightened with a spanner to keep it secure.
Joining two lengths of calibrated chain to form a longer rode that will need to pass through a windlass gypsy is a different proposition. The connector must be very similar in shape and dimensions to the calibrated chain to pass successfully through the gypsy. C links are generally used for this purpose.
C Links are made from two pieces that fit together to form a shape similar to an anchor chain link. The two parts have rivets that need to be peened over to secure the link. Link the two parts through the ends of your chain and hammer the rivet ends over so that the two halves are securely fastened together.
If you are in any doubt about the results of your peening, it is advisable to start again or get the two parts welded as insurance.
N.B. Welding on a galvanised link will require a coating treatment and regular monitoring for any signs of rust.
C Links are available in Galvanised and Stainless Steel.
Jimmy Green Marine offers a rated C Link solution in galvanised finish manufactured by Crosby and two unrated stainless steel C Link types.
The Osculati C Link has four rivets rather than the standard two, making it more secure if peened over correctly.
The metallurgic reaction will adversely affect the chain over time if you use a stainless steel link with a galvanised chain. So, you should check the connection regularly, cut off any rusting links and repeat the job rather than let the deterioration continue.
Spliced Link Rope
It may be worth considering a short length of 3 Strand Nylon or Anchorplait Nylon spliced at each end to join the two lengths of anchor chain. The splicing would need to be of a professional standard to keep your mind at ease. 3 Strand Splicing Anchorplait Splicing It would be advisable to use the maximum diameter line for the size of chain e.g.
Rope diameters compatible with Calibrated Anchor Chain: Compatibility rests on two main factors:
- Break Load Comparison
- Physical limitations of the Rope to Chain Splice, i.e. the largest rope that will splice into the chain links, sit comfortably and articulate satisfactorily
6mm Grade 40 Chain c 2300kg MBL Compatible = 10mm Anchorplait Nylon, LIROS MBL 2400kg
7mm Grade 40 Chain c 3100kg MBL ~ Downsize = 10mm Anchorplait Nylon, LIROS MBL 2400kg or Compatible = 12mm Anchorplait Nylon, LIROS MBL 3300kg
8mm Grade 40 Chain c 4000-4400kg MBL ~ Compatible = 14mm Anchorplait Nylon, LIROS MBL 4400kg or Largest Possible for satisfactory splicing = 16mm Anchorplait Nylon, LIROS MBL 5600kg
10mm Grade 40 Chain c 6400-7200kg MBL ~ Slight Downsize = 16mm Anchorplait Nylon LIROS MBL 5600kg or Compatible = 18mm Anchorplait Nylon, LIROS MBL 7000kg
12mm Grade 40 Chain c 9100-9700kg MBL ~ Slight Downsize = 20mm Anchorplait Nylon LIROS MBL 8400kg or Upsize = 24mm Anchorplait Nylon, LIROS MBL 11800kg
N.B. 3 Strand Nylon has a similar break load to Anchorplait Nylon.
Anchor Chain Markers
Chain Markers are a convenient method of signifying the length of anchor chain that has been deployed by colour coding each section - you can make the segments a regular length, e.g. 5 metres or 10 metres, as long as you remember which:-)- a handy piece of knowledge when judging how much of your chain to let out and how much there will be in reserve.
Oscualti Anchor Chain Markers are the market leaders, having been around for years as the go-to solution, available in blue, green, red, white and yellow in 6mm, 8mm, 10mm and 12mm.
AnchoRight Anchor Chain Markers are an innovative, improved concept, more robust and secure from accidentally popping out under duress. This design is perfect for long lengths of anchor chain, e.g. > 50 metres - they are available in multiple colours with a recommended red section at each end to act as a warning - on retrieval, the anchor will shortly be hitting the bow roller, or when you are paying out, the end of the chain is nigh!