home built mooring system

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by Charlyipad, May 24, 2015.

  1. Charlyipad
    Joined: May 2014
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    Location: St Simons is ga

    Charlyipad Senior Member

    Thinking of an uncomplicated and affordable hurricane plan.

    Moorings are so dang heavy

    Here is my latest brainstorm

    A "Poor mans door moor", for lack of a better name.

    An inverted pyramid style mooring anchor.... have the pyramid welded up from cheap plate steel with a vertical shank, just like the store bought version, except have a separate plate with a hole in the center to fit over the shank. make it so you can bolt it all up once you fill it with steel punchings or something similar. (gravel?) That way you could break it down, and assemble it piecemeal on site, maybe atop a work float or something working from a dingy, hook it all up and push it overboard.

    I thought of maybe a barbell cut short, with a bunch of the round steel weights added to form a cone shape, but I like the pyramid idea better.

    Any ideas if it would work? In the Keys we used to use old engine blocks, but I need a BIG assed weight. for a 36' sailing cat
     
  2. whitepointer23

    whitepointer23 Previous Member

    Over here they dig a mushroom shape in the beach. Pour in concrete drop eye in and tow it out when it has dried.
     
  3. snowbirder

    snowbirder Previous Member

    If it's just a hurricane plan, haul it? Go way, way up river?

    Your anchor/mooring isn't the main issue. Chafing and storm surge are.
     
  4. Charlyipad
    Joined: May 2014
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    Location: St Simons is ga

    Charlyipad Senior Member

    whitepointer, I could do it that way, but I would prefer to be able to assemble it at the drop point. Also, I read somewhere that concrete is only half as heavy when submerged, so I like the idea of using steel if possible.

    I made one with concrete poured into a plastic barrel once. I put re bar through it sticking out the sides to catch and hold the bottom. It worked OK, but the chain securing it did tend to tangle. I was able to dive on it and check it out though. But here where I am now there is zero visibility (and alligators).

    snowbirder, unfortunately where I am I-95 bridges keep me from going too far up river. I would prefer to take her way WAY up and tie off in shallow water on four points to the cypress trees, but there is no where that I can find nearby that is not too exposed. Next best would be to put her on one monster tackle and let her swing. The trick now is finding a sweet spot away from traffic with enough room to swing so I can allow enough scope. Not easy in the creeks.

    Anyone have experience with pyramid anchors? The dor-mor sounds pretty good
     
  5. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    gonzo Senior Member

    Concrete is a really bad material for moorings due to its low density. Barrels will roll instead of holding to the bottom. Cast iron is selling for about $230.00 a ton. You can go to a scrap yard and find a single casting or several smaller ones that can be chained together. Old railroad wheels are easy to work with.
     
  6. Charlyipad
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    Location: St Simons is ga

    Charlyipad Senior Member

    LOL. I don't think my back could stand that. Great idea though.I could probably round up some RR spikes and base plates on the cheap. i am thinking about 4- 5 hundred pounds worth. I want it to still be there when I get back.
     
  7. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    A chunk of scrap iron is cheaper than the welding rods you need to build your anchor.
     
  8. pdwiley
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: Hobart

    pdwiley Senior Member

    True. We used 3 railway wheels, approx 230 kg each.

    *THEN* we added 10m of 36mm stud link chain, shackled to 10m of 22.5mm chain, shackled to 10m of 24mm polypropylene rope.

    12m depth of water.

    15 tonne boat didn't even look like dragging in 60+ knot winds, probably hasn't even fully straightened out the heavy chain.

    Point is, the big weight is only part of the equation. You have to have heavy chain as well to keep any load as close to horizontal as possible.

    PDW
     
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  9. Charlyipad
    Joined: May 2014
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    Charlyipad Senior Member

    Wow. How did you maneuver it all into place?
     
  10. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    We put them on the swim platform of a workboat tied with a cheap line. When we get to the spot, we cut the line and let it sink.
     
  11. pdwiley
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: Hobart

    pdwiley Senior Member

    I have access to a workboat that can handle these sorts of jobs with ease.

    Putting in moorings is something you don't want to do in a half-arsed fashion unless you have a very good insurance policy with very lax exclusion clauses. A good, well designed and heavy mooring *is* the insurance policy really.

    FWIW we also inspect the moorings every 2 years to check for corrosion, chafe etc etc. This involves pulling the whole thing up so you need access to a decent boat, barge, whatever. Putting a mooring in really isn't a 'drop and forget' deal, not if you actually want to rely on it in bad conditions.

    If you have a $250K boat hanging off of it, do you want to spend time worrying that you didn't put enough heavy gear into the mooring?

    PDW
     
  12. Charlyipad
    Joined: May 2014
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    Location: St Simons is ga

    Charlyipad Senior Member

    Well I am already worrying and I haven't even done anything yet.:D

    Maybe I better re think and call in the cavalry. I don't have ready access to anything large enough to handle 500+ pounds or so. Down in the keys we would hook it all up to a mess of empty jerry jugs and tow it all out and cut er loose. But that was peanuts compared to what I need now.

    Anyone have experience with "DOR-MOR" ? A homeade pyramid like that with a welded shank should be easy enough to make.
     
  13. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    We usually dive to inspect the chain. Most of the chafing happens in the bottom where sand and silt wear it out.
     
  14. SamSam
    Joined: Feb 2005
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    Location: Coastal Georgia

    SamSam Senior Member

    Hey Charly How about a screw in mooring like this?

    [​IMG]

    http://www.helixmooring.com/

    I don't know anything about them but it sounds like there are a bunch out there. I have no idea what equipment is needed to install them either.

    I wonder if you couldn't make something similar out of stainless, or use steel and have it galvanized and rent a large 1 or 1 1/2 inch drive air driven impact wrench to screw it in with.

    With a weighted mooring like an engine or the pyramid one, it might make it easier to handle if it was divided into 2 or 3 smaller weights that could be linked together.

    That you might want , or have, to move the mooring is something you might want to consider, it's easy to tip an engine block into the water but awful hard to get it back out.

    Are you going to be able to use this mooring all the time or is it just a hurricane plan? I would be leery of leaving a boat unoccupied, anywhere it might be easy to mess with it.
     

  15. Charlyipad
    Joined: May 2014
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    Location: St Simons is ga

    Charlyipad Senior Member

    Hey Sam, Ive thought about those. They would probably even be more site specific than a single mooring, and I would have to have them in place well ahead of time. Still maybe though. Finding the best spot is turning out to be as much of a challenge as choosing the right system.

    Ideally, I would have a pre-made anchor, that I can disassemble into manageable parts, tow some kind of platform to the site, assemble on site and splash. This would be for a one time catastrophic event (unless I had two or more storms the same season to deal with). I need to be able to deploy it quickly, use it, and then forget about it.

    I have dockage adequate for most events. This is for the big one. Mandatory evacuation and all that. I would need to put the boat somewhere as safe as possible, secure it, and leave it to fate. Unfortunately it does not rate number one in the heirarchy of importance along with family and other property.
     
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