Choosing the right type of anchor for a ship is arguably one of the least understood parts of being a sailor. Most people think, “How difficult is it to choose an anchor for my ship? After all, it’s just holding the boat in place, right?  Well, they are incorrect as anyone who regularly goes boating knows that the right ship anchor needs the correct equipment, knowledge of the local seafloor, and careful selection, all of which can cause confusion when trying to make a decision. You’ll also need to consider the right Davit Crane installation for the lowering of the anchor you choose. For more information, visit

Fluke / Danforth / Lightweight anchors

The most popular type of anchor is anchor coincidence. These anchors are also referred to as Lightweight or Danforth. These anchors happen to be light in weight, and simple to store. It keeps smaller boats well in both mud and sand and is the most popular anchor used in small boats. They tend to be one of the cheapest anchors, so this can also contribute to their popularity with recreational seafarers.

Not all anchors happen to be created equally. The angle of flux on the shaft and the size of the flukes (width and length) vary and must be considered depending on the seabed. For example, wider worms and larger shaft angles can work better on the mud base than longer worms with smaller angles because this allows more suction to be produced by the mud and less chance of the anchor pulling out.

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Plow / CQR / Wings / Delta

This anchor style is mostly a variation of older pirate anchor styles. They offer good weed penetration capabilities due to sharp entry points and durability in a variety of conditions.

For the most part, these anchors reset themselves well in wind or fast tide conditions. This anchor is also preferred at the base of floors with mud and sand. However, these anchors are very large and storing them is quite difficult for smaller vessels so that these anchors are preferred on larger vessels because of the stability they offer.

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Claw / Bruce Anchor

Claw or Bruce anchors are a popular anchor because of their ability to hold in various seabed conditions but that would normally require a larger than claw style or plow, for the same application. One disadvantage of this type of anchor is holding still on a particularly weedy seabed, which tends to mean the anchor slides rather than penetrates the surface.

Because the capacity is reduced compared to other anchors, it’s important to get the right size along with the right number of chains or it will cause frustration when the anchor cannot stand.

With the right setting for the claw anchor, it will withstand well, reset itself quickly if it is released during changes due to tides and allow it to be used in many seabed conditions.