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On at least 2 dozen occasions, I have written about how well our Rocna anchor performs and how happy we are with it. At the time we purchased it though, many people were promoting the purchase of the very similarly-designed Manson Supreme anchor because it was selling for considerably less. I even just recently read a comment on a forum post where someone posted something to the effect that the Manson was cheaper. Well, as it turns out, that is no longer the case. In fact, it seems that the opposite is true, at least using Defender’s current pricing for a comparison (Rocna, Manson).

It’s my understanding that Rocna switched their manufacturing from New Zealand, where our anchor is from, to China. And this switch may have at one time brought on some quality-control issues, which I assume have now been rectified. I thought it was pretty good marketing by the Manson people though if everyone still believes that they’re selling for much cheaper!

Personally, I think I’d sleep pretty soundly using either of these anchors.

18 Comments

  1. I would point out that the touted “rock slot” feature on the Manson Supreme is really badly thought out. When one owner bragged about it and how they used it all the time, I asked them,

    “How does the anchor know that you’ve intentionally shifted the shackle and that it wasn’t the wind or current reversing that did it?”

    Their reaction was a dumb-founded gaze. I said,

    “That’s right, that means that if you’re using the rock slot and the current or winds reverse you will likely end up pulling the anchor up in such a way that it has no hope of ever resetting. You’ll drag until you go aground or hit something.”

    If you have to anchor in rocky terrain, you’d be much better off tieing a anchor retrieval line to the forward anchor retrieval point on the anchor and then seizing it along the chain part of your anchor rode with sailmaker’s thread. Then, if you try retrieving the anchor and it doesn’t come up, you can grab the anchor retrieval line and break it free from the thread seizings and use it to retrieve the anchor. This avoids the need for an anchor retrieval line float–something I find to be a nuisance and can be mistaken for a mooring pickup buoy by stupid powerboaters…

    • Dan, I like that idea of a retrieval line tied to the chain with light thread. I think I’ll borrow that one.

      When, that is, I get an anchor that sets reliably. I actually tried pulling our cheap 5lb slotted-shank Danforth clone along the beach at ~20:1 scope last year. It just would not bite, even if you half-buried it by hand first.

      I do wish these nice new-gen anchors were a bit less pricey, but I suspect we’ll end up splurging on one anyway for our new trimaran when she launches….

    • I would never use that rock slot thing. We’ve only rigged a retrieval line on our anchor once (tied to a float) when we stopped in the Alligator River in the US. I’ve never found a need otherwise, not to say that we haven’t gotten our anchor stuck, because we have. This is also why we TRY to never anchor in a place deeper than we can dive.

  2. I am offended……”Stupid powerboaters”……….I have always used a plow anchor with 25 of chain only. I will preface by saying we are in sand type bottoms……I lay out 1:5 scope during daytime anchoring and 1:7 at night……I will also say I have never been on anchor in anything above 30 knots…….By the way, “I am okay with being called “a stupid powerboater”……..I laughed!!!

  3. Mike, go to rocna anchors in fb and you can read the full disclosure of their issues and the new changes to their lifetime warranty.

  4. Mike, the Rocna anchor is now owned by a Canadian Company who are replacing the faulty batch of anchors and are doing a good job of re-establishing the good name of the brand.

    The original designer, Peter Smith, has been involved with sorting things out with them and all now seems to be well.

    Manson, of course, and all the gleeful scaremongers, are still publicising the Chinese lower grade steel problem as though it was current and continuing.

    I followed all this in detail as I too bought a Rocna, and it is good.

    Mike

    • Like Mike said, Pete will get it sorted out. Pete is a nice guy, tons and tons of energy. Met him a few times when Rocna first came out, and helped him battle some bad marketing. It is a remarkable design. And I agree about the Manson slot. Maybe good for a short anchor, but that is about all. When we used a grappling anchor on dive trips, way before mooring balls on reefs, we had an eye welded to the hook end. The last person up would clip the anchor backwards so it would not trash the reef when we pulled it up. Plus it came right up.

    • The article I linked to indicated the same.

  5. I have just been looking round other sites as well. It seems the Canadians have reduced the price generally and are quietly marketing it more aggressively.

    Thanks for pointing this out. I had not otherwise seen it.

    Mike

  6. Having a smaller boat, I checked on smaller anchors.

    Manson is slightly cheaper on the 13/15 lb & the 22/25 lb anchors, but much higher on the 33/35 lb anchors.

    Go figure!

  7. Who knows, it’s a soap opera. And measuring differences in holding power in the real world is nearly impossible; anchors don’t drag in nice hard sand due to a steady force, they drag when things have gone all wrong. My Manson wouldn’t set the other day, no matter what I did; further investigation revealed I was on a 100′ x 100′ smooth rock slab. Go figure.

    I upgraded from a 22-pound Delta (good anchor, just too small) to a 35-pound Manson at the height of the Rocna implosion. It works fine. Price changes? Seems to me like the workings of a competitive market and Rocna trying to get back in to the fight. In fact, rather liked it when the Rocna and Fortress reps were active on the forums; the mud slinging was just hilarious. Allegations of copying, but doesn’t the Rocna sport a Delta shank and a Bugle roll-bar? Evolution is like that, good for all of us.

    And yeah, the rock slot offends me. I nearly bought a Rocna just to avoid it. I’ve learned not to look at it.

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