Anchor Guide

When the end of the day has come and the sun is setting on the horizon and you can't wait to relax, when the fish are biting and you can't wait to cast a line, when it is time to grab a quick bite with friends before hitting the water again, then it is time to drop anchor. Make sure when you do, you are doing it with the confidence that the the anchor you chose is the right one for the job.

Let First Choice Marine be your first choice for ground tackle needed for your boat. We carry a wide selection of anchor types and brands as well as the accessories you need at affordable prices. With First Choice Marine, the next time you drop that anchor in the water you will have the right equipment you need.

With that said, you might ask, exactly what kind of anchor do I need?  That questions is easily answered once you know thecondition/type of bottom where you will drop your anchor.  Designs of anchors are built for specific bottom conditions.

There is also the consideration of stowing an anchor and if you prefer a coated (PVC) anchor that can add protection to your boat with use.

So, now you have decided on the type of anchor that best fits your need, but what size do you need?  You can start with manufacturer suggestions based on boat length, but you will also need to take into account that anchor loads are also affected by weight and windage.  This means if your boat is heavier than others of the same length you may need a larger anchor.  Many recommend going up one or two levels than what the manufacturer might suggest to compensate for other factors.

Browse the common anchor types and which work best for the needs of your boat and application.

Claw Anchor

The Claw Anchor is known also by a popular brand name, "Bruce Anchor."

Features of The Claw Anchor:

  • Allows you to make a 360 degree turn without it releasing from the bottom
  • Known to not break out with wind and tide changes and resets easily
  • Aligns with the force of the wind or tide
  • Sets dependably
  • Works well with low scope of rodes (rope and/or chain)

Boat recommendations:  Lighter and smaller fishing/pleasure boats. 
Bottom conditions:  Sandy and Rocky (think sea/ocean)

Fluke Anchor

The Fluke Anchor is known as a lightweight anchor, and by a popular brand name of this style, "Danforth."  

Features of The Fluke Anchor:
  • The two long "flukes" dig into the bottom and bury themselves (sometimes with part of the line)
  • Designed to reset themselves rather than turn
  • Large resistance to loads due to flukes digging in
  • Easy to retrieve and store
  • High holding power to the weight
Boat recommendations:  Pontoon/Deck, Pleasure and Fishing Boats
Bottom types:  Sand, Clay, Mud

Folding Anchor

Folding anchors are also known by the names, grappling and grapnel anchors.  They are lightweight, easily stored anchors for small craft.

Features of the Folding Anchor:

  • Usual four fluke design holds in weeds/grasses
  • Unfolds quickly for use
  • Folds and stores easily and compactly
  • Designed for short term anchoring
Boat recommendations:  dinghies, inflatable boats, inflatable canoes and kayaks, jon boats and personal water craft (PWC)
Bottom types:  Varied, but works best in grass/weed and rocky conditions, not soft

Mushroom Anchor

The mushroom anchor is best known as a mooring anchor for smaller boats due to its limited holding power and use in specific bottom conditions.

Features of The Mushroom Anchor:
  • Design creates a suction on soft bottom conditions
  • May have counterweight to hold down until it buries in the soft surface
  • Holding power can be ten times the weight of the anchor when fully set
Boat recommendations:   For smaller boats and as a mooring anchor.Mushroom anchors can serve as a drag anchor for fishing in current situations.  They can be used to secure small markers or buoys.
Bottom types:  Soft bottoms such as sand, silt or soft mud.


Navy Anchor

The Navy Anchor, also called a fisherman style or Kedge anchor has two flukes , but relies on its weight to hold.

Features of The Navy Anchor:
  • Two fluke design allows one fluke to bury in the bottom and the other
  • Uses its sheer weight for anchoring success
Boat recommendations:   Best used by large ships and for the most part, is not designed for recreational boats.
Bottom types:  Works best in heavy grass or weeds, rocky bottoms and hard sand.

Plow Anchor

The Plow Anchor, also called Plough, Delta (pivoting shank) or CQR (fixed shank) anchor has two flukes , but relies on its weight to hold.

Features of The Plow Anchor:
  • Digs right in and with a combination of design and weight, holds well
  • Sets fast and has good resistance to tides and wind movement
  • Works well for fit and launching capabilities with standard bow rollers
  • Ideal for use with a remote windlass
Boat recommendations:    Best suited for large recreation boats such as cruisers
Bottom types:   Designed for a wide variety of bottom conditions (sand, pebble, rock, gravel, kelp, coral)

Richter Anchor

The Richter Anchor, is for most anchor designs, relatively new, but with 17 years experience it has passed the test.

Features of The Richter Anchor:
  • Newer anchor design that is touted by fisherman
  • Aggressive fluke style to hold in a variety of bottom conditions
  • Weighted center
  • Release bar for easy retrieval-almost 100% of the time
Boat recommendations:  Fishing and pleasure boats.  The Richter Anchor is also suggested for hard to hold pontoons, deck boats, runabouts, and float planes.
Bottom types:   Designed for a wide variety of bottom conditions.  Very versatile.

River Anchor

The River Anchor by its name tells its primary use, for rivers and lakes with strong currents and drifts.

Features of The River Anchor:
  •  Holds well in fast currents and drift areas
  •  Versatile in hard bottoms and weedy/grassy ones also.
  •  Holds, even in windy conditions
Boat recommendations:   Designed for pontoon and fishing boats anchoring in a current area, for example a river.
Bottom types:    Muddy and rocky river bottom conditions.