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Anchor Handling Test

The test is carried out to prove the performance of the windlass. 


  • It is performed when the vessel is out in sea trials.
  • This test is conducted at a minimum sea depth of 82.5 m (three shackles or shots of 27.5 m each) and the ship is at standstill and headed into the wind. 
  • It is conducted under calm conditions of the sea.
  • Ensure that all moving parts of the windlass and chain compressor have been lubricated.
  • Make sure that the motive power (electric/engine) to the windlass is available.

  • Lower the port side anchor to water level by controlling the windlass drive.
  • Let go by free-fall three (3) shots of port anchor chain to water. During this operation, test the windlass brake by holding it every half (1/2) shot.
  • Check whether there is three (3) shots anchor chain between chain compressor and anchor.
  • Hoist the port side anchor until the anchor is stowed at its home position.
  • During this process measure the time and calculate the average speed in meters per minute. Normal windlass is designed for 9 m/min.
  • Also during this process measure the amperage, voltage drop in case of electric drive and engine power otherwise. Apart from this check the oil pressure.
  • Repeat the above steps for starboard windlass.

Check Points:
  • Ensure that the sea conditions are satisfactory
  • Confirm if the hauling speed is above 9 m/min
  • Verify that the anchor chain water wash in the hawse pipe is functioning correctly and that the nozzles are directed for effective chain wash.
  • Check if the tongue of the chain stopper can be put in place and secured
  • Ensure that the chain cover can be closed and bolted in place (ILLC requirement)
  • Confirm if the anchor windlass is aligned with chain stopper and hawsepipe. One can check the rubbing of the chain to verify this.
  • Verify if the white paint on the chain at every shot (shackle) denoting the shackle (shot) number is not erased.


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