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Danforth Anchors Have Hooks in BYC

An early edition Danforth hangs off the stern.

The Danforth anchor was a radical new design when it was first developed in the late 1930s. Patented in 1940, it saw widespread use as a lightweight anchor for seaplanes, landing craft and pontoon bridges during WWII.

Inventor Richard S. Danforth (1885-1962) was born in Maine and graduated from Dartmouth in 1908. He appears to have been one of the founding members of Berkeley Yacht Club in 1939, and remained an active member for many years, racing his Q-Boat Gitana through the 1960 season on San Francisco Bay. He lived at 1036 Creston Road.

The Danforth style anchor was the anchor of choice for small craft throughout the second half of the 20th century, although it now competes with other forms of self-burying anchors in the cruising fleet. Weight-conscious racers still prefer aluminum versions of the Danforth anchor, a design that continues to provide the greatest holding power for the least weight.

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