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Old 03-31-2013, 06:35 AM   #1
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Good Windlass?

Hi,

I was looking at Windlass systems and came across this: Good Automatic Windlass rope windlasses

I'm wondering if anyone has any experience with these?

My boat has a windlass, but to be honest I haven't even used it yet as I'm still out of the country. I'll be back in July and it's one of the systems I need to have a look into. Recommendations are always welcome.

Here is what is on my boat now:






Cheers!
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Old 03-31-2013, 07:08 AM   #2
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yes...lotsa experience...what's the question?

Many fishermen in the Delaware Bay area seem to use them with mixed resuts but thy are similar to many rope winlass systems...

If the rope isn't just right from wear or whatever...they tend to slip very easily...Good windlasses are enclosed so it's hard to see what is actually going on.
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Old 03-31-2013, 07:13 AM   #3
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Many fishermen in the Delaware Bay area seem to use them with mixed resuts but

To use the system your anchoring would need to mimic the fish guys style of anchoring.

Drop anchor , fish 10 or 15 min then up anchor and try another spot for more fish.

Note that at no time does the boat stay anchored very long , and it is never unattended while anchored.

Is that what you need?
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Old 03-31-2013, 07:47 AM   #4
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Thanks, I was wondering about the freewheeling aspect I guess. No way to put any drag on the chain or line would maybe not be a good idea and no way to manually operate it? Sounds like it is not ideal for a motor yacht.

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Old 03-31-2013, 11:00 AM   #5
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They have an excellent reputation, are very high quality and known for excellent customer service. I know several boats with them that anchor a lot and they love them. Not sure where the hearsay above comes from. If you go over to The Hull Truth and enter it into the search function, you will see the experiences of many actual users posted.
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Old 03-31-2013, 11:28 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhmeissner View Post
........

My boat has a windlass, but to be honest I haven't even used it yet as I'm still out of the country. I'll be back in July and it's one of the systems I need to have a look into. Recommendations are always welcome.
I recommend that you wait until you have a chance to check your existing windlass. It may work or it may just need minor repairs. Spending a couple thousand dollars on a windlass you might not need doesn't seem like a good idea to me.

Next recommendation - If it turns out that you do need to replace the existing windlass, replacing it with an identical unit is by far the easiest way to go.
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Old 03-31-2013, 11:35 AM   #7
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My capstan windlass works fine. It's smaller than yours but has plenty of power. I've never experienced any problems slipping. I take two turns around the drum and offer a light hand pull upwards. The real draw back to this type of windlass is that one must hand pull the last part of the rode .... the chain and anchor. For me 12' of chain and an 18 to 22lb anchor is the size/weight that is very easy to pull. My heaviest anchor is 35lbs and if I used it all the time I'd consider it too heavy for the capstan arrangement. Most of my anchors require little or no chain.

For you I'd call the capstan a light duty arrangement. If you don't encounter any really adventurous weather you should be fine but in time I'd be thinking about a system that would gracefully handle a 30lb anchor.

I lower my anchors by hand but one can take a turn around a cleat and use it as a brake. Don't use the windlass drum for this unless it is designed for it.
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Old 03-31-2013, 12:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caltexflanc View Post
They have an excellent reputation, are very high quality and known for excellent customer service. I know several boats with them that anchor a lot and they love them. Not sure where the hearsay above comes from. If you go over to The Hull Truth and enter it into the search function, you will see the experiences of many actual users posted.
If you're talking hearsay from what I said...no worse than the hearsay on the
Hull Truth.

But they are made in Barnegat, NJ not too far from where I am. They are very popular because they are available at a reasonable price AND a few other reasons...but that does not make them infallible...as MANY rope windlasses suffer from gripping the rope under certain conditions.

Being an assistance tower who often shows up to anchored boats...I know first hand which ones work well and the ones that don't.

Most people who buy stuff aren't always completely honest when they tell you about how good or bad ther purchase was....AND many boaters are lousy judges of what they own because they have such little experience with what else is out there.

Never said they weren't a good windlass...just relating what I know about them....which also includes the cast aluminum cleat tending to break way too easily.....at least with older models.
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Old 03-31-2013, 12:09 PM   #9
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I recommend that you wait until you have a chance to check your existing windlass. It may work or it may just need minor repairs. Spending a couple thousand dollars on a windlass you might not need doesn't seem like a good idea to me.

Next recommendation - If it turns out that you do need to replace the existing windlass, replacing it with an identical unit is by far the easiest way to go.
Ron, thanks, wait is what I intend to do. I just wanted to get a bit of a discussion going on the subject and some ideas. Thanks!

Eric, looks like a nice clean setup.

Cheers
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Old 03-31-2013, 12:16 PM   #10
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If I were looking to replace mine...I would be looking at the vertical windlasses ...chain gypsy with capstan on top and a winch handle manual backup.

Can always use a power tool to spin the manual backup if need be.

I have found the need to warp on more than one occasion and not having to rig a snatch block for the horizontal capstan would be a plus.
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