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Old 07-17-2017, 06:47 PM   #1
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Ideal Windlass since takeover

I believe Ideal Windlass was taken over by Schaefer Marine in late 2016. Has anyone had any success in getting a response from Schaefer recently? They say they will provide support, parts, yada yada. But there is no response from them. Only one email back from someone with the title "Windlass Historian", who did not tell me much. He copied a lady at Schaefer, who I subsequently emailed as well. No response.
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Old 07-17-2017, 07:21 PM   #2
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Does anyone know of an alternate source of parts for an Ideal windlass from the early 80's?
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Old 07-17-2017, 07:49 PM   #3
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Depends what parts you need. I'm about to pick up some thrust bearings from a local business later today. They are standard (imperial) size, and not difficult to source.

My upper bushing is worn, so instead of oil I think I'll use some grease for it, in part to stop water entering the gear.

My main shaft gear is worn, but I think is still serviceable. It would be a custom fab/machining task. My motor runs, and if it can no longer produce full power then I can likely get it rewound at a local business nearby.

If Ideal were still providing parts I'm sure it could be reconditioned quite easily and cost effectively. It seems Schaefer have no interest in helping.

I'll know in a couple of days whether I can get the Ideal model ACW to give me a bit more use. Otherwise its $4k for a replacement, and I'll go with a Muir.
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Old 07-17-2017, 07:52 PM   #4
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Other than eBay and second hand shops you only have Ideal themselves. Sounds like the owner may have retired. I was dealing with him on a retro of mine about 3years ago. Back then he was spending a fair bit of time in Italy. It was extremely difficult then to get his attention.
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Old 07-17-2017, 09:45 PM   #5
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Some windlass makers repair/rebuild other makers equipment. Often much of the gearing is similar so they're setup for it. RC Plath in Portland, OR is one I know of that rebuilds most makes. Probably expensive for Australia.
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Old 07-17-2017, 10:42 PM   #6
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Ideals are pretty simple, I rebuilt mine myself but it was largely just cleaning and lubricating everything, it was old but not worn. Solid, well-made but not pretty. The motor is a starter motor out of a 54 Plymouth. Or similar.
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Old 07-18-2017, 04:53 AM   #7
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The Ideal folks used mostly off the shelf items for bearings etc.

Take it apart and hit the local Timken bearing folks , you should be able to not only find the replacement bearings , but upgrades like better sealing.

All at very low cost.
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Old 07-18-2017, 07:35 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Insequent View Post
I believe Ideal Windlass was taken over by Schaefer Marine in late 2016. Has anyone had any success in getting a response from Schaefer recently? They say they will provide support, parts, yada yada. But there is no response from them. Only one email back from someone with the title "Windlass Historian", who did not tell me much. He copied a lady at Schaefer, who I subsequently emailed as well. No response.
I spoke to them last week -- received an email from them, also, last week. They told me that they are very busy. The folks I spoke to were very polite & helpful. Keep trying.
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Old 07-18-2017, 09:54 AM   #9
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Most cities have bearing shops where you can source every type and size bearing, seals and O rings.
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Old 07-18-2017, 05:03 PM   #10
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Give them a call, they are usually very helpful. It is a busy time of year here.
+1 508-995-9511
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Old 07-18-2017, 05:53 PM   #11
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Thanks for the feedback guys. I received an email this morning with a quote for the parts. It just took them a lot longer than expected - being busy does that!

However, in the intervening period I sourced bearings, dis-assembled and cleaned everything and put it all back together. I will re-install on the boat and do a dockside test of anchor raising later today or tomorrow.

I am impressed that all the parts are still available, albeit not cheap. Certainly locally sourcing the thrust bearings was a plus: A$40, versus US$133 + freight from Schaefer. It would not be cost effective for me to do a full rebuild after parts cost, currency exchange rate, shipping cost (or time, if sea freight) for heavy items from New Bedford, MA to Australia, GST & Import charges.
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Old 07-19-2017, 09:33 PM   #12
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Dockside test on the re-installed windlass seems reasonably good. At the weekend I'll go and anchor out, moving around for a few days to verify. Although the bronze main gear shows wear there is likely quite a few years left in it.
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