Found this on the SSCA board .
The 555 is considered the best manual windlass made (in small sizes).
SSCA Forum â€¢ View topic - "Double Gypsy" SL 555 Anchor Winch
"Double Gypsy" SL 555 Anchor Winch
» Sun Feb 22, 2015 9:59 pm
Several years ago an anchoring topic on this forum caught my eye: the difficulty of finding a manual anchor winch to use as a back up for an electric anchor winch in the not uncommon event of battery/alternator failure. At the time Simpson Lawrence had already stopped production of their famous "Sea Tiger" (the SL 555). As I recall, there were comments on the increased security of putting out two anchors on all chain rodes and the sound sleep afforded by not needing to keep an anchor watch during foul weather in minimally protected anchorages. They expressed a keen interest in a heavy duty manual anchor winch with double chain gypsies. At the time, there was no great interest expressed in the Lofrans Titan at about $8,000 US or the Lighthouse at $12,000, the only two electric horizontal winches that offer the option for manual operation. And they can be a difficult fit on the foredeck of a yacht of 50' or less. Apart from the expense were concerns that electric motor winches living on top of the deck not uncommonly have limited lives due to salt water corrosion.
Since then, the SL Sea Tiger with a combination chain/line gypsy on the starboard side and the standard line spool on the port side, went back into production under different ownership by a former employee of Simpson Lawrence: SL Spares in Scotland, UK.
Convinced that I also wanted a manual double chain gypsy winch on my Tayana 37 to back up my vertical electric winch, for over a year I have been corresponding with John, the sole owner of SL Spares in Scotland, to see if he would be interested in modifying the casing and main shaft of a new SL Sea Tiger, in order to convert it into a double chain gypsy, using his standard bronze gypsies for 10 mm. anchor chain (available in not only from Europe but also from Canada). I presented to him the obvious advantages of offering this modification as an option. So, he got his mechanical design engineer involved in the project and sent me an email attachment of the modified drawings a few months ago. He has stated that taking orders for five of these winches would spread the additional costs of design and tooling, thus reducing the price to compare favorably with the pricing for a non-modified SeaTiger. He is now ready to put these into production and cover each one with his standard warranty. He is using the original SL bronze gypsy that accepts anchor line and/or chain.
If four people in addition to myself decide to purchase one of these, my only financial gain will be the same discount available to anyone else (about 40%). One way or the other, I plan on making this purchase in about a month. The only added bonus for me is in having gotten this dream turned into reality and knowing that sailors will benefit for many years to come from the enhanced security of having the manual option to handle chain during the worst of unexpected conditions.
I hope our moderators do not construe this an advertisement as the fabricator has not prompted me to promote the sale of this modified winch. I only want to make our passages safer and more pleasurable.
Sun Feb 22, 2015 6:01 pmVessel Name:
Spirit QuestVessel Make and Model:
Tayana 37 Pilothouse Cutter