I'm basing my fears on another formosa owner who had his pack-up and seize on him 1/2 way into a 6 month trip. I suppose if I end up shelling out for an off the shelf model I'll look at how easy it is to disengage the electric motor....
I fiddled a little with the windlass today and was able to ascertain the gear ratios by seeing how many turns of each handle attachment point were needed to turn the wildcat one full turn.
Looks like "high speed" is 1:1
and "low speed" is 2:1
Hmmm.... Even though the diagram is chock FULL of gears it looks like most of the mechanical advantage is probably from the lever in my hand. Not good for my cause me thinks. Also the cold grease packed into the unit provided quite a bit of resistance itself today. Could barely turn it with my hand and no chain load at all.
"True, your boat will outperform mine to windward, but my boat will always outperform yours at anchor." --MedSailor