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  #1  
Old 10-14-2006
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Windlass question

Windlass.jpgShould I be worried about this 4-year old winch on a boat I am looking at purchasing? It currently only runs in one direction (pulling up anchor) but seller is willing to repair it. It looks dented and scratched in the wrong places. I'd rather have it replaced, but perhaps I'm being too harsh
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Old 10-14-2006
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Agree with You

Z:
For peace of mind & added security, I agree with You = new one (with the features you like). If the seller won't spring for it............at least get the highest bid you can for repair, take that $$$ & add your own $$$ for a new one.
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Old 10-14-2006
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Dude: It's been dragging chain out of the water! Let the owner repair it. Then if it won't work go from there.
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Old 10-14-2006
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Surfesq - that's what I thought, but the angles of the dents are all wrong (this windlass is mounted at the same height as the anchor roller). My first thought was that it had been mounted from another boat. I also seem to recall reading either here (couldn't find it in search) or elsewhere about windlass bearings seizing and only going in one direction. I just think I'm going to buy a piece of equipment that will be soon find its way onto a boatyards scrap heap. Then again, it is heavy... 2nd backup anchor?
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Okay...I think you are on to something.

If the top of the windlass is flush with the anchor roller, the chain will drag across the top of the windlass. This is because the force of the windlass against the drag of the anchor will create a straight line with the chain. Follow me? In other words, the throat of the windlass should line up with the natural line of the chain when it is tight. Now, if the windlass is sitting too low, the force could theoretically destroy the bearing and gearing inside of the windlass as it bends back to meet the chain and allow it to wind.

But I would have the owner repair it at his cost and then simply mount it at the correct height after you buy the boat. I would also check the mounting because I would imagine that this force would also create leaks.
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Old 10-14-2006
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It's hard to determine how old that Lofrens windlass is just by looking at the photo, but to my eyes it sure seems much older than 4 years. I would not sleep well at anchor, with the thoughts of hauling my ground tackle by hand, due to a crapped-out, corroded hunk of aluminum.

When we negotiated purchase of our current boat, it had an inoperable vertical Maxwell windlass installed. I wanted it replaced so deducted the cost of a new one (among several other issues) from what we thought to be a fair offer. We now have a brand new Lewmar 1500, essentially paid for by the seller.
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TB: I have a beautiful motorized Lewmar sitting in its box that I meant to install on my last boat. Just never got around to it. On my boat there is a windlass that is 20 years old. (Hand crank). I was going to trash it. But I took it apart, cleaned it and spray painted it. It seems to work fine. I am going to try it for a while and see how it goes.
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I'll bet your manual windlass is chrome plated bronze and a very rugged piece of gear, if original to your boat. Just for the character, I would have restored it as well.

However, we anchor out in some very deep water up here, along the rocky cliffs of New England, using all chain. Somehow, the notion of pulling up a 45# CQR and 250 ft of 5/16" high test, is not very appealing.
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Bear in mind, I have not cranked it yet either, I may switch yet. I was just look at that picture closely again. It is definintely mounted too low.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Surfesq
Okay...If the top of the windlass is flush with the anchor roller...
The bottom of the windlass is in line with the roller, so if the windlass was used for the chain part then any dents would be along the bottom and not the top part. So I thought that perhaps this windlass might have been vertically mounted on another ship which had problems. I browsed the Lofrans site and the new models look different, I just haven't been able to find a 2002 windlass to compare it against.
I'll subtract the price of a windlass and installation from the boat price. Lets see... 200" of chain plus a 44lb anchor is a lot of wattage. Must be at least $5K for the replacement...
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