Lewmar winch pawl problem - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 08-03-2008
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Lewmar winch pawl problem

I have a pair of Lewmar 40ST winches, and one of them has sticky pawls. Occasionally, the winch spins freely under load (no ratcheting), which is annoying and dangerous.

I completely disassembled it and thoroughly cleaned the parts that involve the pawls, and oiled them with Lewmar winch oil. It worked well for a few races, but now it's back to its old tricks.

Should I replace the pawls? Should I replace more than that? Different lubricant?

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Eric
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Old 08-04-2008
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Eric-

It may be that the pawl springs are sprung... get a winch repair kit at the store. It'll have the pawls and springs.. Don't use anything but a light oil on the pawls and springs... they'll gum up if you use anything heavier.
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Thanks. Yes, I used the "winch oil", not the "winch grease". The oil is very thin, and specifically recommended for that purpose. I'll order a kit.

Eric
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Look for burrs on the mounting posts for the pawls, and make sure there isn't a huge amount of grease on the drum side, too. If you're primarily racing, I'd probably use oil on everything but the center bearings, and just make that part of the pre-race routine--take the drums off, put a few drops of oil here and there.

Lewmar's grease is no better or worse than most when it comes to caking up. White lithium grease is the worst.
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When you break the winch down be sure the pawls are completely clean and that the teeth they set in are clean too. If the white grease from the bearings or races makes it way to the bottom of the pawls, they can get sticky. definitely replace the springs, be sure to get the right Lewmar kit, there are I believe two types of pawl springs.
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