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  #1  
Old 01-07-2013
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Feedback/Reviews on Winchmate

Has anyone used this product (Self-Tailing Winch Conversion fits Barient, Barlow, Cathay, Universal and others: Winchmate) with particular success (or failure) and could recommend if it's worth the investment? While it is much cheaper than new winches I still consider $550 a major investment Majority of my sailing is just myself and the girlfriend and self-tailing winches for the jib would be a god send. We have Barient #27 winches, which is apparently what the product was designed for.

Thanks!
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Old 01-07-2013
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Re: Feedback/Reviews on Winchmate

Check some boat consignment shops as the parts to make a Barient 27 self tailing are probably cheaper then these add-ons.
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Old 01-07-2013
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Re: Feedback/Reviews on Winchmate

Quote:
Originally Posted by hillenme View Post
Has anyone used this product (Self-Tailing Winch Conversion fits Barient, Barlow, Cathay, Universal and others: Winchmate) with particular success (or failure) and could recommend if it's worth the investment? While it is much cheaper than new winches I still consider $550 a major investment Majority of my sailing is just myself and the girlfriend and self-tailing winches for the jib would be a god send. We have Barient #27 winches, which is apparently what the product was designed for.

Thanks!
I've had a lot of Barient winches over the years and loved every one of them - they were phenomenal pieces of machinery - BUT....

The newest ones are a couple of decades old now - spending 1/2 the price of a comparable new winch for a self tailing conversion doesn't add up to me.

I'd find some used ST winches or save up for Andersens.

Those new winch prices they list are maximum retail - you can get 27 sized ST's for under a grand each if you shop.
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Old 01-07-2013
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Thumbs up Re: Feedback/Reviews on Winchmate

Quote:
Originally Posted by hillenme View Post
Has anyone used this product (Self-Tailing Winch Conversion fits Barient, Barlow, Cathay, Universal and others: Winchmate) with particular success (or failure) and could recommend if it's worth the investment? While it is much cheaper than new winches I still consider $550 a major investment Majority of my sailing is just myself and the girlfriend and self-tailing winches for the jib would be a god send. We have Barient #27 winches, which is apparently what the product was designed for.

Thanks!
I have spoken to the machinist/inventor of these at SailExpo about 5 or 6 years ago. (I have stock ST winches, so would not be a customer.)

I can say that I have never heard a bad report about his work. As you know, a new large ST winch such as yours will run you about 2K plus.
If (and only you can know for sure) your existing winches are in decent condition, it's a cheap way to majorly upgrade your boat. Believe me, right after an autopilot and a furling jib, ST winches are just wonderful to have on board.
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Old 01-07-2013
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Re: Feedback/Reviews on Winchmate

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Originally Posted by olson34 View Post
I have spoken to the machinist/inventor of these at SailExpo about 5 or 6 years ago. (I have stock ST winches, so would not be a customer.)

I can say that I have never heard a bad report about his work. As you know, a new large ST winch such as yours will run you about 2K plus.
If (and only you can know for sure) your existing winches are in decent condition, it's a cheap way to majorly upgrade your boat. Believe me, right after an autopilot and a furling jib, ST winches are just wonderful to have on board.
Barient 27's aren't a very big winch. SailNet has comparable ST Lewmars & Harkens around $8-$900 each

Lewmar EVO 30ST Two Speed Self Tailing Winch (Chrome Bronze) - 49530056
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Thanks for the info guys. I hadn't taken into consideration the "depreciation"of my current 28 yo winches (funny thing for an accountant to admit). Based on the high level of maintenance the PO paid to all other systems on the boat I'm assuming the winches are no exception and would like to think they have a lot of useful life left. I'll tear them down this winter and confirm that assumption. I'll have to see if these guys make an appearance at strictly sail here in Chicago this month.
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Old 01-07-2013
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Re: Feedback/Reviews on Winchmate

ST winches are definately an advantage and a nice feature. Our MKIII has 5 two speed ST winches. ( 2- ji sheets on the combing, 1 for the centerboard, one for the main halyard and 1 for the jib halyard on the cabintop. I thought they were standard.

Maybe you can buy a couple used ( for the jib especially) from Bacons in Annapolis or some of the boats which were totaled by Sandy on the east coast,
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Old 01-07-2013
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I wish they'd been standard. PO primarily raced the boat and probably had six crew on it for most sails, so I'm guessing it wasn't a worthwhile expense - majority of my sailing before buying this fall was instructing on 30 footers with six students along, no ST meant everyone felt like they were doing something during tacks and sail changes now I'm looking for the easy way
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Old 01-08-2013
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Re: Feedback/Reviews on Winchmate

Quote:
Originally Posted by hillenme View Post
Thanks for the info guys. I hadn't taken into consideration the "depreciation"of my current 28 yo winches (funny thing for an accountant to admit). Based on the high level of maintenance the PO paid to all other systems on the boat I'm assuming the winches are no exception and would like to think they have a lot of useful life left. I'll tear them down this winter and confirm that assumption. I'll have to see if these guys make an appearance at strictly sail here in Chicago this month.
My experience with Barients, especially Stainless ones, is they will last forever if they are stripped and lubed annually and not abused. The very occasional springs & pawls are all the repairs I ever needed. They are the most bulletproof machines I have ever owned - "stone axe" reliable as a friend put it.

If anything is worth spending the price of those upgrade kits, Barients are but I still question the value relationship. I'd sell them and buy new Andersens myself.
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Old 01-08-2013
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Re: Feedback/Reviews on Winchmate

with the huge number of Hurricane Sandy damaged boats being written off, I expect that there will be a large number of ST winches hitting the market by spring. Might want to do some shopping in the north east consignment shops soon.
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