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Old 20-06-2013, 14:19   #1
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Winch Choices

Hi All!
I'm in year 4 of building our alloy Dix43 PH and have finally come to the point where I must drop a load of cash on the winches. I already have 2 Harken Radial 40's for the mast...courtesy of ebay. The choices seem myriad, and the only only brand I have extensive experience with is Barient (on our Caliber), which apparently is no longer made.
So, the choices are ( in ascending price)
Lewmar EVO
Harken Radial
Andersen
Selden reversible
My mate really likes the idea of the Selden reversible but I've found no real-world commentary on their use or maintenance. Andersen seems to be the crown jewel, with Harken and Lewmar as standard quality. Their drums are aluminum, and whilst I'm a huge fan of alu, I'm wondering how it will hold up over the years and miles we hope to put on our little ship.
We need 1 size 40 for the mainsheet, 2 #46 for secondaries and 2 #52's for primaries. The Selden price would be 22% higher than the Harken/ Lewmar and 7% higher than Andersen.
I would very much appreciate any practical feedback on this dilemma-particularly do y'all think the reversible feature of the Selden is a useful gimmick and the alu vs stainless drum issue.
A link to my blog is available on my profile page.

Thanks
Brian
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Old 20-06-2013, 14:42   #2
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Re: Winch Choices

We had good service from our Lesmar alloy winches. Aluminum is not as abuse resistant as chrome bronze but were still fine after 10 years in the tropics.

Anderson's are great winches. Bought them for my halyard and reefing winches. The 44 year old stainless barient 21s look and work like new. Look way better than the much newer chrome bronze Lewmars though work fine.
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Old 20-06-2013, 19:07   #3
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Re: Winch Choices

I have Andersen 40s and Enkes 28s, but I picked up a pair of used Lewmar 44s that had never see saltwater, and I like the idea of throwing them into the mix. I find Lewmars well documented and easy to service. Can't really go wrong with either Andersen or Lewmar, particularly the 48s and 60s, which tame massive genoas pretty easily. Selden...not enough info.

I wish Barlow was still in business, however. I have a set of them on my 33-footer, and they are very well-made and still going strong.
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Old 20-06-2013, 19:28   #4
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Re: Winch Choices

Bought a pair of 2-speed ST Andersen's for my Mirage 27 and really like them. Mind you, a couple of sewing machine bobbins might have been an improvement over what I had.

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Old 20-06-2013, 20:59   #5
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Re: Winch Choices

These guys bought the tooling and spare parts for the Barient and Barlow winches. They also sell the Hutton winches. Wonder if they are the Barient/Barlow winches under a different name??
HUTTON-ARCO Yacht Winches
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Old 21-06-2013, 07:27   #6
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Re: Winch Choices

Thanks for the feedback.
Peter, the Hutton Arco certainly bear a strong resemblance to the old Barient, especially the textured drum grip surface. Another option!
I'm wondering what the Harken black anodized aluminum ends up looking like in 15 or 20 years ...at least we know that a stainless drum will still be decent looking(points for Andersen). I bought the new Maxwell all-stainless anchor windlass partly for this reason. Chromed bronze seems like a bad idea over time, especially on the parts subject to abrasion like the drum, jaws and tailer.
The Selden reversible function was described to me by a dealer as similar to a 3 speed winch (which I never knew existed), so it's not exactly a totally new concept, mechanically. But is it just one more thing to break? A spring loaded plunger pin moving a gear up and down? Think I'll contact Selden for the maintenance pdf...

Cheers
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Old 21-06-2013, 07:46   #7
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Re: Winch Choices

We have Harken Winches on our boat... 72.3 as primary and 48 as secondaries. They have performed well for the past seven year, 3 of that fulltime cruising. The winch drums are chromed and look good with monthly polishing.

He is my two cents worth... What ever winches you buy, don't mix and match. IMHO that just means carrying more spare parts and different ways to disassemble and re-assemble winches.

I would also suggest you think about power winches, at a minimum for you halyard winch.... You will thank me later, when your wife is hoisting you to the top of the mast.
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Old 21-06-2013, 11:25   #8
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Re: Winch Choices

I ve sailed with all you mentioned , including recently selden revsible and Harken electic reversible.

I have a preference for Harken deckgear, I certainly think Andersons are great but hard to see why they are so expensive.

All of them will do the job, once looked after,

The harken black ones look really nice at the start , but over the years the scuffed look makes them look older then the shiny ones, Only aesthetics though


I quite liked the reversible, it tends to promote safer operation as you can trim out without undoing the winch. You do need a special winch handle that can push the pin in.
The Harken electric reversibles were similar, but I didnt quite like the idea that if you left the reverse switch over the next user had no idea the high speed button would cause a slow speed unwind.

I,m just waiting for an electric winch, with three buttons. ah , crossing the ocean wearing out just a thumb !!!

dave
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Old 21-06-2013, 11:30   #9
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Re: Winch Choices

Quote:
Originally Posted by roverhi View Post
These guys bought the tooling and spare parts for the Barient and Barlow winches. They also sell the Hutton winches. Wonder if they are the Barient/Barlow winches under a different name??
HUTTON-ARCO Yacht Winches
Yes, I know I can get spares (and pro-tip: the Lewmar pawl springs will work on the Barlow pawls...), but I haven't needed spares, aside from those springs.

That's the part I like. They are very well built, if non-self-tailing (not a big deal for a guy who still has a tiller and hank-ons).

I open them up every two seasons for a clean out and relube. I save old toothbrushes for the purpose. Thanks for the tip, however.
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Old 21-06-2013, 15:59   #10
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Re: Winch Choices

Quote:
Originally Posted by roverhi View Post
These guys bought the tooling and spare parts for the Barient and Barlow winches. They also sell the Hutton winches. Wonder if they are the Barient/Barlow winches under a different name??
HUTTON-ARCO Yacht Winches
No, the Hutton/Arco winches are of their own design. I've got a couple of them on the mast for halyards. The newer ones have a spring loaded self-tailer like the old Barients, but the internals are quite different. For me, the big drawback is that there are no needle bearings on the internal gear shafts. These are ubiquitous in other designs and I thought quite necessary. Mr Hutton claims otherwise, but I am not convinced. No objective data, but they seem to have considerably more internal friction than the older Barients elsewhere on the boat. Good prices, though, in Oz where all is dear, and good policies on updating older models for much less than new winch prices. And the folks at the factory are pretty nice guys...

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 21-06-2013, 22:08   #11
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Re: Winch Choices

Enkes are some of the best wiches made IMHO, however not around any more. They tried to revive the company a few years go but to no success. ALL internals are bronze, built to last several lifetimes. The 28s are wonderful...

You can get spares for Barlows from Hutton Arco but a bit expensive and will take some time to ship from Down Under...
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:31   #12
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Re: Winch Choices

Hi All,
Here's the follow up on the winch selection saga:
I had pretty much made up my mind to buy the Harken black radials after coming to the conclusion that any of the brands would be serviceable. The Seldens are pricey, and a bit of a gimmick with a small part that is the weak link (the reversing plunger pin). Just before placing the order I decided to check out the Lewmar Evo grey alloy winches on Defender. Lo and behold, they were on sale, with the added perk of a free one-touch handle. The prices were so attractive, especially once I called and explained that I would be buying 5 at once, that I was able to size up, still for less than the Harkens. Thus I got a 55ST as primaries (rather than a 50), 50St's (instead of 45's) as secondaries and a 46 as the mainsheet winch on the roof. This increase in size will insure that my mate will not have difficulty with the winches in strong winds. Being 2-speed, they will still be quick to operate.
They seem very solidly built, actually made in England, very easy to disassemble and have a 7 year warranty. Lewmar seems like a solid brand. And now I also have 5(!!) winch handles as well. I'll let y'all know in about 10 or 15 years how they held up!
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Old 26-11-2013, 09:51   #13
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Re: Winch Choices

Make of winch aside, you are unlikely to regret going over spec to keep the crew happy. It's one of the more direct "more money buys more happiness" equations aboard. I was just on a Bavaria 36 with a (likely) Lewmar 16 mainsheet winch...I'm a pretty husky grinder, but I wanted at least a 26 for that job when the wind piped up!
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Old 26-11-2013, 13:47   #14
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Re: Winch Choices

My recommendation on winches is go as large as the pad allows you to. The sunk cost of going up in size is minimal but the joy of larger winches is huge.
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Old 26-11-2013, 15:34   #15
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Agreed
There is no such thing as too large a winch
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