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Old 20-07-2010, 14:22   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Washington, DC
Boat: Fuji 40 - Del Viento
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VERY Old Lofrans Cayman Windlass, Info Needed

My boat has an old windlass installed. I was told it was an old Lofrans and the very helpful folks at Imtra (the Lofrans US reps?) confirmed this from the pics I sent. They said it is a VERY old (1970s) Lofrans Cayman model.

The windlass works fine now, but I was inquiring about a rebuild kit or manual. According to the folks at Imtra, they have not been able to get any parts or paperwork for these from Lofrans for a long time. Not even plans.

The picture of the windlass is attached. I welcome any info (especially rebuild tips) that anyone can offer--or advice on other contacts, or parts. Anything.

Thank you very much,

Michael
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Michael Robertson, s/v Del Viento (Fuji 40)
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Old 06-10-2012, 23:39   #2
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Re: VERY Old Lofrans Cayman Windlass, Info Needed

Hello! We have one the same on our 1987 Najad!!!! I'm afraid we have drawn the same blank as you from Lofrans direct regarding manual/spares etc. We've never seen another one, even on similar boats of a similar age.
We have had some fun with it - in the Maldives the oil leaked out, the gears chewed up and split the gear case but a local machine shop made and cut a new wormwheel and the gear case was welded. Right now we are having motor problems here in Malaysia. the motor was found to have worn and was shorting but a new commutator has been made and its been re-wound. fingers crossed it works ok now!
i think that this will be the last time we throw significant money at it before we have to buy a new one.
i'll be interested to hear your experiences.
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Old 07-10-2012, 00:35   #3
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Re: VERY Old Lofrans Cayman Windlass, Info Needed

so, basically we've had good support from local machine shops, car electrical places and hydraulic spares for seals etc. Don't be afraid to take it apart (after you've taken it off the deck!) Inside you will find that it is just the basic gear arrangement and a normal dc motor.
consumables are standard seals and bearings.
we've got photos of the guts if you'd like.
you'll want to check the oil....i hear your groan from here...yes, you've got to take it off the deck and partially dismantle it just to even look at the sight gauge!
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Old 07-10-2012, 01:25   #4
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Re: VERY Old Lofrans Cayman Windlass, Info Needed

ROAM2,

Thank you very much for the info. We have been using the windlass extensively and so far have not had a problem--though we did recently replace the gypsy (it is like magic now, didn't appreciate how badly worn the old one was, used to keep our foot over the gypsy to help keep the chain from skipping--best $250 we have ever spent). Took the windlass off once to replace the mount. Turned it upside down and it looked really clean, surprisingly spotless. But did notice that the band that goes around the aft part of the DC motor was loose--off really, just hanging there. Determined that the only way to tighten it back up is to take the windlass apart and decided to just leave it, reasoning it has probably been like that for a while. So far, no problems. Have never had any leaks. We never saw a sight for the oil level, where is that? I read that these things are filled at the factory and sealed...
I think the windlass is a bit undersized for our 66-pound anchor and 3/8 chain, but we use it conservatively. If we ever end up upgrading, we'll go with a new Tigress.
I would love to get your email to keep so that I could contact you if I ever had a question. I have not seen another of these in service. Please feel free to email me at delviento <at> hotmail <dot> com. Please put Fuji 40 or Windlass in the subject line so I spot it in the Junk folder.
Thank you for your time.
Michael
www.logofdelviento.blogspot.com
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