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Old 28-10-2017, 08:43   #1
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Windlass Handset Connector

My windlass handset died during the summer (the second one since I've owned this boat).

So I had fun for a couple of months anchoring using only the helm mounted switch, which worked surprisingly well, but you can't do it single handed.

Yesterday I replaced it with a Lofrans handset, which is now working, but unfortunately the connector is a very poor piece of equipment -- tiny, with flimsy little pins. And the cord is too short

So I'm going to need to replace the connector with something more robust and extend the cord.

The connector needs to be reasonably strong because you can pull on it with the handset cord. Plus it lives in one of the more hostile environments on board, in the anchor locker, where we sometimes get splashes of sea water down the spurling pipe.

I have been struggling through the Farnell and Mouser catalogues, which are pretty hard for a non-pro to use. Has anyone faced this question? Looking for a robust three conductor waterproof connector? And is able to share any experience?
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Old 28-10-2017, 09:16   #2
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

Hi Dockhead.
What about making your own out of a waterproof or resistant box and a large 3 position toggle switch wired into a waterproof deck fitting? ( thinking here about the ones used to pass wires through the deck near the mast).I'm going through the same thinking. I bought a windlass that didn't come with a a hand unit. I can buy one for about $150. but think I can make one for a whole lot less. They really are only a three way switch, up, down and off. Could also use two push buttons
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Old 28-10-2017, 09:34   #3
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

I also made up my own remote up/down switch as the foredeck control for my Quick windlass, keeping the Quick remote with its chain counter display in the cockpit (I think Lofrans and Quick use the same remote). I also think the connector on this remote is a little flimsy.
I used McMaster-Carr to supply the housing for both the remote and the junction box on the foredeck.
Installing a Quick Windlass

John
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Old 28-10-2017, 09:53   #4
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

Sorry, don't have an answer to your question but since you're working on the windlass it might be worth thinking about adding a garage door remote piggy backed on the solenoid. Costs little & can be very handy, especially solo.
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Old 28-10-2017, 10:51   #5
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Windlass Handset Connector

Quote:
Originally Posted by conachair View Post
Sorry, don't have an answer to your question but since you're working on the windlass it might be worth thinking about adding a garage door remote piggy backed on the solenoid. Costs little & can be very handy, especially solo.


I bought this two years ago, I figured for the price why not?
I dislike foot switches.
Anyway for two years it has worked perfectly, havenít even needed to replace the battery in the remote, and it has two remotes. Iím sure there are more expensive/ better ones, I want one that is a chain counter too, but they are stupid expensive
https://www.amazon.com/Anchor-Remote...indlass+remote
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Old 28-10-2017, 11:39   #6
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
I bought this two years ago, I figured for the price why not?
I dislike foot switches.
Anyway for two years it has worked perfectly, havenít even needed to replace the battery in the remote, and it has two remotes. Iím sure there are more expensive/ better ones, I want one that is a chain counter too, but they are stupid expensive
https://www.amazon.com/Anchor-Remote...indlass+remote
I did this also. Works great.
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Old 28-10-2017, 12:23   #7
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

Actually, thinking back to when I worked too much doing out door Live events when lx cables live in puddles for weeks people used military spec connectors, looks like rs do them.

Mil Spec Circular Connectors | RS Components

Ebay do garage door remotes
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Old 28-10-2017, 12:52   #8
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

Quote:
Originally Posted by conachair View Post
Actually, thinking back to when I worked too much doing out door Live events when lx cables live in puddles for weeks people used military spec connectors, looks like rs do them.

Mil Spec Circular Connectors | RS Components

Ebay do garage door remotes
Bloody hell, that's expensive!

But . . . exactly what I was looking for. So thank you!
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Old 28-10-2017, 13:45   #9
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Bloody hell, that's expensive!

But . . . exactly what I was looking for. So thank you!


Iíve been burned by milspec connectors before. While tough, and well made, not always are the materials of the type that will last in a salt environment, nor will they detach if left alone for a good amount of time.
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Old 28-10-2017, 14:00   #10
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

A hardwired connector is always the most reliable in a marine environment. So solder/crimp the wires plus glue lined heat shrink. Cheap, and simple

If the handset needs to be replaced in the future just cut the connection and redo. A little extra wire is sensible as you will shorten the wire a few inches if the connection needs to be remade.

A couple (or more) switches that can activate the winch are always a good idea. A wired remote, and a seperate wireless remote, are good options, but some prefer foot switches and a helm switch. On the wet foredeck any single option is unlikely to be 100% reliable in the long term so some redundancy is sensible.

Perhaps there is a need for the remote to be removable, but if not hardwire it for maximum reliability. Generally a good wired remote will be at least as waterproof as a plug. Permanently connected it is ready to go in an emergency.
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Old 28-10-2017, 14:07   #11
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

Quote:
Originally Posted by noelex 77 View Post
A hardwired connector is always the most reliable in a marine environment. So solder/crimp the wires plus glue lined heat shrink. Cheap, and simple

If the handset needs to be replaced in the future just cut the connection and redo. A little extra wire is sensible.

I couple (or more) switches that can activate the winch are always a good idea. A wired remote and a seperate wireless remote are good options, but some prefer foot switches and a helm switch. On the wet foredeck any single option is unlikely to be 100% reliable in the long term so some redundancy is sensible.

Perhaps there is a need for the plug to be removable but if not hardwire the remote for maximum reliability.
After I saw the price on those Amphenol connectors, hardwiring was my very next idea

Yes, I think that's the ticket. Just need to sort the strain relief . . .
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Old 28-10-2017, 14:17   #12
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
After I saw the price on those Amphenol connectors, hardwiring was my very next idea

Yes, I think that's the ticket. Just need to sort the strain relief . . .
Don't forget to bookmark this thread so you can come back in a year or two to say it lasts for ages, ....... cos a cheap garage door remote does all you need nearly all the time..
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Old 28-10-2017, 14:31   #13
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

How about a couple of Lewmar hard-wired deck switches? That's all we've ever used, but with our new V5 to be installed in April, we"ll have a helm garage style remote for the first time. Most of the time I'll continue to use the free-fall launch technique as I slowly drift over the anchorage looking for sand on the bottom from the bow.
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Old 28-10-2017, 14:35   #14
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenomac View Post
How about a couple of Lewmar hard-wired deck switches? That's all we've ever used, but with our new V5 to be installed in April, we"ll have a helm garage style remote for the first time. Most of the time I'll continue to use the free-fall launch technique as I slowly drift over the anchorage looking for sand on the bottom from the bow.
A couple of holes in the deck . . . whew.

The coupler would be far cheaper and easier, even the Amphenol one.

Hard-wiring the handset best of all.
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Old 28-10-2017, 16:52   #15
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Re: Windlass Handset Connector

DH, if you are still interested in connectors, the Dri-Plug line has worked well for us for years. Quite waterproof and reasonably sturdy.

https://www.gaelforcemarine.co.uk/en...Plug/b-71.aspx

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