Winch Pointers? - Off-Road Forums & Discussion Groups
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post #1 of (permalink) Old 12-19-1999, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
Journeyman
 
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Winch Pointers?

Okay, now that so many got new winches, could anyone give some pointers on their
use? Mine mounted up with just some minor grinding to clear the front crossmember welds
(Warn mounting plate) Prestretching the cable under load?
How do you keep it wound tight enough for the next time you use it and disengage
the clutch. Wouldn't the cable just loosen up or do you power it out?
I hope these questions are useful to others as well. Any other tips would be
useful. I don't want to be somewhere and not have anyone with experience
around to help out.

Glad I got it--like to be able to use it without losing a finger!

Brit
85 CJ7
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 12-19-1999, 08:44 PM
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Re: Winch Pointers?

I run a hyraulic, but there are some things in common.

The hook end:
Do not wrap the cable around something and then put the hook on the cable to make a loop. It will kink the cable. Use a strap around whatever you are tying to unless you can put the winch hook directly on it.
The cable:
Keep it clean and free of kinks and knots. Keep it rolled tightly on the winch drum and keep it tightly in line - no gaps between the line wraps. To do this unroll the cable, attach to something solid, put the emergency brake on lightly and as the cable is winding, keep it lined up properly. You can do this by yourself by standing in front of the winch with the remote and guiding it on properly. A LIGHT LOAD ON THE WINCH - so that it is pulling 300 to 400 pounds only.
Safety:
If the cable is under a strong pull, there is a lot of pressure on the line. If it breaks, it can do a great deal of damage and injury. It helps to keep moderately heavy fabric of some kind on the cable - a coat, a blanket, - anything that will tend to force it downward should it break. Keep something substantial between you and the cable, a big rock, a tree, a Jeep - just in case it breaks. Use gloves to handle the cable. A broken wire in the cable can cause severe injury if it rips through your hand.
When to use it:
SOONER THAN MOST PEOPLE LIKE TO - myself included. I will speak for myself here so as not to step on anyone's toes. It's a bit time consuming to get the winch out. It is a bit of an admission that a) the driver isn't up to the task or b) the vehicle isn't up to the task. Kinda like crying "uncle", but the truth is you can prevent a lot of vehicle damage by prudent use of the winch and/or tow straps. In a group a winch is a good thing to have. If you are out by yourself, it is a necessity.
Unrolling the cable:
Not sure of the electric, but my MileMarker has a free wheeling feature. Just pull on the cable and out it comes. Much faster that way. Occassionally have to use power to unroll it, but not often. If you are using the winch to control a decent as opposed to pulling, then you have to use the power unrolling feature.
Power:
The power of the winch can be multiplied by doubling or tripling the line and using extra pullies.
Other odds and ends:
Safety book says not to use the winch for a hoist to lift things. Personally, I use it when it is necessary regardless of what the book says. Have used winch power to straighten a tie rod, pull vehicles as well as my own, lift stuff, pull heavy machinery onto a trailer, right overturned vehicles, pull stuff out of the way of the trail - It's a tool. A tool that lends itself very well to a lively imagination too, I might add. Try to pull in a straight line with the vehicle. This isn't always possible, but the more you pull sideways, the more stress it puts on the steering gear, the cable itself and the more it affects the actual power of the winch. Also a roller fairlead is much preferred.
Your winch should have had a booklet that included lots of helpful hints. They are good.

Doug '97 TJ
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 12-20-1999, 01:13 AM
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Re: Winch Pointers?

a few other things:
prestretching the wire rope. this is most important, i have seen new ropes break on the first pull because they were not stretched. two reasons why; one is that the wire rope is loosely spooled from the factory and can be kinkied as it is used. two is that you build a memory into the rope so that it spools on the drum better during winching.
snatch blocks are most important. most winches only pull at rated capacity with all of the rope payed off of the drum. a snatch block helps do this and double the pulling power( well almost double, cant forget mechanical losses) of the winch as well.
use common sence. keep people clear( and that means really clear), and take your time. the person running the winch(you the winch owner, not your friends) calls the shots. do not be in a hurry, accidents are usually the product of being in a rush.
practice using your winch. go out and simulate winching situations. try different types of rigging. this will pay off when the time comes that you really need to use your winch.

dan

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post #4 of (permalink) Old 12-20-1999, 05:26 AM Thread Starter
Journeyman
 
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Re: Winch Pointers?

Thanks for the replies folks. Hope everyone has safe and Happy Holidays.

Brit
85 CJ7
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 12-20-1999, 08:52 AM
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Re: Winch Pointers?

I'm just wondering, does anybody really have any luck neatly spooling their cable after use. I've had a winch on my CJ7 since 1986,
and used it a zillion times, but I'll be darned if I can get it to look like in the pictures, all neatly spooled. [img]/wwwthreads_images/icons/frown.gif[/img]

Brad (from the 4 Wheeling center of the universe, 4 corners USA)
post #6 of (permalink) Old 12-20-1999, 09:31 AM
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Re: Winch Pointers?

yes and no. what you see in most pictures is a machine wound spool in most cases. practice will make perfect in this instance. the initial prestretching and spooling of the rope onto the drum is where it starts. the better you get at this initial use of the winch the better the rope spools on, as well as adding to the life of the rope.

dan

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