Know-how / Learn how to install a winch

Starboard Winch © Chloé Torterat

To cope with the power generated by modern sailboats, mechanical aids must be used. Winches allow you to multiply your strength. We will explain how to install a winch on your boat.

1 - Determine the location

If it is a replacement, place it in the same place. We are not talking about the same drill holes - since it may not be the same winch diameter - but about the place where there are reinforcements. The old holes can help you find the right location.

If this is the first installation or a new location, care should be taken to install suitable reinforcements for the winch workload. Feel free to contact a construction site for this part.

1 - Dismantle the winch

Using a flat screwdriver, unscrew the central screw and remove the crank sleeve. Then remove the self-tailing crown and remove it from the doll. Finally, remove the winch doll.

2 - Position the winch

You must identify the final pinion (the star wheel), which must be placed perpendicular to the rope.

The rope will be unwound in the direction of the arrow

3 - Ensure the position

Drill a first hole to hold the winch in the desired position. Screw it in with a nut to secure the position. Drill pre-holes with the winch in position and remove it

5 - Drilling the holes

6 - Milling the holes to put sealing material

7 - Position the screws in the winch holes

8 - Put the sealing compound around the screws or directly into the holes

9 - Reposition the winch in the drill holes

10 - Install the washers and nuts to fix your winch

Prefer the Nylstop nuts because they will not unscrew in case of vibrations. If you use other types of nuts, it is better to use threadlocker (glue).

11 - Screw in your winch

As with all parts subject to significant effects, it is necessary to screw in staggered rows. The winch is held outside and screwed inside so as not to drive out the sealing compound.

10 - Put back the winch doll

11 - Reinstall self-tailing

Position the self-tailing so that the end unrolls in the right place and screw it in so that the end comes out in the right place.

The end will pour towards the roof of the boat

In this position, the end can easily be retrieved from the cockpit

12 - Replace the crank sleeve

13 - Screw in the central screw

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