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Old 12-19-2010, 06:07 PM   #1
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Occassional use winch

I've got a 1995 2wd SMB and a piece of land out in the country that has deep clay and deep, soft, sand. It's ok when dry but I'm still careful not to get off in the soft stuff.

I'd like to be a little more adventurous. If I get stuck, it will not be the end of the world but will probably cost $200-300 and take 1/2 day to get someone out there to help. I got stuck once in my Subaru Forrester and it was 4 hours of misery.

Medium tree cover-about4-6 inch diameter.

I'd appreciate a recommendation on a winch, attachment hardware, and ground tackle. It may get used twice a year. I don't need/want a pricey setup; just enough to get by while I find the limits.

Or is a Harbor Freight 8000 lb come along sufficient?

Many thanks

Tom

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Old 12-19-2010, 07:21 PM   #2
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Re: Occassional use winch

No. Come alongs are okay of you need to move a rig a couple feet, like getting a wheel unstuck from a hole. Move many feet.... you want a winch for sure.

I'd search Craigslist for a used one.

Personally, I like Warn. I know some folks think they are overpriced, but I wouldn't consider anything else. Their R&D is above and beyond what anyone else does, and I've never seen a Warn winch fail when used within its stated capabilities.

You can find a 12k Tabor series for around $700 new. It has a lower duty cycle than their more expensive winches, but it'll still pull 12k. I found I'm more limited by battery capacity than by the duty cycle with a heavy load. With a light load, I'll run into duty cycle issues (it needs to cool after a few minutes of use) but it's never been more than a mild inconvenience.

PS - Here's a good source for recovery accessories.
http://www.wheelersoffroad.com/towstrap.htm
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Old 12-19-2010, 11:40 PM   #3
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Re: Occassional use winch

what about "real" hand winches, or rope winches (not come-alongs)? ARB sells some i think, so they gotta be legit, right? Of course, they're not particularly cheap.
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Old 12-20-2010, 07:07 AM   #4
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Re: Occassional use winch

You're talking about moving 9000-11000 lbs of dead weight, not to mention the resistance of whatever is keeping the vehicle from moving in the first place.

Getting a winch is a fairly large investment of money in something you hope you'll never use. Not to mention that the winch itself isn't the end of it. There's shackles, tree straps, pulley blocks,..but then again, those are things you should have whether you have a winch or not just in case someone else needs to use their winch to get you out.


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Old 12-20-2010, 11:56 AM   #5
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Re: Occassional use winch

Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoHauler
You're talking about moving 9000-11000 lbs of dead weight
Been there, done that. I've both stalled a 9000lb Warn pulling a Scout out of a mudhole, and seen a 4,000lb come along used for the same rig when we were out solo. I say "seen" because once it was loaded, I tried to take a turn and couldn't budge the thing. We didn't use a cheater bar, but I swear you could see the come-a-long frame stretching...

Which brings me to another point, it's not just your van being stuck, you could be messing with your life- if you're stuck that far out, then a hospital ride from cheap equipment is out of the question.

I have a milemarker on my Jeep now, and they're very affordable. Harbor Freight makes some good stuff, and it's quite possible it's a name brand winch rebranded. I don't think there is anything wrong with going 8000, but you have to have the snatch blocks and cable to back it up.
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Old 12-20-2010, 12:13 PM   #6
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Re: Occassional use winch

Quote:
Originally Posted by jage
Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoHauler
You're talking about moving 9000-11000 lbs of dead weight
Been there, done that. I've both stalled a 9000lb Warn pulling a Scout out of a mudhole, and seen a 4,000lb come along used for the same rig when we were out solo. I say "seen" because once it was loaded, I tried to take a turn and couldn't budge the thing. We didn't use a cheater bar, but I swear you could see the come-a-long frame stretching...

Which brings me to another point, it's not just your van being stuck, you could be messing with your life- if you're stuck that far out, then a hospital ride from cheap equipment is out of the question.

I have a milemarker on my Jeep now, and they're very affordable. Harbor Freight makes some good stuff, and it's quite possible it's a name brand winch rebranded. I don't think there is anything wrong with going 8000, but you have to have the snatch blocks and cable to back it up.
Be careful with the Harbor Freight winches (not the small one handy one but the larger one that mounts), I tried two before giving up on them and going with Warn. When you reverse the voltage to pull in the wire, it flips the positive/neg and shorts via where it's connected to on chassis ground! Confirmed after I got the second one.. Not Good.
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Old 12-20-2010, 12:33 PM   #7
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Re: Occassional use winch

BTW - clay-like mud is sticky stuff. General rule when pulling a vehicle out from that stuff, if it up to the chassis, is the pull force required will be 3x the vehicle weight. So your 8000 pound (??? That's what mine weighs) van will need 24,000 pounds of pull to get unstuck. That's why I went with the 12k winch, since that will only need a single block. Any more than a double-line pull line length becomes an issue.
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Old 12-23-2010, 03:58 PM   #8
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Re: Occassional use winch

We got these things at work called a grip-hoist. I hate them but they work. Problem is they probably cost as much as a electric winch.
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:35 PM   #9
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Re: Occassional use winch

After spending lots of cash fixing a torn Bisept tendon(complete seperation) then a year later torn Rotator Cuff (same side) I now am mounting a 15,000lb winch front and rear. Costs alot less in the long run.
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