It wasn’t until we used our winch one day, and it made a horrible sound, that we discovered that it needed to be serviced. No – we didn’t have a Lewmar winch service checklist to remind us of this job. I suppose we’re not unlike most bluewater cruisers in that we’re always learning as we go. Sometimes things break before we learn but other times our egos and pockets are spared.
Before you learn through a very bad noise or a potential breakage, let me tell you that all your winches need to be serviced every year. And although the insides of a winch can look intimidating, servicing them is actually rather straightforward. Look over the checklist below and then watch a video demonstration of Simon doing a Lewmar winch service on our size 54 manual winch.
Lewmar Winch Service Checklist
- Prepare to service the Lewmar winch. You’ll need a bucket, plastic bag (to lay down for the parts), old toothbrush, gear or winch grease, and gear oil (see product listing below). You might also need the Pawl’s and Pawl spring’s associated with the size and make of the winch your servicing.
- Take the Lewmar winch apart. To do this, unscrew the top and take all the pieces and parts off slowly. Lay them on a plastic back nearby. We lay the parts in the cockpit so they don’t accidentally get kicked off the side. TIP: Video record your job or take pictures so if you’re in any doubt as to how things need to look you can refer back to the video/picture.
- Wash everything in White Spirt. Using a toothbrush and rag get all the old grease and grime off every part – cogs, bearings, rods, washers, winch base, winch cover – everything.
- Lightly grease everything except the Pawl and Pawl Spring. You’ll want to use gear oil on that instead. Make sure to lightly grease every part – inside, outside, in the corners and grooves. Don’t put blobs of grease anywhere. Lightly goes is the key.
- Service the Pawl and Pawl Spring (your best bet is to watch the video to see how this is done). This is the only component that may need to be replaced during a service.
- Put everything back together in the opposite manner than when you took everything off.
Lewmar Winch Service Video
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