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getting winches off a mast


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How the hell?  And if I want to put new ones on......how the hell?

C'mon clever peeps, someone must have done this before, but me no see how.

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Care to be more specific?

as in the screws are corroded in place or you can’t get the winch apart. 
 

 

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Take out the screws. Are there nuts inside the mast? If so, there will be some nearby hole that was used to insert some kinda wrench. Maybe under another fitting.

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Are they screwed into the mast?  This is an OLD mast I might be using, and the winches are old bronze ones from the early 70's or late 60's.

I'd assumed that they would be bolted on, but if they're screwed on, that's a lot easier. Well..... maybe. Those screws might have been in there since about 1970.

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1 minute ago, Borracho said:

Remove big screw at top of winch. Remove drum. Unscrew winch. Throw mast and winches in a dumpster. Find VISA card.

There's a long, complicated and frustrating reason I am considering attempting this. However, I might be following your advice.

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2 minutes ago, mgs said:

My money is on screws. Get your favorite penetrating fluid and wait a bit

I gots plenty of time for t his, if I bite off this project.

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23 minutes ago, Raz'r said:

Got the old halyard winches off the 53 year old Luders using a Bosch impact driver.

Yep. Lots of penetrating oil and impact.

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90% certain winches are bolted to the mast wall. These bolts are frozen by corrosion. Use of big impact tools is needed. Make a huge effort to have the impact bits fit the slots as tightly as possible. If/when the slots get buggered to much, drill out the head and pry the winches off the studs (leave studs as long as possible!!!!) Pry winch bases of the studs. Now file two flat sides & use your best big pair of vise grips to grab the studs. Turn the adjusting screw down until you can barely get the grips to lock. Work the pliers back & forth with lots of oil. Hopefully you gradually get more rotation. The inside end of the bolt poking thru the mast wall will also have corrosion on it, so keep working slowly

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Patience, penetrating oil, heat, impact...

and cussing of course. Maybe beer. And time. Did I say "cussing", yet?

Got it.  We shall see.

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4 minutes ago, Alan H said:

Patience, penetrating oil, heat, impact...

and cussing of course. Maybe beer. And time. Did I say "cussing", yet?

Got it.  We shall see.

make sure the drill bits are sharp, for the eventuality...

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12 minutes ago, Raz'r said:

make sure the drill bits are sharp, for the eventuality...

Cobalt drills, I'm sure.

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Nope to all the clever stud ideas above. If the first minute of work results in screw removal failure just drill off the heads. The mast threads will be buggered no matter what. Cut/Grind off the remaining stud. Rotate or move the winch a little bit. Drill and tap new holes. Exactly what and how depends on the existing construction. Big time saver...minutes vs. hours.

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1 hour ago, Borracho said:

Nope to all the clever stud ideas above. If the first minute of work results in screw removal failure just drill off the heads. The mast threads will be buggered no matter what. Cut/Grind off the remaining stud. Rotate or move the winch a little bit. Drill and tap new holes. Exactly what and how depends on the existing construction. Big time saver...minutes vs. hours.

What he said. Although, I have moved screws frozen into aluminum by alternating propane torch and cold wet towel.

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22 hours ago, Alan H said:

There's a long, complicated and frustrating reason I am considering attempting this. However, I might be following your advice.

Was that rig once part of an artificial reef?

As already stated, heat and impact will be your friend here.

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@Alan H I've got no advice to help here, but no matter how long, complicated, or frustrating your story is I am sure we will ALL find it fascinating.

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Luckily, I have scored a spar that needs no winches removed. Yaaaasss!. *phew*

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