Our windlass ist kaput

Port Madison is a great place to anchor for an evening or overnight. Too bad our windlass decided to rebel the last time we were there. It all started well. Step on the button and the  motor dutifully pays out chain. Then … it all went wrong. The windlass started to spin and chain was roaring out. The 50 foot mark, then the 100 foot mark flew by, and then the 150 foot mark. They were recently repainted and looked nice for the second or so I saw each one. We managed to get it stopped with about 175 feet of chain sitting on the bottom. We were only in 15 feet or so of water.

Well there’s your problem …

IMG_4095That’s actually a gear — or at least it was. The main gear in the windlass. It’s supposed to connect to this gear. The gear on the drive motor. As you can clearly see one looks good. The other, not so much. No wonder the shaft spins freely.

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It was a good workout hauling all that weight back on the boat.

This weekend, I removed the windlass and shipped it off to Ideal Windlass for repair. I’ve talked before about how they have all the parts for very old stuff. That’s good for us. Our windlass is probably 35 years old.

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I am getting good at taking it apart.

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With luck, we will have it back soon. Until then, it’s all docks and mooring buoys for us.