We're looking for the trash fence...

Making a windlass plan of attack – Step one: Pontificate

Posted on Wed 18 August 2010 in Projects, Systems - Ground Tackle

I have and plan on reusing the Lofrans Progress that came with my boat. The motor is the same large one that comes with the Tigres.

You may remember that my windlass was originally mounted so far aft that the hawse pipe went through the v-berth and into the decommissioned water tank; basically rendering it impossible for use to sleep there comfortably. This winter I removed it had the the deck closed up and am now making my plans to place the windlass further forward on the deck and to run the chain through the shallow anchor locker and into the unused chain locker below.

Seems as though I have one of four choices:

  1. Place the windlass forward of the locker and use a PVC hawse pipe to run the chain aft to achieve adequate fall. Meridian has this kind of setup as does Syringa.
  2. Place the windlass motor and mount just aft of the locker and use a PVC pipe to run the chain foreward and through the locker. Parallax has this setup with a similar if not the same windlass.
  3. Build a stand for the windlass in the anchor locker at the highest point of the chain fall and modify the door to go around the windlass. There are some horizontals which have been done that way.
  4. Install the windlass on the door itself (or a beefed up hatch without hinges) and essentially leave the locker closed except for maintenance purposes. Another derivation of this is to bolt down a more permanent opening, possibly thicker and have it closed with a more bolt down fittings like they use on aircraft.

1 and 2 seem like the least work, but I’m worried about how well the chain will run. I don’t want to be having to deal with kinked up chain in the anchor locker all the time. Also #1 doesn’t really seem possible on our boat because we don’t have a bow sprit for our anchor and our anchor comes all the way back to the deck. I also plan to put a padeye on the deck just aft of the anchors for the solent stay so again #1 seems like a no-go. If I can alleviate my concerns about the flow of chain then #2 is probably the best idea.

#3 sounds a lot of work and I’m not sure how to make the door water tight once I cut into it. I also am not sure that the drive shaft of the windlass would be long enough to reach through the entire pad.

I think #4 would be a big upgrade. It would also close off the deck better than the door does today. It would however remove a storage spot from the foredeck, which is handy for wet  things like hoses and our folding anchors.

SO #2 and #4 seem like the most viable options at this point with #2 probably winning out based on the simplicity. If you have any thoughts please do chime in.