Originally Posted by Ruffus
most hard core rock crawling is so much easier with an auto, for everything else I'd rather have a stick
Hydro winches can usually go nonstop, but you have to keep your engine running, electric winches have to be used intermitently, I was taught 3 seconds on 5 seconds off, but if your engine dies in deep water for example, you can still pull your self to safety as long as your battery holds out
Autos allow you to drive with both feet. Smoother when working your way over obstacles, unless you're going the super granny crawler route, but that becomes too slow and actually boring. Good cooling on the autos is a must, and also choosing the correct convertor for your type of wheeling.
I have a very low opinion of winch ropes when used in real off road recovery situations. Abrasion will kill them fast, and they're expensive to replace. It's hard to beat a wire rope - just use normal safety precautions.
Hydraulic winches driven from a power steering pump (MileMarker) are slower than the Earth turns. Sure, 2 speeds, but the high speed won't pull the stick out of a popsicle.
There are different types of electric winches. Just because one is labeled 8,000# doesn't mean it's like another labeled with the same rating. Permanent magnet motor winches are inexpensive, relatively speaking, and do a good job when used within the limits of for what they're designed for. Series wound motor winches are the heavier duty winches.
Winch motors build heat when they're under load, and that varies depending on the load. No load = almost no heat, over max capability = much heat very fast. Then there's the in between...where you actually use it. Other than wear and tear, heat is what kills the winch motor.
Saying 'x' time on and 'x' time off is correct, but only for a situation when that is correct. That's never an abosolute.
A motor will be pulling much greater amps under a 5,000# load when the cable is on top of 3 layers of cable (above the winch drum diameter) than when pulling the same 5,000# just over the bare drum. Winch ratings are calculated and labeled based on pulling power on a bare drum/1st layer.
There's also a difference between planetary gear and worm gear winches, holding/bralking capacity being just a part of that.
Then we have PTO winches....
I'm gonna stop.
You can kill yourself or a friend with a winch..and you can also save lives.
I love em, they are the juice...