End of season guide: The correct handling of boat and winches
boot end of season advisor
Preparations for the winter camp
The correct handling of boat and winches
Even the winter time is not a lost time for our boats. Some parts of the yacht can use a little care after the season, so that also in the coming year the time on the water is really fun. Right before storing, you should rinse your boat thoroughly to get rid of salt and accumulated dirt. Especially the moving parts and the fittings thank it the owner in the coming year.
However, so that these initial measures do not come at the expense of the environment, which as a water sports enthusiast you want to enjoy even longer, you should make sure that the cleaners and care products are either environmentally friendly or do not get into nature and the water.
In the following, our guest author Michael Walther reports in detail about the professional cleaning of the winches on board.
Unbattening the sails, screwing on the winches Once the first basic cleaning of the boat has been done before storage, I take care of relaxing the sail battens and folding the sails neatly first and stowing them professionally . As a long-time employee in the wholesale of yachting accessories, I would like to recommend to those of you who have one or more winches on their yacht to unscrew them and clean them as well.
Freshly washed and cleaned...
...the yachts are ready for winter storage
From many conversations with yacht owners, I know that this happens very rarely or never for many. Mostly out of fear of losing parts or breaking something. Modern winches are relatively simple in design. That already after dismantling the drum the first springs and pawls fly, is probably rather a rumor.
Of course, you should take your time for the disassembly and cleaning of the winch, but thanks to today's widespread smartphones, all steps and the assembly of the winch can be well documented, which can certainly help in the subsequent reassembly. For most winches, there are also corresponding instructions on the Internet or the friendly dealer can help briefly!
View of the built-in pawls
Winch disassembled into its component parts
Greased and oiled - ready for assembly
If I now dare to tackle such a winch, I first dismantle the winch piece by piece and then clean the individual parts with a toothbrush and a good organic glass cleaner. When the springs, pawls and the small and large gears are then shiny lying in front of me again, I grease them anew.
Grease & Oil On the rough parts, i.e. the gears, I like to apply a mixture of winch grease and a few mililiters of winch oil. Just put both in a cup, stir with a brush, and when it's nice and creamy, apply to the gears. The small parts, i.e. ball bearings, pawls and springs, on the other hand, should only be given a few drops of oil. Coarse grease would tend to cause the small parts to stick together. Overall, I use the winch grease quite sparingly, since a winch in normal use does not need too much of it.
Careful with the small parts I take a particularly close look at the locking blades and springs during the following assembly. It happens from time to time that one of these small parts is broken and must be replaced accordingly.
Some modern winches can be disassembled by hand....
...other models require tools.
Like new for next season
Stow sails properly
Wait or better buy new?
Once the winch is back in place and the yacht is clean overall, I quickly check my clothing again. Automatic life jackets in particular need to be checked regularly. This can be done in peace over the winter and does not have to happen hectically just before the season. However, then the quiet winter time can also come. The Christmas cookies have been on the supermarket shelves for a long time anyway and the first winter weekends at home on the sofa can also be cozy. And at the latest with the boot Düsseldorf in January the anticipation for the new season starts again!
Author: Michael Walther
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