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Maxwell Windlasses


Maxwell Windlasses

The Maxwell Windlass range has an appropriate windlass for almost any boat. Maxwell features vertical and horizontal winches for chain rode and rope and chain. Most windlasses feature an optional capstan for independent rope handling. A compact anchor winch such as the Maxwell RC suits smaller vessels and especially sailboats. A more heavy duty windlass such as a VW or HW works for larger boats. Use the selection guide at the bottom of this page to determine which Maxwell windlass is right for your boat.

Consider the overall length and displacement (either light or heavy) of your boat and use the chart provided to identify the most suitable windlass or capstan for your vessel.

The two basic types of windlasses are differentiated by the drive shaft orientation. Deck thickness and underdeck space are the two main considerations when deciding which of the two types to fit.

  • Vertical windlasses make up the majority of anchor winch sales. They are characterized by situating the capstan and/or gypsy (top works) above the deck and the motor and gearbox below. Vertical windlasses provide a 180° a wrap of the anchor rode around the chainwheel giving optimal chain control, minimizing slippage and jumping.
  • Horizontal windlasses are mounted completely above deck with gypsy and capstan located to either side. They provide a 90° a wrap of the anchor rode around the chain wheel.

The wattage of a DC electric motor is not an important factor. Rather it is the efficiency of the whole winch, including the gearbox and motor, which counts. With the increasing popularity of powerful and compact onboard generators, AC-powered winches are becoming a practical consideration for bigger boats. Hydraulic systems provide another power source well worth considering as they have the advantage of constant speed under all load conditions and can be run almost constantly while coupled with safeguards such as pressure relief valves. Modern hydraulic systems offer an integrated, low maintenance and efficient, centrally managed, power pack.

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