Monday, September 9, 2013

What About the Winches?

Remember these hogs?
Our boat came with some seriously way oversized winches. These self-tailing Lewmar winches sure make pulling in lines and trimming sails a piece of cake and we're so lucky to have them, but at sizes 52, 44 and 30 they are expensive to replace. As in, collectively they cost more than my car. Yeah. They're by no means new but they're still in great shape, and we aim to keep it that way. The very top is made of plastic and is starting to show some sun damage and when it rains water gets into the winch and pools in the bottom, that just seems like an issue waiting to happen. Most people in our area don't have winch covers but with our plans to head to sunnier locations, and no budget to replace these tanks, we decided to make some winch covers ourselves.

We took some precise haphazard measurements and bought some Sunbrella fabric that matches the other canvas on the boat and for the price of ONE winch cover bought online, Ron was able to make all six. Yes, I said R-O-N. He took home-ec in school (I took advanced biology and physics). Suffice it to say that I'm severely sewing-challenged and his knowledge is turning out to be more useful than mine at this point. Go figure.

The scene I walked in on one day after work

WAY better than I could do
He even put in an elastic band that will help hold the cover on if the weather is less than ideal. Last weekend when we went to the boat we put them on and they fit great! Because the covers aren't super fitted, we decided to tie some sail ties around each one to make sure they're all still there when we get back in a couple weeks. Yeah, Hullabaloo looks classy now...of course I forgot to get photo evidence of this.

At least they'll be protected from the elements from now on. I just hope we don't have any surprises when Ron takes them apart, inspects them and services them this fall. For real, it's called "servicing the winches".


  1. Ron sewed them?!?! LOVE it! :)) They look great!

    1. Why yes he did! I'm going to attempt to make the grill cover...that should entertaining :)

  2. Are you selling winch covers?
    I need three. I like you design over the commerical types.
    George B

    1. We are not selling covers, sorry! We were just too cheap to buy covers somewhere else :)

  3. We determined to strip it down, clean it, re-grease and re-assemble it. This sounds a frightening task if you've got ne'er done it before, however if truth be told it's very quite straightforward and any sailor will screw simply with the few straightforward tools needed and slightly patience and care