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Winch horsepower?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Rocky91, Aug 8, 2002.

  1. Rocky91

    Rocky91 Registered Member

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    Rochester, NY
    I saw 3 winches by the same maker, all 8000lbs. but with different hp motors (1.8hp, 4.8hp, and 5.5hp). How can they all pull the same load with such a drastic variance in power? Would the 1.8hp motor only be able to pull 8000lbs. on a flat surface while the 5.5 could pull 8000lbs. up a hill or out of the mud?

    I am thinking about getting a small winch (3000lbs. w/5.5hp motor), but for $50 more I could buy a 8000lbs. winch with a 1.8hp motor. Would that be better? I don't do any serious offroading but want it for moving stuff (large trees, rocks, etc.) around and occasionally pulling someone out of the snow.
     
  2. mplogic

    mplogic 1/2 ton status

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    It probably has more to do with the gearing. A small motor will require more gearing to pull the same weight as a larger motor. Get one that's rated at the weight you want not just for a larger motor. Generally a larger motor will last longer and pull faster (less reduction gearing), but I'm not sure if this applies to all winches. Try looking up some reviews of the winches in question.
     
  3. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    There's more to a winch than just the HP rating of the motor. The main 2 things that you're interested in are it's maximum pull rating and the line speed, especially under load. Some 8,000 lb winches are downright fast, such as the Warn 8274. Others will have you needing a packed lunch to wait for the line to come in. /forums/images/icons/wink.gif

    The gear ratio determines the amount of pull as well as the line speed, for a particular motor. For example, the Warn M12000 and the M15000 both use the same motor, but the M12000 has a 261:1 gear ratio while the M15000 has a 315:1 gear ratio.

    You'll find that a 3,000 lb rated winch can't handle most chores, such as pulling folks out of the snow. The winch makers recommed that your winch be rated at 1.5 times the weight of your vehicle, or whatever you need to pull. This takes into account things like mud, sand, snow rocks, etc. that the vehicle needs to be pulled through or over. Also keep in mind that the rated max pull is with most of the cable out. Each layer of cable that builds up on the spool reduces the effective gear ratio, and thus the pulling power. (Think of it as putting ever larger tires on your truck, without changing the gears in the axles).
     

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