A hand winch is an important tool for many different jobs and hobbies. If you enjoy your 4×4 vehicle, this is an accessory you should certainly consider making an investment in. No matter what model you choose, you should expect to find a device that includes lubricated bearings, arc-welded reels, drive gears, and a stainless steel ratchet spring. Some hand winch models are more heavy-duty than others. Make sure that the kind you choose to invest in will suit the needs you have for it. If you find that a load is too heavy for the winch you have, you can use a snatch box to lessen the load on the winch.
While hand winches are simple in construction, they must be used correctly to avoid injury to yourself or damage to your property. A snapped cord or incorrectly secured winch could spell disaster for anyone or anything within a certain proximity. Therefore it is incredibly important that you understand how to use a hand winch before you attempt to pull any kind of load. If you are part of an off-roading club, hand winch training may be included with the membership. This is a great way to learn how to properly hook up and use your winch.
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Even once you feel comfortable using your winch you should perform a few checks each and every time you use it. Assess whether what you are about to tow is safely secured and ask all onlookers to back away. Then, inspect your winch before you use it. You will be looking for any frayed cables, dirt, mud, or any other obstruction that could cause a problem when you begin to operate the hand winch. If you buy a winch that features a shear pin, you will avoid a catastrophic break of the cable. The pin will break when the load becomes too heavy and lock the winch in place. Once you lighten the load or add a snatch box to take some pressure of the hand winch, you can replace the broken pin with a spare and resume your winching.
Once you become the proud owner of a hand winch, you will realize that it is one of the most powerful tools in your arsenal, despite the fact that it is a relatively simple device. Certainly, the difference between having a winch or not could be the difference between an enjoyable off-roading weekend and a miserable one.