Yesterday was a good day. Just before lunch, a sailing friend from the WEYC dropped by. He said he was cleaning out his storage unit, and had a few bits of boating hardware to get rid of, and wanted my opinion on what it might be worth.
Among the things he mentioned were a pair of winches, which interested me a bit. He brought them over half an hour later. A pair of Harken 44 self-tailing winches, the old style with the roller-bearing stripper, freshly re-built and in factory boxes. They’d come off the raceboat he crews on, to be replaced by the newest/lightest/greatest by a manager with plenty of his owner’s money to spend.

“I figure they’d be dear to someone… what do you think they’re worth?”
“Oh, I dunno,” I replied, “How much do you want to get out of it?”
“Well, for you, say, $50 each? I mean, they’re just taking up space in my little container…”

I had the cash out of my pocket and the boxes carted off before he had a chance to reconsider. $100! For two 44 ST’s? Yikes! I wouldn’t have expected these winches, used, to go for less than $500 each… New 44’s are around $1400 apiece..

I used to kid my friend Marty for switching out his 42’s for used ex-powered 48’s, but after sailing with him before and after the switch, I’m convinced that otherwise “oversized” winches are just right; sooo much less effort and hassle, less wraps, quicker sheeting, etc. The only drawback, of course, is the crazy expense of new winches these days, easily the single most expensive pieces of hardware on any boat.
Now my standart Lewmar 42’s can move back onto pedestals for secondary use; stays’l, spinnaker, etc. What a score!

  1. osteoderm’s avatar

    It gets better… Just talked to Mike again last night, and it looks like I’ll be getting that mainsheet traveler from him as well; another crazy score!


  2. Clive’s avatar

    I love a good winch.



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