By DariaBlackwell - 1 Nov 2020
I just came across this foldable winch handle and it looked interesting but potentially flimsy. For the price, I'd want to make sure this would last a while. Does anyone have any experience with it?
By simoncurrin - 1 Nov 2020
Not sure there’s much advantage in a folding winch handle?
By Chris.Pink - 2 Nov 2020
I'm guilty of having splashed the cash on these. We needed to carry a couple of spare winch handles and I spotted them on the "Sailing Uma" YouTube Vlog, where they appear to be in use continuously..
Unfortunately - here's the kicker - Covid-19 ensured that we had no chance this year to try them out in earnest. They sit well on top of the winch, in folded position, allowing a jib sheet to be put on or thrown off without worrying about snagging an arm. They deployed smoothly for turning the winch. They feel well built. The company was very responsive (Italian, I think) and were at pains to provide updates on orders and manufacturing especially around the time they were closed by pandemic restrictions.
I realise this is only a small insight into their quality but hope it helps.
By DariaBlackwell - 2 Nov 2020
Thanks, Chris! Good to know. I am forever snagging things on winch handles if I leave them in place. Or searching for the winch handle that I removed. I thought one of these would be good to have, easy to stow, and convenient in shifty wind conditions.
We, too, have a bunch of new stuff we haven't been able to test this year.
By Dick - 2 Nov 2020
Hi Daria, Chris and all,
It sure is slick the way it just folds on top.
My worry about a foldable winch handle is just that: that it will fold on you when you do not want it to. Winching is often done from a weird position and often one finds oneself leaning heavily in on the handle and leaning over the winch with much weight. If it collapsed at that time, it could cause an injury, perhaps a broken rib.
I am reminded of my concern with some walking sticks: if you stumble and put some weight on them, they can and do collapse, possibly turning a stumble into a fall which is why I have stayed with my wooden walking stick.
Without actually seeing and using one, it is hard to say, but that would be my initial concern for winches mounted horizontally.
Winches mounted vertically, like on the mast, would not generate this concern and that is where I might try one on Alchemy. (That is if it not prone to fall open when mounted on a vertical winch.
Interesting product, thanks for directing attention to it.
My best, Dick Stevenson, s/v Alchemy