Sunday, 2 April 2017

Winch Install

Its been a while since I last posted and a lot has happened.  I am probably going to try get myself caught up with a few shorter simple posts.

First up... A winch.

While I admit I am seldom in situations where I need a winch there have definitely been a couple times where one would be nice.  I also feel I am out exploring alone enough that this just gives me the level of security that betters my chances of self extraction.

Now a disclaimer, winches are heavy, expensive and need proper knowledge to use safely.  While I bought this ahead of a lot of other recovery gear I do believe it is well down the list of items that you 'should' have.  Normally before buying a winch I think the following items are priority; shovel(s), good tow points, tire inflator or onboard air, snatch (kinetic) strap,  traction aids like sand ladders, common sense.  I mention the last point since some trail smarts will keep you out of most situations where a recovery is necessary if you are unprepared.  I am planning to supplement my recovery gear with a good kinetic strap and possibly some traction aids.

Now back to the winch. This was a pretty spontaneous purchase as I noticed they were on sale at our local Princess Auto.  I suspect they are either clearing out to replace with the second generation, or perhaps push a different brand. Asking about the sale there was only 3 left, with none being reordered and at a discount of about $200 and backed by both a killer warranty, and store return policy it was a no brainer.

I mean even after I purchased it I contemplated leaving it uninstalled for a while to ensure no other deals surfaced near Christmas. I kicked my search for the best value/deal into high gear but it soon became apparent that this one was going to stay.  I should mention too that to sweeten the deal there was also a $75 US mail in rebate offer, I filled in the form but only time will tell if I get money back.

This winch is listed as compatible with this ARB bumper however beyond that there was not much additional information.  I tried a few different install options and configurations and think I figured out how it was designed to work.  I had to rotate the motor end a 1/4 turn, and opted to use the ARB bumper supplied solenoid mount. This bracket centered the solenoid and buys extra room for lights in the future. (Don't mind the partially removed plasti-dip on grill in picture below)

Overall the install is quite simple, 4 bolts mount the winch to the bumper, 2 more connect the roller fairlead, and a few more connect the solenoid to the bracket. Only a massive power and ground make their way behind the grill and to the battery.

When running the wiring I was sure to shield it anywhere it contacted metal using fuel line, and used lots of zap straps to hold everything tightly in place.

Buying an installing a winch is not the be all and end all of recovery.  A winch will need accessories such as shackles, tree savers, and a snatch block at a minimum. Buying good quality, and properly sized recovery gear is essential as well as familiarizing yourself with its proper usage.


  1. Whether or not it absolutely was my bicycle, motorcycle, car, truck, or ATV, I had to change it in a way to create it higher, faster, additional rugged and sturdy than stock winch for automotive.

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