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I settled on this one, and will be using M8 4/0 connectors to hook up to it. I like the separate terminals, and the high rating (meaning I know it will handle my 400a needs). I'll be using the 400a ANL style fuses from my earlier post.
 

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Discussion Starter #42
I settled on this one, and will be using M8 4/0 connectors to hook up to it. I like the separate terminals, and the high rating (meaning I know it will handle by 400a needs). I'll be using the 400a ANL style fuses from my earlier post.
That's the best one I've seen and it can handle 4/0 wire, but $43 for a fuse block, wow. This is sure getting expensive, when I saw the winch on sale for $300 I figured it would be great to have a winch for that little, but I didn't factor in the wiring and all the other accessories such as tree straps, snatch blocks, D-Rings, etc. All the extras cost as much as the winch!

Then I started looking into upgrading to synthetic winch cable. That was another $130. By the time I'm through I'll have around $750 into this! lol
 

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That's the best one I've seen and it can handle 4/0 wire, but $43 for a fuse block, wow. This is sure getting expensive, when I saw the winch on sale for $300 I figured it would be great to have a winch for that little, but I didn't factor in the wiring and all the other accessories such as tree straps, snatch blocks, D-Rings, etc. All the extras cost as much as the winch!

Then I started looking into upgrading to synthetic winch cable. That was another $130. By the time I'm through I'll have around $750 into this! lol
Wait until you see my air suspension plans, lol! Start saving! I am! :ROFLMAO:
 

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I'm going to make an assumption here that both of you are new to winching. Please, seek out someone local who can teach you how to safely use a winch. The winch in probably the second most dangerous piece of off road recovery equipment you'll have. (Hi Lift jack and chainsaw are tied for first.) If you can't find someone local, watch a ton of videos. Finally, practice with it before you need it.

The funny thing is, my experience winching and assisting in other recoveries, comes from years of off-road rock-crawling. The needs there are often very different than what you'll encounter. For the most part, what you'll need, a slight tug over a small obstacle, is actually pretty easy. You won't be using nearly all the pulling power. However, "soft roaders" are likely to encounter something that really taxes your equipment, mud. I hate mud and do all I can to avoid it. That stuff just sticks and really holds your vehicle. Be extremely careful on mud extractions, review all your safety precautions and then double check them.

Finally, D-rings, snatch blocks? Never buy anything of questionable manufacturing origin.There are a lot of counterfeit items out there. Basically, I only buy Warn and yes, that really hurts the pocket book.
 

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I'm going to make an assumption here that both of you are new to winching. Please, seek out someone local who can teach you how to safely use a winch. The winch in probably the second most dangerous piece of off road recovery equipment you'll have. (Hi Lift jack and chainsaw are tied for first.) If you can't find someone local, watch a ton of videos. Finally, practice with it before you need it.
Hi, no, I'm just new to an installation done by me instead of by a third party, regardless, your advice is very appreciated and welcome, not just because it's such an important topic that it's always good, even for peope who are familiar with winching to try to learn new things and from others experiences...

...but most importantly because we've got so many members who may have no experience at all, and, any discussion of using winches should somewhere have details, and warnings, for the novice.

So, thank you for that.

Coincidentally (not really, since it's part of the reason), I'm working on a series of off road tutorials for MtnRoo, and, this will be one of the topics, along with tow straps, recoil ropes, shovels, boards, saws, etc.

And folks, on that note, like something I've said in MtnRoo about 9 days ago, off-roading is no place for an ego - always try to learn new things, listen to others experiences, and work on becoming more knowledgeable. You can bet I read every word @NotThePainter wrote above.
Mistakes off road can be costly or deadly.

4732
 

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Discussion Starter #47 (Edited)
I'm going to make an assumption here that both of you are new to winching. Please, seek out someone local who can teach you how to safely use a winch. The winch in probably the second most dangerous piece of off road recovery equipment you'll have. (Hi Lift jack and chainsaw are tied for first.) If you can't find someone local, watch a ton of videos. Finally, practice with it before you need it.

The funny thing is, my experience winching and assisting in other recoveries, comes from years of off-road rock-crawling. The needs there are often very different than what you'll encounter. For the most part, what you'll need, a slight tug over a small obstacle, is actually pretty easy. You won't be using nearly all the pulling power. However, "soft roaders" are likely to encounter something that really taxes your equipment, mud. I hate mud and do all I can to avoid it. That stuff just sticks and really holds your vehicle. Be extremely careful on mud extractions, review all your safety precautions and then double check them.

Finally, D-rings, snatch blocks? Never buy anything of questionable manufacturing origin.There are a lot of counterfeit items out there. Basically, I only buy Warn and yes, that really hurts the pocket book.
I'm not entirely new to winching having been around (but not directly involved in) four-wheeling and lumberjacking all my life. I've seen winches used in almost every application, both safely and unsafely by others. I've seen winches fail and I know the dangers firsthand. I came into this eyes wide open.

But I am new to owning and installing my own winch. I research the bejeezus out of everything I buy and use and I'm always super careful about safety. My research into winch installation has been eye-opening. As an industrial engineer, I see so many issues. There are electrical and mechanical safety violations that appear routine in non-professional winch installations/usage. Worse, this appears to be largely ignored by many winch equipment manufacturers and resellers. Some manufacturers/resellers seem all too willing to sell underrated wiring, snatch blocks, D-Ring shackles, straps, and cables deceptively overrated in their descriptions. The most common deceptive things I've seen is the use of wiring woefully underrated for the amperages required, and blatantly trying to pass off Maximum Breaking Strength as the actual Working Load Limit for winch related hardware. This may cause many people to improperly and unsafely wire their winch and purchase associated hardware dangerously underrated for their purposes.

All of your points are excellent and winch safety is critical. This is why I'm using this thread to call attention to the fact that winch wiring in the industry and installed by the user is quite often inadequate and potentially dangerous. Then, add to that all the deception I've seen with specifying and describing winch hardware, and it's a wonder that more people don't get hurt.

Anyone purchasing a winch for their own use must be well aware of this before purchasing any components. You can safely purchase, install, and operate a winch, but only after you know how to properly spec the winch and all the associated wiring and equipment and then learn how to operate it safely. This is not particularly straightforward or easy because of all the misinformation, and it takes careful research and study as well a lot of diligence to get it right as Robert and I had to do.

Be fully aware and knowledgeable of proper winch safety, specifications, installations, rigging, and usage, not only when using your own setup, but whenever you're around anyone else's.
 

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I recently purchased a Harbor Freight ZXR 12000 Lb. Truck/SUV Winch. It was on sale for $299 ($100 off). The 12,000 lb capacity is overkill, I only plan on using it to help with tree cutting, retrieving my stuck tractor and backhoe, and such. It may also come in handy for trailering and off-road use. However, with winches, it's better to oversize because the actual working capacity is usually considerably lower than the rated capacity for a number of reasons, and the 12000 lb HF winch was reasonably priced with the current sale.

Since the Ascent has no provisions to front mount a winch, I'm going to need to mount it using the rear hitch receiver. This is easy enough because many places sell winch receiver mounts. However, the electrical hookup is another story.

I'm an industrial electrical (and software) engineer, so when I spec electrical wiring and connections, I go by the book. This winch is rated to draw 359 amps max. To properly get this ampacity would require 4/0 copper wire which is very large and very expensive. Around 20-25 feet is required. This would cost almost the same as what I paid for the winch.

The big-name winch companies such as Warn and others sell (expensive) kits to wire rear receiver mounted winches. What surprised me is that the 25-foot lengths of wire they include with these kits are only 2-gauge wire, which has a rated ampacity of only around 115 amps. This is crazy since they rate this kit for winches up to 16,000 lbs that can draw 400 amps or more. Using 2-gauge wire for a length of 20-25 feet for amperage capacities far greater than what the wire is rated for can result in considerable voltage drops exceeding 2 volts. This could cause the wire and the winch to get very hot and eventually burn out.

The only thing that I can figure out is that since the duty rating on these winches is only around a minute or so, they're betting that the 2-gauge wire will be good enough. Still, it seems very sketchy to me. Not only is this dangerous, but it could considerably lower the rated capacity of the winch and cause it to wear out faster. Yet, they do seem to be getting away with it. I've scoured the internet on this subject and no one seems to be complaining too much. Most people seem to be wiring very large winches with only 2-gauge wire. Still, I just can see it, the wire ampacity is all wrong.

Yet, I don't want to pay $250 for a pair of 25-foot 4/0 copper wires. Technically I could buy only one 25-foot length of wire for the positive lead and then use the chassis as the negative lead, but this can cause considerable other issues if all the chassis ground connections involved are not nearly perfect. I could also simply buy another battery exclusively for the winch, but that's not a great solution either. I could run 3/0, or even 2/0 wire which is less expensive, but now I'm playing similar games with less than adequate wire ampacity as the winch manufacturers are. Since I'm rarely or never going to need the maximum amp capacity of the winch, I could simply consider lesser gauge wire as good enough, but then that'll always be the weak link.

So, this is a dilemma that I still haven't worked out. I'd thought I'd open up a discussion here to see what others are doing or to hear other opinions and options. I'm sure many of you have installed and used winches and have run into this yourselves.

This discussion may also be useful for other Ascent owners who may be considering installing and using a winch.
After talking with a local car guru who also happened to sell winches Years ago for many years, I thought I would post his thoughts on the Ascent winching.

1. Warn winches are the only ones he would even consider. He stated the others are crap.
2. Rule of thumb is to double the vehicle weight for the winch capacity, so an Ascent could use a 12000lb and he stated a 9000 lb would work just fine.
3. Use 2/0 welding cable for the wiring directly to the battery.
4. Use a crimp. Do not solder as the soldering will often come loose. Heat shrink tube the Ferrel.
5. Use a solenoid.
8. Depending on your mount, you might consider this.
 

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I recently purchased a Harbor Freight ZXR 12000 Lb. Truck/SUV Winch. It was on sale for $299 ($100 off). The 12,000 lb capacity is overkill, I only plan on using it to help with tree cutting, retrieving my stuck tractor and backhoe, and such. It may also come in handy for trailering and off-road use. However, with winches, it's better to oversize because the actual working capacity is usually considerably lower than the rated capacity for a number of reasons, and the 12000 lb HF winch was reasonably priced with the current sale.

Since the Ascent has no provisions to front mount a winch, I'm going to need to mount it using the rear hitch receiver. This is easy enough because many places sell winch receiver mounts. However, the electrical hookup is another story.

I'm an industrial electrical (and software) engineer, so when I spec electrical wiring and connections, I go by the book. This winch is rated to draw 359 amps max. To properly get this ampacity would require 4/0 copper wire which is very large and very expensive. Around 20-25 feet is required. This would cost almost the same as what I paid for the winch.

The big-name winch companies such as Warn and others sell (expensive) kits to wire rear receiver mounted winches. What surprised me is that the 25-foot lengths of wire they include with these kits are only 2-gauge wire, which has a rated ampacity of only around 115 amps. This is crazy since they rate this kit for winches up to 16,000 lbs that can draw 400 amps or more. Using 2-gauge wire for a length of 20-25 feet for amperage capacities far greater than what the wire is rated for can result in considerable voltage drops exceeding 2 volts. This could cause the wire and the winch to get very hot and eventually burn out.

The only thing that I can figure out is that since the duty rating on these winches is only around a minute or so, they're betting that the 2-gauge wire will be good enough. Still, it seems very sketchy to me. Not only is this dangerous, but it could considerably lower the rated capacity of the winch and cause it to wear out faster. Yet, they do seem to be getting away with it. I've scoured the internet on this subject and no one seems to be complaining too much. Most people seem to be wiring very large winches with only 2-gauge wire. Still, I just can see it, the wire ampacity is all wrong.

Yet, I don't want to pay $250 for a pair of 25-foot 4/0 copper wires. Technically I could buy only one 25-foot length of wire for the positive lead and then use the chassis as the negative lead, but this can cause considerable other issues if all the chassis ground connections involved are not nearly perfect. I could also simply buy another battery exclusively for the winch, but that's not a great solution either. I could run 3/0, or even 2/0 wire which is less expensive, but now I'm playing similar games with less than adequate wire ampacity as the winch manufacturers are. Since I'm rarely or never going to need the maximum amp capacity of the winch, I could simply consider lesser gauge wire as good enough, but then that'll always be the weak link.

So, this is a dilemma that I still haven't worked out. I'd thought I'd open up a discussion here to see what others are doing or to hear other opinions and options. I'm sure many of you have installed and used winches and have run into this yourselves.

This discussion may also be useful for other Ascent owners who may be considering installing and using a winch.
is this the type of recovery you had in mind? I notice Matt is using a HF winch on one of the vehicles. Matt's absentmindedness is overcome by Paul's decent planning and a team effort.
 

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Discussion Starter #50 (Edited)
After talking with a local car guru who also happened to sell winches Years ago for many years, I thought I would post his thoughts on the Ascent winching.

1. Warn winches are the only ones he would even consider. He stated the others are crap.
2. Rule of thumb is to double the vehicle weight for the winch capacity, so an Ascent could use a 12000lb and he stated a 9000 lb would work just fine.
3. Use 2/0 welding cable for the wiring directly to the battery.
4. Use a crimp. Do not solder as the soldering will often come loose. Heat shrink tube the Ferrel.
5. Use a solenoid.
8. Depending on your mount, you might consider this.
1. Warn winches are the only ones he would even consider. He stated the others are crap.
That's a bit harsh. Smittybilt certainly makes great winches and Harbor Freight receives far more praise than criticism for their Badland series. Only the Warn Zeon series is US made, their others are made in China. You could purchase two HF winches for the price of one comparable Warn Zeon winch. Sometimes it comes down to what's affordable. Better to have an affordable winch than none at all.
2. Rule of thumb is to double the vehicle weight for the winch capacity, so an Ascent could use a 12000lb and he stated a 9000 lb would work just fine.
Agreed.
3. Use 2/0 welding cable for the wiring directly to the battery.
For as 12,000 lb winch drawing around 400 amps, you could use 2/0 and get away with it as long as you ran the winch no more than under a minute then let the wiring cool down. The proper size wire for 400 amps is 4/0 and it's only about $60 more. Personally, I would never wire it directly to the battery, a fuse is required. Having 20 feet of unfused, massive gauge wire going directly to the battery from under the car is not advisable.
4. Use a crimp. Do not solder as the soldering will often come loose. Heat shrink tube the Ferrel.
In this case, crimp connections would be best, however, a crimping tool for very heavy gauge wire can cost $200-$500 or more and you can't make a proper crimp without a proper crimping tool. I'm not willing to spend that much for a crimping tool that I might use only once or twice, so, the next best and only other option is to solder. Heat shrink is a must. Glue embedded heat shrink is even better.
5. Use a solenoid.
That contradicts #3, wiring directly to the battery. A solenoid that could handle 400 amps would be expensive. A solenoid sure would be convenient because you could turn it on and off without opening the hood, but a battery cutoff switch will work for far less cost.
6,7. What happened to suggestions 6 and 7? lol
8. Depending on your mount, you might consider this.

Isolators are nice for permanently mounted winches, mine will be a rear receiver mount which I'll remove after each use, at least until the front bumper mount for the Ascent is released.

Please thank your contact for his suggestions. They are all worth consideration.
 

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Discussion Starter #51
is this the type of recovery you had in mind? I notice Matt is using a HF winch on one of the vehicles. Matt's absentmindedness is overcome by Paul's decent planning and a team effort.
It's not what I had in mind for my purposes, I'm not an off-roader, but Robert is.

My winch is for tree cutting and recovering tractors and my backhoe, but who knows, it may come in handy if I ever get stuck in a snow bank.
 

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1. Warn winches are the only ones he would even consider. He stated the others are crap.
That's a bit harsh. Smittybilt certainly makes great winches and Harbor Freight receives far more praise than criticism for their Badland series. Only the Warn Zeon series is US made, their others are made in China. You could purchase two HF winches for the price of one comparable Warn Zeon winch. Sometimes it comes down to what's affordable. Better to have an affordable winch than none at all. This individual has 2-3 decades of experience. I have virtually none in winches. He does not sell them now and has no personal stake in this at all. This individual used and sold winches professionally and not just for his personal off road adventures.
2. Rule of thumb is to double the vehicle weight for the winch capacity, so an Ascent could use a 12000lb and he stated a 9000 lb would work just fine.
Agreed.
3. Use 2/0 welding cable for the wiring directly to the battery.
For as 12,000 lb winch drawing around 400 amps, you could use 2/0 and get away with it as long as you ran the winch no more than under a minute then let the wiring cool down. The proper size wire for 400 amps is 4/0 and it's only about $60 more. Personally, I would never wire it directly to the battery, a fuse is required. Having 20 feet of unfused, massive gauge wire going directly to the battery from under the car is not advisable. My guess is that his comments were short hand regarding direct wiring.

Here are some other postings related to winch amperage and wiring. It sounds like the issue is how long one would need to run the winch. That amperage is for continuous load which as you know in the electrical world is three hours or more. A deeper dive into continuous duty addresses the type of curve.
4. Use a crimp. Do not solder as the soldering will often come loose. Heat shrink tube the Ferrel.
In this case, crimp connections would be best, however, a crimping tool for very heavy gauge wire can cost $200-$500 or more and you can't make a proper crimp without a proper crimping tool. I'm not willing to spend that much for a crimping tool that I might use only once or twice, so, the next best and only other option is to solder. Heat shrink is a must. Glue embedded heat shrink is even better. My suggestion here is to head over to an electrical contractor and give them a couple of dollars to crimp it. Any contractor who deals in commercial and certainly industrial will have this simple tool.
5. Use a solenoid.
That contradicts #3, wiring directly to the battery. A solenoid that could handle 400 amps would be expensive. A solenoid sure would be convenient because you could turn it on and off without opening the hood, but a battery cutoff switch will work for far less cost. My impression was that he did not think you would ever need to reach that amperage so that guage wire would not be needed. I called into his radio show this morning. You can talk to him easily any Saturday morning. I bet it would be interesting.
6,7. What happened to suggestions 6 and 7? lol
8. Depending on your mount, you might consider this.

Isolators are nice for permanently mounted winches, mine will be a rear receiver mount which I'll remove after each use, at least until the front bumper mount for the Ascent is released.
I'm personally just learning about all of this. I understand the electrical part but have never been in the position to actually need a winch. Getting older by the day but still learning.

Warn info on pulling capacity by layer. "Pull as much cable off the drum as possible so your winch is pulling as close to its maximum capacity as possible. (Remember to always leave a minimum 5 wraps on the drum with wire rope, 10 wraps on the drum with synthetic rope). " "If your only anchor tree is 20ft away, and you have 125ft of rope on your drum, I would automatically use a Snatch Block. This does two things, it gets more rope off the drum, and it doubles the winches capacity, so you’re putting less load on the winch motor. Less load on the motor, means less amp draw, less heat buildup, longer run time, and less load on the battery and alternator. That’s a Win-Win all the way around! "

PS. He recently test drove a 2020 Ascent and liked it. He noted how heavy it was (compared to the other Subaru models) and how easily it accelerated up the Colorado mountains.



Please thank your contact for his suggestions. They are all worth consideration.
 

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Discussion Starter #53
This individual has 2-3 decades of experience. I have virtually none in winches. He does not sell them now and has no personal stake in this at all. This individual used and sold winches professionally and not just for his personal off road adventures.
I'm sure he knows his stuff. But not everyone can afford a Warn winch. I'd love to own a Roll Royce too, but I drive a Subaru, lol. HF will just have to do for my purposes. Warn may indeed be the best but I can't budget or justify $1781 for a comparable Warn winch.

My guess is that his comments were short hand regarding direct wiring.
Probably.

My suggestion here is to head over to an electrical contractor and give them a couple of dollars to crimp it. Any contractor who deals in commercial and certainly industrial will have this simple tool. It does not need to be an electric / battery version.
Excellent suggestion, thank you. But I'm a die-hard DIY'er, if I can't do it myself, I rarely pay anyone else. Solder should work well enough. Solder vs crimping is always an outgoing debate with no clear winner for every purpose. NASA uses solder rather than crimping. If it's good enough for their spacecraft, it's good enough for my winch.

My impression was that he did not think you would ever need to reach that amperage so that gauge wire would not be needed. I called into his radio show this morning. You can talk to him easily any Saturday morning. I bet it would be interesting.
In the winch industry, a lot of spec'ing undersized wire and components is done. It works because of the very short duty cycle of winches. I just don't like it, it goes against my industrial engineering experience where we oversize everything, not undersize. I'm sure it works ok, it's just not for me.

I do appreciate and respect his suggestions though and I greatly appreciate your taking the time to research this. This knowledge adds a lot to this discussion.
 

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This individual has 2-3 decades of experience. I have virtually none in winches. He does not sell them now and has no personal stake in this at all. This individual used and sold winches professionally and not just for his personal off road adventures.
I'm sure he knows his stuff. But not everyone can afford a Warn winch. I'd love to own a Roll Royce too, but I drive a Subaru, lol. HF will just have to do for my purposes. Warn may indeed be the best but I can't budget or justify $1781 for a comparable Warn winch.

My guess is that his comments were short hand regarding direct wiring.
Probably.

My suggestion here is to head over to an electrical contractor and give them a couple of dollars to crimp it. Any contractor who deals in commercial and certainly industrial will have this simple tool. It does not need to be an electric / battery version.
Excellent suggestion, thank you. But I'm a die-hard DIY'er, if I can't do it myself, I rarely pay anyone else. Solder should work well enough. Solder vs crimping is always an outgoing debate with no clear winner for every purpose. NASA uses solder rather than crimping. If it's good enough for their spacecraft, it's good enough for my winch.

My impression was that he did not think you would ever need to reach that amperage so that gauge wire would not be needed. I called into his radio show this morning. You can talk to him easily any Saturday morning. I bet it would be interesting.
In the winch industry, a lot of spec'ing undersized wire and components is done. It works because of the very short duty cycle of winches. I just don't like it, it goes against my industrial engineering experience where we oversize everything, not undersize. I'm sure it works ok, it's just not for me.

I do appreciate and respect his suggestions though and I greatly appreciate your taking the time to research this. This knowledge adds a lot to this discussion.
"NASA uses solder rather than crimping" The wonders of the internet compared to the card catalogue: https://nepp.nasa.gov/docuploads/E9217401-8544-4DD6-B67488D4410E9762/conn.pdf

If you change your mind on the crimping, Sunbelt rentals has battery crimping tools.
 

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This individual has 2-3 decades of experience. I have virtually none in winches. He does not sell them now and has no personal stake in this at all. This individual used and sold winches professionally and not just for his personal off road adventures.
I'm sure he knows his stuff. But not everyone can afford a Warn winch. I'd love to own a Roll Royce too, but I drive a Subaru, lol. HF will just have to do for my purposes. Warn may indeed be the best but I can't budget or justify $1781 for a comparable Warn winch.

My guess is that his comments were short hand regarding direct wiring.
Probably.

My suggestion here is to head over to an electrical contractor and give them a couple of dollars to crimp it. Any contractor who deals in commercial and certainly industrial will have this simple tool. It does not need to be an electric / battery version.
Excellent suggestion, thank you. But I'm a die-hard DIY'er, if I can't do it myself, I rarely pay anyone else. Solder should work well enough. Solder vs crimping is always an outgoing debate with no clear winner for every purpose. NASA uses solder rather than crimping. If it's good enough for their spacecraft, it's good enough for my winch.

My impression was that he did not think you would ever need to reach that amperage so that gauge wire would not be needed. I called into his radio show this morning. You can talk to him easily any Saturday morning. I bet it would be interesting.
In the winch industry, a lot of spec'ing undersized wire and components is done. It works because of the very short duty cycle of winches. I just don't like it, it goes against my industrial engineering experience where we oversize everything, not undersize. I'm sure it works ok, it's just not for me.

I do appreciate and respect his suggestions though and I greatly appreciate your taking the time to research this. This knowledge adds a lot to this discussion.

"Do not power out more than 30 feet without allowing the winch to cool for 20 minutes before powering rope back in..."


"What about heat from the winch drum?
Heat is generated in planetary winch drums (Warn laydown-style, Ramsey planetary winches, most Superwinches) only under "Power-Out" condition. This type of use drives the winch motor against the brake (note references by winch companies about "Automatic Load-Holding Brake"). This is similar to driving your vehicle with the parking brake engaged.
Doing so will generate heat if you were to use it extensively in this mode. Similar to driving your vehicle with the parking brake engaged, you can drive out of a parking space without causing problems, but if you drove for significant distance, you would quickly wear out the brake. The same is true for your winch. The "Power-Out" function should be used for relieving tension on the rope, not for extended distances, nor for lowering a load--4WD winches are not designed to be used as hoists. Our testing has shown that powering out for 10-20 feet is not a problem, but will cause excessive wear to the winch brake, so we recommend using the "Power-Out" to relieve tension only.
No winches currently made, if used correctly, will heat the drum on "Power-In" use. "

This explains the problem. The conclusion is - planetary winches (Jeep type winches):

1- are not designed for lowering a load
2- Powering out must override the brake and will over heat the spool and cause excessive wear on the brake.
3- power out should only be used very briefly to relieve tension
4- powering in should not heat the spool. Well, except for heat that may be transferred from the motor to the spool which should be very minimal since the thermal path from the motor to the spool has a fairly high thermal resistance.

In conclusion, the winch is not a lowering device; you need a hoist for that. Powering out under load or no load can quickly raise the temperature of the spool to temps that can damage syn rope and cause unnecessary wear on the brake. Powering in should not cause the spool to heat. "

The 'funny' thing about winch duty cycle...
 

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Discussion Starter #56
"NASA uses solder rather than crimping" The wonders of the internet compared to the card catalogue: https://nepp.nasa.gov/docuploads/E9217401-8544-4DD6-B67488D4410E9762/conn.pdf

If you change your mind on the crimping, Sunbelt rentals has battery crimping tools.
I found this crimp tool on Amazon for only $20. It seems too good to be true at that price but it has excellent reviews. I think I'm going to try it out. If I do, I'll report back here with a review of how it worked.

It should work ok for the ordinary lugs, but I'm not yet certain if it'll work for the Anderson connectors because they cannot be distorted to align properly.
 

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I found this crimp tool on Amazon for only $20. It seems too good to be true at that price but it has excellent reviews. I think I'm going to try it out. If I do, I'll report back here with a review of how it worked.

It should work ok for the ordinary lugs, but I'm not yet certain if it'll work for the Anderson connectors because they cannot be distorted to align properly.
That's the one I have, and it's been tested to be as good as or better than any other method tested for 4/0.

I will be using a vice to crimp mine, instead of a hammer. TEMCo recommends either method.
 

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That's the one I have, and it's been tested to be as good as or better than any other method tested for 4/0.

I will be using a vice to crimp mine, instead of a hammer. TEMCo recommends either method.
Right, the vise method does sound better than using a hammer.
 

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Right, the vise method does sound better than using a hammer.
Apparently, the outcome is about the same. I think the vice may be an easier method of achieving it, than using a small sledge... and I also don't know where my small sledge is, lol.
 

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Warn is great, but, I'd happily have chosen a Smittybuilt as well - they're very well built. Instead, especially because I don't know the permanence of my mounting or use, I chose a decently rated, also made in China, winch that exceeds the vehicle weight by a factor of 1.5 - as opposed to spending 2-3 times the price on a Warn or Smittybuilt.

One day, I may go for a Smittybuilt or Warn for a permanent in-bumper solution. Maybe.

As for wiring gauge, it's a broad statement that is not applicable. Winches draw different amounts of power. The 12,000 pound winch I was looking at draws less power than the 9,500 pound one I got. So, sure, one can maybe find a 12,000 pound winch that 2/0 works for - but the 9,500 pound one (and the winch @pro10is chose) draw more power, and require 4/0 per every automotive cabling site calculator and every voltage vs wire calculator.

Many people try to wire based on limited use (eg: 60 seconds at ### load). In the case of my current draw, even adding those factors still requires 4/0. And, I prefer up-gauging than relying on the wires to not get too hot before I stop running the winch. In a recovery, I pick (b) out of (a) having a stop-watch vs (b) still needing to pull because you're at a precarious point.

I've worked with high amounts of AC and DC power (commercial and industrial UPS systems, battery banks and gen sets), and, unlike higher gauge (eg: 22 gauge security system wire, which I've also worked with), a dead short on thick wire can be catastrophic. It'll weld together, and take a lot longer to burn through than higher gauge.

Final thought - most winches (including the one I bought) have a free-spooling mode via a big lever that should be used to pull the cable out - not the reverse mode.
 
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