Bandit's Lofrans Windlass - Removal

Since purchasing Bandit, we've had a problem with the electric 500w Lofrans Airon windlass. The warp drum has always been corroded badly to the main drive shaft and would never loosen up and remove like it should. This is a problem as the windlass needs operated manually if ever needed. Becuase this warp drum was so badly corroded down, it was putting pressure on the chain gipsy and therefore it would never turn to let the chain out. The only way we could ever operate the windlass is electrically. So what if we ran into battery issues at sea and needed to drop the anchor? Well, we'd be stuffed.

I borrowed a puller from the marina today and after a good hour and a half, I was able to finally remove the corroded warp drum from the main shaft. The puller itself simply would not lift the drum off so I boiled the kettle a couple of times and poured boiling hot water over it which allowed it to expand slightly and pull off. Don't get me wrong, it didn't just simply slip off at this point. It was a damn hard job to get off and I hope we never have to do it again.

After removing the drum, it was clear that there was lots of corrosion present. This windlass had not been serviced for a good 10+ years... After we reassemble it, we'll ensure that the entire thing is stripped, regreased and reassemble annually to ensure this doesn't happen again - just as a windlass should be maintained. It's a vital piece of equipment so why neglect it?

Anyway, we also removed the washer, gipsy chain and clutch cone for servicing. We were surprised to see that the gipsy chain was made from solid brass. Since the whole thing was badly oxidised, we're brought it home and will leave it sat in vinegar overnight to try and get it back to what it once looked like. I might head down to the marina after college tomorrow and see if I can get it all back together and working as it should be. Plenty of waterproof grease will be used while putting it all back together, I can assure you of that!

Before removing the drum, I ensured that the anchor was safely secured to the boat via a rope tied to the anchor and made off to one of the large cleats on the bow.

Large puller attached to the windlass drum with lots of pressure applied
Would not budge without the addition of boiling hot water
Warp drum removed!
Chain gipsy and clutch cone visable here


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