Re: Lofrans Tigres windlass turns itself on


This can be scary!  What might have happened if you were anchored and away from the boat when the windless "decided" to pull up the anchor?  I always depower the anchor windlass motor when sailing or while at anchor. NOT just the relay control circuit, but the actual motor power circuit.  I want no possibility of this kind of failure while I am underway or anchored. To do that on a SM requires some wiring rework:


If the rubber cover is torn on the windlass mounted switch it needs to be replaced, it is not optional. You're resistance reading indicate it is bad. No matter it it tests good or not, that is a failure you can not live with.  A drop of salt water in there will turn on your windlass.  That cover not only keeps water out of the switch, but the back of the switch is not sealed, so water can then get on the windlass motor itself. If you keep those rubber button switches, the covers need to be a routine maintenance item, they have a finite life time in the sun.

The only other simple failure I can think of would be the cockpit switch. Of course a possibility, but a remote one, is a wire connector has come adrift somewhere and created an intermittent short. There are other possibilities, but they get pretty unlikely. 

Bill Kinney
SM160, Harmonie
Boston, Mass

---In amelyachtowners@..., <sailor63109@...> wrote :

We had the windlass energized one day when we were doing some other maintenance, and the windlass turned itself on!  At that moment we were taking a break below deck so there is no way we inadvertently turned it on.  It came on in the "up-chain" mode.  We left it on and two days later it did it again in the middle of the night.

It seems the most reasonable explanation is the "Up" button.  The switch externally is not corroded, but the rubber cover is torn so it could have gotten moisture inside it to bridge the switch.  I checked it with a multi-meter and it has a very fluky read, sometimes 5kohms button off and 23kohms button on, and sometimes "0.L" in both positions.  That would make some sense if the button was internally corroded, but in neither case was there good continuity with the button off (it had to be in that position for the winch to come on...right?)

Internally all the windlass connections have grease on them (one assumes non-conductive) and appear in great condition (no corrosion).  The down button had been replaced by Steve Leeds in early 2015.

Is there anything else that I should be checking?


Wanderer, SM#477


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