When it comes to boat equipment, a capstan winch should be high on your list of essential items. Capstan winches are versatile tools that can help you accomplish a wide range of tasks, both on and off the water.

In this post, we’ll introduce you to capstan winches, tell you everything you need to know. Then provide our favorite picks that you can buy accompanied with some tips on how to pick the right one for your needs.

So, if that is what you’re looking for then without further ado. Let’s get started (:

Best Capstan Winches

Top 10 Best Capstan Winches Out There [Review]

Some of you might be in a hurry or you already know enough about this type of winches so we decided to reveal the top picks we found after doing the research on the market.

Here are the top 10 capstan winches on the market:

Portable Winch Gas-Powered Capstan Winch Forestry Kit - 2,200-Lb. Pulling Capacity, 2.1 HP, Honda GHX-50 Engine, Model Number PCW5000-FK

$2,051.95  in stock
2 new from $2,051.95
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • Comes with a rope bag to hold rope and other small accessories

Portable Winch PCW3000 Gas-Powered Capstan Winch - 1,600-Lb. Pulling Capacity, 1.34 Honda GX-35 Engine,

$943.00  in stock
8 new from $943.00
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • Powered by a reliable 1.34 HP Honda GX-35 full 360deg all-position 4-stroke engine
  • 35cc engine displacement
  • Fast 200:1 gear ratio
  • 33-ft./minute line speed
  • Powerful 1,550-lb. line pull (3,000-lb. pull with use of snatch block)

Portable Winch Gas-Powered Capstan Winch - 2,200-Lb. Pulling Capacity, 2.1 HP, Honda GHX-50 Engine, Model Number PCW-5000

$1,554.00  in stock
8 new from $1,554.00
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • PCW-5000 Portable Capstan Gas Powered Winch
  • Use for forestry, rescue, farming applications, and more
  • Pulls 2200 lbs. on a single line
  • Tether the winch to a solid object (tree, vehicle ball hitch, post, rock)
  • Powered by a Honda GXH50 gas engine

Portable Winch Gas-Powered Capstan Winch Hunting Kit - 2,200-Lb. Pulling Capacity, 2.1 HP, Honda GHX-50 Engine, Model Number PCW5000-HK

$2,156.45  in stock
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • PCW5000-HK includes the following: PCW5000 portable capstan winch; PCA-0100 hard-sided transport case; PCA-1213M 12mm x 100m double-braid polyester rope; PCA-1256 rope storage bag; 2 PCA-1259 60mm x 2.5m polyester slings; PCA-1261 hitch plate with anchor ; 2 PCA-1274 stainless steel swing side snatch block pulleys; 4 PCA-1276 steel locking carabiners; 1 PCA-1281 safety hook; 1 PCA-1282 grab hook; PCA-1372 10mm x 2.1m HPPE rope choker with steel rod.
  • PCW5000 Specifications: 4-stroke Honda GX-50cc engine; 57mm diameter capstan drum; 1000 kg single line max. pulling force/2000 kg double line max. pulling force; 12m/min pulling speed; 110:1 gear ratio; minimum rope diameter 10mm/ideal 12 mm/maximum 16mm; continuous work cycle; 1-year commercial warranty and 5-year personal use warranty.
  • PCW5000 Features: lightweight and portable; constant pulling power; capstan design allows for unlimited rope length because rope does not accumulate on drum; designed for synthetic, polyester rope, which has low stretch properties and is easy to work with; quick-anchoring.
  • Use the pulleys, slings and carabiners to create a block-and-tackle system to triple your pulling power or redirect your load!
  • NOTE: Some pictures display equipment in use and may contain components not included in this kit but that are available separately.

Portable Winch PCW3000-LI Battery-Powered 80/82V Capstan Pulling Winch

$881.99  in stock
4 new from $881.99
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • Max. Pulling Force: 2200 lb. (1000 kg)
  • Pulling Speeds: 26.5'/min. (speed 1), 32.8'/min. (speed 2), 38'/min. (speed 3)
  • Voltage: 80/82V ; 1.0 kW brushless electric motor
  • 200:1 gear ratio
  • CE and IPX3 certified ; DOES NOT INCLUDE BATTERY (BATTERIES SOLD SEPARATELY)

Portable Winch PCW4000 Gas-Powered Capstan Pulling Winch Silver

$1,614.05  in stock
3 new from $1,614.05
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • Max. Pull Force: 2200 lb. (4400 lb. when doubling line)
  • Max. Pull Speed: 44' / min.
  • Honda GX50 cc 4-stroke 2.0 HP gas engine powered
  • Equipped with quick release anti-rollback mechanism (ARM)
  • Weight: 26.5 lb.

Landworks Electric Towing Capstan Winch Hoist Portable Cordless Brushless Motor Li-Ion Battery Powered 1000-2000 1/2-1 Ton Max Pulling Force for Forestry Hunting Off Road (Low Stretch Rope Included)

$399.99  in stock
2 new from $399.99
Free shipping
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • PROFESSIONAL SPECS - This Portable Capstan Winch is a DC 48V 1296W Max All-Electric System; Max Load Capacities: Single Line Pulling Force: 1000LBS / 454kgs & Double Line Pulling Force: 2000LBS / 908kgs; This Capstan Winch is to ONLY to be used with a High-Performance Low Stretch Rope of 100' Feet 3/8" Diameter (0.39"-0.47" Inches / 10mm~12mm) or unlimited rope length is applicable
  • POWERFUL DESIGN - Our powerful Brushless Motor utilizes Steel planetary gears that can work continuously all day long & year-round throughout the season, while the engine requires zero maintenance; This Portable Capstan Winch can be operated in -30 degrees Celsius temperatures without affecting its autonomy or performance
  • EXCELLENT EFFICIENCY - Fast charge times & versatile climate viability, high load power outputs, long cycle & shelf life. Li-Ions have a spill-proof safe design; One 2 Amp Hour Li-Ion & Charger are included; 4 Amp Hour Li-Ion available for purchase; If necessary, it only takes a few seconds to change the battery on the spot and continue at the same pace
  • SAFE & PROPER USE - Utilize the easy to use Instant Start Button for proper operation, with eye & hand protection recommended during operation; Great for Forestry, Hunting, Garden/Lawn, Off-Road, Farming Upkeep & Light Construction/Commerical Projects

WCH 2000 Platinum Series 12 Volt Power Capstan Winch, machined Out of billets of 5083 Aircraft Aluminum.

 out of stock
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • All Aluminum Capstan Winch

SuperHandy Electric Portable Winch Capstan Hoist Brushless Motor Li-Ion Battery Powered 1000-2000 Max Pulling Force for Forestry Hunting Garden Off-Road (Low Stretch Rope Included)

$399.99  in stock
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • PROFESSIONAL SPECS - This Portable Capstan Winch is a DC 48V 1296W Max All-Electric System; Max Load Capacities: Single Line Pulling Force: 1000LBS / 454kgs & Double Line Pulling Force: 2000LBS / 908kgs; This Capstan Winch is to ONLY to be used with a High-Performance Low Stretch Rope of 100' Feet 3/8" Diameter (0.39"-0.47" Inches / 10mm~12mm) or unlimited rope length is applicable
  • POWERFUL DESIGN - Our powerful Brushless Motor utilizes Steel planetary gears that can work continuously all day long & year-round throughout the season, while the engine requires zero maintenance; This Portable Capstan Winch can be operated in -30 degrees Celsius temperatures without affecting its autonomy or performance
  • EXCELLENT EFFICIENCY - Fast charge times & versatile climate viability, high load power outputs, long cycle & shelf life. Li-Ions have a spill-proof safe design; One 2 Amp Hour Li-Ion & Charger are included; 4 Amp Hour Li-Ion available for purchase; If necessary, it only takes a few seconds to change the battery on the spot and continue at the same pace
  • SAFE & PROPER USE - Utilize the easy to use Instant Start Button for proper operation, with eye & hand protection recommended during operation; Great for Forestry, Hunting, Garden/Lawn, Off-Road, Farming Upkeep & Light Construction/Commerical Projects

Powerwinch Capstan 1000

$881.60  in stock
4 new from $877.18
Amazon.com
as of October 2, 2022 5:22 pm

Features

  • Sturdy capstan for retrieving anchors, assisting with sails, or pulling pots
  • Offers maximum pull of 1,000 pounds and retrieval speed of 40 fpm
  • Easy-to-operate foot switch; helps spare your back and speed up process
  • All-aluminum housing and stainless-steel hardware for long-term durability
  • Requires 12-volt power source; weighs 23 pounds; 2-year warranty

Capstan Winches: The Complete Guide

Now that you have seen our favorite picks, let’s get into a discussion to know all the aspects related to these powerful winches.

What are Capstan winches?

A capstan winch is a type of mechanical device that is used to wind or unwind rope or cable. It consists of a drum or cylinder around which the rope or cable is wound, and a handle or crank that is used to rotate the drum.

Usage:

Capstan winches are often used on boats and ships, where they are used to raise and lower sails, anchor lines, and other heavy objects. They can also be used on land, for example to pull vehicles up a steep hill or to move heavy loads.

The Benefits & drawbacks of A Capstan winch

Benefits:

The main benefit of a capstan winch is its strength. It can generate a lot of force, making it ideal for use in situations where a lot of power is needed.

Another benefit is its compact size. Capstan winches are much smaller than other types of winches, making them ideal for use in situations where space is limited.

Drawbacks:

One drawback of a capstan winch is that it can be difficult to control. If the rope or cable being wound or unwound is not properly secured, it can become tangled around the drum, which can be difficult to fix. Another drawback is that capstan winches can be expensive.

How to choose the best capstan winch for your needs?

When choosing a capstan winch, it is important to consider the size and weight of the object that you will be lifting or moving. You will also need to consider the power source.

Capstan winch on boat

Capstan winches can be powered by electricity, hydraulics, or manual labor. If you will be using the winch in a remote location, it is important to choose a model that is powered by a portable power source.

Finally, you should consider the price of the winch. Capstan winches can be expensive, so it is important to choose a model that fits your budget.

How to install and use a Capstan winch?

Installing a capstan winch is a relatively simple process. First, you will need to mount the winch on a solid surface. Then, you will need to connect the rope or cable to be wound or unwound to the drum.

Finally, you will need to connect the power source and crank the handle to begin winding or unwinding the rope or cable.

Watch the following video for the step by step guide on how to setup a Capstan winch.

Capstan Winches Tips

Safety Tips

Capstan winches are very strong and can generate a lot of force. This makes them ideal for use in situations where a lot of power is needed, but it also means that they can be dangerous if used improperly.

Here are some safety tips to keep in mind when using a capstan winch:

  • Always secure the rope or cable to the drum before beginning to wind or unwind it.
  • Never stand in front of the capstan winch while it is in use.
  • Keep your hands and feet clear of the rope or cable while it is being wound or unwound.
  • Never try to repair a capstan winch while it is in use.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using a capstan winch.

Maintenance Tips

Capstan winches require very little maintenance. However, it is important to inspect the winch regularly to make sure that it is in good working condition.

Here are some maintenance tips to keep in mind:

  • Inspect the rope or cable regularly for signs of wear and tear.
  • Inspect the drum regularly for signs of wear and tear.
  • Inspect the handle or crank regularly for signs of wear and tear.
  • If any parts of the winch are damaged, replace them immediately.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when performing maintenance on a capstan winch.

FAQs

What is best rope for capstan winch?

There many ropes that you can use along with the Capstan winch but the Double-braided Polyester Ropes are the recommended type.

How much can a capstan winch pull?

The pulling power of Capstan winch depends on its size. Smaller Capstan Winches usually have a lower pulling capacity while the bigger models can go up to 1,000 pounds or more.

Why is polypropylene rope not recommended for capstan use?

Polypropylene rope is not recommended for use with capstan winches because it can stretch and break easily.

Can I use a capstan winch to pull a boat?

Yes, you can use a capstan winch to pull a boat but you need to make sure that the rope or cable is properly secured to the drum.

What is the minimum amount of wraps on a capstan?

The minimum amount of wraps on a capstan is three.

How do I release the tension on a capstan?

To release the tension on a capstan, you need to disconnect the power source and allow the rope or cable to unwind slowly.

When aligning the capstan at what angles can you align the drum?

The drum can be aligned at any angle that is comfortable for you.

How do I know if the capstan is overloaded?

If the capstan is overloaded, the rope or cable will slip on the drum.

Also Read:

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, Capstan winches are a great handy tool to have around.

Whether you’re looking for a new winch to tackle your next big project or just want some information on the different types of capstan winches available, we hope this article was helpful.

If you still confused and can’t decide we recommend you go for the Honda PCW5000-FK Capstan Winch since it’s suitable for almost all the daily tasks you might face.

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Cheers!