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New Housetop Winches & Clutches

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The June-July project was to 1) replace the factory Lewmar ST30 winch on each side, 2) replace the out-of-production clutch stoppers on each side, and 3) move both winches aft toward the rear edge and move the clutch array back to make them a lot easier to reach from the cockpit.
This also allowed a lot more room to use these devices with a wider "cruising" dodger in place.
The old narrow dodger was removed and sold to another Olson owner for the residual value of the SS parts, since the canvas was in need of total replacement, windows and all.
About 38 (!) screw holes were filled with thickened epoxy and are on the 'someday' list of chores to be topped off with gel coat. Luckily they are mostly out of sight under the new canvas.

New Lewmar 40ST winches and banks of Lewmar D2 clutch stoppers were purchased. Two new spinnaker 5/16" low-stretch halyards replaced the older wing halyards.

Then, the new dodger was built and fitted. There is room to pretty much get a full turn on the 10" handle, and the clutches can be easily reached.

One of the more tedious parts was accessing the underside. The old clutch underside could be reached by removing a bunch of staples on either side of the hatch trim. Temporary tape underneath sealed it while the epoxy was filled in from the top. New staples went in, the teak trim was (with new varnish) reinstalled.
The overhead work inside of the aft cabin (starboard) and inside the head (port) was more challenging. The staples on rear and inside margin were removed and fortunately the head liner was not damaged. Since the staples in the head were power-driven thru formica, moderate swearing was invoked.

A layer of cloth and epoxy went on and the old mounting holes were filled from the top.
Ericson Yacht construction note: all fastenings had been well-sealed and once the oversize fender washers were off, there was no (zero) evidence of moisture intrusion. i.e. all of the balsa was dry.

New full circles of G10 are under each new winch, and G10 backing plates are under each set of clutches. There are two double-line clutch assemblies on each side, and this matches the number of sheaves in the two port and starboard factory deck organizers up forward, @ four lines each.

Historical note: the old clutches, also used on other EY boats in the late 80's were still holding fine, but only with regular fresh water flushes because dust would make the internal cams hang up. Further, a neighboring E-38 has replaced one bank of these when a UV-weakened handle broke off. Good quality gear, for its day, but it does have a finite lifespan.

Future: rent a "duckbill" power stapler that can re-drive heavy wire staples to fully restore the rear part of the head liner in the head compartment an also some others in the aft cabin that cannot be driven with a flat-foot stapler.

And more Future: The new larger dodger is now finished and we are going to add a bimini next with a split connector zip-out section to fit around the mainsheet when not sailing.

Financial Note: new winches were bought in February at the West Marine 2-for-1 sale, and the new Lewmar clutches were sourced at just over half of retail using a friend's wholesale account. Still not 'cheap' but waaaay better than buying retail. A large bag of SS fastenings was sourced at a local industrial supply store that does OTC sales, and beats marine pricing by quite a bit.
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Updated 09-08-2019 at 12:16 PM by Loren Beach

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  1. gabriel's Avatar
    Looks like a job well done! What thickness is the G10 PL?
  2. Loren Beach's Avatar
    The thickness of the circles under the winches are 3/16, and I believe that the smaller ones under each set of screws for the clutches were 1/4 inch.
    Either will do; it's a matter of utilizing what I had on hand.
    Updated 09-05-2019 at 04:53 PM by Loren Beach