There are MANY cases a winch comes in handy and it’s not just when you are stuck. A winch can also get you out of tight spots that may otherwise damage the vehicle or environment around it. Keep reading to get the basic rules and guidelines to recovering a vehicle with a winch.
This content was developed by and owned by Paul Sinkinson, Xplorability owner. Paul is a 4wd Defensive Driver Training Consultant/Trainer and Programme Developer.
Ok, you have checked out all the hazards, reviewed your equipment and the recovery options you have available with it and decided that the best way forward (or backwards) is using a Winch. Either your own Winch or one fitted on an accompanying vehicle.
Interesting situation! Here the D90 is balanced precariously on its bash plates, all wheels off the ground and dangling over a 3 metre Drop into a stream bed. The Front and rear winch were connected fore and aft ONLY to stabilise the vehicle. Once secured and based on “if Life is not at stake, the its time for a cup of tea!” We brewed up.
Using the Winch rope off the Discovery 2 via a snatch block for a change of direction, it was then possible to pull the D90 sideways back onto the track safely, while also maintaining the fore and aft security with that vehicles own winches to stop it tipping over into the stream bed.
Now back, upright on terra firma, it was time to de-rig the winches and equipment. It was also necessary from an environmental point of view to get the shovels out and rebuild the track to its original condition. Excluding brewing the Tea and repairing the track, the actual recovery time was twenty minutes. Five minutes of that was operational “PLANNING!”
BE AWARE OF THE HAZARDS - THINK SAFETY AT ALL TIMES
To try and cover everything you need to know about Winching in a short website article is impossible. I’ve been indoctrinated with it since I was a youngster and my old man came back from WW2 where part of his work involved heavy recovery etc. So, while all my friends were playing with bows, arrows and toy pistols, under instruction I was building “Meccano” Winches and Cranes with electric motors and generally messing up the dining table lifting and winching objects both to my amazement and that of my pet sheepdog of the day.
After ALL these Years I am STILL LEARNING about WINCHING!
So, keeping it short, my suggestion would be to book in with a Professional 4wd Instructor and take a Winch Recovery Course. Meanwhile, to wet your appetite I recommend you check out the Video Link at the end, which will run you through the various concepts. You will see it follows the Basic Rules listed previously and also adds more.
THINK SAFE – KEEP SAFE – STAY SAFE
This Defender could have been driven “aggressively” and forced its way past the tree and ridden over the large boulder but the object here was “Mechanical Sympathy” and looking after the environment plus an opportunity to demonstrate the technique. Visit Your Local 4wd Professional Instructor – Money is always well spent on Winch & Recovery Training.
Experience Counts with ANY Recovery operation and as always, PLANNING is the KEY!
Understanding all about your Equipment, the Laws of Physics, Loading, Geometry all form a part.
Here, the vehicle was trapped against a tree with a huge rock also trapping a rear wheel. This example was ONLY used as a WINCH TRAINING EXERCISE, using 3 Snatch Blocks, a Strap and the necessary Tree Strops (for protecting the anchor points on the trees), it allowed the vehicle to be tilted to clear, before driving forward while the winch line was gently released and adjusted accordingly.
Ten minutes Planning and Explaining the “Method”. A further Ten Minutes setting up.
Five Minutes Winching Operation. Ten minutes tackling down and de-brief including a Coffee break.
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This content was prepared for the Off-Road Discovery Website by Xplorability 4wd Training
The Content - All Photographs and Photographic Copyright and All other Rights other Reserved October 2017. S.W. France. This content may not be copied or reproduced without the written consent of Paul Sinkinson – Xplorability Training.
For Use Only in 4wd and Light Vehicle Driver Training.
Not for Re-Publication, Distribution or use outside the Xplorability Training Programme