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Old 10-29-2012, 10:07 AM   #1
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Budget Winch?

I'm considering investing in a winch. I don't do much off-road, but here in central Wisco we tend to get a decent amount of snow. I figured I could make a few bucks here and there towing people out of ditches. Any suggestions? Also, could I make it fit on my bumper if I took the lights off?
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Old 10-29-2012, 10:16 AM   #2
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Harbor freight has a couple winches that's what I'm currently running and seem to work fine. As for your mounting spot you need a really strong FLAT mounting surface which might be kinda tough to find on a tubular bumper.

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Old 10-29-2012, 11:18 AM   #3
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Check out the WARN "VR" line or get a used "M" Series.

Just be careful recovering others:
http://www.youtube.com/embed/Tw_vcM7bynA
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Old 10-29-2012, 09:56 PM   #4
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a winch is nice but for what you want to do why not just invest in some quality recovery straps? Going from experience with fellow jeepers who have tried using their winches to help others stuck in snow showed that our jeeps dont seem to offer enough of an anchor on their own to pull most vehicles out without being anchored to another truck or other anchoring point (tree, pole, ect). they simply get dragged towards the other vehicle. A good strap and some good knowledge of rigging and being able to determine the best angles for a pull go a long way. Only reason i suggest this is since you say you dont go offroad much so a winch might just become more of a paper weight for you.

Also keep in mind if you plan on using this winch numerous times and often then a "cheap" winch wont be reliable.
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Old 10-29-2012, 10:42 PM   #5
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I agree: Get some good recovery straps jeeps do not have enough weight to be an anchor. I have used Erickson 59801 4" x 30' 17500 max lbs. without any problems. The only reason I have a winch is to pull my self out.

If you really want a winch look into Warn, best on the market IMO. Harbor frieght winches are junk especially since you are in a cold/wet environment.

I am not sure your bumper will work, I do not see a winch plate for mounting of a winch. If it will fit, something like this will work with your bumper. Not promoting it just suggesting an idea.

Rugged Ridge Winch Mount Plates - Winch Mounting Plate - Bumper & Winch Mounting Kits - Winches & Winch Accessories - by 4 Wheel Parts

If you are set on a winch then check out Warn's basic guide to winching

http://www.warn.com/corporate/images...PN62885-A2.pdf

This is also a good article on what to look for in a winch:

What Are The Best Winches? How Truck & Jeep Winches Work - Performance Benefits & Install Tips
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Old 10-30-2012, 06:11 AM   #6
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You will need a new bumper for a winch to work.. That bumper looks like a tubular smittybilt and unfortunately, will offer minimal front end protection and will probably gets shoved right into the winch in an accident if you can even fabricate it to work.
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Old 10-30-2012, 06:22 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Goethel12 View Post
I'm considering investing in a winch. I don't do much off-road, but here in central Wisco we tend to get a decent amount of snow. I figured I could make a few bucks here and there towing people out of ditches. Any suggestions? Also, could I make it fit on my bumper if I took the lights off?
Far be it for me to be judgmental, but you would actually charge someone stuck in the snow? or on the trail, or in the ditch, or off the highway and out in a wet cornfield? I must be real old school or something but I wouldn't even think to charge any one for helping them out. Not only that, but when you charge some one, you open yourself up to immense liability. That winch line snaps, and it damages their car, or even worse puts your " customer " in the hospital, then you are liable.
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Old 10-30-2012, 06:40 AM   #8
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you will need a new bumper for a winch to work.. That bumper looks like a tubular smittybilt and unfortunately, will offer minimal front end protection and will probably gets shoved right into the winch in an accident if you can even fabricate it to work.
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Old 10-30-2012, 06:52 AM   #9
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Just to throwing this out there as I have been casually thinking about a winch. Check your local craigslist, I've seen some great deals on some nice Warn winches that were hardly used. Saw a brand new one for sale at a massive discount as the 4x4 shop went under and they're trying to get rid of their inventory. In the long run, I think I'd rather have a nice, used warn instead of a new, "on the cheap" unit. Just give it a good check out before buying.
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Old 10-30-2012, 07:11 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Rubicondon53

Far be it for me to be judgmental, but you would actually charge someone stuck in the snow? or on the trail, or in the ditch, or off the highway and out in a wet cornfield? I must be real old school or something but I wouldn't even think to charge any one for helping them out. Not only that, but when you charge some one, you open yourself up to immense liability. That winch line snaps, and it damages their car, or even worse puts your " customer " in the hospital, then you are liable.
I wouldn't outright charge, but most people will compensate I would think.
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Old 10-30-2012, 08:27 AM   #11
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True, most would offer a 20 or so, I've refused every time, what goes around comes around...
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Old 10-30-2012, 08:34 AM   #12
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I've had a harbor frieght winch for 6 years now 9000 and never had a problem with it I have pulled out toyos fords and jeeps works get a little slow but decent winch if u don't have a lot of money if u have the money I like smitty water proof that's what I may get when mine goes out !!
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Old 10-30-2012, 09:06 AM   #13
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If anyone decides to get a strap for this type of use, make darned sure it is a snatch aka recovery strap and NOT (!!!) simply a tow strap. And not all 4x4 shops even know the difference so it's up to you to know and to select the right type of strap for the situation.

Tow straps have no give/stretch and their use in vehicle recovery situations can cause damage if you need to use a little vehicle momentum to get a vehicle unstuck. Recovery straps, aka snatch straps, have a small amount of give/stretch designed into them which not only helps prevent vehicle damage, their design actually helps with vehicle recoveries.

This 'give' built into a recovery strap is similar to the give designed into many ships tow & dock lines, especially when they are towing other ships where they must give a bit to eliminate shock which can rip the cleats off ship decks.
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Old 10-30-2012, 01:02 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Rubicondon53
True, most would offer a 20 or so, I've refused every time, what goes around comes around...
This is true, I probably wouldn't accept their money. Just tell em to keep it and save for a jeep!
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Old 10-30-2012, 01:49 PM   #15
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Two words / Bubba Rope. these things are incredable. I pulled out a JK last year stuck in river sand for 12 hours, broken chains, straps, bumper tore up. I hook on to him 3 pulls later he's driving home. get the BIG rope. best $350 i've spent for offroad equip.

http://www.bubbarope.com/
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Old 10-30-2012, 01:55 PM   #16
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I fully understand ALL the reasons for buying a Warn but I didn't want to put that much into a winch. I don't care how you spin it, a BMW is a better vehicle than a Honda or a Toyota or a Nissan but not everybody wants to (or can) buy a BMW.

I bought the Quadratec Q9000. It seems to compare well to Smitty XR8 and Superwinch LP8500 so I thought I would give it a try. I haven't used it yet.
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Old 12-28-2012, 11:08 PM   #17
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Two words / Bubba Rope. these things are incredable. I pulled out a JK last year stuck in river sand for 12 hours, broken chains, straps, bumper tore up. I hook on to him 3 pulls later he's driving home. get the BIG rope. best $350 i've spent for offroad equip.

http://www.bubbarope.com/
Def gonna get me one of these
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Old 12-29-2012, 10:20 AM   #18
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I fully understand ALL the reasons for buying a Warn but I didn't want to put that much into a winch. I don't care how you spin it, a BMW is a better vehicle than a Honda or a Toyota or a Nissan but not everybody wants to (or can) buy a BMW.
The difference is all those alternative cars you mention are quality cars that can be expected to hold up to daily use over many years. Inexpensive Chinese winches aren't up to daily use and couldn't be expected to hold up for years like those Hondas, Toyotas, & Nissans you mention will. So I wouldn't make a similar comparison between a Warn and the cheap Chinese winches that everyone and their brother is putting their name on.
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Old 12-29-2012, 02:22 PM   #19
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I would not buy a winch to pull people out of the snow. Let the pros do it, very dangerous and you will set yourself up for a possible lawsuit if anything goes wrong.
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Old 12-29-2012, 02:24 PM   #20
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The difference is all those alternative cars you mention are quality cars that can be expected to hold up to daily use over many years. Inexpensive Chinese winches aren't up to daily use and couldn't be expected to hold up for years like those Hondas, Toyotas, & Nissans you mention will. So I wouldn't make a similar comparison between a Warn and the cheap Chinese winches that everyone and their brother is putting their name on.
Yes. For comparison you can compare a BMW to a chinese vehicle. We have many of these around over here. They cost 50% of the price of a German/American/Japanese rival but break 10x as much and dont last half as long. Furthermore they never work nearly as well as the quality stuff. I do a lot of work with these vehicles so I am not thumb-sucking. They are cheaper because they are of poor quality and WILL break when you most need it.
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Old 12-29-2012, 02:30 PM   #21
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Yes. For comparison you can compare a BMW to a chinese vehicle. We have many of these around over here. They cost 50% of the price of a German/American/Japanese rival but break 10x as much and dont last half as long. Furthermore they never work nearly as well as the quality stuff. I do a lot of work with these vehicles so I am not thumb-sucking. They are cheaper because they are of poor quality and WILL break when you most need it.
but the Chinese took jeeps blueprints for the xj, and still make it today
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Old 12-29-2012, 03:00 PM   #22
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Have you considered just a come-along?
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Old 12-29-2012, 04:41 PM   #23
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Have you considered just a come-along?
Once anyone uses a come-along for anything other than the mildest of situations, they'll never advocate using one again.
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Old 12-29-2012, 04:47 PM   #24
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Once anyone uses a come-along for anything other than the mildest of situations, they'll never advocate using one again.
unless there are no other options. ive used 2 comealongs before with one guy on each one, its still not as good as a winch, but when you have no other choice they'll work.
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:10 PM   #25
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Once anyone uses a come-along for anything other than the mildest of situations, they'll never advocate using one again.
And when you're done doing it anyway, it's best to chuck the come-along in the nearest dumpster and get a new one.
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:13 PM   #26
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It seems to compare well to Smitty XR8
Not setting the bar real high there.

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Old 12-29-2012, 05:34 PM   #27
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Far be it for me to be judgmental, but you would actually charge someone stuck in the snow? or on the trail, or in the ditch, or off the highway and out in a wet cornfield? I must be real old school or something but I wouldn't even think to charge any one for helping them out. Not only that, but when you charge some one, you open yourself up to immense liability. That winch line snaps, and it damages their car, or even worse puts your " customer " in the hospital, then you are liable.
Bro, how do you think people make their money these days? Would you start a towing company and not charge anyone? Towing is helping people so I guess you would do that for free? Or being a lawyer and helping someone out you wouldn't charge for that? I mean half the jobs in this country are just "helping people out"
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:49 PM   #28
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Bro, how do you think people make their money these days? Would you start a towing company and not charge anyone? Towing is helping people so I guess you would do that for free? Or being a lawyer and helping someone out you wouldn't charge for that? I mean half the jobs in this country are just "helping people out"
Ummm big difference? Driving around in a Jeep and helping someone out whos stuck isn't a business. It's just being a good person, geeze greedy people out there...

I sure hope I never get stuck around you.
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Old 12-29-2012, 06:21 PM   #29
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Bro, how do you think people make their money these days? Would you start a towing company and not charge anyone? Towing is helping people so I guess you would do that for free? Or being a lawyer and helping someone out you wouldn't charge for that? I mean half the jobs in this country are just "helping people out"
What Don was referring to is, if you're just driving along and find someone in a predicament, common courtesy (which is less common nowadays) dictates you should stop and help out as a goodwill gesture as opposed to asking yourself, "What can I get out of this?" If my neighbor asks for a cup of sugar, I don't say, "Sure. That'll be $.50." I don't charge someone to borrow my phone when they desperately run up to me and say, "It's an emergency!" like a man did yesterday, nor do I offer to help an elderly woman unload her groceries just so long as she compensates me in exchange. Similarly, if I keep recovery equipment in my Jeep as a normal course of action, I wouldn't hesitate to use it to help someone in need, free of charge, because I know I have the means to help when that person can't help themselves. I personally don't even think about receiving compensation when I reach out a helping hand. But that's my personal opinion, my viewpoint... We can all state our viewpoints, but let's keep it civil. Let's not have an argument about this, since everyone is entitled to view things as they wish.

Now, back to the PO, if you are wanting to get into vehicle recovery as a business, then go ahead and make it a business. If you're planning on doing this regularly for money, it needs to be legitimate, otherwise you risk fines and lawsuits if someone doesn't like you or what you've done. Businesses require a license and liability insurance. Since you wouldn't be operating a tow truck, you could probably manage to legally run the business under a general business license. You would have to do a little research on your local laws to find out what's required.

I have seen a couple of winch plates that claim to be mountable on tube bumpers like yours. Not sure how well such a set up would work, but here's a link for you. In my opinion, you'd be better off buying a solid new bumper with some good D-rings, grade 8 bolts and some Bubba Rope. More reliable than a winch, lighter and simpler to tote around with you. If you are still hooked on the inexpensive winch idea, you can look into Engo winches.
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Old 12-29-2012, 10:20 PM   #30
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but the Chinese took jeeps blueprints for the xj, and still make it today
You sure you are not confusing the Chinese with the Indians? Anyway, it is not the point and not the same thing. Some BMW motorcycles are built in China and they are superb. The Chinese have the best manufacturing capability in the world and ate fully capable to manufacture top notch products. The ppint is they mostly don't. They manufacture using cheap materials and are not too worried about quality control for it is cheaper and affords them a much cheaper product in the market.

OP do not buy D-rings but buy rated bow shackles.

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