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Old 09-15-2013, 10:18 PM   #1
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Winch Line Question

I currently have the steel winch line and now I want to go with the synthetic line to reduce some weight. What is a good amount of weight capacity should I get my synthetic line. My winch is the 8500 version. I see they have 5/16 rated at 13,000 lbs and the 3/8 rated at 19,000lbs. Im just looking to pull cars and mid sized suvs out of the snow banks. Also how many feet would be good for what Im using it for 75, or 100ft. Do I need to upgrade my fairlead from the steel to synthetic?

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Old 09-15-2013, 10:28 PM   #2
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Stronger and longer are always better. Also remember that you lose pulling power as the line spools out so again longer is better. I don't know what kind of fairlead you have now but it's best to use a hawse type designed for synthetic that has smooth edges all around that won't damage your line.

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Old 09-15-2013, 10:30 PM   #3
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3/8@ 80 ft. Take a grinder/file and smooth any burrs up on the fairlead and you should be fine.
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Old 09-15-2013, 10:38 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by bondosgto View Post
3/8@ 80 ft. Take a grinder/file and smooth any burrs up on the fairlead and you should be fine.
X2 on all that. No need for a hawse.
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Old 09-16-2013, 06:59 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Lbear View Post
Stronger and longer are always better. Also remember that you lose pulling power as the line spools out so again longer is better. I don't know what kind of fairlead you have now but it's best to use a hawse type designed for synthetic that has smooth edges all around that won't damage your line.
Actually, the winch has the most power in the bottom 2 layers of winch line.

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There's a chart near the bottom of the page.
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Old 09-16-2013, 08:55 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Lbear View Post
Stronger and longer are always better. Also remember that you lose pulling power as the line spools out so again longer is better. I don't know what kind of fairlead you have now but it's best to use a hawse type designed for synthetic that has smooth edges all around that won't damage your line.
As lovemachine said, the last two layers of line is where the winch is the strongest, so longer isn't always better.

Also, you need to keep in mind that when winching you're not always going to have it spool in perfectly neat, so it may have to bunch up on one side a bit which can cause issues. You can cram more line on the spool than necessary when spooling it up neat, but when you go to use it you may find that the line is too long.

The length suitable for your winch will depend on the model and size of line. On my XD9000, I'm running ~80 feet of 3/8" line from Viking Offroad. If you're unsure of what to get, give them a call and talk with Thor; he's a great guy to work with and very knowledgeable.

If in doubt, I'd rather go shorter on the line on the drum and carry an extension like shown in the link from lovemachine.
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Old 09-16-2013, 10:04 AM   #7
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As lovemachine said, the last two layers of line is where the winch is the strongest, so longer isn't always better.
X2, I missed the part about him saying longer is always better... it's definitely not. Not only is the winch not as powerful when you're using the top layers, more winch rope means it is easier for the rope to pile up on one side during an off-center pull which can force the winch supports away from the hub & break the winch.

If anyone needs more rope than can safely fit onto a winch, carry an extension in the back of the Jeep.

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