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 11-02-2007, 23:19 Post: 147686
kleinchris



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I want to add a winch onto the back of a tractor- however, I have noticed three or four posts over the last six months in which people have givin advice about adding lights and needing a bigger or more productive alternator. So I have a few questions:

Can I add a winch with out messing with the alternator? (What I would like to do is physically attach the winch to a reciever hitch, reciever hitch to the 3pth, and electrically tie it into a trailer plug with the same gauge wire as the winch.)

If not, why could a 12v vehicle be able to support a winch but not a tractor? For instance, I had an old CJ5 which never had a problem powering a 8000 lb winch hooked up directly to a Walmart battery- (the winch could haul the Jeep up a tree with out the engine running.)

Are there any fomulas or ratios out there for winching weight compared to tractor HP?






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 11-03-2007, 00:44 Post: 147688
mobilus



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 Winch/ electric questions

kleinchris, I think that the cautions from members about extra lighting are because of the continuous draw. The only thing I'd be concerned about is the length of time of continuous use of the winch, not much else. The winch on my 4-wheeler will pull it up into a tree on battery power alone, which is the only place it gets power from. Sure, the generator produces the charge for the battery, but if there isn't sufficient energy stored in the battery, the winch is no good.

I understand your idea about mounting the winch on a receiver hitch, it's done on four-wheel drives all the time. Which brings me to the difference between the truck and tractor, if it exists. GM pioneered the one-wire alternator, and it has its advantages and disadvantages...but now it is very popular and Delco produces millions of them for all kinds of vehicles, including tractors.
If your tractor has a one-wire alternator, it basically serves to keep the battery charged. It has an internal voltage regulator and this controls the alternator output to keep the battery at a certain charge.
If your tractor has a three-wire alternator, then its internal voltage regulator uses "remote sensing" and can increase the alternator output to meet the demand on the electrical system and not just react to the decrease in battery charge. This type alternator is considered by most people to be the alternator of choice when you have considerable loads on a vehicle's electrical system.
Okay, enough of that...I guess it depends on how much you plan to use the winch. And by all means, use a relay, don't try to draw pwer through the fuse block.

Oh, have you considered adding a deep cycle battery to the 3-point/receiver hitch setup? I have one in a toolbox on my flatbed trailer to power the winch. i just charge it up occasionally...probably should add an ammeter sometime, but it works. And since it's easy to do, buy a couple of cheap floodlights and add them to the mix. All running off the deep cycle battery(ies).

Good luck,

Mark






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 11-03-2007, 15:15 Post: 147694
earthwrks

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Having been an avid offroader and had several electric Warn winches from 5K to 8K there are many factors to consider. Having a winch or Jeep is much different than on a tractor if you're asking it to do the same task.

Before I expound, what's the need anyway?

And there are other winch types to consider also that might be cheaper, easier to use and install, and have much more purposes and speed, like for skidding timber.

Namely, there is hydraulic- or PTO-powered drum-type---which can be found on salvaged wreckers/tow trucks for cheap. There are even some that use a chainsaw engine connected to a winch for portability;

Capstan (electric, hydraulic or PTO) which give you unlimited range--only limited by the length of wire rope you carry. These can be found around boat yards, and also came on Land Rovers back about 20-30 years ago.

Then there's the type that the British military used which is a drum mounted to the outside of a drive wheel, which could be a salvaged car rim (picture a pulley-looking device) then attach a cable or strap to it and let 'er rip.






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 11-03-2007, 22:40 Post: 147698
kleinchris



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I'm looking at an eletric winch that can be easily swapped between a tractor and anoter vehicle. Uses would be varied-from leveraging trees to getting me unstuck.






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 11-04-2007, 07:19 Post: 147706
earthwrks

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I'm not sure what you mean by leveraging trees. If you mean using the winch as a tow rope, that can ruin a winch with all that shock. And it also causes the wire rope to kink and get wrapped into itself causing permanent damage to the rope, not to mention breaking the wires in the rope which can cut you.

The biggest things to consider mounting it to the tractor hitch is the ability to raise unexpectly and pull the tractor over backward (unless you install stabilizers to keep the hitch down), or worse if it's pulling at an angle to flip it over sideways. And it doesn't have to start out at an angle to flip over either---one wheel can slide and over you go.

Traction is another issue. You may have to bury the rear wheels to keep from pulling out of the dirt depending on the pull, soil conditions, your tractor's brakes, and the weight of the tractor. You may have to tie-off the front of the tractor to a tree or something to keep it from sliding backward, or install another winch in the front to make the job quicker and easier. It's only money, right?

As far as a battery power, consider using two. Keep in mind that an 8000 Warn at full load draws about 500 amps. That will kill a battery quickly. And you have to be able to recharge it quickly too so alternator amperage has to be high---unless you have time to wait. You might be further off getting a higher rated winch that will draw less amperage under half a load than say a lesser rated winch that will be drawing full load and thus higher amperage. Staying with a higher rated winch, if you need to exceed the half-load rating, you may not have to draw down the battery so quickly if you use a snatch block. That'll nearly double your pulling ability, but cuts in half the line speed. As I mentioned in other posts I prefer to over-engineer a system or go one size up knowing I have a good amount of margin or reserve should I need it. Peace of mind I call it.






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 11-04-2007, 08:01 Post: 147707
kleinchris



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Leveraging a tree- attaching a cable as high as one can climb up a tree and pulling on the tree to get it to fall exaxtly where it needs to. Yes, you have to tie off the other end of the vehicle.

Thanks for all the info. It sounds like there are a lot of different way to get this done but hooking directly to the battery should not cause a problem- correct?






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 11-04-2007, 12:30 Post: 147714
earthwrks

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By hooking it directly to the battery you mean just like you would if it were on the Jeep, right? Assuming the control relays and the outlet for the remote are part of winch, then yes you can. If you have quick disconnects on the Jeep already you should be able to use identical connectors on the tractor--the ones I've seen are nothing more than the same ones used on electric forklifts.

Keep in mind that if you tax the battery to the point there is not sufficent powerleft in to run the elctricals on the tractor it will shut down and you'll have to jump it. If you're gonna be far away from help, a cell phone or wahtever---bring another fully charged battery just in case.

Anecdote: I had an 8000 Warn on my quadcab Ram. Got it stuck to the point no truck from the club could pull me out forward or backward. I had to have someone lay on the hood and pack mud on the winch motor to cool it down---and this was using a snatch block. The winch drew so much power that the 165 amp alternator could not keep up. I had to floor the engine to keep the winch and the battery going. Otherwise, if the voltage dropped below 10 volts the computer would shut down.

If I take your post verbatim, you in for big trouble if the tree doesn't go where it's suppose to go. It'll yank the tractor like a slingshot, if it doesn't flip it over first. If you are dead-set on doing it that way, be sure to use a snatch block set low to the ground on a tree in the same direction you want to pull--lower than the winch which should be as low to the ground as possible. Use the snatch block to direct the cable away from the tractor. But like I said that is no guarantee the tree will fall that way, so either buy very good insurance or get a longer cable and saty out of the fall zone.

I used my bobcat for the Army Corp in Mississippi cleaning up Katrina. We were cutting pines down that could be 100-130 feet tall and several feet across. I had to literally plant my bobcat rearend in the dirt (mud really) and get all four wheels off the ground by using the loader bucket all the way up to force the tree over while cutting. It didn't always work, though neither I or my machine was hurt---they tended to slide sideways off the bucket or 90 degrees either way of where we wanted it to go. And many times we came with an inch or less to crushing occupied FEMA trailers and homes. Once we crushed a new deep freezer, an ATV trailer and big tool box with one tree. My buddy was doing the same thing with his much smaller bobcat and it went the other way slicing a hole in a camper that was occupied. DOH! That would have left a mark.

But I'm jis' sayin'






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 11-04-2007, 21:20 Post: 147729
kleinchris



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I will have to try the Bobcat method some time. That might help me cutting down ceders where I am- half the time you cant get to the trunk through the branches.
The key with using the winch is to be tied off and to take things slowly. You start bringing in your cable before making a cut in the tree. Once the cut is started, you keep bringing in the cable with the hopes that your kerf gets wider. If it does, your in good shape, if it doesnt, it's time to re-evalute the situation. The largest tree I ever brought down (me and 8 other guys) was sorounded by power lines on 2 sides, and a house and power lines on the third. There was only a 30 foot space that the tip of the tree could fall into... and we nailed it dead on. I was using my CJ5 and just before the tree came down, I noticed that all four wheels were off the ground. That blue spuce was 4 1/2' diameter at the cut, 104 feet tall, 130 years old. It was split into 6 cords and heated my house for an entire winter.






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 11-04-2007, 23:55 Post: 147736
DRankin



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 Winch/ electric questions

I don't know how much your tractor weighs, but I'll bet that Bobcat tipped the scales at 7000 pounds.

Probably twice the weight of your CJ?






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 11-05-2007, 07:09 Post: 147741
kleinchris



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I have never checked into the weight of a Bobcat- is that about it? The CJ was just over 2000. Old Army specification- Jeeps had to weigh less than one ton for shipping calculations. Also, here is another fun fact: When the CJ was replaced in 1987, it still contained 2000 parts that were used in the Jeeps that rolled onto Nomandy Beach.

Nope, that has absolutely nothing to do with winching.






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