The humble winch. A firm favourite within a number of industries, and a common sight for anyone working with heavy or awkward objects. Coming in assorted shapes, sizes and functionalities, there are plenty of situations in which a winch can make all the difference, simplifying a mammoth task, and making it nothing more than a routine pull of the lever. Due to the universal appeal of winches, they’re not only a common sight on construction sites and harbours – with this article going into detail to cover the many variants you can come to expect – each of which are available at Atlas Winch Hire & Hoist Services, to either hire or acquire. Read ahead and equip your organisation for 2024 and beyond!
Winches are used in many everyday contexts, though you simply wouldn’t register how they’re functioning, and how they’re likely benefitting you if you aren’t especially focused on the details. Traditionally, a winch consists of a spool of rope, cable or similar sturdy material, attached to a hand crank or motor. When this is turned, the spool winds around it, applying a pulling force with the added benefit of tensile strength. For these very reasons, winches are often reserved for tasks that also involve heavy industrial machinery or vehicles.
While some people may keep a winch handy when driving on unpredictable or snowy terrain, others may utilise winches in an industrial context, for example moving large metal girders or displacing existing structures or objects such as trees and rocks. This goes some way to highlighting the versatility of winches. Whether you require electric winches, mooring equipment or a heavy duty engine hoist, we have everything you need to complete your project, hired temporarily or purchased brand new!
Now we have established the very basics of winches and how they function, let’s get specific with the various types of equipment and how they differentiate. As winches have emerged as a viable utility, the way they work has become increasingly practical, evidenced by the below variations:
The original winch design, manual winches can be easily adjusted and operated by-hand, most frequently when interacting with grounded objects which are on the lighter side. Hand-operated winches can crucially be used in wet conditions, while they of course don’t need a source of mains electricity to function.
Reliant on an electrical motor to function, electric winches are a great option if you’re looking for a winch which is not only relatively easy to install, but also mobile, lightweight and easy to install. Convenient to transport around and often used indoors as a result, these winches can be powered via batteries, meaning no intrusive cables or set-ups when adjusting your rope or cable of choice.
Known alternatively as air hoists, air winches are an alternative to the more lightweight manual winches, and can lift heavier objects when required. Air-compressed winches are often more durable and robust, though this comes at the expense of a bulky design sometimes, rendering the winch difficult to transport and use in cramped areas. Potentially advantageous, air winches are capable of performing well in extreme conditions including harsh heat and cold spells.
Packed with pulling power, and favoured for the most demanding tasks (moving vessels and heavy cargo), hydraulic winches have a large part to play within the maritime and logistics industries. Utilising fluid power, hydraulic systems and a motor pump, hydraulic designs are among the most powerful available, and they’re certainly ideal for the trickiest of tasks.
Found yourself searching for ‘winch hire’, ‘winch equipment’ or ‘ deck equipment’? Lifting gear, winches and hoists are a quality investment for those who imagine they will be used on a regular basis – but what about contractors and individuals who only require a winch for that one specific task? Hiring may be favourable should you find yourself only wanting to trial a specific branded winch before you purchase it completely. If you or your organisation is completing a particular project or deviating from your usual daily routine, a hired winch can streamline activities in an instant.
Though at Atlas Winch Hire, we always stay on top of industry trends and retain the most modern selected lifting gear, you could be losing out by buying outdated gear, when a brand new top-of-the-range hydraulic or air winch exists as a loan option for very little expense. Ultimately, in most ways, choosing to hire or purchase depends on your business needs and budget, so do our calculations, weigh up pros and cons, then settle on your preferred option.
Generally speaking, winches are used in the marine industry for the mooring and securing of boats within ports and shipyards. This is due in large part to the fact that a boat must be secured with suitable tension to keep it in place, therefore enabling a ship or vessel to be kept in the ideal position for the loading or unloading of cargo, among other tasks. In addition to these rather routine tasks, a marine winch may be required for more specialist means, such as the lifting of large fishing nets and cages reliably. On a large boat or ship, winches may be attached to the rear of the deck, however for smaller vessels, one may need to be acquired separately, and mounted in place.
The oil and gas industry is a hugely profitable area, with many offshore tasks requiring complex machinery such as drills and platforms. Winches are yet another essential, enabling the efficient handling of heavy loads, equipment, and materials. When extracting oil and gas, it is to be expected that resources are collected in a structured way, and from anchor handling winches and towing winches to recovery winches, many assorted types have a part to play. Overall, Offshore winches are essential components in a wide range of maritime and offshore activities. Not sure how they could make your working life easier? We would be happy to make recommendations.
Reducing labour requirements and streamlining your process by easing your reliance on other tools and actions, winches are an extremely useful tool to have, especially when dealing with bulky and hard-to-shift materials. In a similar vein, if a vehicle becomes stuck in mud or snow, a winch can be used to pull it out, rendering winches an essential if your construction team is operating within an area with marshy or muddy terrain. Finally and perhaps most importantly, in the event of an accident or injury on a site, the winch can be used to rescue workers who are trapped or stranded and away from safety. Winches aren’t just for convenience sake, they can be a literal life-saver! Remain wary that those handling winches should be equipped with the correct training, and any winches should be regularly tested before use.
Winch hire may seem a complex process, but it could hardly be easier when you entrust us. Stocking all of the winch equipment, deck equipment and corresponding utilities you could need, we believe in supplying you with the options you require, in a modern and convenient fashion. At Atlas Winch Hire & Hoist Services, we provide transparent and affordable options for companies or individuals to buy or hire new and used winch models – whatever the budget. Furthermore, we always endeavour to provide customers with a wide range of quality winch products, including everything from electric winches, to hoisting equipment and corresponding utilities.
No matter your requirements, we ensure you receive the appropriate products, accounting for the intricacies of your project. Any questions for the team? Or keen to hire a product temporarily with intentions of outright purchasing should you find what you’re searching for? We would love to discuss matters further, so contact us today! Find our regional Scotland office by calling 01899 221 577, or alternatively speak with our friendly Essex office team by ringing 01371 859 555.