Converting old winches to self tailing

My cabin top desperately needs a second winch on starboard where the mainsheet, jib sheet, outhaul and main halyard are located. I usually resort to cross winching the jib sheet to the port winch but this results in the occasional “clothes-lining” when coming up the companionway.

I was lucky to source some older Barient winches, and while they are in perfect condition it would be nice if they were self-tailing, although I do have clutches close by so it isn’t a deal breaker.

It led me to wonder if there was a way to retrofit old winches to be self-tailing. There are several options.

  1. Barton Winchers  – rubbery rings that fit on top of winches.
  2. Winchmate which fits a plastic top onto your old winch, less than half the price of a new winch. $425 USD for #27, no options for smaller sizes.
  3. Hutton-Arco conversion to metal jaw self-tailing configuration for superseded ARCO Standard and Self-tailing winches and Barlow, Barient & Lewmar Standard winches.
    Alas not for the #22!


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