Author Topic: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions  (Read 6973 times)

Offline Go Caps Go

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #15 on: April 12, 2016, 11:58:58 AM »
I have heard mixed reviews on some Harbor Freight products; not built to last, etc.  Last year I bought a Barricade 9500 lb winch with synthetic cable for roughly $350 through Extreme Terrain.  So far it has been great, and I have used it roughly a half dozen times to pull myself and others out of mud/snow.  Pulled a Chevy 2500 Crew Cab that was being used as a snow plow out of a deep rut during the big snow storm.  Works great so far. 

Ken
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Offline Runner

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #16 on: April 12, 2016, 01:03:26 PM »
I've installed two of the HF winches on friends Jeeps over the last 3 years and they both have had no issues. The only thing negative I would have to say about the HF winch is that when you install the supplied circuit breaker directly to the battery you end up with a lot of exposed metal on the positive terminal.  Because I didn't like this being so exposed, and easy to come in contact with, I ended up lengthening the cable and relocating the circuit breaker where it was protected and out of the way.

With all that said, if you can pick up another winch, close in price, that has synthetic line, I'd recommend considering it as a viable option.  Personally, I've run synthetic line for years and wouldn't consider going back to steel cable.  Just my 2ยข worth!
2004 LJ - Built to wheel, but hides in the garage :(

Offline GOTOMAN

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2016, 02:02:20 PM »
I have a Warn and love it, should I ever need a new winch I will probably buy a $h!tybilt w/ synthetic line just because of cost.

Offline cwkann

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #18 on: April 12, 2016, 03:18:47 PM »
Tractor Supply has synthetic line 15,000 lb strength for about $130.  A friend bought it and says it is great.  I will probably buy it also, but then need to figure out how to cover it....
'03 Rubicon- 4.5" RE LA, 37"s, A bunch of skids by TNT, Poison Spyder, EMP, Rock Hard, Warn, Kilby and custom fab work.  CAI, Power chip, Exhaust, 4.88 gears and chromoly axles by Yukon. OBA and Powertank, one ton steering, Teraflex Swaybar system, MM 9500lb winch and a bunch of other stuff...

Offline majestek12

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #19 on: April 12, 2016, 03:39:53 PM »
Tractor Supply has synthetic line 15,000 lb strength for about $130.  A friend bought it and says it is great.  I will probably buy it also, but then need to figure out how to cover it....

http://www.quadratec.com/products/92122_2100.htm?gclid=CL_EtOvsicwCFc9ahgod_oYBOw

You can also get "fitted" ones that are dimensioned to more properly match the specific winch.

https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl#q=mile+marker+neoprene+winch+cover&tbm=shop

If your park in the sun/outdoors you'll be replacing the cover every couple of years (breaks down in the sun) but better than replacing the line itself, or risk having the line snap.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2016, 03:41:37 PM by majestek12 »

Offline AutoTraker

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #20 on: April 12, 2016, 05:33:50 PM »
Don't know about Tractor supply winch lines which is a 10mm line (2/5). Most the synthetic lines rated over 20k for a 10k or 12k winch are in the $250 price range.
Here is another rule of hand from MasterPull. Winch rope should be rated for twice the winch's capacity. So for a 12k winch, you need a 24k rated synthetic line.
Another rule of hand I heard from another winch line manufacturer was the synthetic should be at least 1/16" thicker than the steel line its replacing. Kind of hard to calculate that if the line is in mm. I guess add one mm to the steel line to get the synthetic line.
I tried to go cheap but the line I got came with a regular wire line thimble instead of those specifically designed for synthetic lines so I suspect it'll eventually cut into the line. The one from TS looks like a wire line thimble to me.
I'm going with this synthetic next and its only $139 and rated for 26.5k breaking...  http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002CFQNM0/
Team that up with the HF 12k winch and you have a combo for $440 that will pull down a house.
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Rich...
Last count have 3 Jeeps. A CJ, TJ & a XJ.  Also got a Yota.
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Offline Sheepdog

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #21 on: April 12, 2016, 06:42:43 PM »
You guys are great! Thanks for all the suggestions and information.  :cheers  :tu
2015 JKU Sahara; 2.5" TeraFlex lift; 35 12.5/17 KO2; Yukon 4.88; Flowmaster American Thunder exhaust kit; Retired USAF; WWP Alumnus; Team Rubicon member

Offline dan58

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Re: Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #22 on: April 13, 2016, 02:06:43 AM »

While it's more expensive, you are actually supporting American workers.  A tour of the plant gives a whole new appreciation for the brand.   ;)

Except that a lot of them are made in Mexico. 
Or China.

The VR winches are made offshore.  But I guarantee you that everything else is NOT.  I've been to the factory in Oregon. I've watched them being assembled.  I've watched them broach the gears and the internals.  I've watched them build bumpers from a sheet of 3/16.  I don't know where you got that info, but it's patently false.

Offline JPS

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #23 on: April 13, 2016, 02:26:07 AM »

While it's more expensive, you are actually supporting American workers.  A tour of the plant gives a whole new appreciation for the brand.   ;)

Except that a lot of them are made in Mexico.
Or China.

The VR winches are made offshore.  But I guarantee you that everything else is NOT.  I've been to the factory in Oregon. I've watched them being assembled.  I've watched them broach the gears and the internals.  I've watched them build bumpers from a sheet of 3/16.  I don't know where you got that info, but it's patently false.

WARN seems to think different

http://www.mudmotortalk.com/mmt_v2/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=23290

also a search for "warn winches made in china" returns a ton of forum topics where people has consistently bought Warn products with "Made in China" and "Made in Taiwan" on them

https://www.google.com/search?q=warn+winches+made+in+china&oq=warn+winches+made+in+china&aqs=chrome..69i57.4510j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

They may be assembled in the US, but not entirely made, you're still buying foreign parts.
Jeff

Offline AutoTraker

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Re: Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #24 on: April 13, 2016, 03:21:39 AM »

While it's more expensive, you are actually supporting American workers.  A tour of the plant gives a whole new appreciation for the brand.   ;)

Except that a lot of them are made in Mexico. 
Or China.

The VR winches are made offshore.  But I guarantee you that everything else is NOT.  I've been to the factory in Oregon. I've watched them being assembled.  I've watched them broach the gears and the internals.  I've watched them build bumpers from a sheet of 3/16.  I don't know where you got that info, but it's patently false.
I specifically said the "V" series is made in China. Sorry if I accidentally left off the "R" in "VR". The VR series is Warn's competitively priced line. Got one laying on the floor right now tore apart and the internal parts are perfect matches for the ones from other Chinese made counterparts. While I don't specifically see "Made in China" on the parts, rest assured they are. Warn can't compete in this competitive Chinese made market with their entire line made solely in the US. That's not a bad thing, just a fact. And they also have a large production facility in Saltillo Mexico. So yes, both parts and entire winches are made in China and Mexico.
While its true they do still make winches domestically, not all their winches nor the parts are American made any longer. I believe the only winches still actually 100% made in the US are those it manufacturers for the military although I don't know enough about particularities of which models or parts are made where. Frankly I don't really care. The only thing that is patently false is your pretentious attitude. Warn does make some products in the US still, no one said anything different. I also wouldn't buy a Warn product because of price. Not when I can buy something at 1/4 the price that will last as long as I need it to. I say keep American dollars in American pockets by buying whatever product suites your needs at a reasonable cost rather than products with inflated price tags just because they make some of their products in the US.


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Rich...
Last count have 3 Jeeps. A CJ, TJ & a XJ.  Also got a Yota.
I Live in a Country Founded by Geniuses but Run by Idiots.
Central Virginia Jeepers
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Offline Roll Tide Jeeper

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #25 on: April 13, 2016, 08:44:55 AM »
Don't know about Tractor supply winch lines which is a 10mm line (2/5). Most the synthetic lines rated over 20k for a 10k or 12k winch are in the $250 price range.
Here is another rule of hand from MasterPull. Winch rope should be rated for twice the winch's capacity. So for a 12k winch, you need a 24k rated synthetic line.
Another rule of hand I heard from another winch line manufacturer was the synthetic should be at least 1/16" thicker than the steel line its replacing. Kind of hard to calculate that if the line is in mm. I guess add one mm to the steel line to get the synthetic line.
I tried to go cheap but the line I got came with a regular wire line thimble instead of those specifically designed for synthetic lines so I suspect it'll eventually cut into the line. The one from TS looks like a wire line thimble to me.
I'm going with this synthetic next and its only $139 and rated for 26.5k breaking...  http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002CFQNM0/
Team that up with the HF 12k winch and you have a combo for $440 that will pull down a house.

Thanks for the link to the synthetic line. I have the HF Badlands 12k and just ordered this line.
Dan
2006 TJ 3" lift, 31's

Own a Jeep, because life is too short to drive boring cars everyday.

Offline Roll Tide Jeeper

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #26 on: April 13, 2016, 08:47:23 AM »
Are you available to host the next presidential debate? You have no trouble asking controversial questions.

My joke about this being a controversial question makes more sense now that Jeepers and their passion is coming through in their recent posts. :popcorn
Dan
2006 TJ 3" lift, 31's

Own a Jeep, because life is too short to drive boring cars everyday.

Offline Sheepdog

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #27 on: April 13, 2016, 09:32:14 AM »
Are you available to host the next presidential debate? You have no trouble asking controversial questions.

My joke about this being a controversial question makes more sense now that Jeepers and their passion is coming through in their recent posts. :popcorn

RTJ,

I may be available for the next debate. I need to check my calendar.  LOL!  :lol
2015 JKU Sahara; 2.5" TeraFlex lift; 35 12.5/17 KO2; Yukon 4.88; Flowmaster American Thunder exhaust kit; Retired USAF; WWP Alumnus; Team Rubicon member

Offline dan58

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #28 on: April 13, 2016, 09:47:21 AM »

While it's more expensive, you are actually supporting American workers.  A tour of the plant gives a whole new appreciation for the brand.   ;)

Except that a lot of them are made in Mexico.
Or China.

The VR winches are made offshore.  But I guarantee you that everything else is NOT.  I've been to the factory in Oregon. I've watched them being assembled.  I've watched them broach the gears and the internals.  I've watched them build bumpers from a sheet of 3/16.  I don't know where you got that info, but it's patently false.

WARN seems to think different

http://www.mudmotortalk.com/mmt_v2/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=23290

also a search for "warn winches made in china" returns a ton of forum topics where people has consistently bought Warn products with "Made in China" and "Made in Taiwan" on them

https://www.google.com/search?q=warn+winches+made+in+china&oq=warn+winches+made+in+china&aqs=chrome..69i57.4510j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

They may be assembled in the US, but not entirely made, you're still buying foreign parts.

First link is an ATV winch.  It's part of the VR line.  The only part not made in the US is the motor, which they cannot get in the US.  That's the reason it cannot say "made in usa" versus "assembled in the usa".    Apologies if I come about as bullish on this stuff, but I deal with the stuff all day, every day.  :blush  I preach buying US made and buying local.  I see too many shops die because they are stuck with inferior products to sell and too many people buying online when the shop can almost   always match a price if given the opportunity. ;(

Offline AutoTraker

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Re: Harbor Freight Winch - Suggestions
« Reply #29 on: April 13, 2016, 10:48:21 AM »
Warn has a great reputation for reliability and my dealings with their support staff has been terrific. I buy American whenever possible but for my money I expect and usually receive all made in America parts, superior engineering, and superior quality at a competitive price. I believe Ramsey is the only manufacturer that meets that criteria and their price point is a lot better than Warn. If anything Ramsey should be the go to company for American made winches. I believe they have the only "Made in American" sticker on every part rather than a "Crafted with pride in the USA" sticker you find on better Warn winches. (Note Warn winches no longer say made in US on any of them. The "Crafted" sticker is false advertising trying to make you believe they are all 100% American made. That pisses me off more than if they would just come out and say most their parts and winches are made outside the country. BTW Warn isn't even owned by Warn anymore and they employ less than 600 people nationwide. The crappy Chinese company I buy my computers from employs more Americans than Warn does.
Still its hard to pay twice the price for a Ramsey which is 100% American made (or 3-4 times for a Warn) for less pulling power than a Chinese made winch. Don't forget the Jeep you are putting it on isn't made in America either. Its assembled in American and owned by a foreign company. The Jeep hasn't been 100% American made for over 3 decades and American owned for over two decades. Its very hard to wave the American flag nowadays and say buy American when even American products aren't even 100% made in America nor employ Americans or keep the money they make in America.
--
Rich...
Last count have 3 Jeeps. A CJ, TJ & a XJ.  Also got a Yota.
I Live in a Country Founded by Geniuses but Run by Idiots.
Central Virginia Jeepers
RCPFA

 

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