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Mystery Lewmar Winch

Aug 25, 2015
Catalina 30 Milwaukee
Its says Lewmar 40 BUT.....
Lewmar winch2.jpg

I have two Lewmar 40 self-tailing two speed winches on my 1984 Catalina 30 TR. To service them I started researching and found the newer EVOs and Oceans neither of which are mine. Not seeing other alternatives, I e-mailed Lewmar Tech support and received back digital brochures which also were not mine. I also searched for and watched every YouTube video I could find, none of which were exactly mine either.
So, being a good sailor, I got out my tools and started to take one apart. The top cap off as it should after being loosened with the required allen wrench, the rest of the disassembly went well until the removal of the main spindle - surprise, it had pawls on it which have not appeared in anything I have seen or read. So onward we go removing the various pawl gears and ratchet gears, roller bearings etc.

now there remains but three things, the actual not to be removed housing and two mystery gears into which inserts the main spindle., a larger gear on top of a smaller gear. The problem is that the opening in the housing is too small for the removal of the larger gear without first removing the smaller gear from beneath it! And I cannot get that smaller gear out from under the larger gear.
Bottom mystery gears3.jpg

ANY help would be appreciated. I e-mailed Lewmar again and have elicited a stunned silence.

I would make the pictures smaller but don't know how! And there are lots more pictures for the curious

Jan 7, 2011
Oday 322 East Chicago, IN
If the winch base is still mounted, maybe there is access to the pin holding the gears in the housing.



Jun 1, 2004
Catalina 27 Mission Bay, San Diego
I would remove the rest of the winch take everything inside to the table to do a complete service.. You can lay every thing out and get a better view of the pins that hold lower gears.


Jun 3, 2012
Hunter 33 Steamboat Wharf, Hull, MA
I have older Lewmar ST40's. They do not grip the line very well. Anyway, opened my manual and they appear to be slightly different from yours. Nevertheless, most of the winches illustrated in the manual have a removable key that retains the main spindle. According to the manual the key is on the side of the spindle and it slides out and then the spindle can be lifted off. The key is just below the beveled edge on the wider portion of the spindle. It is possible that it is there but barely visible due to corrosion and wear on the spindle surface.
Oct 22, 2014
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
That arrangement looks like my Barient winches. Access to the gears requires removal of the winch base. There should be 4 screws holding the base to the boat deck. Remove the base and you’ll find pins holding the gears in place. You access and remove the gears with the base inverted.
Jun 25, 2004
Corsair F24 Mk1 003 San Francisco Bay, CA
Contact winchspares.com

The owner,Tony, is an expert on old Lewmars. He can identify the model, give you tips that aren’t written down anywhere on how to disassemble and... he manufactures replacement parts that Lewmar no longer stocks.

I rebuilt my 28 year old Lewmar Self tailers with new “crowns” that grip the line. The old ones were worn and had been slipping. I also replaced pawls, springs and bearing sleeves, etc. they don’t slip any more.
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