General Purpose Crab Winches

The Crab Winch has been part of a standard range of winches since the 1950’s and to this day, it is still being used in a multiple of industries. This robust designed winch comprises of open type, inline helical gears, large rope capacity and high gear ratios.


All motorised units are supplied with standard TEFC flange mount electric motors fitted with electromagnetic brakes at the rear, coupled to a simple direct drive primary reduction gearbox and with optional fail safe braking done via spring applied brake callipers, fixed to the side of the rope drum. These units are ideally suited for stage stinking and high lift applications.

  • Standard voltages included 220v single phase or 380v / 525v 3-phase 50Hz or 60Hz.
  • All winches are fully reversible, thus giving the operator complete control of the winch load in both directions at all times.
  • All electric motors conform to NEMA, EEMAC or IEC specifications. Motors can be supplied as single or two speed.


Manually operated winches are controlled via two large ring handles mounted on each side of the winch. Braking is done via a heavy duty pawl and ratchet system assisted by a positive locking drum brake.


  • Large rope capacity.
  • Robust design
  • Fail safe electromagnetic brakes on motorised units.
  • Winches fully reversible.
  • Electric motors confirm to NEMA, EEMAC or IEC specifications.
  • Minimum friction loss through the use of ball bearings on all shafts.
  • Direct floor mounting - No pedestal required.
  • Winches can be supplied with electric, air or hydraulic motors.
  • Safe working loads range from 1 ton to 15 tons
Crab Winch Crab Winch



Versatile and economical alternative to locomotives used for moving rail cars.  A capstan winch was originally a vertical-axled machine developed for sailing ships, today we can supply both vertical and horizontal Capstan winches.


  • Rope can leave the drum at any angle, enabling the operator to stand in the most suitable position.
  • Able to accommodate a wide range of speed and capacities.
  • Can be used in the vertical or horizontal configuration
  • Minimal  or low maintenance required.
  • Direct drive design
  • Supplied with standard TEFC flange mount electric motors, available in standard 3 phase voltages at 50Hz and 60Hz.
  • Foot-operated controls available – to allow the operator the use of both hands on the rope.
  • Can be supplied with hydraulic or air motors.


  • Shunting yards
  • Mines
  • Dock yards
  • Factories and steel foundries

Capstan WinchCapstan Winch


Winches SA has assisted clients with specialised projects, where out-of-the-box thinking is required, and provides a unique solution to a unique situation.
Our engineers will work with you to custom design the right solution for your specific application and provide an efficient and dependable solution to your winching needs no matter how small or large the application maybe.

Winches can be designed with the following features:

  • Capacities range from 1 ton to 15 ton safe working load
  • Winching speeds can be varied to suit customer requirements.
  • Large rope-drum capacities
  • The rigid, open base design, allows the winch to be mounted in a horizontal or vertical position and loads can be lifted directly through the centre of the base frame, ideally suited for limited space applications.
  • Winches make use of a direct drive construction with no requirement for additional drive components, thereby, increasing efficiency and maximizing power output.
  • Winches are fully reversible, giving the operator full control of the load in both directions at all times.
  • Units can be supplied with electric, hydraulic or pneumatic motors.
  • Electric motors confirm to NEMA, EEMAC or IEC specifications.
  • All winches are designed with ball and roller bearings allowing higher efficiencies.
  • Engineered winches make use of high efficiency planetary / helical gear reducers or helical worm gear reducers plus anti-friction roller bearings which facilitates an extended product life, low noise and high torque output.
  • All designs are approved by a registered professional engineer.

Some of our custom engineered winches include:

  • 25 passenger tourist cable car system in Zambia (design, manufacture and commissioning of the winch and structure);
  • 75 kW hydraulic man riding winch.
  • 10 ton Shaft Sinking Winch Sets c/w fail-safe hydraulic brake calipers
  • Light mast winches.
  • 1 ton Portable hydraulic winches, with rope capacity for 1000 metres of wire rope.
  • 15 ton Ball Mill rotation/installation winches.
  • 10 ton safe working load Man Riding Winch
  • 2 ton boat winches
  • Goods lift winches & hoists


Winches SA is a manufacturer of custom designed hoists as well a supplier of Electric Wire Hoists and Chain Hoists.

  • Lifting capacities range from 250kg SWL to 10 000kg SWL.
  • Single or dual speed units are available.
  • Pendant or remote controlled.
  • 380v or 525v, 3 Ph
  • 220v, single Phase up to 3 kW.

Engineered WinchesEngineered WinchesEngineered Winches

Engineered WinchesEngineered Winches

HoistsWinches SA are manufactures of custom designed hoists as well as suppliers of Electric Wire hoists and Chain Hoists.

A basic hoist has two important characteristics that define it: Lifting medium and power type. The lifting medium is either wire rope, wrapped around a drum, or load-chain, raised by a pulley with a special profile to engage the chain. The power can be provided by different means. Common means are hydraulics, electrical and air driven motors. Both the wire rope hoist and chain hoist have been in common use since the 1800s.

Order you electric wire hoist or chain hoist from Winches SA, the professionals choice.

  • Lifting capacities range from 250kg SWL to 10 000kg SWL.
  • Single or dual speed units are available.
  • Pendant or remote controlled.
  • 380v or 525v

This particular range of winches has been designed with simplicity and safety in mind.  This winch is ideally suited to the toughest of commercial or industrial applications.

With automatic fail-safe braking done via a heavy duty worm and spur gear configuration, there are no requirements for complicated braking arrangements such as a ratchets or friction disc braking systems, both of which require frequent maintenance.

These, low maintenance, inexpensive winches are used extensively by industry and are ideally suited for use as conveyor take-ups.

  • Winch capacities range from 500kg SWL to 8500kg SWL.
  • Motorised versions of these winches are available.

Detailed drawings of manual and motorized units are available upon request.

HW WinchesHW Winches

HW WinchesHW Winches

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