During the Annapolis Sailboat show we got to sit down with some of the fine folks at Selden and one thing we learned was that they too are entering the winch game. Although we didn't get to see one in person we learned that the engineers at Selden have not only designed an entire winch range from the ground up but that they have also designed a manually operated winch with a reverse feature that offers a unique advantage for racers and cruisers alike.
The reversible winch functions like any other 2-speed manual winch-containing two gears that enable you to trim in at two different speeds. Then, by pressing down on the knob that’s built into the winch handle, while you grind clockwise the drum will turn into a reverse mode. In reverse mode, the rope can be eased out while remaining in the self tailing jaws the entire time. This one handed operation is safe and keeps your hands away from the drum when easing the load. It's also very efficient for single handed sailors who can steer and trim at the same time.
There is only one speed in the reverse mode as opposed to the two speeds in the normal mode. The Selden Reversible winches include a modified stripper that holds the line securely within the self-tailing jaws (see detailed image above), again great for single hand use.
The manual reversible winch range will be offered in 4 sizes: R30 R40 R46 R52. Rumor has it that they'll be available to distributors come Spring 2011 but the official launch is scheduled in Amsterdam next month at METS 2010 and we'll be there to see them so be sure to check back here for more details in the coming weeks.