Depending on the size of a ship, its anchor could weigh 10 tons and above. A mechanical device known as the windlass is used for lowering or heaving this from the seabed. Windlasses cater to hoisting up varying loads with the help of gear and teeth arrangement.
The significant parts of a windlass are the main shaft, driving shaft, inspection cover, gear, gear frame, drums, warping head or couplings, brake band, brake liner assembly, chain wheel, gear wheel, pinion, clutch and high-speed, low-speed hydraulic valve blocks. Like all other equipment onboard, the windlass and mooring winches require regular maintenance.
Frequent greasing of all rotating parts of the mooring equipment, including rollers, fairleads, winch drums, deck stands, etc., must be moved and lubricated frequently.
Routine inspection of the outside and moving components of gear and shaft assists with making a decision about the wear and measure of the purpose of this basic machinery. Regular inspection of external and moving parts of gear and shaft helps to judge the wear and amount of use of this critical machinery.
Besides the windlass and mooring equipment, all tank domes, blocks, pumps, cranes, davits, and other equipment on board that has moving parts and greasing points need to be inspected by a competent person to ensure a proper regular greasing schedule and procedure followed.
This will not only allow all moving parts to move smoothly when in operation and eliminate unexpected breakdowns but will also prolong the life of the equipment, thus saving time and money in the long run.