Three Fools

You, Me, and Lee

Installing new windlass foot switches

During a wild Oregon Offshore, we had a round down where a spinnaker sheet managed to rip off a cover of one of the foot switches that controls the anchor windlass. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be any way of repairing them, so I had to replace.

The original foot switches

The original foot switches. The cover of the up switch was torn off by a spinnaker sheet. Note the hole pattern of the original three fasteners.

Lewmar, in their infinite wisdom, changed the design of the replacement switch. The new switch has a nearly flush bottom (the old one had a 3/4" protuberance). This is actually an improvement, although it requires filling the old hole. I did this using a wooden plug:

The filled hole

The original switches required a 3/4" hole; the new ones do not. So, I filled each hole with a wooden plug and epoxy, sanded smooth.

This is all fine. But, what really burned me up is that for some reason, they decided to rotate the position of the three fasteners by 60 degrees! They are the same radius, same size, but inexplicably turned. This required filling the old holes and drilling new ones, to no apparent benefit.

The filled holes

The switch holes now filled. Note the new screw holes. They were necessary because of Lewmar's decision to rotate the hole pattern by 60°. (I hadn't drilled the holes for switch closest to you yet.)

The finished switches

The finished switches. At least they are lower profile, so maybe they won't snag as many lines.