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Smittybilt x20 winch issue.

Old 08-22-2015, 02:28 PM
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Default Smittybilt x20 winch issue.

I've had this winch for a few months now and until last night I hadent had an issue. Which winching a truck out the cable must have had some sort of kink or bind and cought the metal bar that's above the drum that the control board's mounted on and ripped it off. Thankfully I was able to zip tie the control board to the bumper and it still work. Called 4 wheel parts and because I bought the no questions asked warranty when I bought the winch they will be replacing it with out any issue. However I'm considered about doing this again, and have considered going with that synthetic line, has any body here delt with it much? My biggest concern is how long that line will stand up. Any help regarding tho topic would be great.

This is what type of which I have: Name:  2166A5D4-8679-4DA8-B272-52C73152CB72.png.jpeg
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This is the damage:

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Old 08-22-2015, 05:23 PM
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Default Smittybilt x20 winch issue.

Winch more carefully ... Only reason I can see that really happening is if the cable had too much tension, whether is be the angle, weight or abuse on the winch.
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Old 08-22-2015, 06:12 PM
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People can get killed when performing a recovery, make sure you are not the next victim.
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Old 08-22-2015, 07:00 PM
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Default Smittybilt x20 winch issue.

The synthetic rope doesn't work too bad. Only thing is I suggest cleaning it of mud and dirt often and buy a cover for your winch to protect it from UV damage. This will help extend its lifespan.
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Old 08-22-2015, 10:11 PM
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Default Smittybilt x20 winch issue.

Clean the synthetic line regularly and remember to protect it from abrasion and it is far superior. Easier to pull because it lighter, safer, and don't need gloves. It's wonderful.
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Old 08-22-2015, 11:30 PM
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Angle was not bad however tension may have been since the truck was pulling out weighs about 8,000lbs however the winch is rated at 10k lbs and the truck was not stuck bad at all. I was standing a few feet away with the remote with a bag over the line. Thanks for the advice tho. And regarding the synthetic winch cable I've been looking into the pros and cons since I posted this and it seems like that's the way to go. Also seems like they make some sort of silicone spray to clean the cable. The winch is also mounted inside the bumper so I'm hopping/assuming uv degrading will not be an issue. Thanks again for the suggestions
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Old 08-22-2015, 11:36 PM
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Default Smittybilt x20 winch issue.

Originally Posted by btm24 View Post
Angle was not bad however tension may have been since the truck was pulling out weighs about 8,000lbs however the winch is rated at 10k lbs and the truck was not stuck bad at all. I was standing a few feet away with the remote with a bag over the line. Thanks for the advice tho. And regarding the synthetic winch cable I've been looking into the pros and cons since I posted this and it seems like that's the way to go. Also seems like they make some sort of silicone spray to clean the cable. The winch is also mounted inside the bumper so I'm hopping/assuming uv degrading will not be an issue. Thanks again for the suggestions
To clean it you just run it through a bucket of soapy water and expand the fibers to let the grit out.

UV isn't as much of a concern as people make it out to be. Try to find something like amsteel blue or generic dynema rope. It's UV stabilized and will not break down in sunlight. Hell its the same rope that is used to moor ships including those operated by the US Navy and every fishing boat that comes out of the local shipyard.
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Old 08-23-2015, 01:16 PM
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Cable must kept rolled in a neat spooled manned if not you can have that issue with any of them all kinked up on the spool.


As for syn rope I bought my winch with it on and it only lasted about 4 or 5 uses till it was so frayed in spots from tree bark and rocks in the ground that it had to be replaced. I did so with wire rope as it does not suffer from these issues in the National Forests and trails that I run a lot. They will not take scuffing on any hard surfaces even small rocks in the ground winching over an embankment or against a tree rubbing on it.


It depends on the conditions of where you run at the weight factor would be a great plus alone if just it had worked for me.
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Old 08-24-2015, 01:35 AM
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Default Smittybilt x20 winch issue.

Originally Posted by Fred/N0AZZ View Post
Cable must kept rolled in a neat spooled manned if not you can have that issue with any of them all kinked up on the spool.


As for syn rope I bought my winch with it on and it only lasted about 4 or 5 uses till it was so frayed in spots from tree bark and rocks in the ground that it had to be replaced. I did so with wire rope as it does not suffer from these issues in the National Forests and trails that I run a lot. They will not take scuffing on any hard surfaces even small rocks in the ground winching over an embankment or against a tree rubbing on it.


It depends on the conditions of where you run at the weight factor would be a great plus alone if just it had worked for me.
The abrasion issue is why most synthetic line come with an abrasion protector.
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Old 08-24-2015, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by toasterknight View Post
The abrasion issue is why most synthetic line come with an abrasion protector.

In the middle of the rope?
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Old 08-24-2015, 11:15 AM
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Default Smittybilt x20 winch issue.

Originally Posted by Fred/N0AZZ View Post
In the middle of the rope?
It slides up and down the rope so it can be out wherever it is needed.
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Old 08-25-2015, 11:45 AM
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I just put my Smittybilt 10,000# X20 in last night and one of the square mounting nuts wasn't fully hardened and never tightened. I called TMG and spoke to Ray and he has the parts sent to me on USPS. I should have them next week. Smittybilt is not exactly the Rolls Royce of Jeep products, but they are very easy to deal with. I suggest if you have a problem with your winch that is a warranty issue, call them. They are awesome.

TMG 1-800-776-0767
Ray is ext. 8774


As far as the synthetic vs steel argument goes, I recommend steel. It is far more forgiving than synthetic when it comes to abuse. The only real downside to it, where use is concerned, is that it is much stiffer and therefore more difficult to use when you are up to your knees in muck.

Steel Pros:
Abrasion resistant
UV has no effect on steel cables


Steel Cons:
Dangerous if not in good condition - will kill you.
Commonly has loose strands that will stick into your skin and hurt really really bad
Kinks if not watched or used carefully
Rusts if neglected

Synthetic Pros:
User friendly
Light weight

Synthetic Cons:
Will tie itself into a knot without warning
Easily cut while winching
Requires frequent cleaning depending on environmental conditions
Cheaper brands are not UV protected

Last edited by weswins; 08-25-2015 at 12:14 PM. Reason: added important stuff
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