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Some one has assembled the rack to the wrong side of the steering wheel shaft, OR put the cable down the wrong side of the boat, OR switched from a pivot steering anchor to a transom mount anchor (you would have had a drag link left over.)
In such a situation replace the spring assembly and shaft that it is attached to. Then determine how many winds you need to add to the windlass for spring tension to get the door to lift. Depending how the door track it is set up the outer wheels that take up the lift cable spool about 16 to 18 inches of cable per revolution. The spring gets tensioned by sticking a length of half inch/13 mm rod into 1 of the 4 tensioning holes of the windlass that are cast into the clamping end of the spring and turning tension onto the spring by way of that windlass to lift the door once the cables are attached to the door and then clamped into the wheels, once the approximately correct lift height has been cranked into the spring.One rod would need to be left in place to hold windlass firm until the set screw is tightened. Then you can put on a hard hat, unlock the door and lift slightly- the rod will fall out if you wound the spring the correct direction.and the door should rise again with ease.
Check the brushes and if they are short just replace them.
This will solve the problem.
There is thermal cut out which will protect the winding if its hot and will stop windlass and after cooling down it can run again.
I had a similar problem, but I could use a cordless drill to turn the cable. If the cable won't turn, you might try a new cable, since it might be broken in the middle. I had a bad wire in the tailgate, had to splice a new one, couldn't get at the wiring behind the glass. Have you checked the switch on the dash? I am having a problem with that, too. 26 years old, it doesn't spring back so well.
Of course, first check the voltage at the connections to the windlass. Have someone operate the switch while you measure with a volt meter. If no voltage check breakers, or fuses. Heavy current devices like a windlass will often require fuses near where they connect to battery power.
A windlass requires a LOT of current to run. Not just voltage. Trace the wires from the battery connection all the way to the windlass. If possible, loosen any connections (ex; a lug with a nut or bolt) and clean with a wire brush then reconnect. Be sure to disconnect the battery while cleaning. Many times wires will corrode past the insulation. Especially if they were not tinned wire to begin with (tinned wire has a silver shine, regular copper has a copper color and typically turns dark or even black when corroded).
Since a windlass requires a lot of current, often there may be a relay near the windlass that might go bad. Listen to see if this is activating while someone operates the switch.
I had the same problem this past weekend. Took the complete unit apart and found salt and all kind of moisture in the motor itself. It sure was not sealed very well from the factory. I am unable to find the motor sold separately, therefore I am taking my unit to an electric motor shop. I am guessing it will cost me about $100-$125 to get the motor reworked. It was extremely easy to take apart.
With the moisture in the motor, there was simply too much resistance for the windlass to turn, If you get your tension wrench and work the windlass back and forth, then hit the button. It should work temporarily.
with great difficulty - these belts are so tight!there is a special tool for doing it but there are other ways one way i have used is to make a spanish windlass from belt to bottom of machine. when belt is level with motor spindle, push belt on and release spanish windlass. could also try levering belt on with a screwdriver another method is to get a short piece of tubing that will fit over motor spindle. put belt over tube, lever down and slip belt on. this is the best way