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What is the purpose of a capstan?

What is the purpose of a capstan?

Column:FAQ    Date:2021/6/10 11:15:52    Viewed:

A winch is a winch with a vertically installed cable drum, which can be wound but does not store ropes under power drive. It also refers to a winch whose axis of rotation is perpendicular to the deck.

The winch is a self-protection and traction device for vehicles and ships. It can be used for self-rescue and rescue in harsh environments such as snow, swamps, deserts, beaches, and muddy mountain roads. It can also clear obstacles, drag objects, and install under other conditions. Facilities and other operations are indispensable safety devices for military police, petroleum, hydrology, environmental protection, forestry, transportation, public security, border defense, fire fighting and other outdoor sports.

The winch is mainly used for ships, off-road vehicles, agricultural vehicles, ATV all-terrain vehicles, yachts, fire rescue vehicles, road wreckers, and other special vehicles and special vehicles.

Capstan, mechanical device used chiefly on board ships or in shipyards for moving heavy weights by means of ropes, cables, or chains. 

Capstans also have been used in railroad yards for spotting (positioning) freight cars.

A capstan consists of a drum, driven either manually or by steam or electricity, that rotates about a vertical axis to wind in a line (rope, cable, or chain) that has been wrapped around it (see illustration). 

The grip between the line and the drum depends on friction and on the number of times the line is wrapped around the drum. 

Speed of drawing in the load can be controlled by allowing partial slippage of the line around the capstan. A notched track (ratchet) on the base plate and pawls attached to the drum prevent backward rotation.


Electric capstan is applies to rated load less than 20T and can be driven by electric motor. 

Single, double , triple speeds or VFD motor are available. 

VFD motor is recommended for heavy load capstan as it will not bring impact to power supply system when start.


EME was founded in 2006 and be listed in 2017. We are a professional manufacturer of marine windlass,winch, capstan and deck outfittings for seagoing vessels. All products can be customized by our experience engineering group.