Another Winch Comparison - Recommendation Thread!!

NorCalFJ100

SILVER Star
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
738
Location
Los Angeles, CA
Okay, so I have a built 80. All the good off road mods. Plan to remote camp and mostly moderate trails for exploring. No real rock crawling...I have a brand new paint job! Haha.

I am trying to conservatively narrow down winch choices.
  1. Warn M8000 - Understand this is on the light side of recovery gear, but lots of people seem to use them with their 80's. Tons of mixed reviews. But made in America. High quality, etc.
  2. Warn XP 9500 - Probably the sweet spot for Warn winches that easily fit the Slee Bumper. Specs do not seem out of this world better than the M8000, but it is more than 2 times the cost at around $1,400
  3. Warn VR 12 - Made in China. Reputable brand. Seems to have comparable specs to the XP9500
  4. Smittybilt X20 12k - Made in China. Less reputable brand. But seems to have good reviews here on mud and other online sources.
Obviously the XP 9500 takes the cake with pricing here. All the other winches I mentioned all seem to be around the same price.

I have a hard time laying out $1,400 when I do not want to get crazy on the trails. However, some would call the XP9500 insurance.

Thoughts?


2020-04-29 19.22.52.jpg
 

1911

chupacabra
Joined
Aug 11, 2006
Messages
6,014
Location
Parker County, Texas
 
 
I have a hard time laying out $1,400 when I do not want to get crazy on the trails. However, some would call the XP9500 insurance.

Thoughts?
It all depends on how likely it is that you're ever going to really need it - "remote camp and mostly moderate trails", you may never need it.

But if by chance you ever do find yourself alone, remote, and stuck (even just in the mud), the $1,400 9.5XP is going to seem like a very wise investment at that time.

My own philosophy is this: find somewhere else to economize; for anything upon which my life may depend (tires, brakes, safety [including recovery] equipment), I buy the best that I can afford. If I can't afford them, I save up until I can. YMMV.

One more thing: look for a used quality winch. You can rebuild a Warn yourself, and save some coin. My favorite winch ever is still the 42-year-old Warn 8274 I bought used for a few hundred dollars and rebuilt myself.
 
Joined
Aug 2, 2006
Messages
3,927
Location
Jefferson
 
 
I will second shopping for a good used Warn.
My winch is also a cheap 8274 that i resto'd.
 

NorCalFJ100

SILVER Star
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
738
Location
Los Angeles, CA
It all depends on how likely it is that you're ever going to really need it - "remote camp and mostly moderate trails", you may never need it.

But if by chance you ever do find yourself alone, remote, and stuck (even just in the mud), the $1,400 9.5XP is going to seem like a very wise investment at that time.

My own philosophy is this: find somewhere else to economize; for anything upon which my life may depend (tires, brakes, safety [including recovery] equipment), I buy the best that I can afford. If I can't afford them, I save up until I can. YMMV.

One more thing: look for a used quality winch. You can rebuild a Warn yourself, and save some coin. My favorite winch ever is still the 42-year-old Warn 8274 I bought used for a few hundred dollars and rebuilt myself.
I guess the XP is good insurance as they say! Pretty much every mod on these rigs is ~$1,000+/- Haha. Hard to economize...

I will second shopping for a good used Warn.
My winch is also a cheap 8274 that i resto'd.
I've been surfing local Craigslist for some time...Would love to find a good used one!


Man....as sweet as your Cruiser is....it deserves nothing but the best.
Thanks Flint! I guess the XP is the way to go you're saying? :)
 

flintknapper

SILVER Star
Joined
May 22, 2004
Messages
7,598
Location
Deep East Texas
 
 
 
Thanks Flint! I guess the XP is the way to go you're saying? :)
^^^^^

It's very much up to you, your finances and purpose for the winch. But you have an exceptionally nice 80 series (which I assume you plan to keep for a long time) so IMO it deserves the best quality winch. One you won't be disappointed in the first time you REALLY need to make a hard pull (for you or someone else).

I admit to being a bit of a snob when it comes to winches and rifle scopes. But, you'll not often hear anyone that actually goes off road much say "gee I wish I had bought a cheaper, less quality winch". Yeah, I know....here come the comments from the 12K badlanders.
 
Joined
Mar 1, 2015
Messages
524
Location
Oroville, CA
 
I’ll give two enthusiastic thumbs up for the smittybilt XRC 10k on my 80. Purchased on Craigslist brand new for $300. I was sold after my buddy came and pulled me out of the mud in my F250 loaded down with a full load of Oak firewood, uphill! He’s winched for years btw (grew up on the farm, had pulled his tractor out a few times also owned this model and used for a couple years). Waterproof, wireless remote, bought synthetic line, and hid it under stock bumper.
0C4D8353-5498-45CC-90F4-43CA9DAF2FB3.jpeg


first time out on the trail I winched 5 of us out past the last obstacle, snatch blocked up to a rock, and backwards behind me.
 

NorCalFJ100

SILVER Star
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
738
Location
Los Angeles, CA
I’ll give two enthusiastic thumbs up for the smittybilt XRC 10k on my 80. Purchased on Craigslist brand new for $300. I was sold after my buddy came and pulled me out of the mud in my F250 loaded down with a full load of Oak firewood, uphill! He’s winched for years btw (grew up on the farm, had pulled his tractor out a few times also owned this model and used for a couple years). Waterproof, wireless remote, bought synthetic line, and hid it under stock bumper. View attachment 2332810

first time out on the trail I winched 5 of us out past the last obstacle, snatch blocked up to a rock, and backwards behind me.
That is awesome!! It's a little overwhelming making a choice here. I feel like if you ask 10 people you get 10 different answers to which winch! Haha. It does not seem you can beat the Smitybilt for the money.
 
Joined
Apr 14, 2008
Messages
5,632
Location
North of LA California
 
 
@NorCalFJ100
I'm just north of L.A. in SCV and you're welcome to come by and take a look at my winch installs.

I bought a used Warn M12000 for my FJ62 which cost me $600 all said and done. I also bought a used Warn 8274 and rebuilt it for my 4Runner which cost $700 all said and done.

That being said you can find deals on a new M8000 for around $700 to your door which is good enough for basic pulls on an 80 and doubling up line can be used for hard pulls.

Can you tell I like Warn? :D
 

Nottajeep

SILVER Star
Joined
Aug 17, 2008
Messages
3,150
Location
BFE
 
 
The new Warn Evo lineup is pretty sweet.
Hate the China part but as far as specs, it's pound for pound solid.
I have the 10k Evo in the 100 now.

warn EVO vs ZEON.jpg
 

NorCalFJ100

SILVER Star
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
738
Location
Los Angeles, CA
@NorCalFJ100
I'm just north of L.A. in SCV and you're welcome to come by and take a look at my winch installs.

I bought a used Warn M12000 for my FJ62 which cost me $600 all said and done. I also bought a used Warn 8274 and rebuilt it for my 4Runner which cost $700 all said and done.

That being said you can find deals on a new M8000 for around $700 to your door which is good enough for basic pulls on an 80 and doubling up line can be used for hard pulls.

Can you tell I like Warn? :D
That's great! Warn seems to be the goto of course. I am running the Slee Shortbus so there are some limitations to the winch without mods. Besides, I think I will be okay with the M8 or the XP9.5. I will probably just pull the trigger on the 9.5 - Do you make it out to trails around SoCal?
 

pb4ugo

SILVER Star
Joined
May 8, 2006
Messages
1,806
Location
spay-lay-wi-theepi,
 
 
Back in the last century, my 1st winch was a m8000. I used the snot out of that winch, it pulled me and most of the folks I wheeled with thru hundreds of trails. I eventually sold it when I went to a 8274. It has circulated thru multiple friends for yrs and is still around. The biggest draw back was its line capacity. A few times I needed more line. Many yrs later my brother asked me what winch to buy for his son's yj. I did some research, and recommend the xd9.5 mainly because it held more line. It has worked flawlessly, since its purchase. Another consideration is line speed, especially when winding cable in with no load. Ive had many friends in the past buy ramsey and super winches because of money, that were horribly slow, with or without a load. On multiple pull situations, getting folks thru an obstacle can take a long time with a slow winch.
 
Joined
Apr 14, 2008
Messages
5,632
Location
North of LA California
 
 
@NorCalFJ100
We do trails (day trips and weekends) almost every month before the pandemic. We are starting to emerge from our garages with caution.

We have an online meeting this evening. Shoot me a pm if you care to join and hang out from the sidelines to see what we are about.

Edit:
Regarding winch line capacity. I run synthetic and carry a spare synthetic extension. The spare has two purposes. It lets me reach out and get to the right trees or truck and also acts as a spare winch line if I snap mine.

I can wind in the new line in less than 15 mins and be back up and operating.

Additional Edit:
Splicing a winch line in the field is a pain in the ass. Splicing used line is very difficult.
 
Last edited:
Top Bottom