What Is A Hawse Fairlead – Types & Benefits In 2023

A Hawse Fairlead is a structural arrangement tool/component, which transfers mechanical motion to the hydraulic steering system while keeping the bulkhead from moving sideways or vertically.

They are used in many mechanical applications, but the most common tool in which it is used is a winch.

Hawse fairlead is used with synthetic rope winches, which operate in many different applications.

Synthetic rope winches operate on synthetic rope, and they have some benefits over steel wire rope winches.

Hawse fairlead is a supportive component of a winch that helps the operation of the winch by not interfering with its movement. It will save you from additional labor in operating it.

The performance of a hawse fairlead in a synthetic rope winch depends on how well it is structured.

Different types of winch structures give the hawse fairlead extra strength and help it stay out of disturbance during a violent operation.

This thesis provides an analysis of all major components of hawse fairlead structure and explains how each component works together to maintain stability and prevent disruption during its operation.

How Hawse Fairlead Are Installed

Hawse fairleads can be installed easily if you know how to put them together; however, they need more effort to disassemble.

They are often called again by your vessel’s crews when there is a need for inspection or maintenance. The installment procedure for hawse fairlead will vary from different vessels, but generally, there are four types of structures that we will examine here

Different Types Of Structures Hawse Fairlead

  1. With holes
  2. With Slots
  3. With vertical beams
  4. With Horizontal beams

1. With Holes

If you don’t know how to make a good work platform for welding, this type of installation will be perfect.

Hawse Fairlead with holes
Source: factor55

A simple approach is that holes can be made into the sides of the hawse fairlead that allow welding cables to run through them.

They also come with “stress-bearing channels,” which provide additional stability to the structure.

It’s pretty easy to build these installations because it only requires putting 2 “hooks” at either side of the vessel’s stern or midship section and running welding cables through them.

The opening width between the two hooks should be large enough to allow your hawse fairlead to fit through it, as long as you use appropriate thickness for the width of the opening.

Then all you need to do is drill holes for welding cables through them. These installations don’t have very much resistance against torsion forces.

But they provide a lot of protection against vibrations, and thus this is an easy process to install.

2. With Slots

Hawse Fairlead With Slots
Source: ebay

Hawse Fairleads can be installed easily by inserting vertical or horizontal beams in their ends through slots made in the ship’s hull or its bottom.

So, if you want to use a platform with no rails, then this installation will be a perfect solution for you.

It makes it easy to install hawse fairlead into winches and boats made in such a way that they allow cable movement but without using rail systems or providing spaces for those rails

3. With A Vertical Beam

With A Vertical Beam
Source: international.warn

This installation makes it easy to install hawse fairlead and attach winches, boat anchors, electric cables.

And all other components which move around freely on ships but need a stable platform.

The vertical beam has an extension attached to it so that it’s quite simple to secure them with nuts & and bolts, threaded rods, etc.

It also comes with suitable angles for stacking when needed. In any case, your options are practically unlimited when it comes to installing a hawse fairlead in your boat or winch.

4. With Horizontal Beams

You can use the horizontal beam installation process to install hawse fairlead onto all your heavy equipment.

Which requires good mobility onboard a ship, such as boat anchors.

  1. Stern gears
  2. Deck machinery
  3. Generators
  4. Mooring cleats
  5. Steering equipment
  6. Cranes

The idea is that the base plate with horizontal beams would rest on the top of the machine, which has the anchor/cable reel on top of it.

You will need some clearance from the surface where the horizontal beams are placed. So, you should not put too much weight on them.

Also, remember that your working area must be stable enough for this type of work. The combination of horizontal beams and an elevated deck or hull platform will make this job easier for you.

Benefits Of Using Hawse Fairlead:

  1. Hawse fairlead has several advantages when compared to ordinary winch fairlead or various types of rollers:
  2. The cable angle remains open for 90 degrees on both sides. This allows smooth, free movement of the cable at any position along its path.
  3. Hawse fairlead features sliding bearings, which help prevent vibration from uneven tensioning of cables. And helps them in rolling out easily from their barrels.
  4. Unlike ordinary fairlead, there is no resistance between moving parts due to balls or roller bearings, so friction loss is minimized, resulting in faster speed & greater energy efficiency.
  5. Maintenance costs are lowered because friction between rollers & balls is almost eliminated; this helps extend the lifetime of these parts and improves overall working performance.
  6. Hawse’s overall benefits are evident immediately after installation. Less fuel consumption, reduced oil usage, better power output. Less risk of costly breakdowns due to broken cables or tangled drums, and many more.


Hawse fairlead significantly reduces the friction and aggression of synthetic ropes resulting in lower noise & lessened wear & increased service life.

They help achieve high operational efficiency by minimizing drag, increasing speeds, and easing maintenance costs.

It has good durability as well as excellent abrasion resistance properties. Compared to traditional rollers, it reduces rope twists by 30%.

While providing 15% greater pull capacity than standard fairlead or pulley systems. As far as investment cost is concerned, they are inexpensive & can be made with locally available material & techniques.

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