Hi, I’m Alfred and I’m a….

Today I played with my latest winch purchase.

Trewhella Brothers built some amazing winches and from what I can discover the Monkey (stump puller) winch was very well thought of in both timber work and heavy haulage. However, its one failing that preventing it from being adopted by the military was that it can not safely release a load without the same amount of muscle power used to apply it.

This is my first Trewhella Monkey Winch. It is rusted absolutely solid and no amount of WD40 and heat has so far managed to free it up.

My elderly lump of solid rust formally known as a Monkey Winch!

The Wallaby winch was its replacement with an unloaded release mechanism. This made it safe to release a load without the winch rope running away.

The Wallably is a little lighter in weight then the Monkey and more compact. It does, however, use a similar winch drum and ratcheting mechanism and so should have an equivalent reserve of hauling ability.

My first task after unloading it from the car was a quick inspection. I good squirt of WD40 all over the moving parts ensure it all moved freely. The cable was loose on the drum and tangled so I worked it all around, freewheeling the drum, and pulling out the rope. The rope is about 10m long with special hook on the end.

I then rewound the rope, checking it as I went, and also checking the ratcheting mechanism all functioned as it should. All was good. There were no loose of damaged strands  in the rope, and just some expected kinks at the hook end.

The huge hook is rather special, it allows the hook to be safely hooked back onto the rope without damage. This is not usually recommended with wire rope and an ordinary hook.

So, what am I going to do with the Wallaby?

It will be used where I need a strong winch for tree felling, bragging rights, ornamentation…
Well, you know how it is!
It will also be useful for identifying the rusted parts of the ratchet on the Monkey Winch which are beyond saving, should replacements need to be made up.

Update (Feb 2022):

For those interested, I still haven’t managed to free up the rusty Monkey winch. WD40 and heat haven’t made any difference and I am wondering if it is a partially lost cause. In the meantime I did also find a second Wallaby winch and so I now own that too!

But in order to satisfy my desire to own one that works I managed to buy another Monkey winch.

A big manual mechanical winch with a big cable drum and two wheels. It is painted orange.
My working Monkey Winch.

I have also found that I have had a Trewhella snatch (pulley) block hidden away for a long time. It is rusty but sound and I hope to be able to clean that up and make it free running.

A close up of a big rusty pulley block. The pulley is about 10 inches, or 250mm diameter.
I have had one of these for years, and didn’t realise it is a Trewhella.

I then found that it should come with the cable gripper (cable shortening wedge) and a coil of cable. This is what the gripper looks like and I want to find one. No luck so far, sadly.

A close up of the cable shortening wedge. device. It is about 10 inches or 250mm wide and 20 inches or 500mm long. There is a cble passed around the wedge to show how it is used.
I want one of these.
A big rusty pulley block and a rusty 'horse shoe' shaped cable shortening wedge.
I found this image online.

This shows how the winch, pulley, and gripper is used with a length of pull cable. It is from the booklet linked to at the bottom of the page.

Page three from the booklet on how to use the Monkey Winch shows a diagram of how to set up the winch to pull a tree. The diagram shows the has the following text : Here is a “close up”, showing the relation of the Snatch Block and Grab to each other, with the drum rope leaving to the left and pull rope to right. Note how this Pull Rope, carrying the strain, comes from under the curved rib on long side of gripper. This is correct fixing and is absolutely necessary to avoid damaging ropes. This sketch shows exactly how the equipment will appear when correctly set.  There is more text explaning the use of the winch.
Page three from the book linked to below.

For the pull cable that would be used with the gripper I will remove the cable from the rusted Monkey Winch. It will have the right hook on the end and save me buying a massive cable.

I am still getting a lot of interest in this post and I really know very little more about these winches other then what I can find online.
You can find some more information at this link about the use of the Trewhella Monkey Winch. This is where most of my knowledge came from.

I am not an expert on Monkey winches (or any other winches), nor do I buy or sell them. I only collect for my own interest and hobby use.

I am happy to chat about them, and to learn more about Trewhella Brothers and their tree pulling equipment, but I don’t have a lot of time due to work. Also aside from that I am not really much help with them.

Thank you.

12 thoughts on “Hi, I’m Alfred and I’m a….”

  1. Hi Alfred
    I’m lucky to have a monkey winch myself
    which had been in a friends container for
    about 10 years but I managed to collect it
    the other day. My late father was Trewhella’s
    accountant for many years and himself and Peter ( the owner) were great friends.
    I’m just in the process of stripping it down and will repaint it as soon as I can get the drum axle/spindle off …..😬.
    You are making some great stuff , keep up the good work.
    I’ll send you a photo of the Winch when it’s
    finished .

    1. Hello Steve,
      Thank you for your comment. Things have been so busy in the workshop that I haven’t had time to do much with my monkey winch (or keep up with my website), other then to keep spraying with WD40.
      It would be good to hear how you are getting on with yours, and if/how you managed to get the drum off the spindle.

      1. Hi,Alfred my name is Sam im looking for a good working monkey winch or a good racket winch to pull tree’s do u have one for sale if so can i email me at sam malloy 1968@gmail .com

        1. Sorry Sam, no, I have a small collection of winches for my own use and interest only.

      2. Hi, I have a trewhella winch myself. Noticed you are missing the cable shortener and pulley that goes with it. Should have at least 100 feet of cable to pull trees down. The only accessory I’m missing is the stump hook.

        1. Hi Peter,
          I do have the pulley, actually the first Trewhella part I found. It is a little rusty and needs to be freed as it has seized up in storage for best part of 20 years.
          I an still looking for the cable shortener and cable, but I could just buy new cable as I have a good hook on my ‘pile of rust’ winch that may well be too far gone to restore.
          Having two Wallaby winches, and now two Monkey winches, seems to have satisfied my winch habit, at least for the time being.
          I’ve not seen a stump hook anywhere. Must keep an eye out for one.

    1. Hi Sam, As I responded before, No, I only have a small collection of winches for my own interest only.
      Have a look on EBay and search for Trewhella. There is a Wallaby winch for sale there ending 28th July 2019. Where do I send the invoice for my finder’s fee?

  2. Hello Alfred, I have recently discovered My fathers old winch which is plated bratt colbran 1945 so I presume it is not a trewhella but I cant find much information on this, would you have any information please?
    Thank you

  3. Alfred i can remember as a kid about 7 or 8 years my Dad pulling Gum Trees down with these winches, Thanks for bringing back some fond memories for me.

Comments are closed.