Following a chance conversation between the First Officer of a superyacht and a member of the Harken UK team, the need for a safer way of quickly and easily providing access to navigation masts and other difficult top access points on superyachts and commercial vessels became apparent. Tasks such as maintaining nav and deck lighting, as well as a growing array of CCTV cameras, antennae, and satellite dishes prompted the Harken team to think of how they could improve access throughout a vessel at sea and with it improve crew safety.
With many years’ experience aboard ocean-going superyachts, Harken team member Geoffrey Van Wyk was quick to spot what was essential to creating a kit that would improve both safety at sea and efficiency. “We at Harken are constantly working to improve the safety of crew on superyachts as well as in the industrial sector where working at height is no exception and safety should never be taken for granted.”
“The first challenge was having a winch in the right place, at the right time, and one that could be easily taken away after use..”
“For me there was only one choice—the Harken LokHead winch kit. Its easy-to-use mounting bracket system lets you quickly and easily attach and detach where needed. You are also able to mount the winch so it can be used by a right-handed or left- handed person. The captive head with its encapsulating jaw cover enables the winch to be used safely, while virtually eliminating the chance of accidental release; its finger-tip control of the braking system makes precise positioning on the job easy, while ensuring a safe and controlled descent.”
The Harken LokHead winch comes paired with EN certified 57 mm Black Magic® blocks. Aside from the load-handling capability, the purpose for using these blocks is the open body frame which makes it easier to flush with fresh water to eliminate salt build up,. The safety rope supplied with the kit is 11 mm EN1891B which is certified for human suspension. Both lengths of rope are taken down after use and reinstalled before use by means of a mousing line which is left in its place. “Of the two lengths of rope we’ve put in the kit, one is the primary line and the other is the secondary back-up line. The system is supplied complete with a harness, back-up safety device and extension sling, all of which will be stowed away in a Harken compact bag. The Harken LokHead Winch Kit comes supplied with its own hard case.”
Initial customer feedback on the Harken Navigation Climbing kit, indicates there are many potential applications such as the servicing, maintaining, and cleaning of all equipment attached to Nav Masts, especially in those hard to reach areas.
For full details on the Harken Nav’ Mast Climbing kit click here
Geoff Vanwyk is Technical Sales Engineer at Harken UK
NB The Harken Nav Mast Climbing Kit is initially available through Harken UK only.