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The Best Ratchets & Pawls - 2021

Last updated on September 22, 2021
Best Ratchets & Pawls

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Our Picks For The Top Ratchets & Pawls

Show Contents
Our Take
  Top Pick

AC-DK Manual Two-Way Ratchet & Safety Pawl

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

AC-DK

Manual Two-Way Ratchet & Safety Pawl

Overall Take

Heavy-Duty; Dual-DirectionThis product is made with hardened steel and a two-way ratchet pawl allows for easy reeling.

  Runner Up

Proto 1/2-Inch Plastic Ratchet Repair Kit

Proto

1/2-Inch Plastic Ratchet Repair Kit

Overall Take

Multipurpose Fix-AllUse this kit to repair a 1/2-inch drive ratchet without having to spring for a costly replacement.

  We Also Like

ShoppingOnBed Hand-Crank Ratchet & Saftey Pawl

ShoppingOnBed

Hand-Crank Ratchet & Saftey Pawl

Overall Take

Steel Wire Hand ToolThis heavy-duty, manually-operated winch ratchet is perfect for easily handling moderate loads.

  Strong Contender

S7 Dual-Direction Manual Ratchet & Safety Pawl

S7

Dual-Direction Manual Ratchet & Safety Pawl

Overall Take

Steel Wire; Two-WayThis two-way steel ratchet winch makes it easy to relocate equipment and machinery.

Avatar
Guide written by Danielle Smyth
Last updated on September 22, 2021

Depending on the kinds of projects you take on around the house, you might get good use out of a ratchet, winch or pawl. A ratchet is any mechanical tool used to provide linear motion around a fixed point in one direction while stopping movement in the opposite direction. This term is often used when people are referring specifically to ratcheting socket wrenches. However, a ratchet can also be a winch, which is discussed in more detail below.

A pawl is a pivoted and curved bar that allows a ratchet to spin in one direction. Its end meets and engages with the edge of the ratchet or a cog to permit linear movement but prevents movement the other way.

Related to these are winches, which consist of a rope or cable, a pawl and a rotating drum. They allow you to lift items or simply adjust the tension on the rope or cable by turning the handle. A pawl is at the heart of any winch, as it prevents the drum from spinning backyard, just as it would in a ratchet.

Most hand-crank winches are mountable assemblies that contain a ratchet (a hand crank installed at a certain gear ratio for ease of turning) and a mooring hook with a safety pawl so that you can hang on to significant loads. These winches are often used to haul equipment, like bikes, canoes and lawn equipment, either up to the top of a barn or garage or onto a platform for transportation.

Two-way or reversible winch sets can both load and unload an item easily with a small adjustment to the assembly; this makes the process much easier than having to switch handles or sides to alternate functions.

The Best Ratchets & Pawls

1
  Top Pick

AC-DK Manual Two-Way Ratchet & Safety Pawl

This hand winch can be used to pull up to 1,600 pounds and works well for towing heavy objects, such as boats or lawn equipment. The polyester strap is 26 feet long and has two carefully designed anti-slip handles for easy, fatigue-free manual use.

Features


Specifications

Brand
AC-DK
Model
2
  Runner Up

Proto 1/2-Inch Plastic Ratchet Repair Kit

This repair kit is designed for a 1/2-inch drive and contains replacement parts for the Stanley Proto J5449 ratchet. The kit consists of standard-length pear head ratchets and related parts made with a black oxide finish. It'll work with other brands.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Proto
Model
3
  We Also Like

ShoppingOnBed Hand-Crank Ratchet & Saftey Pawl

Carbon steel gears and a 26-foot steel rope make up this heavy-duty, wear-resistant hand crank ratchet that can pull up to 600 pounds (a larger capacity version is also available). Crank in either forward or reverse using a comfortable handle.

Features


Specifications

Brand
ShoppingOnBed
Model
4
  Strong Contender

S7 Dual-Direction Manual Ratchet & Safety Pawl

With 800 pounds of capacity and heat-treated carbon steel, this weather-resistant hand winch comes with a 32.8 feet steel rope. The setup allows forward and backward ratcheting with an easy-turn handle. It's also simple to set up.

Features


Specifications

Brand
S7
Model
5
  Also Great

LavaLock Santa Maria & Argentinian Style Grill Ratchets & Pawls

Add a ratchet and pawl gear to a handle assembly for your Argentine or gaucho grill build with this plasma-cut steel set. This kit can be used with any 1/2 inch bar or square tube. You may need to adjust it according to your mounting needs.

Features


Specifications

Brand
LavaLock
Model

Our Ratchet & Pawl Buying Guide

Depending on the kinds of projects you take on around the house, you might get good use out of a ratchet, winch or pawl. A ratchet is any mechanical tool used to provide linear motion around a fixed point in one direction while stopping movement in the opposite direction. This term is often used when people are referring specifically to ratcheting socket wrenches. However, a ratchet can also be a winch, which is discussed in more detail below.

A pawl is a pivoted and curved bar that allows a ratchet to spin in one direction. Its end meets and engages with the edge of the ratchet or a cog to permit linear movement but prevents movement the other way.

Related to these are winches, which consist of a rope or cable, a pawl and a rotating drum. They allow you to lift items or simply adjust the tension on the rope or cable by turning the handle. A pawl is at the heart of any winch, as it prevents the drum from spinning backyard, just as it would in a ratchet.

Most hand-crank winches are mountable assemblies that contain a ratchet (a hand crank installed at a certain gear ratio for ease of turning) and a mooring hook with a safety pawl so that you can hang on to significant loads. These winches are often used to haul equipment, like bikes, canoes and lawn equipment, either up to the top of a barn or garage or onto a platform for transportation.

Two-way or reversible winch sets can both load and unload an item easily with a small adjustment to the assembly; this makes the process much easier than having to switch handles or sides to alternate functions.

DWYM Fun Fact

The earliest known use of winch technology was recorded during the Persian Wars by Herodotus of Halicarnassus. Wooden winches were used to tighten the cables of a bridge over the Hellespont (now the Dardanelles, which links the Aegean Sea with the Sea of Marmara) in 480 B.C.E.

Evidence suggests that the Abyssinians actually invented the winch in the 5th century B.C.E. By the 4th century, had become common construction tools.

The Ratchet & Pawl Tips and Advice

  • When buying a ratchet or pawl, be sure it will coordinate with tools you already have. This is especially important if you’re buying pieces for an existing winch setup.
  • The gear ratio helps to determine how easy a winch is to hand-crank.
  • The length and construction of the hand crank on a winch also determines how easy it is to wind. If you suffer from chronic pain or weak joints, look for a model designed with a higher length and ratio.
  • You may need steel rope or a high-quality strap for a winch, so check the weight ratings on both before you buy.