First of all there is all kinds of danger here, as anonymous pointed out, with the real risk of someone getting hurt as a result of a moment's inattention. As I've already discovered, that winch is capable of bending a manly sized shackle like it's made of cheese.
My understanding of how this works to recover the anchor is as follows:
- Ensure the clutch is disengaged.
- Crank up the Lister engine.
- Engage the gypsy dogs using some clutch.
- Engage more clutch while releasing the brake.
- Haul in the anchor chain slightly using the clutch.
- Engage the brake, with the clutch slipping so the engine does not stall.
- Release the claw thingie when the weight is taken off it. Ensure its out of the way.
- Release the break and fully engage clutch. Use the accelerator if necessary.
- While hauling up on the chain, ensure the chain is flaked out in the chain box below to prevent deployment issues later.
- When the anchor is near its resting place, slow down proceedings using the accelerator and easing off the clutch.
- Ensure anchor is going into the hawse pipe the right way up, using the clutch to slow progress.
- With the anchor neatly in the hawse pipe, apply the brake well with the clutch slipping.
- After applying the brake, put the claw thingie onto the chain, to stop it running back out.
- Release the clutch completely, so the weight of the anchor is on the brake.
- Slowly ease off the brake, so the chain feeds out slightly and the weight of the anchor is now on the claw.
- Tighten up the brake.
- Release the gypsy dogs, so the warping drums or other anchor can be used.
- Shut down the Lister engine.
Thinking this through, I see now that my issue is with a clutch that is not working. If this was working, I suspect the windlass would rotate under load when the clutch is disengaged.
That's the theory anyway, I suspect this will take some careful practice.