How To Attach Cable To Winch Drum? Step-by-Step Guide

Winches have become the need of every person, whether he is a professional or an off-road traveler. It is a must-have power tool installed on your vehicles. This power tool is handy when pulling heavy objects, as these winches are specially designed to pull things. Many professionals use these winches on construction and industry sites.

Installing a winch is accessible only if you know the proper way or are a professional. The process is straightforward, but when it comes to attaching or replacing the wire from the winch drum, it’s a challenging task to do as this process is dangerous and requires the worker to follow all the safety precautions before starting the attaching process. In this article, we have explained all the protection you must consider and how to attach cable to the winch drum properly.

Safety Precautions

Before installing a winch or attaching and replacing the wire of the winch, it is essential that you must consider all the safety precautions and follow the proper user manual guide for proper installation and to protect yourself from any injury.

If safety precautions are not considered before attaching the wire to the winch drum, then your hand can get crushed because of the powerful force of the winch. It is highly recommended that you follow safety precautions.

Whenever you want to attach a new synthetic cable or steel wire to the winch drum, it is imperative that you wear solid, heavy-duty gloves. These solid gloves will protect your hands from any injury and ensure a proper and safe wire attachment process. 

Wearing heavy-duty gloves is essential as this reduces the chance of your hand getting crushed between the wire and the drum because when this accident is about to happen, the wire and drum will first face your gloves, giving you enough time to pull your hand out of the situation.

How To Attach Cable To Winch Drum?

Installing and attaching the cable depends on the model of the winch and what type of cable you will use, like synthetic rope and steel wire. Both of these cables are very reliable and can last years without breaking. First of all, before starting the process, it is essential that you get the required length of the cable, which is going to be wind over the winch drum. The length of the line will depend on the capacity of the winch. It is the type of winch you have, whether a manual winch or an electric motor winch.

Attach The Wire

To attach the cable, you have to find the release lever over the winch drum; this release lever will be located over the side plates of the drum, so check both sides of the drum properly. Once you have found the release lever, open it, and after opening the release lever, it will automatically open the wire clamp jaws over the side of the drum where the cable is inserted.

Properly press one of the ends of the cable and trace the wire from the top of the winch drum toward the rear end of the drum. Once the wire reaches the winch’s rear, insert it into the clamp jaws, then pull the release lever back to its original position. This will close the clamp jaws, and the end of the wire will be fixed properly.

Start Winding The Cable

After inserting the wire into the drum, it is time to start winding the cable over the winch drum. For correct winding, it is essential that you hold the wire with your hands to guide the wire onto the spool; remember to wear heavy-duty gloves so your hands can be protected. Start to wind the wire from where you inserted the wire in the drum to the other side of the drum and ensure the wire does not overlap the loops.

Maintain proper and satisfactory looping until the wire reaches the other side of the drum; once it gets to the other side, start to wind the wire over the first layer of the cable while the second layer carefully wraps the wire so that it does not overlap the other wire. Do this repeatedly, make proper layers and do not let the cables overlap; the only overlapping should be when a new layer starts. Except for this overlapping point, there should be no other point where the wire overlaps each other.


Attaching a cable or a wire to a winch drum is a very easy process only if you know how to do it; otherwise, you can hurt yourself. Before starting, you must decide what cable you want to attach to your drum, whether synthetic rope or steel.

Both cables are considered the best in quality and durability, but many professionals recommend going with synthetic rope instead of steel wire, but the choice is yours. Attaching the cable requires proper preparation. You need to follow all safety precautions before starting the process; heavy-duty gloves are necessary to keep your hands safe.


How much cable should I wind over the winch drum?

Winding the cable over the winch drum depends on the manufacturer’s advice or your personal preference. Still, it is highly recommended that you wind an extra 20 feet of wire or cable that might come in handy. Winding extra wire over the drum will ensure you can handle any situation and surprise.

Why should I wear heavy-duty gloves when winding the wire?

You must wear these heavy-duty gloves to stay safe and safely wind the rope over the winch drum. In manual winches, you can easily handle the wind speed of the winches, but in the case of electric winches, the wind speed is breakneck because of the motor, and if you are not wearing gloves, this can lead to serious injury. It is highly recommended to follow all the safety precautions whether you are winding wire over a manual or electric winch.

How can you attach synthetic rope with a winch drum?

There are two ways to attach a synthetic rope with a winch drum; one is that you can use a Rope Grabber, which is a double-sided tape wire grabber, and this is one of the most used grabbers in winches as this can fit all kinds of winches and their models. The second one is the Allen screw, which can secure one end of the winch wire on the side of the drum, and this is one of the best methods of attaching synthetic ropes to the drum.

What is the easiest method to attach a steel cable with a drum?

There are several ways of attaching steel wire to a drum, but one of the most efficient ways is to insert the wire in clamp jaws that firmly hold the cable. The other ways are also effective, like the Allen head screw method, but clamp jaw is the simple method of attaching the wire.

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