Winch Cables

Selecting Winch Rope: The Upside and Downside of Steel Winch Cable
First, wire rope or cable is cheap and it is less subject to abrasion than is its newer synthetic cousin. It's also heat resistant. The heat generated by the braking system in planetary gear driven winches can pose a problem for synthetic winch rope.

3/PK Steel Wire Winch Rope Cable 10mm x 28m w 3/4" D-Ring &3/8" Clevis Slip Hook
3/PK Steel Wire Winch Rope Cable 10mm x 28m w 3/4 $71.01
Time Remaining: 29d 15h 41m
Buy It Now for only: $71.01
Galvanised Steel Wire Winch Rope Cable,10mm x 28m,12000lb Rope Wire Replacemen
Galvanised Steel Wire Winch Rope Cable,10mm x 28m,12000lb Rope Wire Replacemen $71.01
Time Remaining: 21d 12h 39m
Buy It Now for only: $71.01
Red Dyneema Winch Rope,Synthetic Cable 10mmx30m &G70 Clevis Slip Hook with Latch
Red Dyneema Winch Rope,Synthetic Cable 10mmx30m &G70 Clevis Slip Hook with Latch $78.11
Time Remaining: 17d 15h 40m
Buy It Now for only: $78.11
Dyneema Winch Rope Synthetic Cable 10mm x 30m&G70 Clevis Slip Hook with Latch
Dyneema Winch Rope Synthetic Cable 10mm x 30m&G70 Clevis Slip Hook with Latch $78.11
Time Remaining: 17d 15h 40m
Buy It Now for only: $78.11
EIP WINCH CABLE 5/16" X 150' BRAND NEW OFF ROAD OVERLAND 4X4
EIP WINCH CABLE 5/16 $99.00
Time Remaining: 23d 6h 25m
Buy It Now for only: $99.00
Reese Towpower Portable Electric Remote Volt Ball Winch Boat Truck Trailer Cable
Reese Towpower Portable Electric Remote Volt Ball Winch Boat Truck Trailer Cable $92.58
Time Remaining: 19d 5h 26m
Buy It Now for only: $92.58
Winch Rope Synthetic Dyneema 10mm x 30m Car Tow Recovery Offroad 4WD Cable-45931
Winch Rope Synthetic Dyneema 10mm x 30m Car Tow Recovery Offroad 4WD Cable-45931 $71.01
Time Remaining: 5d 22h 4m
Buy It Now for only: $71.01
Blue Dyneema Winch Rope,Synthetic Cable 9mm x 30m 4WD Recovery Offroad-45958
Blue Dyneema Winch Rope,Synthetic Cable 9mm x 30m 4WD Recovery Offroad-45958 $71.01
Time Remaining: 7d 26m
Buy It Now for only: $71.01
Winch Rope Synthetic Dyneema 10mm x 30m Car Tow Recovery Offroad 4WD Cable-45938
Winch Rope Synthetic Dyneema 10mm x 30m Car Tow Recovery Offroad 4WD Cable-45938 $71.01
Time Remaining: 7d 26m
Buy It Now for only: $71.01
Winch Rope Synthetic Dyneema 10mm x 30m Car Tow Recovery Offroad 4WD Cable-45933
Winch Rope Synthetic Dyneema 10mm x 30m Car Tow Recovery Offroad 4WD Cable-45933 $71.01
Time Remaining: 26d 18h 31m
Buy It Now for only: $71.01
EIP WINCH CABLE 3/8" X 100' BRAND NEW OFF ROAD OVERLAND 4X4
EIP WINCH CABLE 3/8 $89.00
Time Remaining: 23d 6h 26m
Buy It Now for only: $89.00
Rugged Ridge Synthetic Winch Cable 1510231
Rugged Ridge Synthetic Winch Cable 1510231 $99.99
Time Remaining: 22d 23h 35m
Buy It Now for only: $99.99
10mm 3/8" inch x 100' 30M gray Synthetic Dyneema Winch Rope Cable recovery 4WD
10mm 3/8 $99.80
Time Remaining: 17d 14m
Buy It Now for only: $99.80
EIP WINCH CABLE 5/16" X 125' BRAND NEW OFF ROAD OVERLAND 4X4
EIP WINCH CABLE 5/16 $79.00
Time Remaining: 23d 6h 22m
Buy It Now for only: $79.00
Smittybilt Winch Cable 97281-41
Smittybilt Winch Cable 97281-41 $91.99
Time Remaining: 23d 23h 45m
Buy It Now for only: $91.99
WARN 88528 Industrial Remote Control Cable 12" Wire Winch 12 15 18 Series #146
WARN 88528 Industrial Remote Control Cable 12 $89.00
Time Remaining: 17d 18h 15m
Buy It Now for only: $89.00
ECCPP 3000LBS Electric Winch Towing Truck Trailer 12M Steel Cable Off Road 12V
ECCPP 3000LBS Electric Winch Towing Truck Trailer 12M Steel Cable Off Road 12V $99.99
Time Remaining: 28d 14h 45m
Buy It Now for only: $99.99
3500LBS Electric 12V Winch ATV Trailer Towing Truck UTV Steel Cable Off Road 4WD
3500LBS Electric 12V Winch ATV Trailer Towing Truck UTV Steel Cable Off Road 4WD $99.90
Time Remaining: 13h 19m
Buy It Now for only: $99.90
ORCISH 3500LB Electric Winch ATV UTV Offroad Waterproof Boat Steel Cable Kits
ORCISH 3500LB Electric Winch ATV UTV Offroad Waterproof Boat Steel Cable Kits $99.90
Time Remaining: 3d 22h 42m
Buy It Now for only: $99.90
3500LB ATV Winch UTV 12V Electric Wireless Remote Boat Steel Cable Off-road 4WD
3500LB ATV Winch UTV 12V Electric Wireless Remote Boat Steel Cable Off-road 4WD $99.90
Time Remaining: 6d 15h 56m
Buy It Now for only: $99.90
On the downside, wire rope is heavy and the individual wire strands frequently fray leading to potentially serious injury to the hands of the winch operator, even with gloves on. In addition, wire winch cable can be difficult to respool, kinking up along the way. It also gets very cold to the touch during winter operation and it can rust and stretch out with repeated use. But most significantly, wire rope actually stores energy and if it snaps during winching the recoil can produce devastating results.

If you are a newcomer to the off road world you may have wondered why you've seen what appears to be car floor mats draped over wire cable in some of the pictures and videos of winches in operation. That's why they are there: to minimize the recoil snapping effect of a cable that breaks under stress.