Spinlock clutches and jammers

Spinlock clutches, cleats and jammers are the best rope holding hardware you can choose for your sailing yacht.

Spinlock clutches and jammersSpinlock cleatsSpinlock service and maintenance kits, spare parts

Spinlock clutches and jammers - How to select the right one?

It's not very easy to select the right clutch for your boat. The forces on the clutch depend on the type of boat you have, type of sail cloth, type of halyard and the way you sail your boat. A racer will always have a higher demand on his clutch then your average cruiser. Keep these points in mind when you select your Spinlock clutch:

Always choose the thickest halyard for your type of clutch

Every clutch had the most holding power at the maximum diameter. If you have a halyard of 8mm for example, please make sure your clutch is has a maximum size of 8mm. If not, you can change the cam to a size smaller with these kits. If your halyard starts to slip in the clutch it will wear up very quickly.

Rope cover in combination with aluminum or ceramic cam

The combination of rope cover and cam material is a critical one. Only the Spinlock Powerclutches XX come standard with a ceramic coated cam. We advise to use a rope with a Technora cover for these, as a polyester cover will wear out too fast. TN-Racing is a great halyard. A more economic solution is to splice a piece of TN-Cover over your halyard. All other Spinlock clutches have an aluminum cam and can deal with all covers. If you want to upgrade the grip, the XTS, XTR and XCS clutches can be upgraded to a ceramic cam. 

Upgrade halyards from polyester to Dyneema core

We recommend having halyards with a core of HMPE fibres, such as Dyneema® or Stirotex on your boat. Dyneema® does not stretch and does great things to the performance of your sailing boat. When ever you are using polyester halyards your sails might start to sag in a puff which isn't great for the performance and fun of sailing. But if you use Dyneema® halyards all the forces will come down to your clutch, please keep this in mind when changing from polyester to Dyneema®.

Inspect the cams of clutches regularly

Check your clutch at least once a year. Especially the cam because an old worn-out cam will cut your halyard pretty quickly. We sell Spinlock service kits with spare cams. Replacing the cam of a clutch is pretty easy. 

Forces on your clutch

On a windy day the loads on your clutch can become pretty high. How high depends on the type of boat, type of sails and type of halyard you have. There is a simple formula to calculate the loads on your clutch, however this formula is only an indication. Read more information on breaking loads on halyards and sheets here.

Formula:  Maximum load = 30 x size of your sail*

* Use 13 x for a spinnaker

Select the right clutch for your boat:

Spinlock clutches overview of types


XAS Clutch

Suitable for: Racers up to 27' and cruisers up to 34'
Rope thickness:

4-8mm (max. load of 450 kg at 8mm)
6-12mm (max. load of 575 kg at 12mm)

The choice of boats up till 34' and suitable in all weather. This clutch is available in up to 5 sizes. If you are a racer over 27' we suggest the XTR clutch. Mountable on port and starboard. Always use the maximum rope thickness for maximum holding power. The XAS Clutch has interchangeable cams for thicker or thinner halyards. Visit our Splinlock XAS clutches.


XTS Clutch or XTR Clutch

Suitable for: Racers up to 34’ and cruisers up to 40’
Rope thickness:

6-10mm (max. load of 700 kg at 10mm)
8-14mm (max. load of 1000 kg at 14mm)

Recommended halyard:

Polyester cover with Dyneema® core (D-cup, D-Performance or S-Cup).

For better grip add a loose Technora cover over your halyard. With a Techora cover, it is also posssible to further upgrade these clutches to a cam with ceramic coated jaws. 

The XTS Clutch is a reliable all-round clutch. The XTR Clutch is an improved version of the XTS Clutch. The XTR is 30% lighter than the older XTS and available in black, white and silver. These clutches are the standard on most production boats around the world and has a great holding power. The handle of the clutch is easy accessible for good boathandling. Available in 5 different sizes and mountable on port or starboard.

Always use the max. rope thickness for maximum holding power. The cams on these clutches are interchangeable to maximise performance.

Are you a racer close to 34' and have high demands on your clutch, then choose the XCS Clutch. This is the same as the XTS Clutch but has an aluminum housing.


XCS Clutch

Suitable for: Racers up to 37' and cruisers up to 42'
Rope Thickness:

8-14mm (max. load of 1200 kg at 14mm)
12-16mm (max. load of 1400 kg at 16mm)

Recommended halyard:

Polyester cover with Dyneema® core (D-cup, D-Performance or S-Cup)

For better grip add a loose Technora cover over your halyard. With a Techora cover, it is also posssible to further upgrade these clutches to a cam with ceramic coated jaws. 

The XCS Clutch has an aluminum housing but the clutch itself is equal to the XTS Clutch. The aluminum housing gives the clutch 20% more holding power over the XTS. Available in white, black and stainless steel. Mountable on port and starboard.

Are you a racer close to 37' and have high demands of your clutch, choose the XX Clutch instead.


ZR Jammer

Suitable for: Racers up to 40' and cruisers up to 47'
Rope thickness:

10-14mm (max. load of 1500 kg at 14mm)

Recommended halyard: Polyester cover with Dyneema® core (D-cup or S-Cup)

The ZR Jammer is great for high load halyards where little change is necessary, great for furling sails.

Not suitable for: Halyard where tension is changed or thinner ropes.


XX Clutch

Suitable for: Performance boats between 35' and 50'
Rope thickness:

8-12mm (max. load of 1800 kg at 12mm)

Recommended halyard: Technora cover with Dyneema® core (TN-Racing).  Or add loose Technora cover over D-Cup or S-Cup)

The high-end clutch for boats up to 50'. These Spinlock power clutches have ceramic coated jaws. That results in an extreme high holding power and is easy in use. This is the strongest clutch and the the choice for every serious sailor on big boats.