The Department of Defence use on deck joystick operator consoles to control their winches on naval vessels. These extremely heavy duty control station pillars traditionally came directly from the manufacturer either from international ship builders or through the OEM and their exclusive distribution chains.

The current variation of on deck controller was a part of a discontinued production line and was presenting a challenge finding an alternative that would physically fit into the existing winch assemblies and be supported for a vessel that had not reached its service life.

The objective was to find a solution aligned with the specifications of existing equipment, complete local assembly, and perform asset management of plant and equipment to the original equipment manufacturer’s specifications.


Leveltec are the exclusive distributors in Australia and New Zealand of the Spohn + Burkhardt products and services. Through collaboration with the OEM and local manufacturers in Australia and New Zealand, Leveltec were able to provide the Department of Defence with a solution that matched original specifications.

The majority of this asset is now manufactured and assembled in Australia and New Zealand meaning that this long serving product can continue to provide value to the DoD with its original intention in a new or overhauled capacity. With increased local manufacturing and assembly, the ability to perform cost effective asset management brings great benefits to the total life of the product.

During the back to base overhaul we inspect mechanical wearing items such as gaskets, bearing and bushes. Items such as push buttons, indicator lamps, contact blocks, wiring and electrical devices are also inspected and dependent on the overhaul level type, are either replace on condition or as a part of a scheduled repair.

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Technical Details

The individual on deck control station pillars are suitable for all ships and wharfs where winching is concerned. Some applications include dolphin winches, boat anchor winches and equipment winches. These robust joystick control stations are saltwater resistant, brave the wind, storms, ice or heat. A true all round solution you can count on in all weather.

Display: Individual configuration of displays to customer requirements e.g Pressure, Load (A), warnings or alarms

Housing: Housing is manufactured from a salt water resistance cast alloy, Multiple layer or marine style paint or powder coating optional. The housing are condensation free with inbuilt heaters.

Electronics: Ability to have a series of control devices such as push buttons or selectors. The output of the joystick can be fitted with contacts and standard potentiometer or encoders. Optionally with CAN, CANopen, PROFIBUS, PROFINET, PROFIsafe

Load Selection Switches: For setpoint specification of tensile force

Switch Levers: Switch handles on one or both sides for winch control

Stands: Available with and without control stands, custom manufactured units available for your project



A successful outcome only possible by direct connection to the OEM, local collaboration with key suppliers and local manufacturing. This has given Leveltec and its partners the ability to provide ongoing solutions in new and cost effective overhauled equipment via an asset management program to the Defence Force. For many years to come these on deck controllers will sit proudly on naval vessels all around the country and world, ready for action when called upon.