i don't off road all that much, once in a while on mostly simple trails...if i were to buy a winch for "just in case" stuff, how many pounds should one be looking for?
8000 to 9500 lbs. is recommended for a Wrangler. And don't forget that the smaller the winch's capacity, the more amps it requires from the electrical system to pull the same load as a larger capacity winch does.
I still haven't had any issues with my HF10k. I don't use it much, but I do let the cable out every once in a while to make sure the motor still works. I do have a couple gripes about it though. It's stupid heavy. The control box outlet for the control faces the passenger side. The cord for the control is plenty long, but the two little lame screws that hold the connector assmebly to the box ripped out so now it's held in place with electrical tape. Lastly, it's stupid slow. I've always been an advocate of the "nice and easy" approch when trying to free up my Jeep, but sometimes it does get annoying.
Really, if I were to do it over again, I'd probably buy a Warn. Not because it's a Warn, or made in America, or has a rediculous warranty, or any of that, but because they do all of the things that annoy me (things listed above), better than the HF does. The HF works just fine for the type of use I give it, but if I knew three years ago what I know now, I probably would have shelled out a bit more for a Warn.
*EDIT* I also like the fact that Warn has [a] winch(s) availible that also has OBA attached, taking care of two things in one neat package. Just a thought.