#55796, "RE: Mystery Box RMS Titanic & RMS Oceanic !" In response to Reply # 1
Thanks for the images. Just a minor correction, the ship in your winch photo is the S.S. Briton of 1897. There is a superficial resemblance between the winch and the Titanic object, but I don't know how significant that is. The Briton boat winch is probably steam powered and would be a lot longer in the fore-and-aft direction.
There is no room on the Titanic object for anything like a steam engine or electric motor. A hand-cranked reel is a possibility, but it's hard to understand what its purpose would be, or why it was later removed from Olympic.
There is an Oceanic photo showing a hand-powered device of about the right size on either side of the ship near the bulwarks. But I suspect it's a shipyard tool (maybe a grinding wheel?) rather than a fitting on the ship itself.
#55804, "RE: Mystery Box RMS Titanic & RMS Oceanic !" In response to Reply # 4
I understand what you're getting at. It's an interesting idea, and I suppose it would work. Any photos I've seen of the boarding ladder deployed on Olympic and Britannic show it in the aft position, so I don't know if there's any way to verify how it was lifted when located forward. We may never know for sure unless the cover on the Titanic box decays to the point where we can see inside.