sail cloth

Rigging components, external fittings and Sails
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S-berg
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 3:27 am
Location: Port Denison W.A.

sail cloth

Post by S-berg » Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:54 pm

I've been talking with sail makers about which cloth they recommend for the boat i'm building. (a Schionning Wilderness 1320) I haven't sailed since i was a youngen, so will be a newbie cruiser
Because of the loads on a lower heeling catamaran, they all have upped the specifications.

One idea is a "cruise laminate" with pentex which i understand to be a modified polyester that resist stretch more than standard dacron.
another is a carbon laminate, which the argument for is, that at 20% more cost(predicted), should have nearly zero stretch over the sails life. I have read somewhere that carbon can be a bit delicate to stack the main as it doesn't like to be folded, which can cause the carbon strings to break?
life span for these laminates is predicted at 7+years, but that could be the salesman talking?

Does anyone have any thoughts or experience with these fabrics?

44c
Posts: 1147
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2006 5:08 am
Location: Hervey Bay, Qld

Re: sail cloth

Post by 44c » Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:49 am

From what I can gather, Hydranet is a very good cost/stretch/longevity compromise.

We've got cruise laminate, they've held up very well so far, about 9000 miles, shape still seems very good.

puremajek
Posts: 751
Joined: Thu May 04, 2006 7:36 pm
Location: Brisbane Australia

Re: sail cloth

Post by puremajek » Tue Feb 28, 2012 8:44 am

Hi S-berg

Appreciate you starting this thread on sailcloth. It is hard to find grass-roots info on this topic.

We have 'cruise laminate' and while a little more at time of purchase, we have had no stretch that we are aware of since launch. We had 'dacron' on other yachts and found that it stretched after about 4-6 years. While some of the stretch could be taken-up by tweaking here and there, the stretch became uneven especially on the mainsail.
James
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Whimsical
Posts: 370
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2007 8:01 pm
Location: Fremantle W.A.

Re: sail cloth

Post by Whimsical » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:19 pm

Very good timing of this thread for me as well. Just starting to trying to understand all the options.
Silly Arsholes (Sailing Anarchy) has a good thread started by evan starzinger, in cruising anarchy, about this topic. One thing i got from it was the seemingly unanamous agreement on mould problems and possible delam, with the laminates, when used extensivly in the tropics. Thats the worry for me.
Hydranet semes a good option but not sure of the relative cost.
Hope i get enough info to make the right decision b4 i fork out many boat units.

44c
Posts: 1147
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2006 5:08 am
Location: Hervey Bay, Qld

Re: sail cloth

Post by 44c » Wed Feb 29, 2012 11:47 am

Mould can be an issue with any sailcloth in the tropics. Avoid putting them away wet as much as possible.

Also, wiping over them with "Wet and Forget" has been recommended.

However, mould isn't really harmful, just unsightly.

seamad1250
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:46 am

Re: sail cloth

Post by seamad1250 » Wed Feb 29, 2012 6:37 pm

Just found my practical sailor sept 2010, have review on sail cloth for cruising. They interviewed 3 well known us sailmakers, all three said the highest quality very tightly woven dacron is the way to go for cruisers. Fancy laminates still have problems with mildew and delamination and longevity. Things may have changed since then. Would love carbon double taffeta on mine, schionnings orams etc probably worth it performance wise.
Hopefully better,cheaper when my time comes
cheers
sean

Must be getting close stephan

44c
Posts: 1147
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2006 5:08 am
Location: Hervey Bay, Qld

Re: sail cloth

Post by 44c » Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:49 am

Dacrons aren't so good for cat's though. We load our sails a bit more.

Smooth Cruiser
Posts: 583
Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 1:51 am
Location: Brisbane

Re: sail cloth

Post by Smooth Cruiser » Thu Mar 01, 2012 10:48 am

I think cruise laminates are pretty good - as has been said mould is only unsightly and can be controlled to a degree. While you hear talk of delamination issues I don't know of anyone personally who has experienced problems and I know quite a few people with cruise-lam sails.

I have Hydranet sails and am very hapy with them - they appear very resistant to stretch and long wearin.

I wouldn't put carbon sails on a crusiing boat - they aren't as forgiving and can be damaged relatively easily either by overloading or by poor handling or just by exposure to UV. I know of several cats with carbon racing sails but they all take them off and have dacron or crusie-lam for when they aren't racing. Carbon sails used for cruising would only last a couple of years proobably.

S-berg
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 3:27 am
Location: Port Denison W.A.

Re: sail cloth

Post by S-berg » Thu Mar 22, 2012 8:57 pm

For better or for worse, I've made the choice to go with the "cruise laminate". Hopefully in a few months, i can give some feedback on how they go.
Giving paid work the middle finger until this boat is done!!
Stefan

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