[Public-List] Blown out sails OK for crusing

John Birch Sunstone at cogeco.ca
Sun Jan 9 06:30:02 PST 2011


You'll get no argument from me because I agree.



----- Original Message ----- 
From: <crufone at comcast.net>
To: "Alberg, Public List" <public-list at alberg30.org>
Sent: Sunday, January 09, 2011 9:21 AM
Subject: [Public-List] Blown out sails OK for crusing

> Hello all,
> I never could understand the logic that sails which were too worn out to 
> use for racing would still be OK to use for cruising or day-sailing. Why 
> would anyone want to subject the boat, skipper and crew to attempting to 
> sail anywhere with blown out sails?
> My understanding of blown-out used-up sails is that as they become worse 
> and worse they loose their intended function to provide lift and drive to 
> propel the boat forward. They cause the boat to heel excessively and drive 
> off to leeward.
> Because the Alberg 30 is initially tender and stiffens up with some 
> moderate heel it seems to me that blown-out sails actually place more 
> stress on the rig for the same drive forward than new sails.
> I recently purchased a, new to me, but only slightly used 150 Genoa for my 
> Typhoon. I was concerned that the larger sail would be even more over 
> powering for the boat than the blown-out 110 head sail which came with the 
> boat. To my surprise and delight sailing in the same wind conditions the 
> larger but better shaped head sail provided better balance, more drive and 
> less heel than the smaller blown-out sail. The Typhoon sails like a 
> totally different boat and with much greater pleasure for me the skipper. 
> This got me to thinking about all those ads I see for used 
> sails...............................which basically state used-up for 
> racing but OK for cruising or day-sailing.
> Makes me think that sails are akin to motor oil for your vehicle. When the 
> oil is used up, i.e, 3K or 5K miles then it is used up and not any good 
> for it's original purpose. One would not intentionally run the used-up oil 
> for another 5K miles knowing the potential damage to be caused to the 
> expensive vehicle motor. So why would sailors run their sails another five 
> years beyond their useful life and cause undue stress and fatigue to their 
> expensive boat and rig?
> I know that I am preaching to the choir on this one, but this whole thing 
> hit me like a tonne of bricks the other day while sailing. Seems to me 
> that used-up sails are OK to use to make Tote bags and painting drop 
> cloths, but are not OK to use for any type of sailing whether it be 
> racing, cruising or day-sailing. Anyone out there have additional thoughts 
> on this subject ?
> Michael #133
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