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Member Since 25 Oct 2004
Offline Last Active Jan 09 2016 11:24 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Missing yacht from RHKYC

11 October 2015 - 07:58 AM

I wouldn't call not having a HF penny pinching. A modern Icom + tuner + backstay or aerial + modem = the cost of 2-3 satellite phones these days, and then if the boat loses power its not going to work. Satellite phones are portable, can be put in a waterproof case and contain their own battery.  


Most long distance cruisers have a healthy respect for mother nature and won't risk bad weather to keep a schedule. 


I hope this wasn't a case of a "new build" with no comms and therefore just relying on a sat phone (maybe only portable) voice hook up for weather advice and distress purposes? The "EPIRB only" distress signal, seems to indicate this may be the case.
For nearly every long distance "new boat" delivery, and many others, I have had to take my own laptop, sat phone with a data plan and HF data modem, if it had a compatible HF radio. If this boat didn't have an HF (which is just penny pinching stupididty...long distance cruisers out there take note), I would not only have not left HK last week, but probably not left until Jan/February, if at all.

In Topic: Triradial or crosscut Dacron main

28 September 2015 - 04:06 AM

If you look at it this way, most of the primary load in a sail is running from the clew to the head. In a cross cut configuration this is taken care of by the fill fibers. The only place where you get a lot of off angle load is diagonally out of the clew. That is the reason why you see race dacron mains with a cross-cut body and radial clew. In a cross-cut sail the luff loads are on the bias of the fabric, this allows for more tuning ability via the cunningham. 

Radial or Cross-cut, its still dacron and its still going to stretch, I think the radial dacron has some applications, but the marketing has over hyped it. 

In Topic: Triradial or crosscut Dacron main

27 September 2015 - 07:53 AM

One needs to be careful using OD classes. Some class OD rules might actually specify cross-cut Dacron...if so, not a good example
One needs to be careful using OD classes. Some class OD rules might actually specify cross-cut Dacron...if so, not a good example

I'm sure there are some that specify cross-cut, but I haven't come across any so far. 

In Topic: Triradial or crosscut Dacron main

27 September 2015 - 01:48 AM



New Zealands biggest and most competitive keelboat class. North, Doyle all use cross cut body with radial clew.

Seen a main on one of these made in Sri-Lanka from Radian and it was far more distorted at a age when the contender cloth would still be going strong. 

Have a look at the etchells class, most highly competitive one designs are cross cut dacron. Dimensions HTP dacron is another popular choice.

In Topic: What drives big name lofts to operate overseas?

23 August 2015 - 04:04 PM

Not all laminate sails are produced by corporate operations with big hardware in under-developed countries. My main was made in New Zealand and cost about 25% more than I was quoted by Hyde. Of note is that the Hyde sail was tri-radial Dacron and the one I bought was a laminate load path sail.

Beyond this, I priced the sail at multiple lofts domestic and foreign. The best price offshore was only 10-15% below the best domestic price when comparing similar products with similar features. This is well below the margin one would expect to find in a labor-intensive product. I see this as indication that the bulk of the margin in the production cost is being retained by the manufacturer as profit versus being passed along to the consumer. Not a universal survey of the market but enough to convince me that I should keep the money where I earned it and support the local sailmaker.

I paid a little extra and in return got a top-quality product made and designed by sailors who are good at what they do, not by factory workers who run a single machine all day every day and likely have no knowledge of the intended use of their product. In addition I've pretty much retained a local subject matter expert for the times when I need to bounce a question or idea off of him. I see this as well worth the rather modest extra cost I incurred.


You have to consider that most of the sail fabric and hardware is produced in Europe and USA so it has to be shipped to Asia or Africa and then the completed sail has to be air freighted back again. So the 10-15% is not to far off the mark.