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post #1 of 7 Old 07-22-2008 Thread Starter
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Ripped genny

This weekend my genny tore right down the middle. The first warning I had was my wife saying "Your sail is torn!" and as I looked up it split right along a seam, from the leech to the luff.

It's not a new sail, but it was in good shape up to that point. I live in the Baltimore area, and while there are several sail shops in the area, I'm wondering what the expense of fixing it would be over replacing it with another used sail.

I'm not a racer, so I don't care that much about perfect shape; but I have no idea what sail repairs cost, and what constitutes "beyond economical repair." It's a clean tear, no shredding that I've seen. Does that make much difference?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 7 Old 07-22-2008
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Originally Posted by jaschrumpf View Post
This weekend my genny tore right down the middle. The first warning I had was my wife saying "Your sail is torn!" and as I looked up it split right along a seam, from the leech to the luff.

It's not a new sail, but it was in good shape up to that point. I live in the Baltimore area, and while there are several sail shops in the area, I'm wondering what the expense of fixing it would be over replacing it with another used sail.

I'm not a racer, so I don't care that much about perfect shape; but I have no idea what sail repairs cost, and what constitutes "beyond economical repair." It's a clean tear, no shredding that I've seen. Does that make much difference?

Thanks!
Jas, since dacron headsails are usually made up in panels, it sound's to me like a very cheap fix. Presumably the luff-rope held?

Take it to your nearest sailmaker and for less than the cost of a tank of petrol, you'll have it back on the boat in no time..

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post #3 of 7 Old 07-22-2008
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Before doing anything... check to see if it was the stitching that gave way or the cloth. If it was the cloth, don't bother getting it repaired—as the cloth is probably too sun-damaged to be worth repairing more likely than not. If it was the stitching... then it might be worth getting repaired. I would highly recommend having the sail loft look at all the stitching and re-do what looks questionable.

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post #4 of 7 Old 07-22-2008
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Before doing anything... check to see if it was the stitching that gave way or the cloth. If it was the cloth, don't bother getting it repaired—as the cloth is probably too sun-damaged to be worth repairing more likely than not. If it was the stitching... then it might be worth getting repaired. I would highly recommend having the sail loft look at all the stitching and re-do what looks questionable.
SD, he did say it split right along a seam, so I assumed it was the stitching.

Either way, he should take it to a sail loft - they'll tell him fast enough

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"Honestly, I don't know why seamen persist in getting wrecked in some of the outlandish places they do, when they can do it in a nice place like Fiji." -- John Caldwell, "Desperate Voyage"
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post #5 of 7 Old 07-22-2008
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If it was the stitching. Buy a sailrite machine and fix it and check all the other areas at the same time for frazzeled and frayed threads.

The cost of going to the sail loft a few times will more than pay for the sailrite machine and youcan make so many more improvements with the machine.

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post #6 of 7 Old 07-23-2008 Thread Starter
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Well, in the last five years since I moved up to bigger boats, this is the first sail I've split; so perhaps investing in a $600-$800 machine that I don't know how to use might not be the wisest investment for me.

For now, I'll take it to a sail loft in Annapolis and see what they tell me.

Thanks for all the advice!
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post #7 of 7 Old 07-23-2008
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I caught a seam while rasing my main and ripped out about 3 feet of seam stitching. The sail cloth did not rip, so I hand stitched through the same holes using wipping thread.

If a man must be obsessed by something, I suppose a boat is as good as anything, perhaps better than most. A small sailing craft is not only beautiful, it is seductive and full of strange promise and the hint of trouble.

- E.B. White
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