How did I break my sail slides? - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 06-12-2011
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How did I break my sail slides?

Had the sail inspected/repaired this winter, all the plastic sail slides were replaced.

This season we've had one 5 day trip where we did minimal sailing...about 3 hours going to weather. Today we did some racing and did 2 races in winds of 12-18 knots. Nothing extraordinary, that is the usual conditions here. After the last race I was dropping the sails and noticed a slide about 1/2 up the sail had come out of the track, as the main dropped several more came out of the track...6-8 total. I have a fully battened main with two slides between each batten car...the top couple slides and the bottom 2 or so slides were the only ones that didn't break.

How does this happen? I wasn't doing anything different than I normally do. What would cause a sail slide to fail? These are plastic/nylon slides, the slug part inside the mast failed allowing the slide to pull out of the slot. They are attached to the luff with a short piece of webbing, stitched.
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Old 06-12-2011
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Go to the next size bigger if you can. I had some white ones, broke half of them on one Gybe. Went to a bigger slug, no issues since. Another fellow with the same brand, had a similar issue, went to som black color slides. I went one size larger, ie same as what is on the two top full battens.

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Old 06-12-2011
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UV damage?
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Old 06-12-2011
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I much prefer the ones with a loop of metal inside the plastic. Never had one of them break.
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Old 06-12-2011
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The problem could be defective or poor quality slides. You may also want to look at the track for sharp edges which may have started to slice through the plastic slides.
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Old 06-12-2011
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If you have the urge to spend some money, look into Strong Track. It comes with SS slides and the sail goes up and down easy enough I can hand raise (no winch) my main.
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Old 06-13-2011
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Strong track looks pretty good...but I've spent enough this year.


One of the local guys said backstay tension, bendy mast may have damaged the slides. I know I did goof up and kept a lot of backstay tension in as we were off the wind. I can see where bending the mast would add some tension to the slides I can't see that causing them to fail.

Found some of the slides with the stainless steel piece, coming 2nd day air...warming up the sewing palm.
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