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Hi,

My laminated 155% jib has started delaminating at the top, somewhere about 5 feet below the top of the sail on one side only. Total area is about 5-6 square feet of clear sheet detached and slightly flapping in the wind. I am guessing this this section of clear sheet will have to be removed and replaced with some sort of adhesive sail cloth. I've called local North Sails and they advised that they sell some stuff called TEDLAR which can be attached on the shiny/clear layer. Does anyone have any experience with repairing laminated sails and this particular product.

Please note, while I do not race and am not looking for new sails, I'd like to have it fixed and improve my speed and prolong the life of the sail.

Petar
 

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Farr 11.6 (Farr 38)
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You have not said whether this is a 3DL type sail or a panel sail, but once the sail starts delaminating in one spot it will usually start delaminating elsewhere once you stress it.

But if it is a 3DL type sail I think that there is nothing you can do. (There is a reason that people who have owned them call 3DL sails "three day lifespan" sails)

In my experience I pulled out and flew an 3DL mainsail that came with the boat and which looked new except that it appeared to have limited amounts of delamination near the foot. By the time I came back in from the first sail there were delaminated patches all over the sail. These slowly spread to the point that after a couple sails, I no longer trusted the sail.

If the sail is a panel type sail, you may be able to replace just the bad panels. The fabric construction also makes a differnece as well. I had an old Kevlar #3 that came with the boat. It was the original woven kevlar style sail and was nearly 20 years old. It was badly delaminated, so much so that small patches of mylar would peel off from time to time. I used that sail in heavy conditions for three years before it split leech to luff in a downburst.

The point being, whether you want to buy a new sail or not, I predict that there is a new sail in your immediate future.

Jeff
 

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Farr 11.6 (Farr 38)
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3DL sails are a North sail product (although other manuufacturers have made inrodads into this field with more durable versions of this process). 3DL's are made as a single piece on a big mould. A large sheet of mylar is laid on the mould. Each strand of kevlar or polyester is glued in place following the stress mapping. Then a second layer of mylar glued over the top. The whole thing is compacted with heat and pressure and voile' you have a new sail that is a single piece of cloth. Great idea but in the early days produced disposable sails. The process is a bit better these days.

Panel sails consist of laminated cloth that is stitched together to make a sail just like a dacron sail. Typically a lot more durable in terms of holding together but at a weight and shape holding price.

Jeff
 
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