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Please forgive the dumb question - but how do I replace a sail? Is the only way to give the dimensions to a sail maker and have a new one made? Is there a used sail market? I have a 1972 O'Day and if I could avoid the expense of a new sail being made I'd certainly consider going used.

Thanks
 

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Depending on the condition of the existing sail cloth, you might want to bring them to a sail maker and see if they still have life left in them. You might only need them re-cut, or just cleaned.

Or go to saildata.com and get the dimensions and look around at used sails, but you may end up with a sail that you will need to bring to a sail maker and get serviced. Sailboatdata.com is the worlds largest sailboat database.
 

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Be careful using sailboatdata.com. I bought a used jib from a person 30' which was slightly small rig than mine, but this did not account for my furling unit so the sail ended up been to big. So I can hoist the sail but cannot furl it. Luckily this was not my primary sail and was only $50.

My advice is to order new sails from loft. The cheap way is rolly task from discount sail in FL. My boat is a lot more fun to sail with sails that have shape. Add make sure to measure your rig carefully.

You may get lucky with used sails that fit right, but that can be a lot of searching and how stretched are they.
 

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How long are you planning to keep your boat? Did you inherit these sails from a PO? If you've never had new sails and are keeping your boat for a long while, new will blow you away. Any quality manufacturer would know the dimensions for an ODay, but a local shop would still likely visit your boat. Random used can work fine or be a nightmare, but the price is right. Someone (you or the used loft) needs to know what they are doing to match the used sail to your boat. Or, you need to be lucky.

If you care for new sails better than most, they will last a long time. That includes a minimum of annual professional cleaning and staying on top of stitch repairs and UV covering.

The way I see it, a sailboat should have good sails. Get a used motor, if you have to. :)
 
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What size of boat, have you? Difficult it is to comment if this information I have not.

Have you considered making your own? Sailrites "kit" is about 1/2 the cost of a finished sail and most of the work can be done on the admiral's Singer. All parts are computer designed and cut. Piece marked and laid out with guidelines. You can see videos of the process on their website. I am seriously considering a mainsail this winter.
 

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If you want used sails try this site:

http://l-36.com/find_used_sails.php?menu=3

It is a site specifically for the Lapworth 36 but I guess there sail search engine was effective enough that they put it for lots of boats. Not sure where the data comes from but it will check the rig demolitions of you boat, and find the closest fitting used sails on several sites. Quite handy, and I have no affiliation. I will say some of the used sails can get close to what new can be had from an Asian supplier, so I am not sure what is a better deal. Suppose it depends on your sailing style and how long you intend to keep the boat.

By the way if you have a local loft, they will often come out to measure the rig that is actually on your boat, as things do get modified occasionally. They will also come back and fit the sails, and make adjustments if necessary. Kind of like the choice of going to a custom tailor to have a suit made(local loft), going to a nice department store and getting a suit off the rack(ordering from one of the on line suppliers), or going to Goodwill(buying used). All will get you dressed for an interview, but there is obviously a difference. For some it does not matter, for others it does. Do check out local lofts though sometimes they are not that much more and might really be worth it. They may even have a "last years" racing sail laying around that they can make work. Lots of racers replace before they are used up.
 

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Please forgive the dumb question - but how do I replace a sail? Is the only way to give the dimensions to a sail maker and have a new one made? Is there a used sail market? I have a 1972 O'Day and if I could avoid the expense of a new sail being made I'd certainly consider going used.

Thanks
While there is a used sail market, it is strongly impacted by the demographics of your boat. If you had a S2, J boat, or some racy thing then there are 10,000 guys out there with the same boat who think that new sails will give them a winning edge. They buy lots of new sails and will not use the nearly-new ones they got 4 years ago.

On the other hand, the demographics of those who sail on a 1970's small production cruiser like O'Day is far different. Those guys will use their sails until they are rags. When there are so many other boat owners who a loath to buy new sails and use their old ones until they die, you're unlikely to find much. The boats the die by hurricane or other probably go down with ancient sails onboard. You're better off getting new from some of the discount sailmakers. Everything is offshore now unless you're buying very high end. This spring I got a laminate sail from North. Even that was made offshore.
 

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I got awesome quotes from rolly tasker in florida...national warehouse or something

for my islander 36 I could get a full 135 cruising genoa laminate, with many goodies and good cloth, hanks etc for just over $1100

thats not bad
 

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"Not bad" is a relative term. I usually ask how big the boat is. That determines the threshold of not bad. A guy sailing a 25 footer, not unlike myself, sees $1100 as a no-go scenario. $300, maybe $400. If my pockets were deep enough, I'd have a bigger boat and all the associated expenses. So, how big is the boat?
 

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I KNOW!

so transpolate to a 25 footer from the same place and you can walk out really well, I bet the same spec genoa would be in the 450-500 range maybe even less...a full set for around 900...I see that as well priced when say getting a quote from north sails or doyle or even pinneaple



not bad is when you compare same sail quotes from others like for example quantum which quoted me 1900 however they are racier sales, same specs however.

I guess what I MEANT was get a quote from national sailwarehouse and see for yourself

the op that is
 
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