Mon, 19/11/2018 - 11:11am
Just my passing comment - but why do you think foreign made sails are better than British? There are number of excellent smaller sail lofts in the UK that can and do make much better sails than cheaper imports and you avoid the carriage and import duty. Import duty tends to be higher on luxury goods and anything that is for yachting tends to be classed as a luxury. You also can get slight alterations if you need them when you first fit them as well as see the quality of the cloth before you buy. In my experience having bought a couple of sets in the past they are much more involved and want to make sure they work well - something that can't be done from abroad.
A cheap imported sail will look great until its been used a few times but will not last - the Doyle sails supplied with the macs are a case in point as they are not particularly well made and use an over filled fabric which does not retain their shape for more than a season or two. The UK sails we had made are far superior in quality of workmanship as well as cut and no more expensive like for like. Its great to look up and see a well set sail fully filled and pulling properly across the whole width and height something that never happened with the original sails.
I find the sail shape can be flatted a little by pulling down hard on the kicker strap and setting the out-haul and halyard tight. When reefed the sail is much flatter and so works well - this is down to the good cut as much as anything else. When sailing downwind or in lighter airs we don't set the out- haul too tight and leave a little give in the halyard and slacken the kicker right off to allow the boom to rise which allows the lower third of the sail to fill a little more. I'm always pleasantly surprised at how well the Mac sails compared to other yachts of a similar size as we regularly sail faster and point higher than others although we do loose out to longer keeled yachts due to leeway when hard on the wind.
Mike C - Taka 26M
Mon, 19/11/2018 - 11:44am
....and don't forget the 'traveller' will flatten the sail or loosen it as required so it is just a question of weather conditions and combined use of the traveller, halyard, kicker strap, and out hall. Loosen everything in light airs (as Mike Clarke says) and tighten everything up in a blow.
Sowenna 26 M
Sun, 25/11/2018 - 12:33pm
I promised to let you all know about the costs of importing a mainsail from Precision Sails in Canada.
As I mentioned before, they only carry out the design and specification in Canada, the sails are made in a loft in Shenzhen China. For orders outside Canada they ship directly from China and the shipping costs for an M main would be about 15% based on an ex-loft price of £680.
To calculate the final landed price if we say the ex-loft cost is 100 plus 15% shipping =115 then duty of 12% would be charged = 128.8 then VAT at 20% = 154.56
Therefore it is necessary to add about 55% to the ex-loft price to get the sail delivered in the UK.
Of course anyone in the fortunate position like Leigh or David will find the sails a bargain, however it has made me re-think and I am currently reviewing the quotes from UK sail lofts where hopefully any problems could be easily fixed.