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Sail repair advice - small tear in leech  Bottom

  • I'm seeking some advice on the appropriate way to patch a small tear in the sail of my F18HT. The tear is about 3" long from the leech in, between 3rd and 4th battens from head, if I recall correctly. My Initial thought is to sew a small patch over the tear, maybe 1.5" wide, and then a longer bit of reinforcement along the leech, 10-12" or so. I have some 5oz dacron on hand, and a bit of very lightweight laminate sail material that i used to make my snuffer sock, but was hoping to avoid buying a full yard of Pentex for this small repair. Would a dacron patch be strong enough given the considerable leech tension? Should I double up layers? Should patch on leach be longer/shorter?

    I have reasonably good sewing skills and a Sailrite machine, but as of yet, no experience repairing the leech on a laminate mainsail.


    Edited by LeelanauH18 on Jun 26, 2013 - 01:11 PM.
  • A picture is worth a thousand words. What weight material is the snuffer sock?

    At the sail loft we would pin the sail, cut the torn section out completely and sew in a complete new section. The leech is highly loaded so preference is given to replacing the laminate with similar/exact same material sail was built with to begin with. Re-reading your post it sounds like your sail is nearly done, that is where mains fail first. Best option is replacing as much as possible.

    Your repair will work fine in dacron but the stretch characteristics won't match that of the original sail at all. Fine for a cruising main.
  • I'll post a picture this evening. I'm not sure of the weight of the sock material - it's very light, and I don't think I'd trust it for this repair.

    There's no racing nearby for me so I'm just looking for a fix that will be durable enough to get me through the season, and doesn't further weaken the sail in the process. Planning to replace the sail this winter.

    The damage occurred sometime after a rather vicious pitch pole which forced us ashore to check everything (and ourselves) over. Once in we intentionally capsized to get the main down and I suspect the tear happened when a couple battens got caught in the sand. Decided to sail the 2 miles home (downwind) bare pole, which only took 15 minutes. Winds had built to 20 gusting to near 30 and shifty, and I don't care to be out in that stuff on this boat again.
  • r u a sail maker?
    QuoteAt the sail loft
  • Have you seen this product? "fixmytear". I bought this repair tape a few yrs ago and am finding it really helpful in a lot of different surface repairs.
  • The tear going up and down? Hit it with some insignia or your favorite sail repair tape. Wipe the area with some alcohol to clean it up for best results.

    Greenville SC

    Offering sails and other go fast parts for A-class catamarans

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