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Old 02-07-2012, 16:17   #16
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

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Originally Posted by LH44 Anne View Post
Anyone with experience with HydraNet sail cloth? It's fairly new, from Dimension Polyant, and has Dyneema (Spectra) reinforcing of dacorn weave. Seems an interesting way to go, but I'd like to hear about experiences of "early adopters" if there are any out there.

For those who want to know more, see http://www.dimension-polyant.com/en/Hydranet_2_2_1.php
Actually it has been around for at least 9 years, because when we last bought a new mainsail it was highly recommended to us. At the time it was out of our budget, but I would have gone for it if I'd been fiscally able to do so.

I believe that Nick (CF "Jedi") has them on his Sundeer, and has been very favorable in his comments in general. Another cruising friend has them on his Ganly 53 and loves them, but does not often sail in heavy conditions. Finally, yet another close friend has just returned from a two year 20,000 mile circuit of Oz-Japan-NA-SP-Oz with all Hydranet sails, new at the beginning of the cruise. All the plain sails have done well enough, but his Code Zero, made of 2.2 Oz Hydranet, has broken down along the luff. The original sailmaker has not explained the failure well, but two others blame the cross-cut design of the sail, saying that bias distortion was the cause of the breakdown. They both said that the sail should have been made with radial construction, and that this would have avoided the problem.

Having said all this, when we buy our next mainsail (sooner than I'd like) I will be looking at Hydranet for sure.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:20   #17
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

I'd avoid Hydranet crosscut as it doesn't have enough Spectra to make a difference and testing shows it's not appreciably better than a premium Dacron like Marblehead/Fiber 104.

Radial Hydranet is a great material but spendy. Really depends on the application as for applicability. Radial construction translates to a lot of material going in the dumpster and when you're spending $50-60 a yard, it adds up quickly. There are some excellent load path products worthy of consideration that are far more efficient to build sails with.
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:29   #18
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

without other reasons, on a multi hull I would opt for the heavier cloth. Loading is more severe. On a mono... I might go for the lighter....to set beter in light air.
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:40   #19
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
without other reasons, on a multi hull I would opt for the heavier cloth. Loading is more severe. On a mono... I might go for the lighter....to set beter in light air.
On most cats I would not suggest Dacron unless the owner is okay with a very heavy sail. The loads are a lot higher than that of a comparably sized monohull. There was a cat in SF Bay that was for sale and the main was totally shot. Seller bought a cheap Dacron main. After the sea trial, the sail was so stretched it was ready for the dumpster.

You can do things like twin ply the leech and really reinforce the sail well, but at the end of the day, you still have potential for stretch and sail weighs a lot.
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:51   #20
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

On my Lagoon 42, the main was used when I bought the boat, it had full battens and Harken roller Battcars. It was apparently Dacron (not laminated etc), seemed to be fine for the years I had it and when I sold it. Not exactly a racing sail... and heaviest damn thing (trying to hoist it) you can imagine for a mainsail, but on an overnight crossing I was usually "first to finish" anyway!
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Old 03-07-2012, 16:59   #21
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Actually it has been around for at least 9 years, because when we last bought a new mainsail it was highly recommended to us. At the time it was out of our budget, but I would have gone for it if I'd been fiscally able to do so.

I believe that Nick (CF "Jedi") has them on his Sundeer, and has been very favorable in his comments in general. Another cruising friend has them on his Ganly 53 and loves them, but does not often sail in heavy conditions. Finally, yet another close friend has just returned from a two year 20,000 mile circuit of Oz-Japan-NA-SP-Oz with all Hydranet sails, new at the beginning of the cruise. All the plain sails have done well enough, but his Code Zero, made of 2.2 Oz Hydranet, has broken down along the luff. The original sailmaker has not explained the failure well, but two others blame the cross-cut design of the sail, saying that bias distortion was the cause of the breakdown. They both said that the sail should have been made with radial construction, and that this would have avoided the problem.

Having said all this, when we buy our next mainsail (sooner than I'd like) I will be looking at Hydranet for sure.

Cheers,

Jim
Update on above:

Further research revealed that the cloth used in the Code Zero was not HydraNet at all, but rather a 2 Oz highly resinated Dacron. Other observations still apply.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 04-07-2012, 16:13   #22
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

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Originally Posted by islandplanet View Post
I'd avoid Hydranet crosscut as it doesn't have enough Spectra to make a difference and testing shows it's not appreciably better than a premium Dacron like Marblehead/Fiber 104.

Radial Hydranet is a great material but spendy. Really depends on the application as for applicability. Radial construction translates to a lot of material going in the dumpster and when you're spending $50-60 a yard, it adds up quickly. There are some excellent load path products worthy of consideration that are far more efficient to build sails with.
G'Day Island Planet,

Thanks for all the comments re HydraNet. We are likely to need a new main

within the year, and I'm interested in your comments re the high cost of

Hydranet Radial, and there being useful alternatives. I would be interested in

your thoughts on an appropriate material for us.

The boat: Jon Sayer design, LOA 46', LWL 44'8" light boat disp 9.5 tonnes,

cruising disp approx 11.5-12 tonnes, beam 13'10". We are full time cruisers,

averaging about 6K miles/year, primarily in mid to tropical latitudes,

occasional dips into the 40's. Boat spends a lot of time with one or more

reefs in the main (not as young as we were, and don't drive the boat as hard

as we used to!).

Current mains'l: radial construction, "Wide Radial Dacron" material, 9 oz in

body, two plies of 6.8 oz in outer panels. Top three battens are full length,

lower two are longish leech battens. Area about 60 square metres. Sail has

42,000 miles usage over 9 years, and has developed some shape

discontinuities where the plied and single layers come together, but otherwise

isn't so bad considering its age. (I guess one could say the same about Ann

and I !!) I have attached two photos to illustrate.

Considering all the above, in your opinion what materials would offer the

best combination of cost, shape retention and longevity?

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 04-07-2012, 18:22   #23
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

Cruising,

If cost were no issue for then Hydra-Net radial would be the best performance/long life. As far as I'm aware DP are the only cloth manufacturer doing a woven spectra and thus have a monopoly. All lofts pay a high cost for it.

Elvstrom used to do a woven dyneema called SeaLar which was good but they stopped.

Laminates will cover the performance but will not last as long as a woven cloth due to De-lamination. There are some good products like DP's DC range is bulletproof and used alot in NZ. Vectran Custom Axis Laminate from china is good value for money.

I went thru this recently with a good customer who is also a yacht designer and he ended up going with a high quality dacron with 2 ply clew,head and leech.

My own yacht I went with bainbridges SCL spectra cruise laminate and accepted the fact it won't last as long as a woven sail.
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Old 08-07-2012, 18:09   #24
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Re: Main Sail Cloth Weight

Jim,

My thoughts are much the same as Kestrahl. The Vectran Custom Axis Laminate is an excellent product offering good value and excellent stretch resistance. One woven product I would add for consideration is Vektron from Challenge which uses Vectran to give the cloth a bit more stability.

There are some good cruise laminates worth considering. If I owned your boat, I would probably not get a woven sail. 60m is a large sail and the woven products are going to be pretty heavy. For a performance cruiser, I think it's better to focus on maintaining sail shape than it is chasing longevity. The longevity of Dacron is a bit of myth anyway since they lose shape and you can only consider them to be longer lasting if you don't care about shape.

Feel free to send me a PM as I'm not on the forum too often.
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