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Old 13-06-2016, 19:58   #1
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Sails from China

I am sure someone else has started a thread on this but I cant find it.....So sailsfrom China. Any thoughts ....Cruising sails
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Old 13-06-2016, 20:25   #2
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Re: Sails from China

I looked at some sails a friend just got from Hong Kong sails, looked pretty decent, price was good, Challenger cloth.
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Old 13-06-2016, 20:40   #3
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Re: Sails from China

I buy a lot of stuff from China, Very rarely I get caught out, But thats more my fault for not looking close enough,
They do have 3 Billion customers in China, They do make a lot of Crap,
Their technology is some thing else, Even if a lot of it is copied,
They make more sails than the USA do, There are a lot of sailing vessels in China,
Have a look at the Chinese factory where its made, Google it,
They do make good quality, But really cheap isnt,

I bought my Boats new electronics from the same company that makes the Made In America electronics,
Their American market is very small compared to their own, They make their own brand as well as the American labelled,
I bought their brand for a fraction of the cost, Same gear as the American ones,
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Old 13-06-2016, 20:41   #4
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Re: Sails from China

Smudge...(a Dickens sort of handle...)
From what I understand there is one major loft in Hong Kong that builds sails for a number of vendors. To the extent that that is the case it comes down to the vendor to set the quality of construction etc. The more they ask of this loft, the actual producer, the higher the wholesale price of production. Depending on the vendor chosen one will find a range of quality and, of course the more they pay the more you pay and vice-verse. I just bought a new main fron Peak Sails, an outfit with EZ pricing and a somewhat notorius rep in terms of communication, delivery dates, cloth quality etc. Why oh why would I do such a thing? Well they were offering an affordable price on an installment plan. That worked for this broke-ass sailor. I took a chance and got the sails in a 6.5 oz challenger cloth that is only double stiched but has a draft line, all numbers, insignia etc. and will be a perfectly fine casual beercan racing sail. AND I found that they have completely resolved their communications and shipping problems. I had a reasonably well made mainsail in hand before I had even paid my final installment. These guys ask less of the loft and they get what they pay for...so did I.
I asked for the "econobox" of sails and that is what I got. If I work with them again, which I may, I will work with the sales rep to arrange for more quality touches and we will negotiate on price.
Other vendors will work with a different quality metric with that producer from the start but it is always important to pin the sales reps down on elements of construction and let them know that if you don't find the assured quality they will come right back.
If I had better money I would work with the premium sateside producers but (sigh) not in this life!
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Old 13-06-2016, 21:22   #5
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Re: Sails from China

I'm a sail designer and live in this part of the world so get to see a lot first hand.
There is a massive variation in sails made in China.
The biggest producer (CSF) only does OEM manufacturing for a massive amount of sailmakers worldwide big and small and has high quality standards. The design and material is up to the sailmaker who they are working with.
Wilfer china sails seems to be a copy cat of CSF but no where near the same standard. Doyle also have their own manufacturing in China I believe and possibly others.
Then there are a gaggle of Chinese owned sailmakers in HK who have been around for years and years doing cheap cruising sails i.e. Lee, far east, HK, sails east etc The workmanship is normally good but design and cheap materials often let them down, especially on yachts that are a bit more tricky like a big cruising multi or a high performance boat. UK sails, North sails and most of the other brand names have a big market share locally in HK also.
Challenge dacron is generally used because it is the cheapest but not always the best quality.
So at the end of the day you get what you pay for out of China, you want cheap and nasty you can get it or you want good quality also can.
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Old 13-06-2016, 23:06   #6
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Re: Sails from China

We recently purchased a high quality DYS tri radial cut main sail from the UK sailmaker Dolphin Sails for the same price as a basic cut Chinese dacron sail would have cost after shipping.

Sure the Chinese sail probably costs less when it's imported, but by the time the domestic sailmaker adds in their markup, there isn't much of a savings over having the sail made domestically.
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Old 13-06-2016, 23:32   #7
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Re: Sails from China

Did you ask Dolphin where it was made? Being a local company doesn't necessarily mean a sail is made locally unless you specifically ask. I've seen a couple of Dolphin sails which I can tell were manufactured in China. They probably went all the way to UK and then back to Malaysia.. Not that there is anything wrong with that but if you care and want to know it always pays to ask, as not all sailmakers will tell you upfront where your sail is made.
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Old 13-06-2016, 23:59   #8
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Re: Sails from China

Support your local sailmaker. Who else can you deal with face-to-face?
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Old 14-06-2016, 01:16   #9
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Re: Sails from China

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kestrahl View Post
Did you ask Dolphin where it was made? Being a local company doesn't necessarily mean a sail is made locally unless you specifically ask. I've seen a couple of Dolphin sails which I can tell were manufactured in China. They probably went all the way to UK and then back to Malaysia.. Not that there is anything wrong with that but if you care and want to know it always pays to ask, as not all sailmakers will tell you upfront where your sail is made.
Made in the UK as far as I know. They did tell me when the sail was in the production schedule, and it did seem to be manufactured during a specific week in April and was ready for shipment a week later. Beyond what they tell me??? But they do produce all of the Oyster sails (or most anyway) to specific measurements obtained when the boat was new and there are quite a few customized details on the sail that I would think would be difficult for a distant manufacturer to replicate. Dolphin also made some custom (to our measurements) side mesh awnings for our bimini at the same time.

I can't imagine the company switching a Chinese sail for one of their own, it would be devastating to their reputation if any company was caught doing this.
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Old 14-06-2016, 02:32   #10
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Re: Sails from China

With OEM sail manufacturing the idea is the sail can be customized to a level where it is hard to tell if it was made locally or offshore as all detailing can be computer designed/marked or photographed and replicated. Many lofts outsource manufacturing during busy periods or for certain sail types that are to expensive to make locally. Some are more honest about it than others so if you want to be sure it doesn't hurt to ask rather than assuming it is made locally.

And its also suicide for a OEM manufacturer to sell direct to the public .
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Old 14-06-2016, 21:12   #11
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Re: Sails from China

Thanks to all, you have given me much to think about. It seems to me if I am to use the Asian market I need to do so armed with the knowledge of knowing exactly what I want and with some ( and better) understanding of the available Fabrics there names and which weight to choose I will ponder this and come back with further questions around the above topics. Cheers
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Old 14-06-2016, 22:36   #12
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Re: Sails from China

Smudge,

svTOTEM, a cruising CF member, is a sailmaker and knows a whole lot about the Chinese market. Perhaps an advanced Google Search (down a ways on the CF Search menu) will find some of his posts on the subject for you. He has been quite forthcoming with info.

Fwiw, we always like to deal with a local sailmaker, because if anything needs adjusting, there's no shipping, and it's easy to work things out without a long lag time.

Ann
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Old 18-06-2016, 13:09   #13
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Re: Sails from China

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kestrahl View Post
Did you ask Dolphin where it was made? Being a local company doesn't necessarily mean a sail is made locally unless you specifically ask. I've seen a couple of Dolphin sails which I can tell were manufactured in China. They probably went all the way to UK and then back to Malaysia.. Not that there is anything wrong with that but if you care and want to know it always pays to ask, as not all sailmakers will tell you upfront where your sail is made.
Here's the response I received yesterday directly from Dolphin Sails, I Was also invited to watch my sails being made in their loft next time when we purchase our new Jibs. We finally got a chance to try out our new mainsail early this morning. WOW! What a difference.

Here's the letter from Dolphin:

"The sail was made at our Loft in West Mersea, Essex. The fabric is manufactured in Germany, we cut the panels using our laser cutter in Harwich before manufacturing the sail in Mersea.

Hope all is well on your shake down sail. Keep an eye on the leach line as this will not have been set by us in the loft.

Regards

Jon Sturmer

West Mersea - Harwich - Hamble - Palma

00 44(0)1206 384412"
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Old 18-06-2016, 16:46   #14
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Re: Sails from China

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Fwiw, we always like to deal with a local sailmaker, because if anything needs adjusting, there's no shipping, and it's easy to work things out without a long lag time.

Ann
And, if we put all the local ones out of business who is going to do repairs for us?
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Old 21-07-2016, 11:53   #15
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Re: Sails from China

Hi gentlemen

I need your help to renew my Catalac 8M, I live in Dubai and need addresses of sailmakers in Asia.
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