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Old 10-08-2016, 23:04   #31
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Re: Mending Sails With Adhesives ?

Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Hey, UNCIVILIZED, if you were really out somewhere it would be a month or so before you could encounter a sailmaker at all, how would you mend a spectra sail? What would you carry with you? We have used sticky-back sailcloth to mend a scragged dacron sail, quite successfully, no sewing needed, though we have sail cloth needles and threads. But now both our main and genoa are Spectra. Thanks in advance.

Hi Ann,
If memory serves, you guys have Hydranet sails, right? If so, it's not something I have any experience in patching. So I can't say. But I have wondered, as some of the "Spectra Type" cloths like that which I've seen, only have a token amount of the stuff running through the Dacron parent cloth. And some of those sails are made with more or less traditional methods. As there's only enough Spectra in them to use as a cachet selling point really.
I hate to say "it depends", but I really don't know.

Mostly I've worked on Dacron, & Kevlar, which are pretty forgiving when worked on by deck apes like me. And they aren't so fussy about being stitched, unless they're fully laminated sails. But even on some of those, like say a Kevlar #1 who's clew is starting to get tattered from tacking, can be glue patched a bit. As it's not a highly loaded sail, so as long as no big stress risers are created via the glued on patch, they survive. At least in non-racing contexts. And there, the tiny performance loss or weight increase isn't a killer.

My earlier comments about Spectra are based on it's slipperyness. And some paneled sails made of fully Spectra cloth are glued together at birth. So fixing them, or re-cutting is fairly problematic as I recall. Some can be done by the loft. Depends on construction type, & fabric. Of which there are more types than there were animals on the Ark.

Evans Starzinger might know, as from what I've read, he's experimented with a fair number of new cuts of sails, & cloth/laminate types. As well as knowing plenty of lofts/sailmakers.

EDIT: One of the other catches about some fabrics, hybrids especially, is that like knitted fiberglass cloth, their strengths are/can be very directional. So a repair to them needs to both account for the load path/fiber orientation, & also be done properly so that the repair has the correct strength to match what's around it. So that neither a hard spot, nor weak spot is created.
All of which is very sail, & cloth specific. Probably more of a racing thing too, but I don't know who else will be reading this & what folks have for sails. And the above even applies to some woven Dacron sails.

Also, if you read my post above, I mention some of the issues with adhesives. Though there are also others. As for instance, some prep solvents used prior to applying the glue are incompatible with certain fabrics & films. To include the possibility of melting things. And I'm not a chemist, nor up to date on materials science, so...
Too, there are some adhesives which need to be treated with the same cautions as the prep solvents. Plus they can be pretty nasty for the user to handle as well.

Me thinks that some glues tend to be sailmaker only type items, or are only used when the sail's being made. The science & magic of which are out of my depth by quite a bit. But some upper echelon racers & sail makers would know, & perhaps be able to aid you in putting together a First Aid kit for higher tech sails.

There are other "fabrics" which have similar repair issues to Spectra cloth, in that they're either so slippery as to be tough to glue to. Or they're so strong that a lot of glues bonding abilities can't match their strength. And there's the reverse of that, where the protective layers bonded over the load carrying "fabrics" are much weaker than the "fabric" itself, which makes fixing the sail problematic again. If it's even possible.

I haven't read it yet, but there may be some info on all of the above in Mugsy's book that Jim has a copy of. Brian "Mugsy" Hancock's one on sail making.
Either that, or um, someone will need to volunteer to seduce a sailmaker

Hey, you did ask


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Old 11-08-2016, 00:51   #32
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Re: Mending Sails With Adhesives ?



I guess I'll just ask the sailmaker who provided the sails what we should plan on doing.



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Old 12-08-2016, 15:32   #33
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Re: Mending Sails With Adhesives ?

The repair of Hydranet is the same as for Dacron/polyester: Insignia self-adhesive patches work well, as do 4200/5200 adhesives.
I carry 3 weights of Hydranet sail material for spares: each large enough to replace the largest panel for that weight. Then there are scraps from cutting the sails and thise would be great for use with 5200.

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