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Old 07-10-2009, 08:37   #16
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......most are sailing before Labor Day?
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:47   #17
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We have "Egyptian Cotton" colored sails -- sort of an antique white, though made from nice modern Dacron. We also have wooden masts, and everywhere we go, people ask, "What year is this boat?!" When I reply "It was built from 2003 till 2005" they always say, "Oh, it looks like it's from the 1800s."
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:04   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cormorant View Post
We have "Egyptian Cotton" colored sails -- sort of an antique white, though made from nice modern Dacron. We also have wooden masts, and everywhere we go, people ask, "What year is this boat?!" When I reply "It was built from 2003 till 2005" they always say, "Oh, it looks like it's from the 1800s."
sounds almost like an ex-wife story..
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:15   #19
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I think Gordon and Sandy got it. White is the un-dyed natural color of Dacron. Adding dye slightly weakens the material. There are other materials such as Kevlar woven into some sailcloth that can give them a yellow or silver color. That too is the natural color of the more exotic materials...Kevlar being yellow.

I concur with Sandy, I used to race a Hobie 18. The more serious racers bought all white sails because the sails with the multi-colored panels stretched at different rates.
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:23   #20
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This is the same reason...

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. The more serious racers bought all white sails because the sails with the multi-colored panels stretched at different rates.
...that I go with an all-white spinnaker.
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:46   #21
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I don't know if it matters with downwind sails because the disturbance in the laminar flow from uneven panels would be less because of the lower wind velocities across the surface. Ask a sailmaker though. Lots of hardcore racers have spinnakers and asymetricals with multicolored panels.
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Old 07-10-2009, 11:19   #22
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speaking as a former hard-core racer...

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I don't know if it matters with downwind sails because the disturbance in the laminar flow from uneven panels would be less because of the lower wind velocities across the surface. Ask a sailmaker though. Lots of hardcore racers have spinnakers and asymetricals with multicolored panels.
There's a big difference when a cruiser buys a spinnaker because a cruiser wants it to last a decade, while the racer expects to have to replace it after a few years. My last spinnaker, after eight years, had stretched noticeably more in the alternating yellow panels than in the white ones. This is why I switched to all-white when I had a sail built for the new boat.

More and more racers are going to solid-color chutes, and one-designers are tending toward white spinnakers. Part of this is to make it more difficult for the opposition to single you out in a tight fleet, but also because the sail lasts longer.

I don't agree at all that laminar flow is less important on a cruising spinnaker than on an upwind sail, especially if we're talking about an asymmetrical chute cut for reaching. In light air my gennaker will point as high as 60 degrees, precisely because the laminar flow is so good on that sail. And my new, all-white gennaker is a tri-radial cut, integrating 81 panels of .7oz nylon. Laminar flow is everything on that type of a sail.
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Old 07-10-2009, 11:27   #23
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Cost, tradition, performance anything else?
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Old 07-10-2009, 12:35   #24
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Why are sails White??

One reason the polyester sails, (Dacron, Teryline), are white is due to the polymer they're made from. The PET resin used to make the fiber from which sail cloth is woven includes a small amount of Titanium Dioxide, (white power at room temp). This acts as a delusterant and provides localized stress nucleation points that help build tensile properties into the fiber as it is drawn.

FYI
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Old 07-10-2009, 12:52   #25
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Our kevlar sails are brown. I've found with poly sails the darker collors seem to hold up best. Our red kites tended to last much longer then our white kites, I don't know why though.

Our nephew is in Nevada testing the new North sails that are made without a scrim, they are nothing but fiber. He says they are pretty bullet proof, more so then the boats and gear. He says when a puff goes through they do not move, no bag, no stretch, no nothing. They simply load up and break the halyard, shackles, sheets...... They look like the solution to film shrinkage.

But I do like white sails.
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Old 07-10-2009, 12:57   #26
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All these years I always thought it was because if a Prince wanted to make off with his brothers bride on the wedding day, she could be camoflaged against the background of the White sails for a safe get away? Now i've learned something new...
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