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Old 24-05-2024, 10:05   #1
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Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

Need to replace sails honestly both of them are getting tired. Budget this year only supports replacing one or the other. Which one is best bang for the buck? I am leaning towards mainsail but welcome insight.
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Old 24-05-2024, 10:14   #2
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

Could you have both refurbished instead?
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Old 24-05-2024, 10:24   #3
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

I‘d go for the headsail since it is generally the „engine“ bringing power and smooth wind over the main.
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Old 24-05-2024, 10:53   #4
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

If the headsail is too baggy, I would do it. As it effects things a lot.

You can always flatten the mainsail better with down haul, outhaul and if you have one, the "flattening reef" cringle, you can flatten the main quite well and not loose much sail area.

If you dont have a flattening reef cringle maybe add one until you can replace the main?
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Old 24-05-2024, 11:14   #5
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

Good points on having more options for shaping the mainsail and that improved headsail improves flow over the main too. Thanks will go with headsail this year and like mainsail in a year or two.
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Old 24-05-2024, 11:25   #6
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

Keep an eye out for second hand sails. There are plenty out there and often in good shape. Call around lofts and ask if they've anything going.

I note you're USA based. There's a crowd called Re Sails based in Newport Rhode Island. I'd call them and ask the question. They might keep a register of people searching for specific sails. There must be other such firms.

There must be an owners association where you can post a request.

I was lucky enough to see a boat exactly like mine sink at her mooring (no one on board). She was salvaged but a write off. Bought her entire sail wardrobe, including main sail cover for $300. The main was virtually brand new. And I was shocked at the improvement in my yachts performance. Wow, I can now tow skiers behind my keeler.
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Old 24-05-2024, 11:26   #7
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

I found small fixes to foresails easier and cheaper. Therefore I would buy a new main up first.



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Old 24-05-2024, 11:29   #8
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Statistical View Post
Good points on having more options for shaping the mainsail and that improved headsail improves flow over the main too. Thanks will go with headsail this year and like mainsail in a year or two.
Other factors I neglected to mention are:
-How big is the headsail? A blown out 130-140% can be worse than a 110-120%
-Which sail is the worst baggy?

Other thoughts:
As mentioned above, there are used sails and some happen to be minimally used. Although there are many with stains on otherwise good sails etc. There was a good stock of them years ago when over time a number of sailboat builders went out of business.
Not sure how much the used market has now though. Often there used to be a lot of super cheap near new .

A used head sail may be easier to find than a used mainsail that fits well with all the right appointments.
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Old 24-05-2024, 14:37   #9
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

In the US, Bacon (I think in Annapolis) has a decent reputation for its used sails. Someone started a thread about used sails, and about 4 outfits were recommended. Maybe the CF Custom Google Search could find that thread for you.

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Old 24-05-2024, 17:20   #10
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

I would (and did) replace the main first. It may not be the engine of a masthead sloop, but it is the workhorse. First up, last down, first reefed, last shaken, when all else fails a boat can be sailed on her main better than the headsail.

I also recommend 3 reefs.
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Old 24-05-2024, 23:58   #11
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

I'd change the Genoa. Many people sail more down wind than upwind.

Down wind your Genoa is more important.

A friend of ours which sailed around the world and is still cruising hardly ever uses his main, at least when he is single handing.
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Old 25-05-2024, 00:46   #12
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Quote:
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I'd change the Genoa. Many people sail more down wind than upwind.

Down wind your Genoa is more important.

A friend of ours which sailed around the world and is still cruising hardly ever uses his main, at least when he is single handing.
True, but remember that sail shape is not so important downwind as it is going to windward. And is not the Tayana 37 a cutter (that's what his boat seems to be)? If so, the main is a primary driver and more important than an individual foresail, up or downwind.

And finally, it is much harder to find a used main that really fits well than a useful foresail, and that's what I would replace with new.

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Old 26-05-2024, 16:47   #13
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Re: Replace mainsail or headsail if limited to one or the other.

Thanks for all the feedback but I may be selling the Tayana 37. I have been thinking for a while now to downsize and at the marina today long story short I got an offer for it even though it isn't listed and the offer was more than I would have listed it for.

It may not happen but I could be boatless soon.
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