New Sails 

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To define the perfect sail for your boat, a number of variables must be analysed, including cuts, sail types, future use, cost effectiveness, among other factors

Our Dune Sailmakers team will be happy to present the best option.

MAINSAIL

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HEADSAILS

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DOWNWIND SAILS

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Please contact us for quotes on classic sails

Sailcloth

Polyester (Dacron®) - Introduced in the 1950s, this is the cloth most commonly used for cruising sails. It has good UV resistance, excellent abrasion resistance, good stretch resistance and good cost effectiveness. Different manufacturers produce different types of polyester. Sails made from Dacron are easy to handle and, on cruising yachts, may last a good few years. On racing yachts, they tend to rapidly lose shape and their performance suffers.

Nylon - Sailcloth used for sails that balloon (spinnakers), since it is extremely light, strong, quite flexible and highly abrasion resistant.

Kevlar® - An aramid class material with low elasticity, used for bullet-proof jackets and other body armour. It is quite commonly used on racing boats. It is not appropriate for cruising boats, since it requires special care to increase its operational life. Sails made from Kevlar require minimal flogging, must not be folded and have low UV resistance.

Twaron® - This has stretch properties similar to those of Kevlar, but greater tensile strength and better UV resistance. Like Kevlar, the fibres are a bright gold colour. As the demand for Kevlar has exceed its capabilities, more and more sailcloth manufacturers are using Twaron.

Carbon Fibre - Carbon fibre has high UV resistance (practically unaffected), but requires the same care as Kevlar sails. It is very expensive, but creates very high performance sails.

Vectran - Vectran is a polyester-based high performance liquid crystal polymer. It has a modulus similar to Kevlar 29, but suffers negligible strength loss with flex. This is a benefit in endurance applications and for cruising sails where durability is essential. Additional advantages of Vectran fibre include high chemical and abrasion resistance and high tensile strength.

Ultra PE (UHMWPE) was originally introduced to rival Kevlar. The brands Dyneema®, produced by the Dutch company DSM, and Spectra®, by Honeywell, are familiar to many sailors. These fibres offer very good UV resistance, low stretch properties and very high breaking strength. Both Spectra and Dyneema are used mainly on larger cruising boats where reasonable weight, strength and durability are fundamental. It is an expensive fibre, but the longevity of the sails guarantees good cost effectiveness.  

Laminated Sailcloth: This sailcloth first appeared in the 70s and 80s and changed the sailing world. Lamination is the most effective way to combine materials with different characteristics to make the most of each material's advantages. They are made by gluing layers of  film, scrim and/or taffeta under high pressure and/or heat to form sandwiches of compound materials.


Sail cutting and making


Cross-cut - This is the traditional sailmaking method with panels placed horizontally so that the first seam runs perpendicular to the leech. They are normally made from Dacron®

Tri-radial - A type of construction in which each section of sail has triangular panels, placed in such a way that the distribution of the fibres reflects the distribution of force exerted by each of the corners of the sail. For this reason, laminated sailcloth is normally used for these sails 

Membrane - The latest word in sail technology for competition and high-performance cruising. What defines the shape of a membrane sail is the format of the mould and not the cutting and seams of the panels.

These sails can be heat-moulded or just glued and the only seams are on the corner patches. They are very lightweight, with high deformation resistance and low elasticity.

Other Materials - There are other materials such as Mylar, Spectra, Technorati. They all vary slightly in cost, quality and general characteristics, but are basically similar to a Kevlar sail.

Elasticity - A good material for upwind sails must have low elasticity, so that it does not lose its shape. Sails are aerofoils, like the wings of an aircraft. Sails that stretch and lose their shape reduce the performance of the boat, especially when sailing upwind. This deformation can be temporary or permanent, but is always harmful.

UV resistance - Some materials degrade rapidly when exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation.

Abrasion resistance - During manoeuvres, sails can rub against the mast, stanchions, etc. This wears down parts of the sails.

Flex resistance - Capacity to be folded without defects or marks.

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We will contact you as soon as possible.