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How to Get the Most Out of Your Sailmaker

April 28, 2016

You just purchased a new set of sails or had a complete service done to your existing sails, but what happens after the sails are on the boat? We take pride in the services we offer and, you may discover, that goes way beyond sail inspections, repairs, and building state-of-the-art sails. Here are eight little known and often underutilized services our local lofts provide:

Choosing the right sail for the conditions

Reachers, runners, Code 0s, jib tops, genoas, windseekers, and staysails—that’s just a tiny sample of the type of sails we offer. How do you know which one to use and in what conditions? And does the sea state matter? Ask us to come out for a sail and help you build a crossover chart to get the most out of your sail inventory.

Prolonging the life of your sails

Sure, we’re in the business of selling new sails, but we also take great pride in helping you prolong the lifespan of the sails you already own. We’re up to date on all the new technology and techniques available. We can also recut and refit existing sails to ensure that they’re ready to perform as long as you are. Regular sail maintenance and evaluation in the offseason can prevent a costly sail repair later.

Dialing in the luff curve for peak performance

Take a picture of your mainsail when it’s brand new, and hold onto that for future reference. As a sail ages, sail cloth naturally stretches making the sail deeper, which in turn makes it less efficient. It’s great if you have the budget to replace your main every three years, but it’s not always necessary. A small adjustment can make all the difference in performance. 

Quantum Sail Scan powered by VSPARS is a simplified version of the very powerful VSPARS real-time sail-scanning tool. Any photo uploaded to the program to create a digital version of your sail, allowing us to analyze the flying shape and determine where it may need to be recut. It’s a good idea to have the luff curve on your mainsail recut every three to five years.

Rig tuning

Proper rig tuning is essential to the performance and handling of any boat. For racers and cruisers alike, a properly tuned mast will make the sails more efficient and help balance the helm. Our sail consultants are skilled in rig tune, and can make sure that your rig is optimized for your new or existing sails. 

Control line planning

Whether you’re looking to rearrange your control lines for ease of use, or adding a new headsail furler, we can help you determine where various control lines would best be placed on your boat for single-handed sailing, family cruising, or better crew coordination for big boat racing. 

Help finding crew 

Our sail consultants are avid sailors who sail on a variety of different boats at varying levels of competitive regattas, from humble club beer can races to grand prix racing. We’re deeply plugged into the local sailing scene and know a lot of people who want to go sailing. Need a skilled tactician or a last-minute spinnaker trimmer? Give us a call, more than likely we can help you find the right crew for your next regatta.

On-the-water coaching

Many of our customers are first-time boat owners. We’ll deliver your sails, and then go out sailing with you to get it set up and trimmed for performance. Or maybe you’ve got a beer can crew you want to get ready for a big weekend regatta. We’re available for on-the-water coaching to help you dial in crew work and communication. So whether you’ve got a new set of sails or need some help taking your crew to the next level, your first call should be to your local sail loft.

Seminars/clinics at local yacht clubs and regattas

Be sure to check your local loft's calendar and take advantage of any seminars at yacht clubs or sailing centers. Traveling to a regatta? Check the NOR and regatta schedule for any pre-regatta clinics or weather briefings. A great opportunity to talk to the experts and ask any questions you may have and learn tips and tricks from the pros. Come prepared to ask questions and take notes! If your question can't wait until the next seminar, you can always ask a Quantum expert here.

Weather forecasting

Not only are most of the members of our lofts professional sailors, they also have decades of experience sailing in their local areas. They are well versed in local knowledge – wind direction, shifts, tides, and current patterns. Our customers often call our lofts along with using a weather app. Getting ready to start your first race or maybe you’re cruising into a new port? Call the local loft and they’ll be happy to help you sort out all the weather information you need.

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