Vele con load path
equipment for the sail
articles for sails, sails conversion, load path
There is a vast array of materials for sails and their choice depends on performance and budget.Here are some of the most commonly used.
The concept of manufacturing load path sails
began in the mid-eighties with the patent for Tape-Drive sails from UK-Halsey.This concept involved two revolutionary principles: firstly, the fabric of the sail and the structure were separated, two distinct entities; secondly, the structural part has been aligned in accordance with the loads of the sail.
The Tape-Drive sails are still popular today because of their performance and their durability and the visual similarity to Matrix sails which represent the third generation of the UK-Halsey sails.
As for the Tape-Drive, even for the sails Matrix the reinforcing elements applied follow the stress lines on the sail and bear the majority of the dynamic load generated by the sail.The density or the frequency of the reinforcing elements coincide with the loading concentration of the sail and the sail body or its surface support only a small fraction of the load that the sail encounters during use.Its purpose is to prevent the passage of air from one side of the sail to the other thus preserving the differential pressure created by the shape of the sail.When a Matrix canvas is designed, the size is taken into consideration as well as the amount and draft position and the material and how the material is to be placed.
UK-Halsey has its own sail design software.In addition to the type, you can also choose the size of the yarn to be used.There are other important factors regarding this: some yarns are resistant to UV rays (such as carbon) while others can deteriorate very quickly when exposed to sunlight.Technora is the most resistant of the aramid yarns when it comes to UV rays, while Spectra or Dyneema are the best in terms of strength and flex.
Last but not least, is the layout and distribution of the yarn.AccuCut allows the designer complete flexibility to tailor the yarn layout exactly as expected from the loaded map of a sail.During this process, the sail is divided into sections.Then, depending on the dimensions and use, the designer will determine the DPI (denier per inch *) that each section of the sail requires.Once the DPI has been provided, the type of yarn and size, will define the path of the yarn and its spacing (concentration).This is a step that requires time and is of critical importance, as the strength of the sail is determined from this, where this is required, and eliminates cost and weight (and therefore yarn) where they are not needed.
* Denier is a measure of the weight of the fibre used to express the fabric thickness.A high denier value indicates a coarser fibre and stronger material.
A denier is equal to a gram of weight per 9000 metres of fibre
Titanium is the development of a technology designed twenty years ago, a revolutionary system with tapes from corner to corner on a membrane (tape - drive).The difference between the two is that the Tape - Drive sails have the fibre glued on the outer side of the membrane, while Titanium has the laminated fibre inside the two films.
By laminating the fibre inside the sail, you get better coverage.Instead of having tapes positioned at a distance, the yarns will be closer together.This will give the sail a more regular shape.The fibre oriented sails are also lighter because the amount of glue used in the finished sail is significantly less.
The Titanium sails can be as light as the sailor decides that they should be: by inserting less fibre, it is possible to determine the weight.The lightness of these sails, however, is not enough; the length is also an important requirement: for this reason the sail is constructed with a sufficient number of fibres that will also guarantee a long life.These sails use either single or combined arimid and carbon fibre yarns.If the sail is to be used exclusively for high-end regattas, we will construct a sail entirely in carbon fibre.Titanium is also a suitable system for 50 foot plus cruise boats.
Taffeta is also used, a fine and very lightweight veil of polyester applied on the outside or on both sides of the membrane.This protects the sail from abrasion and UV rays making the whole sail heavier but suitable for long distance performance, thus adding years to its duration.
The Titanium can, therefore, be used for racing or cruising, for Maxi Yacht boats or small boats like the Mumm30.
UK Halsey Italia's Titanium sails are made exclusively in the sail loft in Cannes, France.The membrane is brought to different UK-Halsey sail lofts where, locally, it is given its finishing touches.Reinforcements, batten pockets, head plates and much more are applied here.