Mainsail all finished and friends

The North sails team finished off the final adjustments to the new mainsail on Friday, in the middle of the 40 degree heatwave in Marseille, thanks guys!  We took Wildling out today to try everything. The mainsail is perfect!

Main and genoa downwind in light conditions

We did the weight comparison. The 3Di mainsail (with no battens) weighs 80 kg (175 lbs) and the old sail with no battens weighed in at 117 kg (257 lbs). I’m guessing the difference in weight of the battens is around 15 kg (35 lbs) which means we reduced the weight of the mainsail by 40% and removed 52 kg (115 lbs) from the boat, and most of it up high.

Here are a few more photos…

Fully raised mainsail. We checked the battens in 6 knots of wind, and they tacked over no problem.

We were very fortunate to be able to take our dear friends from Austin Texas – Scott and Deanna and their two boys – out on the boat with us today. They are visiting Marseille on their vacation, and stopped off to say hi.

Another hot day in the Med, but perfect for sailing and swimming at Iles du Frioul.

9 thoughts on “Mainsail all finished and friends

  1. Very nice sail and less weight makes hoisting easier. I think you will find nylon teltales better than wool. Wool ones always find something to catch on. Also as far as trimming the main, the leach teltales are a good rough guide, but look up at the leeward side teltales to make sure they are not stalling.

    • Hi Frank,

      I’m with you on the nylon vs wool telltales, the wool telltales on the headsails are already getting snagged. I would have specified nylon if I had known ahead of time, which might be a good tip for anyone reading this and planning on purchasing new sails.

      Thanks for the advice on the leeward side telltales. I’ve always found trimming using these quite challenging. The tells on the bottom third of the sail seem to always stream regardless of trim, and the upper third tend to stall in most conditions. It takes a lot of twist off to get them to fly, and often it feels like more twist than needed, so I default to the leech tells. I’m hoping the new sail makes this more precise but I need more miles with the sail to know. Any tips you can provide on how to best trim the main would be very appreciated.

      Best regards,

      • Yes mainsail trim is always harder figure out compared to headsails. Since there is no boomvang like on a mono, the traveller and mainsheet must work together. (and molded sails have the shape built in so all you can vary is twist and angle to the wind)
        The lower leach telltales will be influenced by the traveller position and upper leach telltales by the mainsheet. You want the upper leach telltales stalling 1/3 of the time and then check the leeward telltales that they are streaming which tells you the air flow over the back of the sail (this is where the lift/drive comes from)

        Also complicating things can be backwind of the head sails into the front of the main.

      • Also be careful to center the mast rotation before gybing and the mainsail can be damaged on the spreader tips.

  2. Been very interesting seeing all your adjustments and comparisons to date Doug, I am amazed at the difference in mainsail weights, and how this sail is also good for cruising. From your observations in this post, 6 knots and battens flipping over is great! Thanks for your posts Doug.

  3. Doug,
    Inspiring all you have done/doing. Sorry about the shoulder – had mine done years ago – came out fine but wasn’t easy.
    On the Mainsail did you think of using Harken Battcars? I am looking into them and as thorough as you are I wondered if this had come up.
    Get well

    • Hi Steve,
      Outremer uses the Antal cars and track which I find works really well. Since I was having no problems with the cars on the original mainsail I decided to keep them when we fitted the new 3Di sail. I’m happy with Antal, but the Harken Battcars are a good option also.

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