The Perfect Sail Repair Toolkit
Sailing is once again gaining popularity in the US as is indicated by one report published by the National Marine Manufacturers Association online. The report, published last year among other things stated that boat sails were reaching a peak after a decade long dip as indicated by statistics.
The report also elaborated on the percentage increase in revenue earned via boat sales by state. Where North Carolina placed highest by way of percentage increase in revenue earned (16% increase), Florida came out on top by way of sheer numbers— a staggering USD 2.9 billion!
If you’re one of the many independent adult Americans who have developed a love for boating or, more specifically – sailing, repair and maintenance of your vessel is probably something that concerns you.
The Importance of Knowing How to Perform Basic Repairs
In this day and age, everyone who owns a car or motor vehicle may not know much about the mechanisms with regard to what goes on under the hood. This may be acceptable in a land transport setting. Particularly if you live in a city or need only travel short distances for the most part.
The reason for this is that finding help or the right professional services to get you going again is a quick and easy process. If however, you were a trucker covering long transportation routes, this would be a different story.
If your truck breaks down too far out or at a part of your route where help was inaccessible, you would probably be a sitting duck unless you knew a thing or two about truck mechanics and repair.
Let’s Now Discuss Sailing
If you’re a trucker, you’re still on land and have the comfort of walking your way to a rest post, gas station or the closest hint of civilization even in a worst case scenario. Given you’re on a used route, you could probably hitch a ride too if needed.
It’s a completely different story however when you’re out at sea! Though American hobbyists, sport sailors and sailing enthusiasts do enjoy a degree of security when in home waters, the same cannot be said when you’re out at sea.
There are areas where the US coastguard may not be able to reach you or situations where you might need to perform quick fixes on your sailboat so you can get back home. Though these situations are rare, the saying rightly goes; it’s better to be safe than sorry!
Putting Together The Perfect Tool Kit for Sail Repairs
If you own a sailboat there are a number of things which could go wrong. As one blog published by Cruising World describes; many of these are sail related and further are easily prevented. Part of preventing such issues means being equipped with a sail repair kit with the kind of tools you need to get you sail repair jobs done.
Furthermore, if you’re out at sea, far away from help and your sails need a quick fix, a kit containing the items described below should have you back on your way before you know it.
Every sail repair kit must contain the items described below:
2 inch, 3 ounce Dacron-tape (15 Ft): Used for emergency repair and temporary holding before more permanent sowing.
Half Inch Seamstick: This is a tape with two adhesive faces which bond to Dacron, nylon-vinyl, and also to cotton. It helps with holding patches as well as certain hems down prior to sewing. This is because fabric thickness makes pinning extremely difficult if not impossible.
Hand sewing palm: This tool makes it possible to push needles through thick as well as numerous layers of sailcloth by hand.
Heavy-duty scissors: cover these with an oiled cloth to keep them from catching rust.
Razor-blade knife: for shearing and cutting.
Roll of ten inch insignia (Eight yards): This is a kind of Dacron cloth which features a face which is sticky. This adhesive face allows for the quick cutting, placing and repair of sails preventing any more damages from being sustained.
Sailmakers’ Needles: Needles designed for sail maintenance as the name states.
Seam Ripper: Incase sewing needs to be unpicked.
Sewing Awl: This is a tool that enables one to penetrate thick fabrics such as those used in sails while hand sewing. The person may then lockstitch what is required by hand with ease akin to that of a machine.
Spinnaker-repair tape: To repair the Spinnaker.
Tubular webbing: For runners etc.
Two tubes of 5200 fast-cure: A powerful and handy adhesive to have.
Waxed Thread: As used in sails.
Additional Items for Repair at Sea
Apart from the tools described above, there are others that you might want to keep in case you need to and know how to perform more advanced repairs on your boat sails. The tools below are particularly useful when you need to perform repairs far out at sea.
Spare razor blades: store these in an oiled cloth which may then be placed in plastic like the scissors.
40 pushpins: As spares.
A Portable drill: For punching holes. Make sure you don’t forget to purchase diameter bits. Those that come in a small size will do just fine.
Small Vise Grips: For stability.
Hot knife: Used to cut and seal rope, synthetic fabric prone to unraveling and webbing.
Spare Sail Cloth: Keep amply sized cuts of sail-cloth as well as sail-canvas. Do so for all your sails.
Caring for your Sail Repair Kit
Make sure you keep checking in on your repair kit once you put it together. Make sure metal items are not rusted. If tape, adhesive or any other tools and items need replacement, do so before you need them next.
It may also help to read up on how to perform certain fixes on sails if and when necessary. If you follow these instructions, chances are you will be well equipped to address any sail repair issues whether you’re docked or out at sea!
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If you have any more questions or need more information on boats and yachts available to you, we’re at your service.