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Author Topic: Sail making practices of the 1800's and 1900's  (Read 1502 times)


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Sail making practices of the 1800's and 1900's
« on: November 30, 2009, 12:31:51 pm »

Hello folks,

I'm looking for detailed information on sail making practices of the 1800's and 1900's for my sailing trawler project.

So far I have learned that the cloth preferred was American or Manchester cotton which came in bolts 1 yard wide. I'm looking for a 1/16th scale alternative. :-))

I would like to have a go at making scale sails and the plan is to build them up over a wooden form shaped to act as a mold over which the cloths will we glued together so that the finished sail will stand with the correct belly and shape but I don't know how the two edges of adjoining cloths came together. {:-{

I plan to glue the seams rather than sew them but would be interested in how the sail seams were actually formed, I gather that the seam width varied between each cloth and this is how the sailmakers built in the shape of the sail but so far I have not come up with info in any great detail.

Also I would like to know how the bolt ropes were actually attached

Perhaps I'm looking in the wrong places, can anyone advise please?

I would be interested to hear from anyone who has tackled sail making the way I am planning. O0


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Re: Sail making practices of the 1800's and 1900's
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2009, 11:39:24 pm »

Find a damn good library and ask for a copy of "Dixon Kemp". That will tell you everything about Edwardian/Victorian Yachting practices. Not working boats, I grant you, but I suspect eveything was still done properly, albeit maybe with slightly lighter and more expensive sailcloth.
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