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Author Topic: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?  (Read 3041 times)

wullie/mk2

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Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« on: February 22, 2012, 08:13:49 PM »

Has anybody used Tyvek to make sails. Does the cut edge fray, or does it need to be hemmed and sewn.
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tobyker

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Re: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2012, 09:35:30 PM »

I think it was at one time proposed for kites - you could try googling tyvek kites and see if anything helpful comes up.
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Klunk

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Re: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2012, 06:49:30 AM »

I work  in the print trade and no iy does not fray at the edges. Although eiyh the eight and stiffness  why would you want to use it for a sail ! I have used it as a template to make sure that when i but the real sail its ok. I see no reason why you could not use it as a sail though. It would be interesting to see how it stands up over ti.e as well. If you are looking for cheap material for sails  i go to bootfairs and but old tents made of ripstop nylon for a couple of quid
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Brooks

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Re: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« Reply #3 on: February 29, 2012, 07:11:20 AM »

Tyvek works great as sails. All my ships use it: Pamir 4 masted barque, Aldebaran fore&main topsail schooner (also rigged as brig, brigantine, schooner), sandbagger sloop, bottleboat topsail schooner. These vessels hull lengths range from 10 inches to 3 feet.

I use white portions cut from left over housing wrap (used in US, not sure about GB). The stuff does not fray. Corners are reinforced by 1 or 2 layers of clear packing tape to hold the thread outhauls, halyards, etc.

For small vessels, there are white mailing envelopes of Tyvek.
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Big Ada

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Re: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« Reply #4 on: February 29, 2012, 01:49:19 PM »

Can someone post a photo of Tyvek so I know what you are talking about please.

Len.
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The long Build

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Re: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« Reply #5 on: February 29, 2012, 01:55:50 PM »

I work  in the print trade and no iy does not fray at the edges. Although eiyh the eight and stiffness  why would you want to use it for a sail ! I have used it as a template to make sure that when i but the real sail its ok. I see no reason why you could not use it as a sail though. It would be interesting to see how it stands up over ti.e as well. If you are looking for cheap material for sails  i go to bootfairs and but old tents made of ripstop nylon for a couple of quid

A Few tents may be going available in London probably..
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Brooks

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Re: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« Reply #6 on: February 29, 2012, 03:20:22 PM »

Tyvek examples

Pamir
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=743611
Aldebaran
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1096365
Sandbagger
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1078321
Other ships: search under my username Brooks on rcgroups boats and boat videos.

The only downside of Tyvek is that it can't be furled since the material takes creases. To reduce sail on my squareriggers, I just remove the yard and it's attached sail - "struck below" in nautical terms :-)

One big upside for me is the speed of sailmaking - no sewing required, just cut, tape corners, and bend on. I cut sail patterns out of newspaper first, to test fit, then cut the Tyvek. It's hard to erase pencil lines from Tyvek w/o causing damage by the eraser, so pencil lightly. Of course, you could always replace the Tyvek sails with cloth versions, using the Tyvek as the pattern, if you wanted.

The square sails are CA'ed to their yards. Fore&aft sails are installed on booms, mast and gaff per real practice. Jibs don't require a forestay since the Tyvek does not stretch - just install a halyard and a tack line (tied to the bowsprit or jibboom). Overlapping jibs may not cross-over on a tack in light wind since Tyvek is stiffer than cloth - I reduce the overlap from prototype design; even eliminating overlap entirely does not look as off-scale as I expected. btw, even overlapping cloth jibs cut from very thin, flexible cloth,  don't always cross over.
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wullie/mk2

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Re: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« Reply #7 on: February 29, 2012, 09:47:10 PM »

Hi Brooks, thanks for the pictures. Good examples of Tyvek as a sail material.
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JerryTodd

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Re: Tyvek as a Sail Material ?
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2012, 02:43:08 PM »

I've actually used Tyvek for sails on real boats.  Made an experimental drifter for my 16 footer with it.

If you wash it in the machine a few times, it will soften up.
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