What is a good cruising sail?
Here are some of things you should look out for. We have asked William Friis-Møller, passionate sailor and sail advisor to give his best advice and tips on characteristics of the optimal sail for cruising.
“In general, we see a rising demand for easy-to-handle products and solutions. Convenient solutions that make the sail easy to handle even for the small crew, e.g. the husband and wife heading out for the summer tour.
Convenience is a key driver in the development of today’s sail design at Elvstrøm Sails and can be built into the sail design in several ways.
“One of the more obvious ones is the sail battens. The battens improve the shape of the sail and support the roach ensuring the aerodynamic characteristic of the sail. But they don´t exactly ease the handling. The trick is to design the sail with as few battens as possible, and that all comes down to the expert knowledge of the sail maker.”
In terms of convenience, furling systems are top notch. “At Elvstrøm Sails we have pioneered the development within furling systems and keep on refining solutions for our furling systems.
A wealth of opportunities
“You should be aware that even within furling sails there is a wealth of opportunities in terms of sail cloth. The choice of sail cloth has an impact on the handling. The cruisers typically ask for a sail that is easy to fold, furl and pack. And many don´t realize that our EPEX membranes are also a very good choice for furling systems. We are often asked if the material can really furl-in easily and the answer is yes indeed! In fact, the smoother the surface of the sail is, the easier it furls in. And that is exactly the case with an EPEX membrane.
Durability and Balance
The sail cloth itself also has an impact on the durability and the performance of the sail. Both parameters worth looking out for. All our sail material combinations have an indicator from 1-10 on the durability and performance helping you to find best suitable combination for your sailing preference.
“When you choose a cruising sail, there are several sail design and sail making solutions to look out for. A factor that has a huge impact on the comfort of sailing is the balance of the boat. The flatter a sail is designed, the less it heels and the more comfort you will gain sailing. The sail will be designed to stay free from the rig as much as possible, the area of the sail aligned to the specific boat and the reefing options built with an eye to the comfort as well. These are just a few of the things that needs to be taken into consideration when designing a long-lasting comfortable cruising sail.”
At Elvstrøm Sails our starting point is always the needs of the customer. From here on we tailor make the final solution. Don’t be afraid to challenge your sail maker on solutions making sure you get the sail of your dream.