Sedna

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Clay
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue May 13, 2014 1:40 am

Sedna

Post by Clay » Tue May 13, 2014 1:53 am

I'm new here and would like to post a link to my blog about rebuilding,living aboard, and sailing a 1978 Albin Ballad (on a budget). So here it is:
www.sailpony.wordpress.com

Bob McGovern
Posts: 279
Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 3:08 am
Location: Wyoming, USA

Re: Sedna

Post by Bob McGovern » Thu May 15, 2014 1:57 pm

Yay! Welcome, Clay. Your rebuild was most impressive, and I am slowly working thru your interesting blog entries. Thanks for both!:) It's been a long, cold winter; hope warmer days have arrived back East and you can shed the foulies. My partner & I are early in a similar refit on our 1972 Ballad Fionn, so any advice you have to offer will be appreciated. Starting with that mast step truss.... :lol:

Bob McGovern
Posts: 279
Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 3:08 am
Location: Wyoming, USA

Re: Sedna

Post by Bob McGovern » Fri May 16, 2014 9:07 pm

PS: Just noted on your blog you are looking for new sails. Have you had any luck finding some? Far East has a decent reputation for basic coastal sails, and at least they are honest about where they are made. If your plans include the Caribbean, a heavier fabric & extra corner work might be useful -- but you know that.:)

I checked the usual suspects for used mainsails -- Bacon's, Second Wind, Minney's, CastAway's -- but didn't find a good match. The Ballad's boom is so short! A used roller furling genoa should be easier; there are many Catalina 30 #2s out there that might fit okay.

Have you ever built your own sails? Depending on what value you (or an employer;)) place on your time, that can be an excellent place to save money. The Ballad's main is so small & high aspect, it would be simple to construct. In high-aspect Dacron, 6.5-7.3oz, a partial batten main should cost ~$375USD to scratch build. I priced out materials for a 292sqft furling headsail & it came to $600. That's probably not enough savings over an importer to justify the wrestling match. But mainsails, esp. smaller mainsails, offer better DIY margin because there is so much finish work involved.

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prjacobs
Posts: 226
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 4:06 pm

Re: Sedna

Post by prjacobs » Sat May 17, 2014 4:09 pm

Bob, I'd be interested to know where you source your sail making materials for such a good price.
As I have an industrial sewing machine, I made my own sails for my Albin Vega. I had a local loft supply the materials and do the design. The savings were about 50% over having them do the whole job. Since then the loft has changed owners and the same deal was no longer available for the Ballad's sails.
I priced Sailrite kits and also got prices from a local loft that does all the design work and has the sails made offshore. The ready-made sails were not much more than the kits so that's the way I went, and am really happy with the results.

Bob McGovern
Posts: 279
Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 3:08 am
Location: Wyoming, USA

Re: Sedna

Post by Bob McGovern » Sat May 17, 2014 4:46 pm

Sailrite, mostly. Cruising Dacron at about $17 a yard; they no longer sell High Aspect/High Modulus, but we used that on our SJ21 main at $19 a yard. Luff tape and similar accessories add up fast.;) I've agree, DIY runs half the lowball importers (like FX or FES) and a third of name lofts like North or UK Halsey. Sailrite kits are no bargain, tending to cost nearly as much as an FX/FES sail, complete.

292 sqft furling #2 genoa, all materials sourced from Sailrite (not the cheapest, but easy & I like the people):
  • 22 yds Performance Cruise 7.4oz Dacron @ $17
    35' luff tape @ $2.20
    18yd 14"w UV Dacron tape (sacrificial) @ $6.90
    Misc hardware, rings, webbing @ $60
Total = $635

Add some for shipping, deduct 10-15% for coupons/sale discounts. We have a huge spool of Dacron thread that should last a lifetime; might use Tenara for white sails on the Ballad (if we build them), and that's not cheap. For design I use SailCut's freeware program, which is really, really good once you get used to its quirks.

Total cost for the SJ21 suite was ~$275 for the main, $220 for the jib, and $130 for the 144sqft nylon drifter. Just a bit more than an FX mainsail with one reef. As sails become larger, more & more of the cost shifts to the cloth -- and then the discount loft/DIY gap shrinks to vanishing. Ballad headsails approach the break-even point.

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prjacobs
Posts: 226
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 4:06 pm

Re: Sedna

Post by prjacobs » Sun May 18, 2014 4:23 pm

Thanks Bob,
I hadn't priced raw materials at Sailrite. I see some significant savings there. I built two sails using Sailcut Cad years ago for my Montgomery 17: a Genoa and an asymmetric spinnaker. The most laborious part of the job was plotting out the individual panels, but after that they went together quite easily. A few emails to Sailcut's author helped solve some design problems.
I'm thinking about a third sail for the Ballad, a nylon screecher, and may go the DIY route again, but this time I'll build a big table for the plotting work, instead of wearing out my back and knees on the floor!

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