29 April 2009

New sails

In the beginning of March our discussions with the sailmakers of North Sails in Nelson are finalised. We order modern, heavy duty cruising sails (radial cut made of DP-laminate). Every few days we visit the North Sails 'loft', the workshop of the sailmaker, to be engaged in the sequential stadia of the sailmaking. And we also have to attribute a small effort ourselves. You'll find it all on the pictures in the slideshow.
Before the end of the month we can install our new headsail that fitts perfectly well in the furler. At this occasion we see the thoroughness of the sailing cloth, but also how easy and smooth the sail can be furled in and out.
The mainsail takes a bit longer and since we are a few weeks away from Nelson, we postpone the delivery to the end of April. This turns out to be a rainy period, but in between two showers we are able to put the main in place and get a first impression. To trim the new sails we make two seatrials in the beautiful Abel Tasman Bay. That's only a 10 minutes sail from our position in the Nelson marina.
Trimming the sails, halyards and rigging is an accurate job, depending on the amount of wind and the course we are sailing, and of course the opninion of the other masters we've invited to join us on our seatrials. In short, enough to talk a bit more extensive afterwards with a beer or wine. About one thing we do agree: the new sails on 'Alexandra' look sturdy and show off!

Slideshow New sails