Welcome to the UKWA Home Page Forums Technical Temporary DIY sail repair or immediate pro job?

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    James Grigor

    Hi Everyone

    I have been getting things ready for the Calshot meet up in a couple of weeks, so got my sails down from the loft in the garage and to my horror a spotlight I have up there in the rafters has come in contact with my cruising mainsail. It has burnt 2 holes, one near the clew and one further up the leech of the sail just under the first batten and above the first reefing point. They are about 5cm by 2-3cm but one of them is through some of the reinforced stitching on the very edge of the reinforced panel between the reefing point and batten.

    My question – do you think I could get away with a temporary fix with some heavy duty sail repair tape? I was thinking of sticking a piece 1 cm bigger than the hole on both sides then a second piece 2 cm bigger, so overlapping, so it would end up being 4 layers. My concern is the reinforced section which would be missing. Do I need to try and get a professional repair done straight away as I could be risking further damage? My issue is I live in Chippenham so would be a quiet hard to get a quick professional repair done before  Calshot. Any advice very welcome.


    Jamie Grigor

    Dave Barker

    Hi Jamie,

    I think you could certainly make a satisfactory temporary diy repair, but I would overlap the sound edges of the fabric much more than 1 cm all round. If you don’t have repair tape wide enough to do that perhaps you have on old sail that you use as donor material and sew on some repair patches by hand.

    But given that you will almost certainly want to get the sail repaired professionally at some point, it seems to make sense to do that now if at all possible and miss out the diy step altogether.

    James Grigor

    Hi Dave

    just a update I did a diy repair and did a test sail 2 weeks ago and it was fine this weekend at Calshot. Thank you for your reply I had a busy few weeks and didn’t remember to check if anyone had.

    Thanks again


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