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Sail Storage

I always thought folding was the only way to store a sail. Maybe not. I found some neat ideas that look like they could make storing a sail fast and easy.  One method that has been suggested and I have seen done is to get about a 4-6" diameter piece of PVC pipe and put a rolled sail into it.  It could probably be attached in several various locations such as to the frame of the trailer or dolly or on top of the deck like the spars.  I used to belong to a club with a sail loft and they built a rack along one of the walls so that all they had to do was roll the sail on the mast and put it on the rack.  I have not tried any of these listed below, but I would be interested in hearing any input that anyone who does would have.

Drain Pipes

PVC tubes can be heavy, I prefer the black plastic drainpipe sleeves sold at Home Depot. they are very light, and a little flexible. If you prefer PVC, you can cut holes in it with a hole saw every so often to lighten it up.



PVC With Bungee

A PVC tube is helpful for rolling the sail.   Make it 1 foot longer than the foot of the sail. You can put notches 1 1/2" long in a "V" shape in each end of the tube and then attach a short bungee cord with a plastic snap hook on each end and then attach those hooks to the sail at the tack and clew grommets. This will keep the sail flat and smooth while rolling it and is especially helpful on a windy day.

SCA Web site:

Mark A. Michaelsen ~MM~
SCA Website:
Small Craft Advisories Sailing Centers
873 West 17th St.,
Costa Mesa, CA 92627
(949) 650-5079 Voice
(949) 650-6515 FAX
(800) 354-7245 Order Line
(714) 238-0925 International Voice Mail/Pager


Storing a Laser Sail

by Joan Casey

For $4 I bought a 4" PVC pipe at the hardware store with holes in it (lighter) and I don't even remove the battens. I just role the sail down the leach so the battens stay straight along the pipe. After a little practice it works fine. I got a tube sail cover from Dick Rose which I just slip over the rolled sail. 

When I trailer I carry the tubed sail on one side of the boat (spars on the other) and put my top cover over the whole thing, including the bottom cover. 

The only thing I did to the tube after I left Eagle Hardware is cut off a little so it's a little longer than the sail. If you do this you might roll the sail on it before you cut it. The first one I made too short. 

Joan Casey 


Subject: Storing a Laser sail
Date: Sat, 4 Nov 1995 19:02:47 -0500

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PVC Tube V-Cut

by Col Barney

With other dinghies, I've found that 90mm diameter PVC pipe works well. Cut the pipe about a foot longer than the foot of the sail. Drill two holes (about 3/16 inch) at each end about about 1 inch in from the end and spread around the pipe by a couple of inches - say one in the 12 o'clock position and the other at 3 o'clock. Carefully cut a narrow 'V' shape through from the end of the pipe to just one of the holes at each end. Through the other hole, again at each end, thread a length (say 2 ft) of light cord knotted at one end. Make another knot on the other side of the hole to retain the cord on the pipe. 

To roll on the sail, lie the pipe along the foot. Thread the cords through the tack and clew then back to the "v-cut". Tie off another knot in the right place to jamb inside the "V". 

You might need to mark the luff and leach ends and maybe even roll a little of the leech end first to get the sail rolling straight on to the tube. 

Ideally you could find the right place to tie another cord somewhere near the centre of the tube to attach the head of the sail first. That way you can slide the mast in from the tack as the sail rolls off the tube. In practice with the Laser sail its a bit of a pain to get the right angle to start with so that the sail rolls on without running off one of the ends. 

Your local sailmaker would be able to make up a bag to carry the tube on the roof - or anywhere else for that matter. A length of 4mm shock cord wrapped diagonally along the tube will stop it from flapping about too much. 

NOW FOR THE BAD NEWS: Some of the Laser sails have a headboard that is simply too stiff to roll - I haven't worked out where they are made or what you get in the US. So I have to admit while all this rolling stuff is great for some sails - mine get folded!! 



Subject: Storing a Laser Sail
From: Col Barney <>
Date: Wed, 01 Nov 1995 07:34:00 +1000

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