Riveting a sail to avoid a track

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Collin, May 6, 2013.

  1. Collin
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    Collin Senior Member

    Is there any problem with smashing some grommets into a sail so I can lace it to a mast instead of having to make a new mast with a track?

    Why did I say rivets???
     
  2. keysdisease
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    keysdisease Senior Member

    Guessing this is a dinghy why don't you sleeve it around the mast instead? simple, no hardware, aerodynamic.

    But to answer your question, I don't see why not, I sure somewhere in the history of sailing grommets have been used to attach a sail to a mast, question will be how many and at what spacing.

    Steve
     
  3. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    Lacing sails to a mast has been done for centuries there is nothing wrong with it.
     
  4. Yobarnacle
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    Yobarnacle Senior Member holding true course

    Reinforce sail with cloth patches where grommets go. Cut holes and whip stich inside hole edges, then install grommets in stich re-inforced holes. Helps prevent tear out. Good Luck! :)
     
  5. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    There is a trick to it though. When you pass the line through the grommet, come back around the mast the direction from which you came, alternating back and forth. Don't spiral the line around the mast. It won't want to come down if you do that. It's very desirable to have a mast that pivots to prevent chafe as the sail tries to take a downwind set each tack. You can also furl the sail by rolling it up around the mast, since it is a little awkward to raise and lower. Use pairs of grommets on bigger sails. Go through one, up a couple inches, and back out on the same side. That works better than wrapping the line around the sail's luff. I couldn't find anything on the grommet spacing, but 6-8 times the mast diameter would seem about right. Maybe somebody else can find info on that.
     
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  6. Collin
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    Collin Senior Member

    Thanks guys.

    But looking at what grommets cost with a die set equals half the cost of the whole sail :/
     
  7. troy2000
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    troy2000 Senior Member

    You're either looking at some amazingly cheap sails, or an amazingly expensive grommet set.....
     
  8. Petros
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    Petros Senior Member

    is $8.00 too much for you? that what this one costs, includes the grommets too:

    [​IMG]

    Or you can buy this delux kit for a whopping $16.00 from Sailrite:

    [​IMG]

    I have also made grommet setting tools from some scrap metal dowels (put it in a drill and used a file to shape the tip)/ In fact I have even used a punch with a tapered shank, with a ball peen hammer to flatten it, to set grommets. No special tools required if you get creative.
     
  9. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    Or, you can go old school and make them with a metal ring sewed in.
     
  10. Collin
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    Collin Senior Member

    ohhhhh

    [​IMG]

    So these would be overkill?
     
  11. Petros
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    Petros Senior Member

    those are certainly easier than sewing in metal rings. though in truth, the metal rings hand sewn into the luff of the sail would be more durable. You sew all the way around the ring with tight stitches of heavy twine.
     
  12. messabout
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    messabout Senior Member

    Collin: the grommets in your picture are called spur grommets. The only kind you'd want to use on a decent sail. The option is plain grommets that do not have spurs. The setting tools for plain and spurs are different. A metal ring, with overhand lacing, in the sail is called a cringle. That is a very substantial method but rather laborious. In either case, grommet or cringle you need suitable punches with which to make the holes.

    Find a local canvas guy and have him/her set the spur grommets for you. You can escape the dilemma cheaply that way.
     
  13. troy2000
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    troy2000 Senior Member

    Spur grommet price's they're cheap:

    #2 Brass $3.83/doz.

    #4 Brass $5.98/doz.

    #2 Nickel $3.83/doz.

    #4 Nickel $5.98/doz.

    But the forged steel die set for installing them is pricey:

    #2 - $41.00

    #4 - $45.00
     

  14. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    If you know any sailmakers or canvas people they will do it or lend you the tools, I have a few sets that regularly get used by others trying to save a few bob.
     
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