Sails and other things

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Brian E. Evans
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Are you sure you know who is making your sails ?

Post by Brian E. Evans » Tue Oct 02, 2007 8:59 am

An article appeared in this months Professional Boat builder about sails which might open a few eyes. It at least makes one ask who is really making your sails?

I am adding a link to the article which appears on page 156.

Brian Evans.

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Post by PeterV » Tue Oct 02, 2007 1:25 pm

Fascinating article, thanks.
It reminds me that back in the late 70's I complained about the quality of a new Finn sail from one of the top UK lofts and found out that the sailmaker only cut out the panels to his pattern. All the sewing, I was told, was carried out by women working in their homes on piece rate.
Finn K197 & GBR564

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Post by Rich » Tue Oct 02, 2007 5:59 pm

My job as a buyer envolves me dealing with Chinese companies on daily basis so I can relate to many of the points raised in the article. However I am led to believe the minimum wage at many factories making the products I buy is more like $60 dollars a month rather than $90, though this is for the most basic unskilled labour. It should be pointed out that to many of the Chinese these are considered good jobs when compared to the alternative which is subsistence farming, hence why many companies provide dormitories as the workforce is not localy domiciled but instead travel in from the surrounding provinces.

I'm sure it's only a matter of time before some bright spark starts importing a cheap range of budget sails for some of the most popular classes of one design dinghy, if you look on ebay you can already find Chinese made boat covers at cheaper prices than those of the large chandlers I am sure sails will follow in due course.

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Post by jonathan » Tue Oct 02, 2007 6:29 pm

I am aware that there is already an import of Chinese sails. Some of the "straight out of the box"one designs have them and they are made in a mould to ensure an identical shape. One guy at my club sent his back to the boat builder as he thought it wasn't right and was surprised to learn that it had been forwarded to China for comment and correction. They posted him another one as it was cheaper to "press" a new one than resew it!

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