SAIL SHAPE TECH
Sail Shape has invested in the best technology and infrastructure available
We have a purpose laid out production loft which covers 5000 square feet enabling us to build sails up to 100 foot luff length and build multiple sails simultaneously. We have four departments – Sailmaking, Rigging, Covermaking and Washing for our winter valeting service which is all done in house.
Solent Sewing machines
We have 7 machines which can sew through covers, kites, laminates, dacrons and the thickness of superyacht sailsOur new XL sewing machine is the second largest machine on the planet and certainly in the UK. Its can sew through 30mm of sail cloth and webbing making our repair and manufacturing process limitless
Blackman & White CNC cutting
in 2018 we invested in a new 10m Blackman and White CNC cutting machine which cuts using either a drag knife or pizza wheel with the added benefit of marking. The machine cuts all of our covers and sails improving greatly on efficiency and quality without the reliance of a third party cutting machine adding cost and compromising margins enabling Sail Shape to offer more competitive prices.
This machine has made waves in the cover making industry eliminating the need for traditional templating. The device sits on a tri-pod and measures the object in 3d space which can later be manipulated into surfaces and then panels in Rhino. This process saves on vast amount of template building labour and template material cost. Its has the added benefit of complete repeatability as the customer cover can be drawn from our database 10 years later and made again.
We have recently upgraded our Smar-Azure sail design package to the full advanced aero and structural analysis enabling all our designs to have vigorous and detailed performance enhancements to shape, panel orientation and type and weight of cloth. This makes the lightest, strongest sail available for a given range of windspeeds while keeping the cloth within our safety factors of elasticity resulting in improved longevity and performance. This design process is completed on all our sails to ensure patch size and shape are optimum even on basic cruising sails.
We use Rhino which is a 3D modelling software to input data from our Proliner. This gives us the image and locations of all the points we took while measuring. We can then design the cover, cushion in Rhino, send to Gemini our nesting software which can then be cut by our CNC machine. This process is very advanced but offers the best fit covers around.
In the world of efficiency and waste reduction, our nesting software called Gemini enables our designed panels which are exported from either Rhino or Smar-Azure to be nested in the most efficient way. This reduces the waste element of the sails and covers in production. Our cross cut sails are now between 93-96% efficient meaning there is only 7-4% waste cloth. This improves our environmental footprint and makes our product more competitive.