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North vs Hyde Sails & Practice sails

Rubicon

New Member
I'm looking at buying a new sail. I think I'll get an official and a practice sail at the same time. So I have a couple of questions, why the difference in price between Hyde and North sails? Is there a difference in quality and also what experiences have people had with ISails and other practice sails.

I find it ironic that being in Australia I can buy an Official sail from the US shipped here for over $400 dollars cheaper than available here.

Pleased for any advice.
Thanks
Mike
 

laserxd

Member
The difference between North and Hyde is price and in your head, neither has a significant advantage over the other, The significant advantage comes from a new sail over a worn out one.

I have both an intensity and aps practice sail, same price range, both excellent quality and well worth it.

If you practice with an old sail, you'll get used to sailing with an old draft-aft bag and it will be harder to find the groove when you switch back to your race sail.

If you practice with your race sail, it will be worn out when you need it most.

The practice sails give you the feel of a new class sail and will probably actually outlast a class sail since they are made of slightly thicker dacron, you really can't go wrong with a practice sail.
 

suthera

Member
I'm looking at buying a new sail. I think I'll get an official and a practice sail at the same time. So I have a couple of questions, why the difference in price between Hyde and North sails? Is there a difference in quality and also what experiences have people had with ISails and other practice sails.

I find it ironic that being in Australia I can buy an Official sail from the US shipped here for over $400 dollars cheaper than available here.

Pleased for any advice.
Thanks
Mike
General consensus in Aus is that Hyde are better than North, and the extra $ you pay are worth it. I don’t think anyone believes that Hyde go faster, but the North ones tend be of worse quality and fall to bits quicker (if you can imagine a laser sail falling to bits “quicker” then they already do!)

Most guys at the front of the fleet tend to train with regulation sails as well. Replicas tend to trim differently (not saying they are better or worse, just different). Unless you are really on the pace you might not notice this difference, but if you do just use it for when you are training on your own and working on boat handling. Lasers don’t seem to mind what sail they have on when they are being tacked or gybed.

Getting a cheaper sail from overseas is possible due to the stunning performance of the AUS$ against most other currencies. If you go and buy a new TV you will find it is currently very cheap as the retailers are passing on the savings they make from purchasing cheaper imports. The Laser retailer is not passing on these savings – so go and buy one from overseas and feel guilt free about it. If you get one from the UK they will knock off VAT (GST in AUS) which is 17.5% over there. This more than covers the shipping costs.
 

AlanD

Former ISAF Laser Measurer
Pretty much spot on Suthera on each point, except I don't think PSA would get many sail shipments each year, so the price we pay is related to the price of the sail when PSA ordered them/received them, so their price won't vary much with the value of the dollar over short term, unlike high volume items like TV's.

There are other reasons why our sales are more expensive. The main one being that PSA orders for sales are a fraction of those from the US/UK and therefore PSA don't receive the same volume discounts that LP does.

If you are going to import sails directly from overseas, also be aware if you import more than 1 sail per year, you might attract the attention of Customs with the end result that you need to pay import duty on the sails which will add to the cost of the sails. You're effectively limited to $AUS1000 per year on similar products if it's addressed to you (irrespective of the despatch or receival address or if to the same address the persons it sent too).
 

gouvernail

Super Opinionated and Always Correct
In North American the choices are to quit racing or get a sail from somebody who sells sails.
 

Eric_R

D10 Secretary
The difference between North and Hyde is price and in your head, neither has a significant advantage over the other, The significant advantage comes from a new sail over a worn out one.

I have both an intensity and aps practice sail, same price range, both excellent quality and well worth it.

If you practice with an old sail, you'll get used to sailing with an old draft-aft bag and it will be harder to find the groove when you switch back to your race sail.

If you practice with your race sail, it will be worn out when you need it most.

The practice sails give you the feel of a new class sail and will probably actually outlast a class sail since they are made of slightly thicker dacron, you really can't go wrong with a practice sail.
You mention the whole old sail issue, but if the practice sail doesn't trim the same way, what's the point? I always use an older class sail for club and local racing and then use a racing sail for big events. I don't see the change in trim to be that big of a deal.

Older sails aren't that hard to find and cheap. In fact, there were a few on sale in the for sale section now. Buying legal also gives you the option to race with a that sail rather than using your racing sail.
 

laserxd

Member
You mention the whole old sail issue, but if the practice sail doesn't trim the same way, what's the point? I always use an older class sail for club and local racing and then use a racing sail for big events. I don't see the change in trim to be that big of a deal.

Older sails aren't that hard to find and cheap. In fact, there were a few on sale in the for sale section now. Buying legal also gives you the option to race with a that sail rather than using your racing sail.
a new practice sail trims much better than an old sail in my opinion, I have plenty of old class sails that I could practice with and I used to practice with, until I finally tried the practice sails. I try to practice in all sailable conditions and I've found the practice sail to be a better substitute.

Most of the clubs around here don't allow practice sails to be used for local club racing, so I use my practice sails strictly for practicing,

If I could afford to buy the real for practicing or got a sponsorship I would practice with the real thing but, until then I will use the next best thing.
 

caerbannog

New Member
Definitely buy the Intensity for now ...... other than the APS practice sail it may be the only one you can get. My fleet hasn't had a problem with Intensity usage ..... or should I say my performance hasn't made it an issue yet.

I ordered a North sail back last April and still haven't got it.
It's becoming apparent that LP isn't paying their bills and thus vendors are
bailing out leaving existing Laser sailors to suffer by waiting ... endlessly.... for back-ordered "builder supplied parts" ..... such as consumable staples like sails.
Hyde may be the only folks making new Laser sails now .


.... but I'm not bitter :cool:
 

laserxd

Member
Definitely buy the Intensity for now ...... other than the APS practice sail it may be the only one you can get. My fleet hasn't had a problem with Intensity usage ..... or should I say my performance hasn't made it an issue yet.

I ordered a North sail back last April and still haven't got it.
It's becoming apparent that LP isn't paying their bills and thus vendors are
bailing out leaving existing Laser sailors to suffer by waiting ... endlessly.... for back-ordered "builder supplied parts" ..... such as consumable staples like sails.
Hyde may be the only folks making new Laser sails now .


.... but I'm not bitter :cool:
It seems like this is becoming a big problem, there is still enough demand that they should be producing products. Maybe the retail end is to blame?
 

Kratos

Member
Training with a North sail and racing with a Hyde, there was a noticeable difference, outside the age of the sails.
 

caerbannog

New Member
It seems like this is becoming a big problem, there is still enough demand that they should be producing products. Maybe the retail end is to blame?
Heard ya ..... been a big problem. Agreed demand should be there... even late into the northern hemisphere season.
After a 3 months I began to suspect the retail end too so I called LP direct and received a song and dance ... " oh yeah, we'll have a new shipment of Norths at the end of the month " ... that came and went too. Called a number of "other dealers" ... same story.... "can't get sails outta LP " . Then heard North shut down on them ..... hmmmm.

Money spent + no sail + 7 months = inexcusable

Maybe I'll be all set for next spring .... dirtbags

gettin' bitter now ..... better go
 

vguard296

Member
I originally ordered a new sail through LP last February then canceled after the 2 month wait. Turned out my local dealer had a hole stock of new sails so I ended up going threw them instead.
 

laserxd

Member
Training with a North sail and racing with a Hyde, there was a noticeable difference, outside the age of the sails.
What do you think the difference is and how much does it effect performance? I have only sailed North sails
 

Kratos

Member
What do you think the difference is and how much does it effect performance? I have only sailed North sails
The Hyde sail:

- Felt a lot tighter regarding the sail controls.
- Held its shape significantly better in heavy breeze.
- Held its quality for much longer.
- Did not affect performance other than getting use to sailing with a sail that felt different.
 

sinbadtwo

New Member
Ordered A new laser sail from Torresan and got an email back saying they wont ship out to Aus anymore due to territory reasons????? not allowed to sell laser parts overseas??
sounds like a monopoly to me....it was signed jason@totorresen.com
 

49208

Tentmaker
Ordered A new laser sail from Torresan and got an email back saying they wont ship out to Aus anymore due to territory reasons????? not allowed to sell laser parts overseas??
sounds like a monopoly to me....it was signed jason@totorresen.com
Northing new there.. Look at what happened in South America.

You just need to find a "friend" in the US and have them ship it to you
 

Sean

Member
Ordered A new laser sail from Torresan and got an email back saying they wont ship out to Aus anymore due to territory reasons????? not allowed to sell laser parts overseas??
sounds like a monopoly to me....it was signed jason@totorresen.com
I think they are wrong. The rules about selling outside your country were removed over 2 years ago I believe.

If your in Australia you are better off buying one from the UK anyway as they work out cheaper even with the dollar where it is. I will check that in a minute as I might get one in the next few weeks myself.

It seems the new sail design has been delayed maybe because of issues with Olympics and ISAF, but who knows, it could be they just want to get rid of all old sails first.

If the latter, not too good if you buy a new sail only to have the new design be released a few weeks later.

A timeline of how and when they intend to release the new sail should be published so we know what is happening.
 

Deimos

Member
Ordered A new laser sail from Torresan and got an email back saying they wont ship out to Aus anymore due to territory reasons????? not allowed to sell laser parts overseas??
sounds like a monopoly to me....it was signed jason@totorresen.com
I've not purchased sail from overseas but with a couple of other things I have found some suppliers don't like shipping abroad because, if there are complications it can get very expensive for them to sort it out. e.g. suppose your sail arrived and you said some of the stitching at the head is coming undone - in their own country its a simple matter of getting a replacement and getting back the faulty one. However, overseas and you get shipping cost issues, import duty issues, etc. On occasions suppliers don't like to admit it is the increased (potential) complications so give "easy" excuses. I used to find it when I lived in France and would on occasions purchase from the UK (so instructions, etc. were in English).

Ian
 

193645

New Member
All my career I am sailing with Hyde sails. A few weeks ago in our country (Slovenia - don't ask me where it is) appeared some North sails. They said that their sails are bigger and stronger. I can't believe that this is true. Have you ever compared these two sails one to one. Here in Slovenia North sails are more expensive. But as I read on this forum, they should be cheaper.

Can you comment?
 

torrid

Just sailing
All my career I am sailing with Hyde sails. A few weeks ago in our country (Slovenia - don't ask me where it is) appeared some North sails. They said that their sails are bigger and stronger. I can't believe that this is true. Have you ever compared these two sails one to one. Here in Slovenia North sails are more expensive. But as I read on this forum, they should be cheaper.

Can you comment?
Are you familiar with the expression "the grass is greener"? People will naturally think some they can't get will magically solve all their problems.
 

Deimos

Member
How many people actually have sails only for practice. One of the clubs I am a member of has a couple of training/practice sessions per year whilst the other two have none - so opportunities for practice on an organised basis are very limited. do many people just go out an practice with sails they have different characteristics from their race legal sails ?

I suspect that the name "practice" is a polite way of saying illegal (as in not "Class Legal") knock-off sails that mean you are not racing a Laser against others who are - so you are breaking the strict one design class rules !! So why not say that rather than pretending you only use them for "practice".

Ian
 

boom vang

New Member
How many people actually have sails only for practice. One of the clubs I am a member of has a couple of training/practice sessions per year whilst the other two have none - so opportunities for practice on an organised basis are very limited. do many people just go out an practice with sails they have different characteristics from their race legal sails ?

I suspect that the name "practice" is a polite way of saying illegal (as in not "Class Legal") knock-off sails that mean you are not racing a Laser against others who are - so you are breaking the strict one design class rules !! So why not say that rather than pretending you only use them for "practice".

Ian
I am fed up with these holier than thou attitude by people saying that 'practice' sails are illegal, breaking rules, ruining the class etc.

As long as the class rips us off for 76sq ft sails that cost over $550, people will save the official sail for major regattas and use a knock-off for practice and club racing. If Intensity can make a quality product for under $200 including battens and numbers and still make a profit there is something very wrong in the system with Laser and someone is stuffing their pockets with c-notes on each sail.

I can't believe that we all support paying through the nose for official sails that have less than a year of competitive service, maybe it is time the Tea Party Movement attitude is adopted by the members of this class. And before someone says that the official sails are carefully monitored to be exact between them, I went through 3 Hyde sails that varied by 2 3/4" when I fanned the luff and hence made any cunningham adjustment impossible

I have bought my last 'official' sail a couple years ago and it is only sailed on sanctioned regattas. In the end I am sure Laser has noticed a huge drop of new sail sales as most are using a practice sail instead. If Laser priced it at $300 (a $100 more than intensity) I think that people would be buying a real sail instead for both practice and competition and their sales would increase and the question of real or practice would be moot.
 

49208

Tentmaker
If Laser priced it at $300 (a $100 more than intensity) I think that people would be buying a real sail instead for both practice and competition and their sales would increase and the question of real or practice would be moot.
Doubtful - the class sail has two problems, cost is only one - durability is the other, and without fixing that (the reason for the new design) they could match the price of the non-class approved sails and still not see their sales go up again
 

Deimos

Member
I am fed up with these holier than thou attitude by people saying that 'practice' sails are illegal, breaking rules, ruining the class etc.
I'm fed up with going out racing each weekend in a strict one design class and ending-up racing against a wide variety of different boats - not handicap but people who don't want to follow class rules. One of the great strengths of the Laser Class is that it is a strict one design.

I am probably going to leave the class this winter because I am fed-up with racing against all and sundry in the same hulls - called a "Laser Class" but few boats complying with the rules. where can you et Laser sailing these days - nowhere local to me because everybody is "practicing".

And chatting to other people out racing Lasers (not knock-offs) some of them are getting pretty hacked-off by it all as well. I suspect that there will be a bit of an exodus from the class unless people start sailing Lasers again. Personally I am looking at changing to a Solo over this year - a class where it seems people out racing follow the class rules.

Ian

Edit: In fact one club I am a member of but have not sailed at recently (who allow knock-offs) used to get decent Laser class fleets but now seem down to 3 boats turning up most races with an occasional couple of various others (that is counting anything that even looks like a Laser, whatever gear). Looks like the fleet is "in trouble". (But I cannot say it is because of knock-off gear despite the feelings of many people who sail class legal boats).
 

boom vang

New Member
I'm fed up with going out racing each weekend in a strict one design class and ending-up racing against a wide variety of different boats - not handicap but people who don't want to follow class rules. One of the great strengths of the Laser Class is that it is a strict one design.

Ian

In theory you have a point but it is never an equal class as newer boats are stiffer and faster; those that upgraded the vang and the outhaul and cunningham package do have an advantage over those with pre 2001 rigging; those with a carbon fiber tiller have an advantage over the old wood one because the traveler can be tighter and increase the block to block mast bend; i am sure the new fibreglass blades will have an advantage; the new speed blocks have an advantage over the old friction bearings in light air: etc etc etc

I upgraded all those this year including a much newer hull and the difference is staggering, no longer trailing the fleet, so I don't buy this one design BS because there are advantages to be had.
 

Sean

Member
In theory you have a point but it is never an equal class as newer boats are stiffer and faster; those that upgraded the vang and the outhaul and cunningham package do have an advantage over those with pre 2001 rigging; those with a carbon fiber tiller have an advantage over the old wood one because the traveler can be tighter and increase the block to block mast bend; i am sure the new fibreglass blades will have an advantage; the new speed blocks have an advantage over the old friction bearings in light air: etc etc etc

I upgraded all those this year including a much newer hull and the difference is staggering, no longer trailing the fleet, so I don't buy this one design BS because there are advantages to be had.
I wouldn't say the difference is staggering. That there is a difference is not debatable but whether that difference would make you quicker is debatable I think.

Not attacking your post in any way but you mentioned all the big changes of the past few years so lets go through them objectively.

New boat v old boat:

Are you racing at the front of your district or national fleet? If yes, of course you will want to give yourself every chance considering the effort you put in and a new boat, doing the training these guys do is a cheap investment and will soon be an old boat and time to flip it for a new one to get new spars and sail.
If you sail on weekends and enjoy your fleet racing, you could sail a 10-15 year old laser if it hasn't gone soft and you could do as well as those around you who are in brand new boats. If the boat is dry and the deck is still good the slight difference in stiffness is hardly going to make a difference.

Turbo pack:
Pretty cheap upgrade and even cheaper if you just upgraded the deck cleats and pulleys and chose to use the old vang as some top level sailors elected to do for quite a while.
The deck cleats allowing you to easily adjust the outhaul would make your life a lot easier around the course so yes it is an advantage. This would be high on my list of upgrades if I had an old boat and was wanting to get up to speed.

Wood tiller v Alu tiller v Carbon tiller:

The wood tiller is a bit of a reach as if you are even doing club racing I doubt you would have a wood tiller as they were phased out nearly 30 years ago.
I wouldn't consider the difference between Alu and Carbon to be game changing but I would put it on the list of nice things to have. I doubt you go any quicker than with a well fitted alu tiller but for ease of use both sailing and rigging why not get one. I have a carbon tiller I have used for 10 years or more. Still functions and am currently using it in fact, even though I have a brand new one in its bag in the garage. I also have a alu tiller with the UK gorilla casting that fits old rudder heads and it is a fine tiller. If I was to use it for racing and then blame it for losing I would be grasping at straws I think.


Old foils v new foils:

Straight from the box I will take the new foils. Better finish and that no doubt is reflected in better boat speed.
The old foils with trailing edge thinned down and resprayed and polished, any difference between old and new in speed would be gone. If your foils, be they old or new are free of dings and are smooth, they should be equal to the new ones and once the new foils are bashed around through neglect and use the well maintained old ones will be faster. Properly finished foils will always be quicker than damaged ones. If looking for a reason as to why your not do well here, it is best to look elsewhere.
Only advantage to be found here is great finish right out of the box. Well worth the money in terms of time saved sanding trailing edge etc.

Old v new blocks.

I used the new boom blocks and old holt traveler blocks last year and this year started to use the new traveler blocks. The sheet runs out a bit quicker with the full set of new blocks but other than making the experience of sailing a laser a bit more enjoyable and dare I say modern I doubt it is going to win you any races any time soon. The old blocks still sheet on and run out just fine.

I understand your point that all these changes taken cumulatively make for a much quicker boat but in my experience it isn't the case.

If you were just getting beaten by "that guy" every week and he had a brand new boat and you had a 30 year old boat with a 3.2 ounce sail, wooden tiller, and 3 to 1 vang I agree with you, you may well beat him if you also had a new boat. Is it reasonable to expect to be competitive in that situation no matter the sport though?

I think what is amazing about the laser is that you can sail an older boat and as long as it is well maintained and has the important upgrades such as the turbo kit and a sail that wasn't first sewn together at the time when man landed on the moon you can be competitive with most of the fleet.

Smooth hull, clean foils, a decent sail and well set up simple rigging will put you on equal terms with the majority of the fleet.
Go sail a few afternoons a week and gain more from that than any changes to the boat over the past 3 decades.
 

AlanD

Former ISAF Laser Measurer
Go sail a few afternoons a week and gain more from that than any changes to the boat over the past 3 decades.
Agreed, more races are won and lost based on the quantity of bad tacks, gybes, mark roundings, let alone the ability to sail the boat well upwind or downwind, than how much faster new lasers are because of their upgrades or because the hull is stiffer than an old boat.
 

ewagman

Member
If you are sailing a Laser in a mixed boat, Portsmouth handicapped fleet, does a nonclass Laser sail present any question using the official Laser Portsmouth number? I saw a Laser using a nice looking sail built by Quantum, at a light air venue. I would consider sail like that, for racing under Portsmouth handicap, if the sail doesn't disqualify the Laser Portsmouth rating. Anyone know for sure?
 

Sean

Member
If you are sailing a Laser in a mixed boat, Portsmouth handicapped fleet, does a nonclass Laser sail present any question using the official Laser Portsmouth number? I saw a Laser using a nice looking sail built by Quantum, at a light air venue. I would consider sail like that, for racing under Portsmouth handicap, if the sail doesn't disqualify the Laser Portsmouth rating. Anyone know for sure?
If it is not a class legal laser it is not a laser. It looks like a laser and sails like one to a certain extent but it is not one.

An argument could be made that it should have a different handicap which would have to be determined by looking at lots of results etc of that boat racing in a fleet of similarly equipped boats.

The place for replica sails is training not on the race course.

If people don't like that, they are free to go off and start their own class and build the numbers up to the point that they can sail against people from all around the world and have a healthy second hand market to buy and sell their dinghies.

If they are not prepared to do that and want to just hitch a ride on the rest of the laser class why should they get to race against you.
 

ewagman

Member
If it is not a class legal laser it is not a laser. It looks like a laser and sails like one to a certain extent but it is not one.
Thanks for the info. I suspected that is the situation, but wanted to know for sure. Does using any non class sail or equipment mean the boat would be disqualified for using the Portsmouth Laser rating, if protested?

That Quantum sail on the Laser hull sure was nice looking, I didn't get to ask the price.
 

sunfishlaser123

New Member
What if I were to go to my local laser dealer, buy a new sail , a north that they have in stock, bring it to the Nationals and its measured to be either too small or too big according the the official measures. Do I return it to my dealer, vanguard who sold the dealer the sail or laser performance. Yes I have a sail that is 3 inches shorter on the luff, an different on the leach when compared to several other laser sails?
 
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