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Submitted: 06-24-2008 by Jim
I am very hard to impress and at a price of about $350 US taxed and shipped for the 1 meter sail I turn into impossible to impress. The sail impressed me. A lot, frankly. All components are of the highest quality. Workmanship is flawless. The design is right on and is a snap to learn to use. Easy to set up and take down, I have trained a 12 yr old and a 15 yr old to use it well with just a two minute class. Most of that two minutes was spent impressing the importance of speed in striking the sail and securing it to the bungie. Everyone I have taken out sailing in my double baidarka has been a non paddler and absolutely had a blast. It is especially cool when the hull starts to make that gurgling sound as water passes under it. I went out on a test sail in very high winds and the kayak rocketed along comfortably. I was advised to modify the rig a bit and did. I replaced the original sail control line or sheet with two ten foot pieces of sheet material. I installed two deck clamcleats. All of this really helped and cost an additional $30. Sail control was simplified, became more precise and physically easier.
The only strong criticism of the PA sail concerns the instructions for installation. As a person who has built four kayaks from kits and a Melonseed sailboat from a line drawing and not much else I found the PA sail instructions almost useless. I went on line and looked at photos of installed PA rigs to wing it as best I could. A critical step to pay attention to is mounting the twin sail posts that hold the sail erect. You must ensure that the twin posts, which look like your fingers making a peace sign, are spread out as far as possible so the sail sets flat. This will take two helpers or some jury rigging to hold the posts away from each other. The posts are then permanently set at this angle with a pair of screws bisecting the posts. Get it wrong and you either have to redrill the posts possibly weakening them or live with your error.
I would spend the money again in a heartbeat.
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