X-Drive Taffeta - Cruising Genoa

An Italia 13.98 with X-Drive taffeta carbon cruising sails. Click to enlarge.

X-Drive® is the ideal sail construction process for cruising sailors who appreciate a well shaped sail, but who also need to keep control of cost.

Holds Its Shape

X-Drive is a two-part construction system. As the diagram shows, the sail is made from a lightweight material cut into cross-cut panels that, when put together with broad seaming, achieve the 3-D shape created by the sail designer. Next the sail is reinforced with a grid of narrow, high-strength, low-stretch fibers that are bonded to the sail up to 11 at a time.

UK Sailmakers’ X-Drive construction system uses continuous high-strength, low-stretch yarns or filaments to support the sail’s flying shape. Hundreds of closely-spaced carbon or Endumax or S-Glass filaments are bonded to the sail’s surface for maximum strength and shape-holding. UK Sailmakers’ innovative fiber laying machine allows up to 11 fiber strands to be applied at once. With so many high-strength fibers running across the sail, the sail has incredible stretch resistance. 

Cost Effective

The cost of the sail is also controlled because the sail surface can be made out of an inexpensive, lightweight laminated material, whose only job is to give the sail its 3-D shape. All the sail‘s strength comes from the dense grid of continuous high-strength yarns that are bonded to the sail‘s surface. Since the yarns run across the shaping seams, the seams are locked in place and cannot distort. Due to the dense coverage of fibers, the sail is completely supported, which results in a smooth sail without distortion.

Construction Options

X-Drive Taffeta Carbon

Description:
Loadpath fiber-reinforced sail construction for performance cruising and club racing. Sails have black fibers on white laminate.

Construction:
Extra lightweight cross-cut laminate panels reinforced with continuous corner-to-corner single fiber strands.

Material:
Carbon fiber loadpath yarns applied up to 11 at a time along the sail’s computer predicted loadpaths. Carbon fiber is the strongest and least stretchy fiber used in sailmaking.

Shape Stability:
★★★★

Durability:
★★★★

Shape after 500 hours:
Circa 80%

Price:
$$$$

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X-Drive Taffeta Endure

Description:
Loadpath fiber-reinforced sail construction for performance cruising and club racing. Allows for an all white appearance.

Construction:
Extra lightweight cross-cut laminate panels reinforced with continuous single fiber strands.

Material:
Tapes with Endumax (UHMWPE) ribbons run continuously across the sail in all directions to lock in sail shape. Nearly the same performance as carbon, with all benefits of Spectra & Dyneema.

Shape Stability:
★★★★

Durability:
★★★★

Shape after 500 hours:
Circa 80%

Price:
$$$$

X-Drive Taffeta Silver

Description:
Loadpath fiber-reinforced sail construction for performance cruising and club racing. Allows for an all white appearance.

Construction:
Extra lightweight cross-cut laminate panels reinforced with continuous corner-to-corner single fiber strands.

Material:
Glass fiber loadpath yarns applied up to 11 at a time along the sail’s computer predicted loadpaths. Glass fiber yarns have more stretch than carbon but are less expensive.

Shape Stability:
★★★

Durability:
★★★★

Shape after 500 hours:
Circa 70%

Price:
$$$$