Intensity Sails

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Intensity Sails

Postby kkearns » Wed Jun 10, 2009 8:52 pm


I am the new proud owner of a 1965 DSI in good shape. I want to purchase new sails for her. While I'm not primarily interested in racing, I don't want sails that will be real "dogs" in terms of performance. I have seen the post from Intensity Sails in San Diego and am astonished at their low prices. $279 for a main and $179 for jib. Has anyone had any experience with these sails? They advertise as 200 gm / 7 oz. fabric. Are they decent sails for day sailing and occasional casual racing?

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Postby Bob Damon » Thu Jun 11, 2009 12:25 pm

Look in the classifieds section here. There is a long string of questions, replies, and comments on Intensity Sails. Seems to me they make a good product that will work for cruising or club racing. Good Luck.
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Postby Peterw11 » Thu Jun 11, 2009 6:53 pm

I ordered a new main from Intensity about a week ago, and received it 2 days later.

I've sailed them twice since then and so far, I'm very pleased. Granted, my old sails were pretty much used up, with a bagged out section you could use for a pup tent, so anything was bound to be in improvement.

That said, they appear to be well made, they fit nicely, slightly longer than my originals, (a few inches, maybe) and they make a real difference in perfomance. It literally feels like my DS has a second gear, especially when sailing close hauled.

One thing I wasn't prepared for was how noisy a new sail is. When luffing they sound like a tympany, compared to my old ones. Also, new sails are a real handfull when lowered, not so easy to fold or store, but that's to be expected, and a small price to pay.

I still have to order a new jib. I'm already way over budget on my "cheap" boat, so that may have to wait a while.

Overall, money well spent, IMO.
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Postby GreenLake » Thu Jun 11, 2009 11:17 pm

I'm getting curious...

the descriptions posted here says 200gm/7oz. for the intesity sails. Is that per sqft? or per square metre?

Whichever, it's 40% higher than the value 4.8 quoted by Jotz and other sailmakers. Does it mean these sails are heavier?
~ green ~ lake ~ ~
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Intensity Sails location

Postby MrPlywood » Tue Jul 21, 2009 12:40 am

Unless we're talking about a different company, the Intensity Sails that I know of is in Rhode Island, not San Diego. I have been considering one of their mains for my DS1 (along with many other things, so the purchase is on the back burner). But judging by another recent post, they seem to be a good value.

Concerning the fabric weight, you should email and ask. I got quick feedback from Jim Myers. Let us know what he says :)
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Postby GreenLake » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:56 am

I'm not in the market for sails at the moment - so this was just curiosity to understand these specifications.
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Intensity Sails II

Postby Mike & Lisa » Fri Dec 11, 2009 10:42 pm

I bought both main and jib from Intensity Sails/Jim Myers this fall. The main includes reefing points, tell tales, the DS logo, and the generic pattern to construct sail numbers. Both sails come with sail bags. Jim has other offerings for Day Sailors if so inclined. Although I have not sailed with the sails yet I have to say that the communication and accommodation provided by Jim were exceptional.


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Postby pjr » Sat May 08, 2010 2:12 pm

I just recently received my new main sail from Intensity. I've only gotten to sail it once and it didn't go so well. So I'm not sure I can form a solid opinion of the sail ability yet. But the season is early and I'm hopping to work the kinks out the next time out. The sail appears to be both taller and longer than the original Neil Pryde sail from '84, but very well made regardless. Intensity was great to deal with on the phone and the shipping was super fast. Long story short, I probably do more business with Intensity in the future for accessories, but I'm not sure yet if I'm in love with the sail.
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Postby pjr » Wed Jun 23, 2010 6:13 pm

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Re: Intensity Sails

Postby Alan » Tue Jul 30, 2013 10:34 pm

Woke up one morning last week and my crew said "Order a new set of sails. We'll need them eventually, and they might work better than what we've got." Who was I to argue about it?

The new Intensity main and jib are on a couch as we speak, removed from their heat-sealed plastic shipping bags but only partially unfolded. First impressions:

The Doyle UPS surprised me with its stiffness (I was expecting something like kite fabric, and it was about that thin but much less yielding), but these are really, really stiff. A good thing in what amounts to a vertical airplane wing, I suspect. By comparison, the sails that were in the boat when it came to live with us (Neil Pryde, made in Hong Kong, possibly factory original) are like bed sheets.

One set of reef points - a second set will have to be made locally, according to Intensity

Reef points - reinforced with round patches of white material, I'm guessing heat-sealed, and wider than the old sails' reinforcement patches

A sail slug on the foot, just aft of the boom bolt rope

The bolt ropes on main and boom are a clear, flexible, plastic monofilament cord (not a rope, but more like massive fishing line) sewn into the sail

Jib hanks of unknown yellow metal. The Neil Pryde hanks are bronze; these may well be, but they look like they're plated

The jib hank grommets are reinforced with folded-over layers of clear plastic, the fold going over the luff wire

The DS logo is permanently heat-sealed to the mainsail, in Pacific Blue (which works just fine for my plans, but if you were thinking of another color, it might be worth your while to have a chat with Intensity before ordering)

As jdoorly mentioned in another thread, the sail numbers are those "square 8" things that you see in electronic displays, to be cut as needed. If I put the number on the sail, it will be from another source

The main comes with a long roll-up sailbag; the jib doesn't come with a bag

The luff wire in the jib looks to be heavy-duty, thicker than 1/8 inch (I'll need to eyeball this tomorrow and update if need be) BUT the bitter ends, after they wrap over their thimbles, are covered by black heat-shrink tubing - feeling as best I can what's under it, there appears to be one longish swaged fitting at tack and head

The grommets at the tack and head of the jib have the number 316 stamped into them, so I assume they're 316 stainless. None of the other grommets on main or jib have these, at least that I've spotted, but they appear to be similar metal (so I'm not ruling out 304 stainless, which would be fine with me, or even zinc-plated ordinary steel)
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Re: Intensity Sails

Postby ChrisB » Wed Jul 31, 2013 8:16 am


Ain't it nice when its the crew's idea to spend money on the boat?

The "yellow" jib hanks are untarnished bronze. Give them a little time for the copper oxide to form and they will take on that nice bronze color. The bolt ropes on my main are actual rope if memory serves. Definitely add the second reef point, particularly if your plans include sailing long distances, camp cruising, etc. I had a second reef put in by a local sailmaker for about a hundred bucks and I can say I've used it as much as the first reef. My jib came with a tube bag, the main came with a duffle style sail bag. New sails are very stiff and I didn't want to lose that stiffness by stuffing the sail so I bought a tube bag for the main off Ebay. I roll both sails when stored. Never put the sail numbers on the main; I don't/won't race so I have no need for numbers on the sail.

I'm surprised by your comment about the stiffness of the UPS though. Mine is very much like a spinnaker and is made from the same 3/4 oz nylon cloth chutes are typically made from. It's quite flexible.
Chris B.
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Re: Intensity Sails

Postby Alan » Wed Jul 31, 2013 10:09 am

Thanks, Chris. Good to know about the bronze, and the second set of reef points is now on the "definite" list.

The UPS is very much less stiff than the main and jib, but I'm used to the ripstop nylon used in backpacking tents. The UPS fabric is a lot less flexible than that (not that I've been crushing or bending it), and it crackles when I move it.

The main and jib will be hoisted in the yard today (hopefully) to check for fit.
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Re: Intensity Sails

Postby dannyb9 » Wed Jul 31, 2013 11:39 am

i've had an intensity jib for a couple of years and i got a main about a month ago. (i also have two intensity sunfish sails) i am always happily surprised with these sails. the craftsmanship is amazing. i do suspect that the fabric may be somewhat uv sensitive. i suggest being conscientious about keeping them covered when not in use. i live in subtropic south s.c. and the sun can be brutal here.
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Re: Intensity Sails

Postby Alan » Sun Aug 04, 2013 11:49 am

Still haven't had time to hoist the sails, but I did think to contact Intensity and ask which way the battens go into the pockets. I heard back from Jim Myers, who says the curved ends go in first, with the squared-off ends outwards.

I'd been doing it the other way on my old sails, on the theory that the points on the curved ends would keep the battens in the pockets.

Sailing, I'll figure it out yet...
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Re: Intensity Sails

Postby rnlivingston » Mon Aug 05, 2013 11:01 am

There are elastics at the bottom of the batten pockets to keep the battens tight against the end. The curved end centers the batten on the elastic.
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