WHAT’S IN A NAME
“It’s an industry problem—there are too many names for the same thing,” Quantum Sail’s Dan Kaseler says when asked about the various names applied to off-wind sails. Talk to boat salespeople, and you’ll hear terms like blaster, screecher, reacher, gennaker, cruising chute, etc.
“As a sailmaker, we can see the same geometry, but for the general public, it can be difficult to parse it out. People don’t realize that they’re talking about the same thing.”
The key to navigating this nomenclature minefield, according to all three experts, is to establish the right rapport with a reputable sailmaker.
“A sailmaker needs to know how your boat is set up, so they come and measure the boat,” UK’S Adam Loory says. It’s important that the sailmaker understands your cruising agenda and how you plan to use the sail. “You don’t want to buy a mail-order cruising spinnaker.”
Bob Meagher from North Sails agrees: “It’s important that customers have a conversation with a sailmaker they trust. Don’t focus on sail names—focus on what you want to do with the sail. It’s a tool. Sailmakers can build a fantastic sail for any need, but they need to know what a customer needs.”