Thursday, December 12th, 2019

Stratis Sail Art through 3D imaging technology

Published on December 10, 2015 by   ·   No Comments

Fotos_0019_comar3Doyle Sails has combined science and art to come up with a ‘kraken’ way of decorating your sails – a process that allows full colour high-resolution images to be printed onto Stratis sails.  If you own a yacht then why not personalise it?  And if you sponsor a yacht, no more measly hull branding, have your logo writ large in high def in the sky where everyone can see it.

Doyle Sails are pretty much ubiquitous in the sailing universe with 80 lofts in 30 countries.  Founder, Robbie Doyle, was a very keen sailor and a pretty good one at that.  As a teenager, Doyle won the Sears Cup twice and was a three-time All American at Harvard.  In 1967, at the age of 17, he qualified for the Olympic Sailing team, and went to the Mexico Olympic Games in 1968.

Combine a degree in Applied Physics from Harvard University with an in-depth knowledge of sailing and you get the perfect candidate to make high tech sails.  When Robbie graduated he was headhunted and, after a ten-year stint working in Ted Hood’s sail loft, he established the first Doyle Sailmakers loft in 1982 in Marblehead, Massachusetts.


The science behind the Stratis sails is complex, so just let it be said that with an Olympic sailor with a degree in physics and 33 years of experience at the helm, Doyle Sailmakers are creating some pretty fine sails.

Traditionally sail art has been painted directly onto the sail.  Not only is this time consuming, but also, and more importantly, the paint adds weight to the sail, a real no-no on racing boats where every gram counts.  The traditional painting method can add upwards of 10kg to a large sail.  Painting can also result in brittle sail membranes.

Doyle has developed a method that enables an image to be printed directly onto the sail’s surface using Doyle’s own Stratis sails as a base.  This procedure is incredibly accurate and allows extremely complex images to be printed.  The sails are known for their lightness and the process adds much less weight than traditional methods.  The underlying Stratis membranes have a formidable reputation for high performance and resistance to flex fatigue and the added ink does nothing to detract from that.


“Stratis Sail Art is the next generation in sail art,” says Doyle Sails New Zealand Managing Director Chris McMaster.  “It adds negligible weight to the end product, while maintaining the integrity of the sail and performance Stratis is known for.”

The first yacht to have been fitted with Stratis Sail Art sails is Shadow by Italian yacht builder Comar Yachts.  Doyle Sails Palma de Mallorca fitted the 100-foot yacht with Stratis sails complete with an enormous photo-quality octopus on either side.  The octopusses (or is that octopi?) stretch down the sail on each side, perfectly aligned across both the main and jib.  The complexity of the print with its layers of colour and overlaid details bring the two cephalopods to life as the sail fills.

The sails are made and printed at the Stratis plant at Doyle Sails’ NZ production facility, which, at 7,000m², is the biggest in the southern hemisphere.  Once printed, they are laminated and forwarded for installation by one of the 80 sail lofts worldwide.


So let your imagination run wild, the sail is your blank canvas, the world your oyster.

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