Windsurf sails are simple and complicated all at the same time. It takes a lot of knowledge about sails to decide exactly which kind is best for you. The best method (if you are a beginner) is to ask your instructor or experienced windsurfers what they look for in a sail.
Windsurf sails are available in three different materials. These materials are Dacron, Mylar and Monofilm. Dacron is lightweight, but it has a tendency to stretch out of its original shape. Mylar is basically like Dacron, but coated. Mylar holds a little better than Dacron, but is subject to a good bit of wear and tear over time.
A Monofilm sail features the newest sail material available on the market. It holds its shape better than Mylar. One of the good things about Monofilm is that it is clear. It allows good visibility and is strong. For most people who buy newer boards, Monofilm is the material of choice.
Just as there are different sail materials, there are also different sail types. The softest type is made of Dacron or Mylar and is usually found on beginners’ boards. It is pretty light and relatively inexpensive.
The medium sail type is found on beginner as well as intermediate boards. These are also lightweight and tend to be pretty easy to handle.
Lastly, there are also camber-induced sail types. These are high-speed, high performance sails that usually only those windsurfers who are advanced use.
Knowing are different windsurf sails and materials that make them up is helpful in understanding about sails before making a purchase.