How to Repair a Sail's Batten Pocket

Item # X-HT-200689

A sail's batten pocket sees a lot of stress and will need to be replaced. Sometimes it is not the pocket itself but rather the elastic inside that needs replaced. Each batten pocket has a loop of elastic at the end that pushes the batten back toward the leech and keeps the batten properly tensioned in the sail. The elastic also keeps the batten in place and from slipping out of the pocket. Over time, the elastic in each batten pocket will lose its elasticity and will need to be replaced. In this video, we will show you how to remove the elastic in a batten pocket and replace it with new elastic.

If your sails are often flogging (flapping) in the wind, the batten in that pocket may eventually chafe through the pocket's fabric. When this happens the pocket or end of the pocket will need to be repaired or replaced.

You’ll use a seam ripper to remove the top layers of Dacron® tape that form the batten pocket. If the pocket itself is in good shape, you can reuse it once you replace the elastic inside. The tools and supplies needed for this sail repair are basting tape, elastic, scissors, thread and sewing machine. You’ll need a zigzag stitch sewing machine, and we recommend the Sailrite® Ultrafeed® Sewing Machine for its power and portability. You’ll be able to tackle all your sail and canvas repairs with this powerhouse machine.

We hope this video has helped you learn how to replace the elastic in your batten pocket. Any questions or concerns? Please don't hesitate to call, email or online chat with us. We are always happy to help you turn your DIY dreams into reality. And be sure to check out the rest of the "Sail Repair" How-To Series to learn other useful repair and maintenance tips for your sails.

Materials List

  • Dacron® Sail Tape or Sailcloth roughly the weight of the sail for batten pocket repairs
  • Elastic White 2” – Item #68911 or Elastic White 1" - Item # 22202
  • Thread V-92 Polyester White UV 4oz - Item # 100079
  • Seamstick 3/8" Basting Tape - Item # 659
  • Insignia Adhesive Backed White 54" - Item # 945

Tools List:

  • Gingher® Scissors Right Handed - Item # 19104
  • Sailrite® Ultrafeed® LSZ-1 PLUS Walking Foot Sewing Machine - Item # 300602