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      A Few Simple Rules   05/22/2017

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ndhosford

J24 - What alternate configurations make sense?

20 posts in this topic

There are a lot of J/24s not racing. What configuration changes could get some of them out racing without damaging the class?

 

Here are some strawman goals for an alternate configuration to drag out those other boats to race as a separate class:

 

1) Keep conversion cost low.

2) Make changes easy to convert back to standard J/24 so boats can still race sanctioned events.

3) Make less physical for less physical crews

4) Make easier to sail well with smaller crew.

4) More comfortable to sail with family

5) Keep same speed and handling as standard J/24.

 

What do you think about the goals and what changes do think make sense?

 

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I raced J/24's for 9yrs only way you could get me back on a J/24 today is if Thompson was sourced to design a new J/24 that was a 24foot version of the Viper640. LOL

 

I've had zero interest going back to a 24 since racing modern, faster boats that have proper rudders, CG points on the rig vs keel etc.

 

But if you insist on trying to find a way to get the old J/24's out sailing how about doing low key low cost fun events that are less about who has the best rebuilt boat with a new rig, Templated keel and rags and more about hey I talked this 24 owner into letting me take the boat out and chase your group across the bay to the bar for a drink.

 

No seriously nothing is less fun than trying to race OD in a fleet full of boats that all need some major working over and class inspections to ensure they are all within spec for fair racing. The crusty old J/24's sitting around on trailers with flat tires just need to have events that are less about the racing and more about just having fun on the water.

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I have made a mod kit for my boat for PHRF racing. Our local fleet is down to 3 so there is little to loose.

The kit includes:

 

1) A 3" slip-in mast extension extrusion supported by a carbon tube and three molded load transfer bulkheads.

2) Six 3" stay extenders.

3) Ten plastic 1/4" plugs (to plug deck holes from moving the primary winches to the cabin top or back).

4) A maximum size 104% jib which clews just forward of the shroud chain plate.

 

The boat got a provisional PHRF rating same as a standard J/24. While common sense says the rating should be higher because a standard J/24 has more sail area and should be faster in light winds and jib reaching, so far the boat seems to perform very well. It is very good in drifters because the smaller lighter jib shapes when the genoa would just

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A bigger "All Purpose" 100 - 105% jib, go sailing, have fun. Winch solution not too bad, just make sure everybody seals the balsa from the environment; ;then all you need is a splash of sealant to fill the hole, pulls or drills out easily. Mast mod seems pretty radical and expensive for most folks I've seen getting into the "old" J/24 scene. I am assuming that you are wanting more participation and not just wanting to modify a boat.

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A j24 in OD config is a phrf killer if sailed well-

 

Why reinvent the wheel?

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Don't modify the boat at all. That puts people off right away.

 

Just leave the genoa at home, and limit the crew to three (helm+2). If owners don't have to recruit an army of apes, they are more likely to hit the water.

 

If you really want to bring them out, require sails at least 2 years old. That'll ensure no chequebook racers.

 

And then try some social innovations, like crew-swapping and crew-takes-the-helm days.

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Don't modify the boat at all. That puts people off right away.

 

Just leave the genoa at home, and limit the crew to three (helm+2). If owners don't have to recruit an army of apes, they are more likely to hit the water.

 

If you really want to bring them out, require sails at least 2 years old. That'll ensure no chequebook racers.

 

And then try some social innovations, like crew-swapping and crew-takes-the-helm days.

Our trimmer is the smallest guy on the boat (150 pounds soaking wet) and gets the genoa around just fine.

 

The blade is a hell of a lot easier to tack until you get the technique down though.

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I like j-24s just the edgy they are

If you find them

To be uncomfortable you are using them wrong

 

They sail easily they go faster than most old cruisers

 

Really nice slightly used sails are available all the time

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Quit trying to turn the boat into something it's not. It will NEVER be a sport boat. It's a solid, entry level raceboat with decent performance and operating costs that a lot of people could afford. Quit trying to turn it into a geriatric easy chair and embrace what the boat demands; a level of athleticism that is appealing to a lot of people. If you REALLY want to improve the boat, get more people on it. Go saililng, take college kids. Take junior program kids. Go to the bar, pickup girls and take them sailing. They'll bring their boyfriends and you may get a grinder. Have good parties. Laugh a lot and invite them all out again. The adrenalin junkies and competitive people will stay while the others go sail Catalina's or something. We have the experiment of changing the boat; it's called the IC. Have they even reached 100 boats yet? If you want a different boat, buy a different boat. Or cut up yours into something that's not a J-24 anymore but leave a damn successful class alone.

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In response to why mod the J/24 rig rather than just sail with the blade.

 

1. The boat sails much better than with a blade in light winds. The J/24 with a standard blade is noticeably sluggish in light winds. With a full range jib about 10" longer on the luff than the blade, the boat sails about the same speed as with a Genoa in light to medium (up to 8). Although it is probably a little slower than with Genoa, we seem to beat the same boats by about the same amounts as before -they would kill us with a blade.

 

2. The boat sails better than with a blade in high Genoa range winds (8 to 20). The full length top batten can be twisted off to allow light crews to go faster than they could with the Genoa or a blade. The longer luff provides more power when it can be used. A full weight crew with a Genoa would probably still be faster.

 

3. The boat is nicer to sail. The boom is higher, decreasing head knocks and improving visibility below it. The primary winches are moved to the cabin top clearing a lot of space on the main deck and reducing bruises. The deck is cleaner because the jib clew position allows sheets to cross the boat just behind the mast.

 

4. Tacks are easier. The jib allows much faster and easier trimming than a Genoa in tacks. The cabin-top winch position allows easier tacks than even the blade with standard winch position.

 

5. The one-time cost is reasonable may be a cost savings in a year or two. A non-standard jib costs a little less than a class blade (~$1600 vs $1660), noticeably less than a Genoa (~2060-2380) and is used every race. After about 20 races, it still looks new. A new "A" Genoa after 20 races is usually showing enough wear to be demoted to "B" status. The mast can be raised 3" and the wires extended for less than $100 in materials.

 

6. Conversion back to standard J/24 can be done by a crew to do in less than an hour. Harken winches with pedestals can be moved in about 6 minutes each. The mast can be lifted a foot or so, the extension removed, and then lowered on to the step. The longest part is loosening and retightening the turnbuckles.

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If you are looking to get people into racing who are not racing you are better off talking to someone who owns a boat and doesnt race then to talk to a bunch or racers who are speculating on why people dont race.

 

I own a J/24 and I dont race I just day sail my boat and I love it. It is a blast to just go out sailing for the day on it. I dont race becuase well as a novice sailer it was not a pleasurable expeirence when I talked to racing fleets. If you really want to open up racing in the j24 class you need to make it more fun the competitive. I was able to get in on a PHRF race on our lake that one of the guys at the marina talked us into. It was a blast but only cuase it was just about having a good time.

 

I would also open the class up to make minor changes to the boat. The class shouldnt be so stringent. My boat is 25 years old and It needs work. When I make the repairs to the boat I am repairing the boat but also upgrading parts to better components then were offered 25 years ago. Why repair something and use the same problematic components that they used 25-30 years ago when changing them out will make a longer lasting repair/boat and not really effect the speed or handeling of the boat?

 

I would also say match racing might be a little more fun then the regada style. But I used to drag race on the weekends so maybe thats why I feel that way.

 

Like I said I enjoy day sailing my boat. If I get into racing I just want it to be fun and go out and have a good time not to deal with a bunch of stuck up people who hassel me and are rude to me.

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It's not the boat, it's the people. If you want to race with a smaller headsail, just measure it as your 150 and get down the road. If you modify the boat, it's ruined for one-design when you sell it. Yes, races need to be made more fun but the beauty of the boat is I can do a PHRF race, letting my crew drive or work other positions while I drink beer or we can go to a regional regatta with national level competition. As a class, we should work more on recruiting and training rather than worrying about the boat.

 

Again, it's the people not the boat.

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Again, it's the people not the boat.

. As a class, we should work more on recruiting and training rather than worrying about the boat.

When I say allow minor changes to the boat I mean alowing poeple to use other materials when making repairs and not making it so stringent that the boats be exactly the same. Again you are talking about 20-30 year old boats that some of which have been pretty neglected. When it comes to repairing the boats people dont want to freak out and go will this be class legal. Or using a product that can be a known problem when there are better alternatives to use for a repair. The perfect example is the balsa wood core. While balsa is not a bad product there are better products on the market. People want to be able to fix something and not worry about it again if possible. By using modern synthetic cores you can repair the decks and not have to worry about the same issue.Its like you dont need to reinvent the wheel but I rather drive on a radial tire then a stone one.

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If you're having problem with balsa core, maybe you should fix the fucking leaks in your boat first.

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If you're having problem with balsa core, maybe you should fix the fucking leaks in your boat first.

Maybe I didnt own the boat when the leaks started. Again we are talking about 20 to 30 year old boats the chance of a them being owned by one owner for the time period is slim to non. The owner prior to me really neglected the boat plan and simple. I have spent a lot of time trying to get it back to the proper condition it should be in. I resealed the fittings when I got the boat. Even if you reseal the fittings on the deck after the core has rotted well guess what the core will still be rotten. Water can aslo seep into the core through spider cacks in the deck which is not an easy fix and can be pretty common on fiberglass. I am not sure if the spider cracks in my deck developed before or after the core rotted away.

 

But hey I guess its easy to sit back in your seat and post ignorant statments like "maybe you should fix the fucking leaks in your boat first". The fact of the mater still remains if you are going to replace it do you put in what was there or a superior product?

 

My boat was owned by several different people before I boat it back in 2011. it was built in 1989. Its 25 years old to pressume that it wouldnt need work would be pretty presumtuase.

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I'm not sure that balsa is an outdated material for boatbuilding; deferring to the Gouv or others with a lot more time tearing into the guts of these boats makes more sense to me. What I AM sure of is that opening the class up to "any material, any repair" will cause more problems than it will solve. I can think of a couple of people off the top of my head that would start removing balsa for lighter cores if it gave them an advantage. The strength of the class is that I can get on the line with Mollicone, Forester or a hundred other really fast guys and know that it's not the boat that will beat me. Opening the door to extensive mods will change that forever.

 

There are a multitude of less restrictive classes that permit unlimited mods. Perhaps they would suit better?

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119 Moore 24s built

 

32 sailed delta ditch 2014

Moore two fours, like representing dude...

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I'm not sure that balsa is an outdated material for boatbuilding; deferring to the Gouv or others with a lot more time tearing into the guts of these boats makes more sense to me. What I AM sure of is that opening the class up to "any material, any repair" will cause more problems than it will solve. I can think of a couple of people off the top of my head that would start removing balsa for lighter cores if it gave them an advantage. The strength of the class is that I can get on the line with Mollicone, Forester or a hundred other really fast guys and know that it's not the boat that will beat me. Opening the door to extensive mods will change that forever.

 

There are a multitude of less restrictive classes that permit unlimited mods. Perhaps they would suit better?

Thats a fine stance but you cant then ask why J/24 owners are not getting involved.You guys cant ask why people arent getting involved or ask what changes you could make to get more owners involved and then go we dont want to change anything. I am happy with my J/24 and it make a great day sailer to me and it is a lot of fun to just go out for the day and go with friends and do. However I will no OD under the current rules with it nor will I try and force them to change the rules. I was mearly stating my opinion since it was posted.

 

I can tell you that if I wanted to seriously compete racing wise and not just do it for fun I would not chose the J/24 class. While I realise it currently is the biggest keel class I feel that there are better alternatives to chose from. After all the money I invest into getting boat 4510 up to class specs and be competitive plus the purchase cost I could have been most of the way to a mordern sport boat. Which is what most people are looking at. Thats my opinion though.

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You have it exactly wrong. Those of us who are actively promoting the fleet ARE asking how we can get more people involved. We doing so by promoting the strengths of the Class which is tight, one design racing. An anecdote; when I got back into J-24 racing as an owner we only had three consistent j-24's on the line. To try to increase participation we formed a 170 fleet which included IC's, Sonars, Merits or any other boat that rated around 170. What this accompished was to bring back all the bickering that the J-24 class eliminated; this boat won because it was light air, that boat won because they're lighter or the other boat won because it had more people on the rail. By leaving the 170 fleet and promoting strict class racing, we've grown the local fleet to 12. None of them sail in the PHRF or 170 fleet. The 170 fleet has 3-4 regular participants.<br /><br />Yes, those of us that have been around awhile are a bit fanatical about the class rule book. We've learned to live or die by it but not because we're a bunch of sea lawyers but because it has made an old heavy boat one of the most popular one designs. Look at other classes that were as good or perhaps better, the Moore, Merit or Sonar. None have been anywhere near as successful as the J with a large part of that success being attributable to strict one design rules that we live by.

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