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JBOATTROUBLEMAKER

J35 for family use

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Hello All,

When I began looking for a boat to sail with my family (my fleet of dingys has not fulfilled that desire) I was looking for a <30k racing boat (like an Olsen 30) but was pushed by my family in the direction of cruising boats like the Hunter 36 and Catalina 34. The J35 seems to be the middle ground between race and cruising boats in this size and price range. With that, I have a few questions...

1. Can 6 people comfortably be onboard (and maybe a guest or two on top of that)?

2. Can someone mainly experienced sailing Lasers and Beach Cats as well as a few double handed mono-hulls comfortably skipper it?

3. Is a 30k budget reasonable to get a competitive, yet comfortable J35

All answers will be appreciated.

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Six would be tight for cruising on a J/35. Racing with eight works because watches keep some on deck while others sleep. It's maneuverable and the gear & sails aren't too big to handle, especially if there is family to help. Prices will depend a lot on condition. Some have been stripped down for racing.  New cushions could make a big difference for comfort and aesthetics below and don't have to be that pricey.    

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2 hours ago, JBOATTROUBLEMAKER said:

Hello All,

When I began looking for a boat to sail with my family (my fleet of dingys has not fulfilled that desire) I was looking for a <30k racing boat (like an Olsen 30) but was pushed by my family in the direction of cruising boats like the Hunter 36 and Catalina 34. The J35 seems to be the middle ground between race and cruising boats in this size and price range. With that, I have a few questions...

1. Can 6 people comfortably be onboard (and maybe a guest or two on top of that)?

2. Can someone mainly experienced sailing Lasers and Beach Cats as well as a few double handed mono-hulls comfortably skipper it?

3. Is a 30k budget reasonable to get a competitive, yet comfortable J35

All answers will be appreciated

1-Do you mean for sailing or for an overnight?  If sailing yes although a few bodies would be helpful out of the cockpit as it is not overly large.  If you mean for an overnight/stay aboard, only if they are family or a race crew, not casual acquaintances-6 people berth capacity/no private staterooms, etc.

2-Two parts to this question.  If you have a high level of proficiency in those boats, then yes those skills are transferable. If you are just doing day sailing in protected waters in lighter breezes, again shouldn't be a big issue, the boat is pretty stable and forgiving.  Not J35 specific but if you were to do long offshore either distance racing or cruising and don't have the skills to do that safely then the answer would be no and that honestly would apply to any boat, not J35 specific. That said the boat is a great boat for offshore work, no matter what the weather if you have the needed skills, she will always bring you home safely.

3-Looks like you are in the northeast so I would say the answer should be yes, tight but doable.  Bear in mind that for anything other than casual day sailing or cruising (ie racing either around the cans or distance) the two downsides as it were is that it needs a fair amount (7-8) folks who know what they are doing and although the boat can be bought for a great price, if would be pretty easy to spend a large portion of purchase price on sails.

Good luck in your search, I owned one for 7 years and raced it offshore for thousands of miles and can say it is a great boat.  The trips home were equally as fun although obviously in a different way.  One caveat to the all the above would be the makeup of the family.  If you had three kids under 10 or they were really not into the performance side or sailing in general, then perhaps the answer would be different.  Keep us posted on the outcome and feel free to PM me if you have more questions.

 

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We have an old war horse J35 sails locally.  Its windy as stink where we live and the captain has learned the value of the #3.  His kids are entering the age zone to sail and handle the boat competently while he runs around like a headless chicken rigging stuff.  Id give this program a thumbs up.  J35 + young family = success.

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Have you looked at Thomas 35’s?  Might be a better fit for what you want and may not have as many issues as an old j35.  

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19 minutes ago, T sailor said:

Have you looked at Thomas 35’s?  Might be a better fit for what you want and may not have as many issues as an old j35.  

I will certainly do so.

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Troublemaker,

    So let's see, you are restoring a Hobie 16, designing a overcanvassed cartoon dinghy, and asking here for someone to find you a $30K J35? I'm sure there is another troll like topic that I have missed. Oh, telling us all about AC 45's doing ocean races with their low resolution Carbon Fiber foils. Quite a spread there but your post count is climbing fast for a newby.

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Maybe out of your price range, but you might want to also consider the J/32.  They didn't build that many of those so availability might be a factor.

btw, I started a long thread on the topic of looking for boat suggestions which might be of interest. Lots of good info in there.

I was originally looking at 50K price range, but I ended up spending half that and getting a 1982 Ericson 33 (Ron Holland) which I love.

 

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19 hours ago, Rasputin22 said:

Troublemaker,

    So let's see, you are restoring a Hobie 16, designing a overcanvassed cartoon dinghy, and asking here for someone to find you a $30K J35? I'm sure there is another troll like topic that I have missed. Oh, telling us all about AC 45's doing ocean races with their low resolution Carbon Fiber foils. Quite a spread there but your post count is climbing fast for a newby.

Stimulus Checks and time are to blame for that...   The main reason for this question was my family (who are not into dingy sailing) have decided that it would be better for us as a family to buy a keel boat. Having raced on a J35 and seen it's rather luscious interior, I wondered if it was the right boat. The 30k budget is as a result of all of the other projects I am enduring.

FYI, the AC45s potential buyer wanted to do the R2AK, which would over-stress the foils and thus find them needing attention. They are designed for short sprints, not ocean races. The guy should buy a TP 52...

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It's do-able but if the wind is over 10 knots you need one person who really knows what they are doing and two others who have a decent idea of what they are doing, and reasonably fit, to handle the sails - getting them up and down and stowed.   If you added easy jacks and a furler you could rig it to single hand or easily double hand pretty simply.  A 110 jib (#3) gets it going nicely for daysailing and we normally use the #4 (95) if it's the three of us and wind is over 10. The class Genoa is a 155, and that is too big if the wind gets up over about 7-8 unless your family name is Gronkowski - it needs weight on the rail and it's hard for the small or inexperienced to sheet unless a prior owner added self tailers.  Not sure how you would do the downwind part if the family aren't trained up... maybe rig a cruising assym or perhaps get a chicken kite and trim with guys.  

I'm a current owner, race it weekly and family cruise once or twice a year.  Love this boat. But shorthanded it can be a handful until you learn how to finesse it.  

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I have owned a J35 for 8 years in the Puget Sound. We have cruised it as a family each year with one longer trip of 10 days to 2 weeks each year. There are five of us with my kids 15, 13 and 10 now. It is very cruisable with our family but we do spend most of the time at a dock. We will anchor out for a night and then find a dock. Cruising with a non over lapper like Lex says, is the easy way to go. I really like the boat as it is comfortable but still sails to a reasonable level. The only other boat I owned before this one was a Catalina 22, which I had a couple of years, so there has been a lot of learning on the 35. One nice thing about it is that at ~11k lbs, it is easy to push around when you screw the pooch docking etc. It is still filling the need of a decent sailing, ok raceable and acceptable cruising boat for me and my family. The wife would love a Catalinabago type thing but I cannot stomach the sailing abilities of such a boat.

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If you have to ask these dumb questions then no, a J35 is not for you, now fuck off.

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4 hours ago, toad said:

If you have to ask these dumb questions then no, a J35 is not for you, now fuck off.

Thank you for your kind words of advice, Mr. Toad

Or should I say...

Totally

Overbearing

Anarchist

Ding Dong

Get REKT

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Looked at a J35 and the Family decided that it lacked the necessary "Luxury". In response to this, I have increased my budget to 50-60k and am now looking at mid 90s Jennaeu Sun Odyssey 37s and Beneteau Oceanus 34s.

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Seen several Bene 36.7s in the 75k range...which you might be able to get down into your budget (with some stretch maybe?).  Would be more fun for you then the SO 37 or Oceanus 34...

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