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J/35 - Best offshore racer of it's time?

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J/35 - Best offshore racer of it's time? I've always felt this was a classic boat. Any old timers who raced OD on it have anything to add?

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Bob Perry has spoken highly of it.

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1 hour ago, stayoutofthemiddle said:

J/35 - Best offshore racer of it's time? I've always felt this was a classic boat. Any old timers who raced OD on it have anything to add?

When you say offshore, do you mean up to 1,000 nm offshore or do you mean within 500 nm offshore? Also, do you mean USA centric or global?

If the answer, is the former, for both above questions, My vote would be the Express 37.

 

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If you want to stay with J boats and serious off shore the J44 hands down. And it's not like there haven't been a plethora of J35 threads, just saying.

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If you mean in the 35 foot range, I will go with Sweet Okole.  Pounded her div boat for boat and on corrected in the last Pac Cup which included a J/35

if unlimited size, I will go with Windward Passage as usual.  Just for her awesomeness.

sweet_okole.jpg

Windward Passage.jpg

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7 minutes ago, 12 metre said:

If you mean in the 35 foot range, I will go with Sweet Okole.  Pounded her div boat for boat and on corrected in the last Pac Cup which included a J/35

if unlimited size, I will go with Windward Passage as usual.  Just for her awesomeness.

sweet_okole.jpg

 

Sweet Okole, while great and very high on my list of favourites, did not win her division in the last two Pac Cups.  In 2018 she was beaten by a J-92 and in 2016 she was beaten by an Express 37. She did win her division in the 2019 Transpac.  While she did beat the J-35 (which was in a different division) boat for boat, the J-35 corrected ahead.

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39 minutes ago, Hitchhiker said:

Sweet Okole, while great and very high on my list of favourites, did not win her division in the last two Pac Cups.  In 2018 she was beaten by a J-92 and in 2016 she was beaten by an Express 37. She did win her division in the 2019 Transpac.  While she did beat the J-35 (which was in a different division) boat for boat, the J-35 corrected ahead.

Just checked the results for 2018 and yes I overstepped by saying she corrected out on the J/92 and J/95.  I watched a lot of the race on the tracker and she did beat both on elapsed time quite handily. 

I just assumed a J/92 and J/35 would owe an old IOR One Ton (27.5 rater) heaps of time - because normally that would be the case.  That is an old IOR One Ton rates  around 110-120 PHRF.  But I see from the 2016 Pac Cup results that Sweet Okole rates about level with an Express 37 at 585.  So has she been turboed to the hilt, or what was done to have her at 585?

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1 hour ago, 12 metre said:

Just checked the results for 2018 and yes I overstepped by saying she corrected out on the J/92 and J/95.  I watched a lot of the race on the tracker and she did beat both on elapsed time quite handily. 

I just assumed a J/92 and J/35 would owe an old IOR One Ton (27.5 rater) heaps of time - because normally that would be the case.  That is an old IOR One Ton rates  around 110-120 PHRF.  But I see from the 2016 Pac Cup results that Sweet Okole rates about level with an Express 37 at 585.  So has she been turboed to the hilt, or what was done to have her at 585?

Correct about turboed to the hilt.  New carbon mast was added with masthead kites.  But, now that I think of it, those mods happened in 2018, the boat rated 575.  I navved the winning Express 37 in 2016 and pretty sure I recall they were in the frac config then. Sweet O is quite a bit lighter than the Express 37's hence the close rating.  That was a very windy year and while we led pretty much the whole way, it was a straight out, close, drag race!

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4 hours ago, 12 metre said:

If you mean in the 35 foot range, I will go with Sweet Okole.  Pounded her div boat for boat and on corrected in the last Pac Cup which included a J/35

if unlimited size, I will go with Windward Passage as usual.  Just for her awesomeness.

sweet_okole.jpg

Windward Passage.jpg

 

I agree with your views and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

 

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J/35 - Best offshore racer of it's time?
 

so let’s get back to the question. Offshore basically means anything beyond a race around the Bouys. And “of it’s time” means when they first came on the scene. 
 

the J35 is in the  Hall of Fame for jump starting the return to “Big Boat Racing” from IOR that drove a lot of potential owners away due to high costs. It gave boat owners a boat that can be cruised with their family, but can have great racing in One-Design format free of any rating system.  Brilliant. And the numbers showed it. 
 

I remember stepping on board a brand new J35 and, well, cheesy, fell in love with it. And that is why I own one.  I spent several season racing on Gonnagetcha Again including the first NA where, if I remember correctly, 42 boats showed up. 
 

so beyond that, how does the boat stack up. Very well thank you. She has found new life under IRC And has proven to be a weapon. It seems most owner hold on to them for longer length of time because they are good dual purpose boats. And only one other Off Shore One-Design came close to what the J35 did at birth. The Farr40od. But that boat never hit dual personality that makes for a Great Boat. 

9EAC3A0C-018D-4665-B020-F902FF014520.jpeg

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What, pray tell, is sticking off the bow in pic above?  That cannot be a sprite at the ridiculously short length?

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If we are speaking of it's time,  raced offshore against a few of these back in the early days of IMS,  including a couple of well sailed and budgeted examples.

The J35s were very competitive inshore,  but longer races further offshore we had much more trouble with the (at the time only) J44 in Oz.  But even her we could handle fairly well, (on rating),  once the breeze got up.

So depending on what you call offshore,  the 35 was either pretty good or a bit better than average.  Still quite a way from "best".

But then I am usually wrong!

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Cal 40 preceded J35 - late 60’s and 70’s - different time and different weapon 

J35 helped usher out the IOR era in the Northeast.  We raced a Contessa 35 - which was the best IOR 35 footer ever - and had fun against the last generation of custom One Tons

meanwhile, J24 and J30 owners were graduating to J35s and initially raced under Off Soundings rule then PHRF ... but quickly had the numbers to go One Design at events like BIRW.

so maybe the best inshore boat of the 80’s????

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What about Santa Cruz boats, weren't they around that same time?  I think Merlin set a record in the 1977 Trans Pac?

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4 hours ago, George Hackett said:

J/35 - Best offshore racer of it's time?

I remember stepping on board a brand new J35 and, well, cheesy, fell in love with it. And that is why I own one.  I spent several season racing on Gonnagetcha Again including the first NA where, if I remember correctly, 42 boats showed up. 

9EAC3A0C-018D-4665-B020-F902FF014520.jpeg

For me it was the 1984 Seattle Boat Show. I knew it was a boat for me, but I was young and could not afford one. By 1999, I was out growing my half tonner and i found I could afford a used J35. I found one in San Diego and after a couple offers, survey and sea trials and it was on its way to the PNW on a truck. I still own it. It has been a great boat for me and have had a lot of fun racing it and cruising.

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Some USA no account.

Get out of the bubble dick!

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7 hours ago, JimBowie said:

What, pray tell, is sticking off the bow in pic above?  That cannot be a sprite at the ridiculously short length?

I added that to move our Asy Tack away from the Forestay. It has since been replaced with a proper sprit. 

B1D47D9D-3D24-4B19-B51D-1F0870606E99.jpeg

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21 hours ago, stayoutofthemiddle said:

J/35 - Best offshore racer of it's time? I've always felt this was a classic boat. Any old timers who raced OD on it have anything to add?

Middle, your thread topics make me shake my head.  

That said, the Thomas 35 was another "level 35" boat that was a J35 v2.0.  I like it better.

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Good all round boat, sure, but best offshore?  Not if you need to eat and sleep.

Flaws for offshore use:

Dependent on high crew weight for upwind performance, but 1650 pounds gets very cramped in a 35 foot hull and there is a big dropoff if you don't have all that weight on the rail.

Single stack berths - you can only put two off watch crew on the high side, further hurting your upwind performance.

Alcohol fuel for cooking - more difficult to handle safely in a seaway.

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1 hour ago, Looper said:

Middle, your thread topics make me shake my head.  

That said, the Thomas 35 was another "level 35" boat that was a J35 v2.0.  I like it better.

Hey you are in the convo so it can't be shaking that much! J/35 is a "classic" in my opinion! As many point out, it was the right balance of Racer / Cruiser...

T35 was a ripoff of the J/35. It was commissioned by someone local. I'm not an expert on the differences but I believe it is basically the same hull. Doesn't look a good above the rail...

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1 hour ago, Tax Man said:

Good all round boat, sure, but best offshore?  Not if you need to eat and sleep.

Flaws for offshore use:

Dependent on high crew weight for upwind performance, but 1650 pounds gets very cramped in a 35 foot hull and there is a big dropoff if you don't have all that weight on the rail.

Single stack berths - you can only put two off watch crew on the high side, further hurting your upwind performance.

Alcohol fuel for cooking - more difficult to handle safely in a seaway.

You can put in some pipe berths above the existing ones with a pulley system to move them out of the way when not in use.

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56 minutes ago, stayoutofthemiddle said:

T35 was a ripoff of the J/35. It was commissioned by someone local. I'm not an expert on the differences but I believe it is basically the same hull. Doesn't look a good above the rail...

Would've been better to finish with "I'm not an expert on the differences", nothing you said afterwards is correct.

I'm not suggesting the T35's in the same leagues as J/35 for historical influence, but that's no reason to spread fake news.

Cheers!

 

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1 minute ago, CriticalPath said:

Would've been better to finish with "I'm not an expert on the differences", nothing you said afterwards is correct.

I'm not suggesting the T35's in the same leagues as J/35 for historical influence, but that's no reason to spread fake news.

Cheers!

 

So you are saying the T35 wasn't a loose copy of the J/35? I thought that was well accepted, even to the point of "Level 35" racing here on Lake Michigan...

Again, perhaps I'm wrong. 

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Just now, stayoutofthemiddle said:

So you are saying the T35 wasn't a loose copy of the J/35? I thought that was well accepted, even to the point of "Level 35" racing here on Lake Michigan...

Again, perhaps I'm wrong. 

I believe the T35 was originally designed to be a replacement for the Tartan Ten.  The design brief referenced the J/35 as a data point, thus the similarities.  But there is nothing in G&S's design that's particularly similar to Johnstone's except for length and speed (OK, since the J's an easier boat to sail at (near) it's potential it's often the quicker of the two on the water).

Cheers!

 

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1 hour ago, CriticalPath said:

I believe the T35 was originally designed to be a replacement for the Tartan Ten.  The design brief referenced the J/35 as a data point, thus the similarities.  But there is nothing in G&S's design that's particularly similar to Johnstone's except for length and speed (OK, since the J's an easier boat to sail at (near) it's potential it's often the quicker of the two on the water).

Cheers!

 

T 35 was a Thomas 35 wasn't it? Not Tartan 35... I thought Lindy had a hand in it but again, I could be wrong.

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13 minutes ago, stayoutofthemiddle said:

T 35 was a Thomas 35 wasn't it? Not Tartan 35... I thought Lindy had a hand in it but again, I could be wrong.

Yup, T35 is Thomas not Tartan, the confusion's from Tartan building both boats.  Lindy Thomas was a stalwart of the Tartan Ten fleet at the time he masterminded the Thomas 35 project.  The noble idea was to create a new one design class more modern than the J/35 and also suitable for IMS that'd be a step up for Tenners.  Superior light air performance to meet Chicago conditions was the target.  Unfortunately the boat didn't take off as hoped, then Lindy and other owners drove additional nails in the coffin when they fucked around with the original frac rig (added runners and jumpers), then led the conversion to masthead rigs.  One design aspirations died quickly, but the Level 72 class with J/35s was a popular diversion for awhile.

Cheers!

 

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9 minutes ago, CriticalPath said:

Yup, T35 is Thomas not Tartan, the confusion's from Tartan building both boats.  Lindy Thomas was a stalwart of the Tartan Ten fleet at the time he masterminded the Thomas 35 project.  The noble idea was to create a new one design class more modern than the J/35 and also suitable for IMS that'd be a step up for Tenners.  Superior light air performance to meet Chicago conditions was the target.  Unfortunately the boat didn't take off as hoped, then Lindy and other owners drove additional nails in the coffin when they fucked around with the original frac rig (added runners and jumpers), then led the conversion to masthead rigs.  One design aspirations died quickly, but the Level 72 class with J/35s was a popular diversion for awhile.

Cheers!

 

Interesting history. How many T35's were built?

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5 minutes ago, stayoutofthemiddle said:

Interesting history. How many T35's were built?

I've always been interested in the Thomas 35, hence the information (as I remember it!).

I read somewhere there were about 45 built.  A friend looked at one of the last builds about ten years ago in Chicago and obviously the original vision had been lost.  It was a 1995 with an ugly little shoal draft keel, shortened masthead rig, wheel, cruising layout, and had been Tartanized with lotsa stainless and teak added to exterior and interior.  Tartans are wonderful boats for their target market, but this wasn't an auspicious ending for what was intended to be a performance sailing machine...

Cheers!

 

Seaquel 02.jpg

Seaquel 14.jpg

Seaquel 15.jpg

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I've sailed the T35 (there's ONE out here) briefly - and  J/35s quite a bit - including offshore racing.

Can't say I cared THAT much for either of them myself,   The J's are really heavy and the Thomas was a bit too 'cruisy' for me - might have been how that one was sailed however - it sure seemed like a nice boat to me though and it sailed alright (I didn't get a lot of miles on it)

The J certainly was a popular boat,  no question there.  So they are around to be had.

For a club racer/cruiser it that range I'd SO much rather have an Express37, or Farr36/8 - just my personal.

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1 hour ago, stayoutofthemiddle said:

The is the cheapest one on YW I found @ $18,500 which is a lot of boat and utility for the money. Beer cans and weekend cruising...

https://www.yachtworld.com/boats/1985/j-boats-j-35-3650723/

Nice exhibit for a couple red flags - there may not be an issue, but you want it run to ground:

Anchor locker (not really a foredeck cooler) - weak spot/water entry for the deck core

Aluminium dip pole - most boats converted to an end-for-end, usually carbon, for ease of handling in the corners.  Less important if you are not racing one design, but it raises the question of what other upgrades are missing (available on the next boat you look at).

Solid windows - a year or two newer and the side windows in the cabin open, nicer for cruising

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13 hours ago, Tax Man said:

Solid windows - a year or two newer and the side windows in the cabin open, nicer for cruising

But leak like a sieve no matter what you do. Bomar (makers of the original opening ports) told me years ago that the windows spec'd by J Boats will always leak, the draft angle of cabin top sides is too high for adequate drainage. They blamed it on J. Years ago I saw a sistership anchored near mine, I dingy'd over to see his nice new shiny Lewmar opening port lights. When I asked the owner about the port lights he stopped me before I finished my question: "yes, they still leak!'. He spent a small fortune glassing the sides of the cabin top to fit the smaller Lewmar ones & have them installed. 

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57 minutes ago, DrewR said:

But leak like a sieve no matter what you do. Bomar (makers of the original opening ports) told me years ago that the windows spec'd by J Boats will always leak, the draft angle of cabin top sides is too high for adequate drainage. They blamed it on J. Years ago I saw a sistership anchored near mine, I dingy'd over to see his nice new shiny Lewmar opening port lights. When I asked the owner about the port lights he stopped me before I finished my question: "yes, they still leak!'. He spent a small fortune glassing the sides of the cabin top to fit the smaller Lewmar ones & have them installed. 

99% of the ports on the sides of cabin tops are too small to really allow air flow.  I will never understand the desire to have these "open" rather than just doing a nice solid piece of lexan/acrylic for all the windows and then having a standard hatch under the boom / vang area and one forward in the V birth.  I think it's mainly for those folks who count the cup holders in a car before they make a purchase.

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2 hours ago, Grrr... said:

99% of the ports on the sides of cabin tops are too small to really allow air flow.  I will never understand the desire to have these "open" rather than just doing a nice solid piece of lexan/acrylic for all the windows and then having a standard hatch under the boom / vang area and one forward in the V birth.  I think it's mainly for those folks who count the cup holders in a car before they make a purchase.

The ones on the J/35 are huge, it makes a HUGE difference. The airflow inside is excellent with the oversized port lights open. 

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