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Hi all. I'm a longtime lurker first time poster.

I'm looking at a J36 that needs some (a lot of) work. Lots of -at minimum- cosmetic water damage to the main bulkhead that the chain plates bolt through.

On the J36, does anybody know if this bulkhead is balsa cored or solid fiberglass? Does the plywood play any role here, or is it truly cosmetic. Is this the same on the J35?

Thanks in advance.

Ben.

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2 hours ago, benjicohn said:

Hi all. I'm a longtime lurker first time poster.

I'm looking at a J36 that needs some (a lot of) work. Lots of -at minimum- cosmetic water damage to the main bulkhead that the chain plates bolt through.

On the J36, does anybody know if this bulkhead is balsa cored or solid fiberglass? Does the plywood play any role here, or is it truly cosmetic. Is this the same on the J35?

Thanks in advance.

Ben.

The bulkhead is balsa core between two skins of glass. The plywood(or veneer) is purely cosmetic. 

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17 hours ago, Squalamax said:

The bulkhead is balsa core between two skins of glass. The plywood(or veneer) is purely cosmetic. 

Call J/boats and ask them.  Im pretty confident they have never used balsa in a main bulkhead application. 

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6 hours ago, USA 236 said:

Call J/boats and ask them.  Im pretty confident they have never used balsa in a main bulkhead application. 

You would be 100% mistaken. My 29 has a balsa cored bulkhead as well as all the 30's. The 30 used the main bulkhead from the 36.(obviously cut down) 

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My 35 ('83 production) has a teak veneer over a layer of marine plywood on the cabin side of the bulkhead (maybe 5/8 or 2/3), tabbed in and sistered on the V-berth side with maybe a half inch of solid glass.  Just had one side repaired last year due to water intrusion.  No balsa.  Interestingly there was very little water damage in the actual bulkhead, the teak veneer had delaminated and created seeming soft spots. The yard thought it would be okay with the existing wood but we cut out anything that was soft and sistered new plywood in and they re-tabbed the top of it. 

Seal your damn chainplate cover fittings on the deck every year or so.  It was a pain in the ass of a repair.   

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We had a J/36 for 24 years, with a ship's bell clock mounted on the main bulkhead to starboard.  The screws that went into the bulkhead to hold the clock did not encounter any balsa. On the other side of the bulkhead, to Port, is the head.  The screws that went into the main bulkhead to hold the toilet paper roller did not encounter any balsa either. We replaced the veneer when it buckled around the chainplates from getting wet and had no problems with the bulkhead.  

The boats are a blast to sail.  We got ours up to 12.5 knots, downwind under a reefed main.  Racing we enjoyed occasionally passing J/109's and J/120's.  Cruising is also fun. The boat is big enough to be comfortable and quick enough to go far.  We explored ports from Northeast Harbor, ME, to NYC, and had a blast with ours.

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This is all great, thanks to everyone here. I heard back from J/Boats that to their recollection the J36 does have a balsa cored molded bulkhead. I'll just have to do a better inspection to find out.

PaulK thanks for this tidbit - from your first hand experience it sounds like there is no balsa. The veneer is definitely buckled around the chainplates but hopefully no problems lurk beneath...

 

Thanks again,

Ben.

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On 11/1/2021 at 2:29 PM, benjicohn said:

This is all great, thanks to everyone here. I heard back from J/Boats that to their recollection the J36 does have a balsa cored molded bulkhead. I'll just have to do a better inspection to find out.

PaulK thanks for this tidbit - from your first hand experience it sounds like there is no balsa. The veneer is definitely buckled around the chainplates but hopefully no problems lurk beneath...

 

Thanks again,

Ben.

I know for a fact that the J30 and J29 have balsa cored main bulkheads. I've worked on both. What's funny is a lot of J29 owners will swear their bulkhead doesn't have balsa in it. They are mistaken. It was common for TPI to build them that way back then. 

I would investigate your J36 a bit more. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 11/14/2021 at 11:22 PM, JCoggs said:

Where is the J/36 located? Could be my old boat that I sold around 1994.  I heard it was still afloat in the Pacific North West and for sale last year.  Sail number was 36528.

ceilidh 1.JPG

That one of those camp sails?

image.jpeg.3863e695a9aaa68877fc8586c0ecd940.jpeg

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