Buying a used J70? (Please convince me not too)

Varan

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Out of the blue, some regular racers in our area are moving to J70s. Maybe it's time to give up the J24  :ph34r: . Our local Melges fleet is gone, same with the U20. The FE23 was a sweet sailing boat, but sticky in summer's fickle light winds. I like the narrowness of the 70, but the club foot keel and winches make me want to vomit.

That being said, y'all got any measured, class legal ones for sale? 

I know.. Move it to JA, it is not a sportie. Fuck it.

 

@last

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Not to sound funny but perhaps focus on what the key goal is.   Melges 24s for example while great boats are typically not as new as the J70.

So for example, if someone had 40k to spend, it would buy a nice (but older) Melges, while in the J70, you would be getting a nearly new/few year old boat.

Is the j24 still raced locally with a decent OD class size and is OD class racing locally the goal?  Not to sound like a politician, but focus on the goal (to own a newer boat, to own whatever has the most local OD racing, to own the fastest/"best" boat of the three for example?).  Depending on the priority will probably shape your answer.  FWIW I have a j24 and like it primarily for cost reasons (low initial cost, etc) although there is no OD racing here and from that standpoint the M24 is the clear winner in this locale.

YMMV and just my 2 cents.

 

Varan

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It's all about OD. Each year, our j24 fleet gets smaller. The M24s, U20s, Vipers are all gone (except one viper and one U20 who don't race locally except maybe once per year). J24 fleet is down to six regulars. J70 fleet is at two, with another confirmed and one maybe. Others have expressed interest now that boats can be found for under 40. I agree, that in that price range, the m24 has so much more to offer. All are way easier to travel with than the j24.  Prudent thing to do is wait another year and how thing develop. Never been good at waiting.

Something else we should consider is the formation of a SMS rated sportsboat class the could include the V640, U24, J70s, FE23 and maybe the U20 we have at our club.

 

@last

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I think you pretty much have probably answered your own question and hit the nail on the head in all categories/thoughts.  The J24 can't have too much carrying cost (initial cost, maintenance, etc) so for now hold and wait and see how it plays out.  The J70 class looks like it has some potential for club level stuff in the sense that 1-hull numbers are now in 4 digits, could be wrong but I think like 13-1400ish and I think perhaps room to get to 1600ish in the next few years.  If so, the available pool for used boats could be potentially nearly double what the M24 is. 2-So you have a few strategies here, one, like you say try and come up with sort of a sportboat "run what ya brung" class. Two perhaps try and regrow the J24 class.  I realize that they are never going to be as sexy/new/updated a boat as either the M24 or J70, but, and this is a big but,  they are very low cost boats to buy with hull numbers in the 5500's/large available pool of inexpensive boats and as such it may be easier to attract newbies to the class with a low cost to enter.  Suspect too that the J70 class at the moment has a fair number of people in it who are willing to travel a good distant for regatta's with the ensuing expenses (motel, gas, meals, entry fee, etc) and as these road warriors leave the class, perhaps there will be some trickle down of boats congregating to the lower level/weekend warrior type budgets.  Either way I think you have it spot on and figured out.  Good luck, fun choices/problems to have.

 

Zaney

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I dunno   M24 is a hard boat to beat OD.  They all are actually.     Sounds like you and some buddies need to sit down and get a group together...

 

Varan

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I dunno   M24 is a hard boat to beat OD.  They all are actually.     Sounds like you and some buddies need to sit down and get a group together...
Totally agree, on all points.

 

Toe.Knee

New member
Call me biased but...

I'm in Sydney Australia and have owned a J70 for 3 years.  I have fun on the water EVERY weekend and with a max crew of 4 and the ability to win PHS races in a mixed fleet with only 2 on deck up to 12-15kts, and hanging on at 18kts SOG in bigger breezes with smiles on everyone's face...I love it!!!  Ticks all the boxes for me...price, safe, solid, carbon mast and boom, easy set up for trailering, simple but quality systems, fastest growing OD in the world, etc, etc.  Even more fun with very close OD racing with other J70's on Sydney Harbour.  You know you want to...just do it!

M24 much lighter keel to displacement and more sail plan, so much faster.  Main issue for the other M24's at our club is getting the 5-7 crew you need every week to sail it competitively.  No box ticked there.

Keep asking questions and the light will go on for you eventually.  Good luck Varan!

 

Streetwise

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Varan, we tried SMS for a couple of years at our club in Vermont. It was smoother to use PHRF, and I compiled a bunch of data.

PHRF%20Sportboat%20Matrix.pdf


 

Varan

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Varan, we tried SMS for a couple of years at our club in Vermont. It was smoother to use PHRF, and I compiled a bunch of data.

PHRF%20Sportboat%20Matrix.pdf
Yes, I followed your posts. You were the inspiration for wanting to give SMS a try here. Thanks for the info.

Call me biased but...

I'm in Sydney Australia and have owned a J70 for 3 years.  I have fun on the water EVERY weekend and with a max crew of 4 and the ability to win PHS races in a mixed fleet with only 2 on deck up to 12-15kts, and hanging on at 18kts SOG in bigger breezes with smiles on everyone's face...I love it!!!  Ticks all the boxes for me...price, safe, solid, carbon mast and boom, easy set up for trailering, simple but quality systems, fastest growing OD in the world, etc, etc.  Even more fun with very close OD racing with other J70's on Sydney Harbour.  You know you want to...just do it!

M24 much lighter keel to displacement and more sail plan, so much faster.  Main issue for the other M24's at our club is getting the 5-7 crew you need every week to sail it competitively.  No box ticked there.

Keep asking questions and the light will go on for you eventually.  Good luck Varan!
Nice to read some positive feedback, thanks. Around here, 70s tend to sail with 3, 80s and M24s with 4. Crew size isn't an issue. For me it's more about OD, ease of traveling and of course, budget.

 

Crash

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Is there another new OD fleet out there with as many boats, that is still growing?

There are other new sport boats that are faster, are more technical, more athletic, etc.  None have reached the success/critical mass that the J/70 has reached.  Demo'd an early one.  It was a quality piece of work.  If I was looking for an OD in that size, the J/70 is a no-brainer.  How many will be on the line at Charleston Race Week this year?  How many of the next closest OD?

Last year there were 73 J-70s.  20 J-24s, 21 Melges 24s

 
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Varan

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You can lease them now 3 year lease
Linky? Local fleet now at three with a couple more serious types interested. Been asked to trim on one which is probably a good idea before buying. Still hard to go from a sportie.to the 70, but damn, I love OD. So, if you know of a good class legal one coming up for sale, please keep me in mind. Thank you!

 

EYESAILOR

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My feedback as a former J70 co-owner.

When you are buying a boat I think it is more important to define your budget in terms of annual running cost than initial entry cost. Part of the annual running cost is depreciation but one positive experience with the J70 is that there was a ready market when it came time for us to sell.  I have seen owners stuck with J24s as the class downsized and either couldnt sell them or had to virtually give them away. For the North East, the Rochester worlds was a swan song for several J24 owners. We dont see much OD sailing in J24s around here any more and I remember 100 boat starts in Newport.

The running cost of the J70 was quite reasonable with one unfortunate exception (more on that later). Sails , maintenance etc was not significantly different than older boats of a similar size including a J24.  Dry sailing is now the norm in OD sailing here and you have to budget for that.

The J70 was fine to sail. ( You mention light air and I should say that it can be a little sticky in light air.)  We have a very strong Viper fleet in the North East and that was an alternative I seriously considered. I enjoyed the Viper feel a lot but my husband wanted something that was a little more sedate. So we went for the J70 and had fun with it. The one design racing is very strong and there are some good regattas to travel to.  The boat is well made. It provides a good tactical experience. The "after burners" was a bit of an exaggeration, it does not really light up downwind but it is a lot faster and easier downwind in breeze than a J24. You will need a strong middleman, the forces load up in breeze.  If you are going to trim, you will notice it. We felt we had a good experience and the boat was what it was represented to be.  If you previously owned a sportie, you should look at the J70 as a fast keel boat (modern J24) rather than a sport boat.

The one disappointment was the lack of amateur racing. Most of the racing in the J70 is traveling to regattas. We found that the vast majority of teams at these regattas including paid pros on the boat. This is very different from the J24 racing. Even in its heyday, the J24 would only have a few sailmaker teams at the front battling it out for sail reputations but the rest of us were racing on a level amateur playing field. In the J70, the amateurs are in the minority and we got a bit tired of that.  If you are going to include a paid pro in your budget then obviously the running costs increase significantly and there will be less room on the boat for friends and family.

 

jokerx9

Member
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NY
Call me biased but...

I'm in Sydney Australia and have owned a J70 for 3 years.  I have fun on the water EVERY weekend and with a max crew of 4 and the ability to win PHS races in a mixed fleet with only 2 on deck up to 12-15kts, and hanging on at 18kts SOG in bigger breezes with smiles on everyone's face...I love it!!!  Ticks all the boxes for me...price, safe, solid, carbon mast and boom, easy set up for trailering, simple but quality systems, fastest growing OD in the world, etc, etc.  Even more fun with very close OD racing with other J70's on Sydney Harbour.  You know you want to...just do it!

M24 much lighter keel to displacement and more sail plan, so much faster.  Main issue for the other M24's at our club is getting the 5-7 crew you need every week to sail it competitively.  No box ticked there.

Keep asking questions and the light will go on for you eventually.  Good luck Varan!
5-7 crew?????? Not sure about that. 3 or 4 plus skipper. Anymore than 5 people gets too crowed and in light wind, you will just sit there. Melges 24 can be sailed with 3-4 crew even in heavy wind. 

 
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Varan

Super Anarchist
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My feedback as a former J70 co-owner.

When you are buying a boat I think it is more important to define your budget in terms of annual running cost than initial entry cost. Part of the annual running cost is depreciation but one positive experience with the J70 is that there was a ready market when it came time for us to sell.  I have seen owners stuck with J24s as the class downsized and either couldnt sell them or had to virtually give them away. For the North East, the Rochester worlds was a swan song for several J24 owners. We dont see much OD sailing in J24s around here any more and I remember 100 boat starts in Newport.

The running cost of the J70 was quite reasonable with one unfortunate exception (more on that later). Sails , maintenance etc was not significantly different than older boats of a similar size including a J24.  Dry sailing is now the norm in OD sailing here and you have to budget for that.

The J70 was fine to sail. ( You mention light air and I should say that it can be a little sticky in light air.)  We have a very strong Viper fleet in the North East and that was an alternative I seriously considered. I enjoyed the Viper feel a lot but my husband wanted something that was a little more sedate. So we went for the J70 and had fun with it. The one design racing is very strong and there are some good regattas to travel to.  The boat is well made. It provides a good tactical experience. The "after burners" was a bit of an exaggeration, it does not really light up downwind but it is a lot faster and easier downwind in breeze than a J24. You will need a strong middleman, the forces load up in breeze.  If you are going to trim, you will notice it. We felt we had a good experience and the boat was what it was represented to be.  If you previously owned a sportie, you should look at the J70 as a fast keel boat (modern J24) rather than a sport boat.

The one disappointment was the lack of amateur racing. Most of the racing in the J70 is traveling to regattas. We found that the vast majority of teams at these regattas including paid pros on the boat. This is very different from the J24 racing. Even in its heyday, the J24 would only have a few sailmaker teams at the front battling it out for sail reputations but the rest of us were racing on a level amateur playing field. In the J70, the amateurs are in the minority and we got a bit tired of that.  If you are going to include a paid pro in your budget then obviously the running costs increase significantly and there will be less room on the boat for friends and family.
Excellent feedback, thank you so much. Owned a J80 for a number of years, then after sailing an old Bennett Viper years ago, I caught the sportsboat bug, sold the 80, but later got bit by the OD bug, so now back to the J24. If I had my way, we would all be sailing Melges 24s. Still love that boat, but interest here is elsewhere. J70 is starting to get traction, especially with older sailors, but cost may have something to do with that. I view it as a scaled down 80 more than a sportie, but I'm surprised to hear you say it is sticky in light air. As narrow as it is, I would not have expected that.

On the plus side, this mini dump truck (as we affectionately referred to the 80) is way easier to travel with, and the interested parties here are all into traveling. Personally don't mind pros as long as the are not assholes. Good advice is always welcome.

Thanks again. Appreciated.

 




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