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Old 10-21-2010
jch33n jch33n is offline
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Farr 395, J/120, J/109--any wisdom?

Currently I am looking for a boat for around-the-buoy racing on the Chesapeake. I expect to also cruise around the Bay and maybe beyond the bay later. How far I will ultimately go I don't know. So now, I am considering Farr 395 (have seen some built in 2000-2002, hull # in the mid 20s), J/120 (1998-2001 vintage), or J/109 (2003 or slightly newer) -- relatively fast racer/cruisers. Performance-wise, Farr 395 appeals to me but I have some concerns about the known hull problems. (The potential candidates evidently all had the class-recommended modifications done.) The available J/109s tend to be newer than J/120 (can't afford a newer J/120). The early J/120s also had some hull (keel attachment) problems, but the problem evidently was addressed after the first 25 hulls. I have not found any serious problems common to J/109s mentioned. It is a bit smaller but appears to be still plenty fast (been on one but have not sailed one). It seems like a very nice size. (My wife will prefer this.) The gear presumably would be less expensive to maintain, and the sails are definitely not as heavy to lug around. (My wife will definitely prefer this.) However, with a racing crew on long races, it may be a bit more cramped. I've read a bit about C&C 110s (sprit version) but haven't pursued it as much, but perhaps I should. I've been on a C&C 115, and the interior looked beautiful. I assume that these boats are all offshore rated, but I have heard (sometimes from boat brokers selling Js) that J boats are more rugged. In theory, they are comparable in terms of their abilities to take the pounding. That's in theory, and I don't have enough experience to judge how much pounding they can really take, assuming, of course, that the hull and rigging are in good shape at the outset. BTW, I am not contemplating circumnavigating the globe, but anything can happen. Any wisdom? Thanks for any information, thoughts, or leads for other ideas. Jim

Last edited by jch33n; 10-22-2010 at 12:53 AM. Reason: addition
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