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Old 10-30-2013
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"Free boat" seaworthiness

hi folks. I have a big question but first, some background. I've been sailing for 17 years. I taught myself to sail on a 9' dinghy and I still sail her the most. she's convenient and fun. anyhow, I also own a holiday 20. it's a rock stable boat, when compared to my dinghy, and I've never even come close to worrying about a capsize. although, I must be honest, I've faced a lot worse situations in that dinghy than the 20. really crazy stuff, especially since I can't swim. lol.

now, the question. I am about to get a j24 for free. yep. free. it's in good functional shape. brand new sails. only needs a bit of trim work, really. the only thing is it's covered in mud and it doesn't come with a trailer. I have to move it immediately, if i'm to get it, so I have to see if I can find an affordable marina. I don't know what else to do. anyhow, my question:

when I first found out about this boat, I didn't know what it was. the guy only told me it was a keel boat and "24' Chesapeake". now, I thought he might have been telling me a model. cheapeake. searched the web over. found two possibilities. anyhow, at that size and full keel I figured light cruiser. found out tonight it's a j24 and got a pic of it. I will put the pic on here for shock value. lol.

anyhow, i'd like to use the boat for day sailing and light cruising; weekends or over night. everyone knows what a j24 is but I've never sailed one. so, I was searching the web and I found some disturbing stuff. I read a lot about them being prone to capsize and sinking. I've also heard that they have a bit of lee helm. I figured a keel boat would be more stable than my holidays 20, which is a center boarder.

I intend to sail her from back river, in the Chesapeake bay. I was wondering if I could get input from any who have sailed them about their sailing qualities. obviously, i'm looking for something stable for cruiser type use. I don't care about racing. I just love to sail.

so, are they that unseaworthy? are there any suggestions to make one more seaworthy? I don't mind some moderate modifications but I have a shoestring budget. that has to be kept in mind.

if I can get a place to keep her, I am going to take her. free boats don't happen every day...at least not to me. but, if she won't suit my purpose, i'll fix her up and try to sell her to afford a boat that does. too bad it couldn't be a nordica20, halman20, or flicka. that would have been perfect. but never look a gift horse in the mouth.

thanks in advance.
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Old 10-30-2013
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

here is the picture as she sits. had trouble finding it.
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Old 10-30-2013
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

Relatively low ballast, lightly built, short rudder, big open lazarettes, tiny below decks. They are really only good for racing, good fun though.
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

Hmm, that's one odd looking J24, likely not a J24 at all in which case you might be able to ignore what I posted just now
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

Agree... that's NOT a J 24, someone's having you on.. Bad angle and not a good shot, but it looks more like an older 'flush deck' cal to me, maybe 23/24/25 in that range. The sunken forward deck is a bit odd so I'm not even sure about that.

But definitely NOT a J-24. The only reason J 24s sank was when they were pushed very hard downwind with the spinnaker up, and broached.. unfortunately the boat didn't float with the companionway above water, and they down flooded and sank quite quickly. But it was quite rare, and only when pressed hard.

all of which is moot, that's no J 24... did I mention that??
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

ok. well. that is interesting. I know of j-24s but don't know them, if you know what I mean. is that a California 24? looks like that would make this a 70s boat? what I read, so far, looks promising, if you are right.

Last edited by captain jack; 10-30-2013 at 02:10 AM.
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

I will have to try to find the HIN when I look at the boat, tomorrow. that might shed some light on it. looking at pictures of the cal 24 and 25, I don't think this is it. the forward isn't actually sunken, on this boat. it is flat then steps up to the cabin top. nope. looking closer, I see what you mean about that. apparently all the cals, at leas tin that size range, had port lights. this boat has none....well, that can be seen.

Last edited by captain jack; 10-30-2013 at 02:33 AM.
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

Quote:
Originally Posted by captain jack View Post
......I am about to get a [boat] for free. yep. free. it's in good functional shape. ......
Warning, warning. This defies the laws of physics.
krazzz likes this.
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

I've seen one of these boats as a kid and I cannot remember the model.
It's about as far from a J/24 as you can get...
I am thinking late 60s early 70s model boat.
Here's a J/24, see the difference? Hint... look at the flush deck, and low topsides, a rounded sloping deck.


Far be it from me to discourage you though... but a "Free Boat" is like a "Free Lunch." There is NO such thing.
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Last edited by SHNOOL; 10-30-2013 at 06:49 AM.
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re: "Free boat" seaworthiness

I agree with other posters, this is not a J24. Take a look on the transom and see if there is a 12 character code molded in. Usually in the upper starboard but not always on older boats. This code is the HIN/MIC (Hull identification number/Manufacturers identification code). the first three characters identify the builder.

Go to this page on the USCG website and plug in those first three characters to find out. Every boat built in the US was required to have one of these codes after 1971 (maybe it was 74'. can't remember)
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