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  Topic Review (Newest First)
06-10-2016 06:53 PM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

20 hp is adequate for the boat's displacement unless water skiing is your thing. Should maneuver without other than the typical full keel issues around the marina. Might be a bit challenged going directly into strong winds and seas. Owned a W32 for years with a Volvo MD2 diesel. Something like 24hp to push the 20,000#s around. It was over propped, wouldn't reach max RPM in flat water, so was challenged beating into headsea and strong wind but we almost never encountered those conditions. When we wanted to go against wind and waves, motor sailed easily doing 5k about 35 degrees off the wind with the engine at about 1500 rpm. Current boat is daughter of the Alberg35, the Pearson 35. Similar displacement though a bit more water line. Does have a 3GM30 in it which I think is officially 27hp. Similarly maneuvering challenged but never use full throttle in the Marina or anywhere else for than matter.

Full keel boat designs typically have slack bilges, the classic white wine glass shape. They are designed this way to cut down on wetted surface for better light air performance. It makes the boat initially tender heeling to 15 degrees in light air typically. The benefit is they stiffen up once that far over and have much greater ultimate stability than the modern flat bottomed boats. Since these boats are typically heavier displacement, they are much more comfortable at sea or choppy conditions. As others have said, the short water line, longish overhangs are relics of the CCA rule. Made for beautiful boats that sail well once the boat is heeled and able to take advantage of the longer water line from the over hangs. Light air isn't their forte because of the wetted surface. Boats will sail in light air though not as well as boats with markedly less wetted surface. Once the wind perks up, will sail with fin keelers and even drop them astern in even heavier winds. Worst thing you can say about the CCA boats is you have to pay slip fees for those overhangs.

These boats all seem to develop hull caused weather helm as speed increases. I love it but then the self steering vane does most of my steering. Find the tiller way easier to steer with the weather helm than a wheel. So much so I ditched the wheel on the P35. Keep the big main for light air performance. Set the boat up for easy reefing if you want to reduce weather helm in higher winds/boat speed. Have run all the Main Sail controls to the cockpit. With the double line reefing, can reef in a minute from the comfort and safety of the cockpit.
06-09-2016 11:15 PM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

Originally Posted by Sic Semper Tyrannis View Post
I have a 62 A35.


She loves to sail at 15 degrees. Reef early and often and you wont have to worry over weather helm and she will still make good time.

Don't pinch or you will just go sideway. Keep her driving.

In light air she does fine. Ghosting through the lulls. But you cant pinch her!

She is heavy and will ghost through the lulls.


You will never get her to back anywhere but into the wind unless you get good with using propwash and prop walk. With a big rudder and a blast from prop wash you can usually do alright.

Has a universal.m35 in her and i wouldnt go smaller.


She is not a floating condo like a modern 35 footer. But she will sleep more people than you really want to cruise her with.

We would load 3kids and my wife and I and go cruise. But I would not do that with 5 adults! Maybe 4 for a weekend.

Or 2 for a month.

Lots of drawers, cubbies and hidden pockets for storage. Lots of room in keel for water tanks and a real bilge.

Formica isn't the greatest but it is maintenance free. Enough wood trim to make her look good. I think of painting the panels but simply cant bring myself to do it. worried about scratches.

The liner would not need to come out to remove the toe rails.


Nice bulwark that provides great footing. Nice wood toe rail.

Cockpit is not huge and tiller does take up some room.

Decent sized fixed ports for light below.

4 opening ports and 2 dorades for good ventilation. No seahood over companionway hatch.


Even if the balsa core has some water the inner and outer skins are massive compared to modern construction.

The glass in the hull is very thick and uses cloth with no chopper gun tigers anywhere.

Chain plates are big and visible and bolted to major plywood bulkheads.

The thing is a beast.

Rig is simple and overbuilt too.


You will always smile as you approach her, you will always turn back for one last look as you leave and you will almost always get compliments !
Thanks for this. I own an Alberg 35 (Anchorage Marina/Baltimore, MD, s/v Pendragon). And you're right: I never leave without looking back.

Weather Helm: Yes. I often sail with the first reef in the main and a 135% jib, that seems to generally cure the weather helm. I have oldish sails, I'm sure new ones would help.

Sailing: Like others have said, she heels right away, then stays there. Nothing seems to stop her, she cuts through waves, and as long as reasonably handled, feels safe and secure. Once she hits her preferred heel, she's on rails. I have a wheel with an autopilot and with the sails balanced, the weather helm is minimal enough under 15 knots wind to work.

Under power/docking: I have a Yanmar 3gm30 with 600 hours. It took a while to learn about prop walk; now I see it as an advantage. I back out of the slip. This was terrifying at first but someone taught me this trick: I run a long floating line from a stern cleat to a cleat on the portside finger pier to a mid-ship cleat on the port side. Put the boat in gear, slowly back out, slacking the line until we are about half way out. Turn the rudder appropriately and harden up on the line. The boat pivots; I release the stern cleat and pull in quickly on the line. As the bow come about 30 deg to the straight line out, put her in forward, burst power, and off we go. I can do this maneuver single handed now.

Coming into the dock, as someone said, everything has to be planned, everything is done slowly. My biggest failures are docking; I tend to lose way too fast. The theory is that I grab a spring line as we come in, but it hasn't always worked.

I do, as the poster said, find I always look back when I leave the marina.
12-01-2014 01:23 PM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

I'm Jim, my Alberg 35 is Pendragon. I believe she is a 1965 boat but I don't have a hull number and I've never been able to find anything that tells me how to certainly identify it. It's not on the boat title papers.

Pendragon was previously owned by James Schnittker, who kept her in Baltimore, at Anchorage Marina. We bought the slip with the boat, so she's staying there. Apparently a previous owner had her in Chicago, because that's the city on her stern.

Original wooden boom which I find a pain...soooo heavy. Slab reefing, roller furling 130% jib. Yanmar 3g30 diesel. Learning about the diesel has been a big part of the last few months (we bought her in July, 2014).

We have the "traditional" lay out: settees on both sides in the main cabin, icebox starboard, galley port. A previous owner built a beautiful chart table between the galley and the port settee. There is no hot water, which was apparently originally standard. We haven't really tried the shower other than to turn it on, make a mess, and say "ok, that works."

I love sailing her and although I'm still mastering the mystery of backing her out of the slip and getting her back, she sails like a dream. Fast isn't always the goal. Fun is.
01-02-2013 04:07 PM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

Mine's the same way. There was what looked like the remnants of a shower sump pump down there but it's so inaccessible that it's just not a good place for one there under the shower base. Mine is piped w/ 1-1/2" right to the bilge next to the bilge pump. Works fine. If there were a bunch of people using it on a regular basis, it would probably need some sort of screen.
01-02-2013 02:49 PM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

Noticed that the shower drain on the boat in the OP simply terminates under the shower pan as the photo shows. In the boats drawings, I see that it is supposed to drain to a sump. I guess that as shown in the picture, the water simply runs around the water storage tank, to the bilge.
I assume the seller was not using the shower, especially given the fact he has not seen fit to even install a auto bilge pump in the boat!
In any case, were did the original sump drain, and is it necessary?
12-09-2012 11:12 PM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

There is room for a much larger engine but the old engine mounts need to be cut away and new, wider mounts glassed in. It's a pretty big job. That's probably why they went with a smaller engine. Kinda like the tail wagging the dog
12-09-2012 09:05 PM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

The 27 would definitely fit. That's the same engine I have in Auriga. Beta and Universal both use the Kubota D1005. I have plenty of space in the engine room to work. From the picture it looks like they kept the original engine beds and put some aluminum bar to accommodate the extra width of the mounts. It would have been much better to cut out the engine beds and glass in new beds the proper width. Looks like the aluminum is lag bolted to the engine beds which is not a good idea either. Would have been better to through-bolt steel angle or something of the sort. I doubt shaft length was an issue as someone suggested on the diesel forum. Looks like there is room to move the mounts fore or aft on those aluminum plates. That was probably the largest engine they could get on those original beds. I've seen an A35 with a 35 hp engine so engine room space is not the issue.
12-09-2012 05:32 PM
Story of my life...It's too big!

Asked the seller why he went with a 20hp motor. He replied that he bought a 27 but it "wouldn't fit in the hull" so they went with the 20. Hard to believe that with all this space (gotta love the access!) they couldn't make a 27 fit.
He claims 20hp is plenty, especially since it's a diesel (there is that diesel vs. gas hp thing again). Yet, he also said he didn't think he was using the extra hp with the A4 anyway. Not that it matters, she's got 20hp and that's that. But it does throw the credibility of the claim that 20's plenty into question.
Would have made more sense if he said, "We never used all the power from the A4, so we decided on 20hp for the refit.
Conditions could be benign during a sea trial and it might be hard to determine if she's under powered.
You guys buying the "wouldn't fit" excuse?
Edit: After I posted this, I decided to post the same question in the diesel forum.
12-08-2012 08:43 AM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

I don't know when they started with aluminum booms. If the wood booms actually weight over 100#, it was probably a good idea. The aluminum boom weighs maybe 60#. The reason people are shortening the booms is because of the weather helm issue but you are absolutely right that doing it would also lose the square footage for light air. These boats were competitive in their day and were used by a lot of club racing so they were maxxed out to specs as far as sails go. My mast still has the luff marks that indicated maximum luff length to meet race measurements. Something else to mention to folks thinking about an A35 is that they are slow as molasses compared to modern designs. That said, I remember one day heading over from the CC Canal across the bay when some of the more modern designs turned tail as the waves got larger. The old A35 took 'em in stride. I had waves breaking into the cockpit at times but she never missed a beat.

Sailnet is a great resource but there seem to be few people who ever access the Alberg thread. I see Alberg 35s wherever I go. There are still many in service. There are individual blogs and it's easy to web search for info but a central location to create a database of projects, what works and doesn't (such as boom shortening) and useful information as well as reviews on equipment, etc. would be helpful. The question above about when the boom changed would likely be available.
12-08-2012 01:54 AM
Re: Looking at a Alberg 35

Originally Posted by smurphny View Post
I'm with you on the morning workout! Hauling my 45# anchor and 60' of 3/8" chain by hand is always a great way to start the day UGH.

Philyria has one of those useless roller booms. I slab reef but like the boom because it is a hefty chunk of aluminum. The roller mechanism is a waste. They were a bad idea from the git-go. Am seriously considering shortening the boom by about a foot and have actually recut a cruising main to fit a shortened boom. Once my big, battened, roached main is worn out, the next new one will be on a shorter boom.

I've been on the Yahoo group site but few people seem to use it. It would be nice to have a good official A35 site where details of projects and boat-specific info. could be shared. I see a lot of A35s on the water and can't believe the interest is not there if a website were maintained.
Did Pearson go from wood to aluminum booms? If so, when?
What is the advantage to going with a shorter boom over simply reefing early and having the extra sail for light air?
Regarding owners sites: Yankee made less than 140 Yankee 30's (my boat)before they went out of business, most of which are still sailing. I've found the owners site next to useless, do to lack of participation, and have derived much more value from Sailnet. On the other hand, I'm envious of the Erickson owners site. They were very helpful with a Ericson project I was looking at. So, I guess there is strength in numbers! As I understand it, The A35 is the same boat as the A/E 35 with the exception of 500 pounds less ballast and the coach top design on the Ericson, so it might be a valuable resource. I think they would welcome you. Very active site, great people!
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