Various pictures of the J105 beating under genoa and main
Beating under 140% genoa #2 and class main; 2002 Governor's Cup
Discussion on the offshore capabilities of the
|Jose R. Villalon Mazatlan, Mexico
Posted on Wednesday, November 21, 2001 - 8:14 pm:
currently club-race a 1976 C&C38 and am considering purchasing a used
J105. I was attracted to the 105 for the ease of sailing it shorthanded.
However I live in Mexico and OD is out of the question. I will be racing
under PHRF. I am also interested in campaigning oceanic doublehanded
races such as the Newport-Bermuda and possibly the Pineapple Cup. Would
the 105´s OD characteristics be a hindrance for PHRF racing? Or does the
ease of doublehanded A-sail use offset any speed given up to masthead
rigged PHRFérs. Is this a good and PHRF competitive offshore boat?
Thanks for your feedback...
Jose R. Villalon
|Jaffar Bentchikou / Annapolis
Posted on Thursday, November 22, 2001 - 3:41 pm:
are a few elements to consider.
• The ease of sailing the J/105 is true. A doublehanded J/105 class has
been introduced in 2001 in Annapolis and had a few point-to-point races
on the schedule (no real offshore race yet).
• The A-spin is a big plus for point-to-point races with lots of
• PHRF ratings do not vary with the wind. The J/105 with class sails has
a very unfavorable rating in light air (below 5 kn any genoa boat in the
class will beat any J/105; from 5 to 10 the gap decreases) and a very
favorable one in heavy air (above 15-20 kn the J/105 has few competitors
in the same PHRF class).
• You can use a genoa with the J/105 but the wide chainplate base
prevents the boat from pointing well above 8-9 kn of wind.
• You can of course use a larger A-spin for PHRF races. The current
class size of 77 m2 is quite small for the boat but will be increased to
89 m2 in 2002. Many J/105s racing PHRF go all the way and use a 110 m2
• There is an easy way to have a masthead rigged A-spinnaker on a J/105
if, and it is a big if, you have one French-built J/105 (I own one).
These boats have a Sparcraft mast which is much stronger from the hounds
up and the spinnaker halyard exits the mast at the top and then goes
down through a couple of U-bolts on the front of the mast at the class
legal height. So, changing from class setup to masthead setup for PHRF
is quite easy.
• I am also considering doing one offshore race (Annapolis-Bermuda) with
my J/105 and I was puzzled by the fact that very few J/105s have entered
known offshore races while its predecessor, the J/35, has a good track
record offshore (even winning the Sydney-Hobart in her class!). Most
sailing pros I have discussed the subject with explain the difference by
the lack of comfort in the cabin for an offshore crew spending several
days and nights racing. There is no question that the hull and the rig
can do a good job there but there is no headroom in the cabin and the
alcohol stove is not gimbaled in the TPI-built units.
• As a side comment to the preceding point, the French-built J/105s have
again a slight plus as they come from the factory with a more
comfortable interior and a 2-burner gimbaled propane stove.
• I also would be much interested if other J/105 owners with offshore
experience would care to comment.
|Jaffar Bentchikou / Annapolis
Posted on Thursday, November 22, 2001 - 4:09 pm:
to mention in my posting that you could also use a Code Zero A-spinnaker
for close reaching legs. I have one with my new J/105 Chantecler. Its
range of use is relatively narrow (close reaching to broad reaching) but
when you can use it is a killer as your competitors are close reaching
under jib or genoa. The sail is a class-legal spinnaker but its best use
is for PHRF racing where you can change spinnakers during the race (not
permitted for class races).
homepage at ..\index.htm
Mike Tucker Hamilton Bermuda
Posted on Friday, November 23, 2001 - 5:26 pm:
with the last two messages. Here in Bermuda two of the boats have
reaching A-spinnakers from Doyle (not quite Code 0)and we usually sail
under IMS. At the right moment the performance is outstanding. Can't use
the reachers in really high wind though.
We now have 3 French boats in Bermuda and the internal layout is much
better. I have done two short ocean hops in varied weather and the
position of the stove,sink and cooler make a big difference. Headroom
will always be an issue and we can't pretend she is a Swan when
reaching. The dodger is essential for long distance work. But in one
race we came back from the deep blue running along the wave crests for 3
hours largely at 15.5 knots - smiles all round and a real roller coaster
ride galloping down the big ocean swell.
I haven't used the mast head spinnaker halyard except in light air. We
use the 110 chute a lot and in light airs it touches the water unless we
haul it up to the mast head. While the French mast is stronger above the
hounds, we believe it looks suspiciously like a Euro J120 mast which
uses running back stays so we haven't pushed the higher halyard in heavy
air. We also just made a local class decision to remove the mast head
halyard to make us even with the TPI built boats.
Mike Joji BER205
|Jose R. Villalon Mazatlan, Mexico
Posted on Saturday, November 24, 2001 - 2:13 pm:
thanks for the complete feedback Jaffar and Mike. I am beginning to feel
more confident in my bias towards the J105. I guess the bottom line
question is: If you were to sail strickly PHRF buoy races with an
occassional PHRF oceanic race and were always sailing shorthanded
(between 1 and 4 on boat), would the J105 be your choice? I am convinced
that I would set-up with a 155% genoa, adjustable track cars, and a 110m
masthead kite; I believe this would make me competitive around the cans.
How would one deal with the small cold storage capacity?
Jose R. Villalon
Posted on Sunday, November 25, 2001 - 5:07 am:
While I've been sailing for years last year was my first with the j105.
That said, expect to point about 5-8 degrees lower (with the genoa
versus jib) than than the 27-28 degrees that is possible in most
conditions with the jib. Unless the j35s attempt to carry 150s above ~19
knots true (when they become overpowered) they will eat you up up wind
in most other conditions. Worse still, its not just the j35s but many
half-way decent phrf boats that can outpoint a genoa j105. Watching your
competitors as though they are riding elevators to windward as you race
windward/leewards is a serious tactical disadvantage to say nothing of
demoralizing. Because of this covers are far less effective and down
right dangerous from a competitive standpoint. The 105 relies on offwind
work to make its rating but this is reduced in square leeward course
work. With the 110m2 kite at the hounds we saw some slight advantage.
I know that the 105 has participated in the Bermuda 1-2 (from newport).
However, I don't know if it is allowed to enter the Marion to Bermuda or
its biannual partner the Newport to Bermuda race. I suspect it won't be
allowed in the last as that race is open to boats with an IMS stability
index of 115 or greater. Based on the IMS certificate that I have seen
[available on the class site, I think] the 105 has a stability index of
about 113.5. I hope that other Bermuda race sponsors take a different
Given all my harsh words I still have to tell you we love this boat. It
is responsive and exciting to sail. It only takes a few reaches at 12-16
knots to leave a lasting grin on your face. In flat water the boat does
(110m2 kite) 9-11 knots beam reaching in 13-17 knots true (although
above 15-16 knots you are overpowered and should change down). Upwind it
is very easily driven and can achieve 6 knots in fairly light air. We
bought the 105 to one design race and given our few discouraging
experiences at PHRF racing the boat this year, we'll probably stick to
Certainly, cold storage is limited and if we have resorted to carrying
an extra cooler when we travel for an overnight with 4-5 on board. This
isn't entirely satisfactory at sea, but with the cooler on the sole
against the rear face of the main bulkhead at least the weight is in the
best possible place. I think that freeze dried food or even better
Ready-to eat meals would be the only way to go for a 3-5 day offshore
race for a crew (or even just 2).
|Arthur Treach/Oriental, N.C.
Posted on Sunday, November 25, 2001 - 9:53 am:
is a great daysailor or one-design racer, but I can't honestly fathom
ocean racing in a PHRF fleet. The boat is neither designed for that, nor
reasonable equipped to do so. I have raced both PHRF and bouys for seven
years, and would encourage anyone who enjoys one-design or daysailing to
purchase one. I would discourage an ocean racer to buy one. I would
emphatically discourage a PHRF ocean racer to buy one. It's a great
boat, and without going into details about flaws for PHRF (which few
people do), or flaws about taking her bluewater racing (which some have
done, mostly once), I would again discourage a bluewater sailor against
a j105. She certainly could handle it, but I was far from happy given
the layout-- especially about the scars on my head from the 5'4"
headroom. For ocean racing, you must have headroom. You must have a
gimballed stove. The j105 is a great boat, and there is not an owner out
there that can argue in good conscience about the previous two
Just make sure you personally take her on an ocean race before you make
buy her. Especially now, at the peak of their popularity. This boat is a
one-design racer/cruiser and should not be compared with a PHRF champ or
ocean racer, but she does what she was designed to do and fits into her
niche like a champ.
Additionally, I believe the minimum LOA for Bermuda races are 35', but
check with the race organizer. FWIW, I would politely decline any offer
to race 750 miles offshore on this boat. Not because it's not capable,
but because it just isn't designed to take the reasonable person that
I don't mean to disparage the j105. She is a beautiful one-design bouy
and overnight racer, but one cannot confuse her with an ocean going
vessel. In my estimation, I have logged thousands of miles on the j105,
varying from 60+ gusts to 0.0 knots. She is a beauty to sail in anything
over 10 knots as one design. As far a PHRF, buy a PHRF boat. You will
save tens of thousands, even after the sailmaker has had his way with
you! Disclaimer: this opinion is worth what you paid for it, but I
couldn't help but to chime in given your posts!
Good luck and fair winds!
|Jaffar Bentchikou / Annapolis
Posted on Sunday, November 25, 2001 - 9:21 pm:
The minimum length to enter the 2002 BOR (Annapolis - Bermuda) is 30
I have not yet decided to enter it because I still have lots of issues
to solve, most of them related to cabin and storage space (which may
limit the crew to a total of four). As an example, the 2002 NOR (Race
requires fuel for 300 nm and water and stores for 10 days. In 2000,
boats with comparable PHRF rating did the 756 nm race in less than six
days. The boat has not been initially designed to do such races but a
look at the J/105 Hall of Fame shows that J/105 sailors have done much
longer distances. The key question is 'is it reasonable?' and the answer
may depend more on the quality and experience of the crew and on the
quality of the preparation than on the J/105 itself.
Now, I am honored that you have a 'personal observation' from NC on my
racing performance around Annapolis. Should I abstain from making any
web posting until I reach the top third of the fleet? How many top third
of any fleet are contributing to this discussion? I believed that I
could contribute to answer Jose's interesting question and I did it
without mentioning that I did one Annapolis-Horta (Açores) crossing
because it was done on a 45' Jeanneau Sunkiss and thus was not very
relevant. I am afraid that this part of your posting, contrarily to the
rest, was not very constructive.
Posted on Monday, November 26, 2001 - 8:55 am:
Don't read this if you are a sensitive man. I communicate in a quite
direct way, and as such, you may not like my phraseology (is that a
word?). Just keep in mind, it is one salty man's opinion; primarily
intended for Jose's benefit, not to disparage anyone.
I apoligize if you fail to recognize the value of my opinion for Jose,
however I assure you it comes from the top third of the Bay fleet. My
opining was intended to be quite constructive, but as a pirate, I tend
to be a bit edgy on my prose. Please don't be offended, and I doubt my
opinion would have surfaced on this thread without your "wrongheaded"
(more opining) posting. So, please continue to post as a member of the
bottom 2/3 of the racing fleet! ;-) Feel free to correct me if I am
wrong regarding the previous claim. Disclaimer: previous partnered boat
record and present included.
Also, I find it interesting that you chose a 45' cruising boat to do
your offshore trip to Horta. It was probably a more seamanlike choice
than, say a 35' boat with a fixed stove, no headroom, and a stability
rating of a J105.
The j105 regardless, remains to be shown as a solid boat. Quite sound
and capable, of course, but then again I have a friend who singlehanded
from the Chesapeake to the Azores and then to the Pacific in a wooden
handbuilt twenty footer. It is a matter of what is reasonable and
seamanly, which may vary by individual, of course. Hey, only one man
died on the Mini-transat this year(his empty harness dragging behind his
well-trimmed vessel, that's not so bad. Or is it? I believe we agree
I would not recommend offshore singlehanding in general, and my
assertion to Jose is that he take his $140k and put it in a bluewater
boat, not a daysailor. Assuming, of course, he intends to do ocean
races, as he says. Then again, he could buy your j105, right?
Jaffar, I will see you in Bermuda, if you overcome your issues, which
there are plenty. And I have no doubt the boat can make the trek. I
suspect I will be sipping a margarita, by the time you make harbor. I
will toast you when you arrive!
Time will tell, and actions are clearly louder than e-chat.
Best of luck to you (truly). Please don't take my comments personally. I
think Jose deserves a realistic perspective, and felt compelled to give
him one. The j105 is designed for around the bouys and overnight racing,
IMHO. Anyone who disagrees, and I suspect most agree here, should chime
|Nelson Weiderman J/105 #300
Posted on Monday, November 26, 2001 - 9:29 am:
ordinarily do this, but I'll remind you that this is an "Owners Forum".
Mr. Treach or Mr. Teach or Mr. Buellizinsky is apparently not an owner
and apparently does not know the rules of etiquette for this Forum. I
will delete any future posts of this nature.
|Daniel Heun / Lake Michigan Fleet 5
Posted on Monday, November 26, 2001 - 1:51 pm:
like to add my perspective to the Handicapped Long Distance racing
discussion. Fleet 5 in Lake Michigan used to race in the 300+ mile
Chicago to Mackinaw race within a PHRF section with all the sails we
could take for the PHRF number. Kevlar Mains and Genoas, over sized
Polyester Spinakers were the norm. The problem is that J105 is One
design boats. Not many owners wanted to buy PHRF sails for a single,
albeit significant race. We could only field around 6 boats on the
starting line. PHRF and ODR do not mix well. Fleet 5 decided to change
our posture with long distance events and race as a ODR section with
J105 ODR sails and rules, except for crew weight and storm sails. This
returning to our One desgin roots so to speak has increase boats on the
line by a factor of 3. It is important to keep things in perspective, in
long distance racing, when you beat your direct ODR competitors, that is
something to be proud about, and when you beat a 70 footer on corrected
time, that is something to drink about.
The Chicago to Mack race committee scores the J105 section separately
and is awarded separately as well as scores our ODR rating in IMS
against the overall fleet of 300 boats. That way we get section and
overall fleet scores.
My recommendation for a fleet wishing to organize Long Distance racing -
go ODR and get scored separetely, that way you will get more J105s on
the starting line. Buying a J105 and making it a PHRF or IMS racer can
be done, but the odds of you beating a true PHRF or IMS racer are
stacked against you. Don't do it - the J105 is an excellent ODR boat and
you can race ODR in long distance race. Race against other J105s like we
have done in the Chicago to Mackinaw race and you will be rewarded with
more boats on the line.
In the question regarding is the J105 a good platform for long distance
racing. Yes, if the race is not too long. In lake Michigan, we carry
food, water, safety gear, anchors, duffle bags, storm sails for six crew
for three days. With all the stuff, it begins to get crowded. Six to
eight days on a J105 racing with 4 to 5 or 6 crew will be really pushing
it. I my opinion, it just doesn't sound fun for six to eight days. We
have a category 2 list that must be used for long distance racing to
give you an idea of cost.
Now a J120 is a different matter...........
|Bill Hunt/Rhapsody 487/Boothbay Harbor, ME
Posted on Monday, November 26, 2001 - 11:11 pm:
|I did some
testing with my boat (#487) with Ullman Jib alone vs. Witch (#200) with
North 150 genoa. I was actually driving Witch during the test and while
the jib definitely out points the genny, up to about 11 knots the genny
had better VMG to weather. After that test I am very tempted to get a
145% or so that is cut to clear the top spreader, I think that would
make a sufficient difference to gain back much of the lost pointing
without losing significant speed. Has anyone got experience with this
type of cut?
BTW: If the conditions are right, nothing will touch a J/105. Labor day
weekend Rhapsody and Witch finished 1,2 boat for boat and 1, 3 corrected
in a 17 boat fleet that included a Farr 43 among others. The Farr
finished 3rd boat for boat about 3 minutes behind Witch and 7 behind us
on Rhapsody. Rhapsody was sailed by myself, my wife and my 13 year old
daughter. This was a non-spinnaker race using class main and jib on both
105's. The Farr was carrying a full genoa.
|Ben Jatlow, Annapolis
Posted on Saturday, December 01, 2001 - 2:26 pm:
message is for Art Teach. My name is Ben Jatlow and I sail on/take care
of Osprey, #106. Although I rarely post messages in the J/105 forum I
read the input weekly. I have never met Jaffar, but as a fellow Fleet 3
sailor, I feel that I need to say something here. First of all, I agree
with Jaffar in that the J/105 (french or american), is perfectly capable
boat of sailing to Bermuda. The abilities of the crew on board only
dictate the pleasure of the trip and the speed in getting there. Your
remark about Airbus' being build in France is ridiculous. That crash has
nothing to do with French people's sailing ability or ability to build a
boat (if French J/105's were not seaworthy, J/Boats wold not licenece
them to be made there). Besides, wasn't that crash was Airbus' first
crash in 25 years? Second, I would like to say something about your
comments to Jaffar as to the validity of his postings becausue of his
standing in the fleet. Someones bouy racing results do not reflect their
offshore sailing capabilities at all. I will use my father as an
example. Being only 17 years old, I still live with him. He has always
been a crusier who has several thousand miles of ocean sailing
experience. If my dad was to skipper a J/105 in any J/105 event, he
would most likely be at the bottom of the pack, however if there was a
J/105 start in the Bermuda racen and he competed in that (with the same
crew as if he skippered a bouy race), his result would most likely be at
the top of the fleet. Another point is that you seemed to minimize
Jaffar's offshore passaage to Horta becasue it was in a 45 foot cruising
boat. I beleive the brand was Jeanneau. From what I know about the two
boats, I would feel safer in the J/105 than the Jeanneau. My last point
is about your margarita statement. Just becsaue someone has issues to
work out before a race such as the Bermuda race does not mean they are
going to do bad or have trouble if thats what you were implying. This
forum is very helpful to many J/105 sailors and remarks like the ones
you made are just not needed, especially if you are not affliated with a
J/105. If you are, those kind of remarks still are not needed. That
said, I think Jaffar gave Jose some good points to think about and good
luck to both of them in the future.
|Jaffar Bentchikou /#536 Chantecler /Annapolis
Posted on Monday, May 12, 2003 - 1:54 pm:
across the old discussion above while searching the board on something
As an epilogue, I would like to say that I did the 2002
Annapolis-Bermuda race on Chantecler together with a couple of other
Chantecler was first to finish in Division III. Details are at :
Thank you again Nelson and Ben.
As a P.S. to the epilogue, I would be very surprised if the person
posting under the pseudonym of Art Teach and who 'knew' me and my boat so
well was not Bill B., a team member who raced for me on Jay Boat for about
one season in 1999-2000. He had some qualities, but 'team player' was not
among them and the disruption was so bad that we had to part ways. Here is
my final email to him.
Sent: 26 JUN 06
Subject: Yesterday race
Results are not posted yet
but there is no doubt that we were at the very bottom of the fleet. The
wind recorded at Thomas Point was a steady 18-23 knots from 160-170
during the full race. It looked like the last day of the NOOD, but, even
though we were at a perfect crew weight this time, a breakdown in
communication and teamwork at the back of the boat prevented us to have
the better result we were hoping at the start of the race. We have also
tried to use a takedown line and this was another failure, with the
spinnaker floating freely twice and only the wonderful damage control
skills of Paul saved our new spinnaker and prevented a much larger
ground loss at the leeward mark. Fortunately we had decided to douse
early. Unfortunately Paul injured his bicep in the process. Paul, you
have a big heart and I wish you prompt recovery. Let me know how you are
For the first time in 7 years of racing, I did not enjoy the race.
The wind was on the strong side but this was the kind of weather where
J105s are known to excel. Well, not us, anyway (my partner John has good
success in this kind of weather). We had major main trim problems, it
gave us a narrow or nonexistent groove, we were constantly falling into
boats below us and I constantly overcompensated on the pinching side
which also gave relief to the unusual weather helm we had most of the
time. The synergy was negative between Bill, Barbara and myself in the
back of the boat.
Bill, you wanted to be given the full responsibility to trim the main
but when it did not work out you refused to cooperate with me in finding
what was wrong. Your attitude is disruptive. I believe now, thinking
clearly about it, that our major problem was that the backstay was too
tight. Your solution was to ease the cunningham, which had for direct
consequence to pull the draft aft and to reduce the steering groove to
negative numbers. You had so much trouble with the traveler's lines, the
coarse and fine mainsheets that your weight was often too far off the
Barbara, the experiment with you as a full time strategist and part
time helm reliever might have been better if we did not have our
problems with the main. You have, correctly, focused your attention at
times on improving our main trim but did not contribute much to a
possible solution. You focused on the minor problem of the bubble at the
luff of the main when our major problem was that the leech inverted
along the head to clew diagonal. You refused to cooperate with me in
solving the problem and kept nagging me about my steering. In the past,
I thought that I could live with your overcritical attitude and that we
will have to learn to cooperate and get a good synergy out of this
cooperation. But yesterday's race showed that you were guessing as much
as Bill on main trim, that the synergy objective was a long way off and
that above all it was not going to be fun.
So, Barbara and Bill, you have been with us, on and off, for a year
or more. I have enjoyed most races with you and you have made efforts
and sacrifices for the week-end races of the team, for which I thank you
sincerely. I think however that it is time to take advantage of the July
break to rebuild the core team around Janet, Tim and Paul in order to
improve its cohesiveness.
Janet, we will give up on using the takedown line. The wind was
unfortunately a bit too strong before the start to practice well this
time, but next time, we will work on the takedowns in order to
facilitate your job, a critical one.
Tim, we had turned the engine on and were ready to leave when you
arrived. I know you are one of the steadiest team member, but next time
try to give me one confirmation before the race, either by email or
phone so that we can comfortably wait for you if you hit some unexpected
problem the morning of the race.
|The first page
of my J/105 subweb|
features of J105 hull #536|
Don't miss this important technical bulletin on rudder bearings,
companionway slider stop, hull to deck joint, mast tuning and mast
bend, engine stop cable, bowsprit seals, and battery specs|
launch of my J-105 in Baltimore, from shrink wrap and cradle to the
well, the bow sprit seals, the gimbaled two-burner propane stove, the
three sea berths with lee clothes, the instruments, the sails and
other details of the J105||
the mast step, the sinks, the navigation table, the stove area, and
other views from the interior of the J/105|
under sail, upwind with genoa and main|
|The J 105
wheel, instrument remote, propane bottle locker, the genoa tracks, the
triple cabin top rope clutches, the foot rest for the main trimmer,
and the cabin top instrument cluster|
J/105 masthead, the Sparcraft mast, which permits masthead asymmetric
spinnakers and the forehatch.|
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