J/92S: Clean Lines, Smooth Ride

"Gear Up" from our September 25 /SW eNewsletter/


The beauty of J/Boats’ designs has always been their aesthetic simplicity and performance capability, and the new J/92S is no exception. While it shares the hull shape and interior layout of the J/92, the 92S has been optimized for racing with masthead spinnakers, a non-overlapping headsail, a deeper keel, and a bigger cockpit. I had the opportunity to experience these improvements firsthand during a recent afternoon sail with J/Boats president Jeff Johnstone. In a 15-knot breeze, the two of us had no trouble launching the asymmetrical reaching spinnaker, and the 92S quickly accelerated to an 8.5-knot pace. The boat felt stable but not sluggish, responding nimbly to changes in wind speed. The cockpit of the 92S is 33 inches longer than that of the 92, which opens up the workspace considerably. As with all J/Boats, the ergonomics of the 92S are superb: the footholds on the cockpit sole are perfectly placed for helmsman and crew; the mainsheet tackle and jib winches are within easy reach of the helm; seats raised slightly above deck level keep rear ends dry as the deck sheds water; the squared cabin top with logical handholds helps crewmembers make the steep traverse during heavy air tacks. The 92S is a carefully-designed 30-footer ideal for shorthanded sailing, racing, and weekend cruises. Compared to its 14-year-old predecessor, the 92S is faster off the wind and easier to handle, yet its comparable PHRF rating shouldn’t render the 92 obsolete just yet.


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