Everything You Need To Know About J80 Sailboat

Sailing is probably the best sport in the world. Many sailing enthusiasts are interested in boats of different types. If you are interested in learning about different types of boats in general or want to know about the J80 sailboat in particular, you are in the right place. This blog will discuss all you need to know about the J80 Sailboat. Please read on to know if it is the right fit for your boating needs. 

With exciting 15-knot rides under breezy sunset cruises or spinnaker, J/80 does it all. It was rated by Sailing World as safer, less intimidating, easier to handle, and better suited for sailing offshore compared to the other modern sport boats. If you want to expand your sailing horizons outside the protected lakes and harbours with a modern sport boat, J80 will be the ideal choice. 


J80 is an American sailboat designed as a one-design racer by Rod Johnstone. It was first built in 1992. Since 1992, the design for the J/Boats United States has been assembled by Tillotson Pearson. More than 1,600 boats have been produced so far, and they are still in production. At some point, Waterline Systems located in the U.S. also produced these boats.


The J/80 is a very fast keelboat whose hull is made predominantly from fibreglass. It is equipped with a fractional sloop rig that has a retractable bowsprit controlled by a deployment line from the cockpit. The hull consists of a fixed swept fin kneel, a plumb transom, a raked stem, and a transom-hung rudder managed by a tiller. It carries 1,400 lb and displaces 2,900 lb of ballast. The length of the cockpit is around twelve feet, and there is a secured buoyancy compartment on the bow of the lull. 

The boat’s draft is 4.9 ft or 1.48 m with a standard keel. On the ground, it can be transported on a double-axle boat trailer pulled by an eight-cylinder van or SUV. The design is equipped with an asymmetrical spinnaker of 700 square feet for sailing downwind. The hull speed of the design is 11.64 km/ hr. 

Key Features of the J/80 Sailboat

The J80 is easy to launch, trailer and own. It features a single-point lifting bar that enables easy hoisting on a relatively small hoist. When hauled onto a double-axle trailer, the boat lies within the legal width for towing in most countries. Two people can rig and hoist the J80 mast with the help of a portable gin pole. 

Owing to its 1,400 lb fixed lead keel, the boar requires less experienced crew even though it gives a big-boat feel. The high boom ensures good visibility and safety. Everyone sits in the 12-feet long cockpit, so no one has to clamber over a cabin top. 

The sailboat has an incredibly high speed. All you need to do is to take off the boom cover and hoist the mainsail. You will find yourself sailing much faster than other boats with a full canvas.

Boat Specifications

Following are the specifications of the J80 boat. 

LOA 8 m / 26.25 ft
Draft (max) 1.49 m / 4.89 ft
Type of Hull Fin w/transom hung rudder
Type of Rigging Fractional Sloop
Ballast 635 kg / 1399.93 lbs
Displacement 1315 kg / 2899.08 lbs
Bal./Disp. 48.28
S.A./Disp. 26.66
Construction FG
Designers Rod Johnstone


The J80 has retained its value due to its solid reputation, superior building, and devoted owner base. It is a fast, reliable sailboat that you can ride on sunny days and have a great time. We hope this blog answered all your questions about the J80 sailboat.