By today's standards, the Morgan 34 is a small boat, comparable in accommodations to a lot of 30-footers. When the boat was designed, she was as big as most other boats of her overall length. In profile, the boat has a sweeping, moderately concave sheer. The ends of the boat are beautifully balanced: the bow profile is a slight convex curve, the overhanging counter aft is slightly concave. Esthetically, hull shapes of this period from the best designers are still hard to beat.
Best known for his big race boats, Argentinean designer German Frers drew the lines of the Niagara 31. The 35, as noted, was drawn by Mark Ellis, who also designed the Nonsuch line, and more recently, the Northeast 37 motorsailer. The 35 came first, in 1978, and about 300 were built before its run came to an end in 1995. The Niagara 31 was built between 1980 and 1984. A less popular 26-footer also was built, as well as a 42.
Just over 200 Nicholson 35s were built over more than a 10-year period, with production tailing off in the early 1980s. Most boats were sold in England, but a number were built for American owners, and still more found their way to the U.S. during the rampage of the dollar against foreign currencies in the mid 1980s. The Nicholson 35 is a cruising boat, plain and simple. Its proportions are about as common-sense and moderate as you can get. The boat is clean, almost austere in appearance, with very little exterior wood trim.
The Pearson 35 was introduced in 1968 and remained in production for the next 14 years. In all, 514 P35s were built, almost all for East Coast and Great Lakes owners attracted by the 35's shoal draft (3' 9" with centerboard up) and "classic" proportions. Even the popular Pearson 30, usually heralded as the enduring boat from a builder otherwise noted for its frequent introductions of new boats and short production runs, remained in production only 10 years, albeit with almost 1,200 boats built.
The Ranger Yacht division of Jensen Marine was created in 1969 to build performance-oriented boats designed by Gary Mull. Jensen's Cal division had been successful with both racer/cruisers and pure cruisers, but the Ranger line was racier, with consistent styling and appearance throughout the series. Ranger stopped building the 33 in 1978, after 464 boats had been turned out. Many minor changes were made over the years of production, and boats built after 1974 are generally more desirable, with restyled interiors and a diesel engine option.
In 1978, Tartan brought out the Tartan Ten, a 33', fairly light, fractionally-rigged "offshore one design." The boat was a huge success: fast, easy to sail, and unencumbered by the design limitations of a rating rule. But the Tartan Ten had one big problem: limited accommodations with stooping headroom, an interior most kindly described as spartan. A hardy crew could take the Tartan Ten on a multi-day race such as the Mackinac, and you might even coax your family aboard for a weekend of camping out. But cruising or extended racing in comfort? Forget it!
In 1972 Garry Hoyt set about developing the original Freedom 40. Discarding conventions one by one, he came up with a long-waterline, quasi-traditional hull form and a wishbone cat-ketch rig. In the intervening years Hoyt refined his rig and developed a whole line of boats: a 21, 25, 28, 39 (express and pilothouse models), and the 44. The Freedom 33 is no longer in production, having been replaced in the line by the 32, which is a single masted "cat sloop" with a self tacking jib and gun mount spinnaker. More rig innovation.
Ericson Yachts has gotten a lot of mileage out of 35-footers over the years. In 1965, the first Ericson 35 was a typical CCA cruising boat; in 1969, the Ericson 35-2 was introduced--an up-to-date racer/cruiser, with swept-back moderate fin keel, pronounced bustle, and semi-balanced shallow spade rudder. In 1982 it was replaced by the 35-3, a larger, more modern boat.
The Endeavour 32 began life back in 1970 as the Irwin 32. Ted Irwin designed her as a dual-purpose cruiser-racer before the development of the IOR. By 1975, the IOR was in full swing, and boats such as the Irwin 32 were obsolete as racers, since PHRF had not yet emerged to help handicap non-competitive boats raced at the club level. Although the Irwin 32 and the Endeavour 32 look identical and have the same displacement, the Endeavour 32 is listed by the builder as being 4" wider, 4" longer overall, and 6" longer on the waterline.
The F-31 presents an aesthetically pleasing design with its fine entry; low, 27-inch freeboard; and fine lines. A flat aft section prevents the stern from burying when the bow rises in heavier breezes. Even when sailed on a broad reach with the windward ama out of the water, Farrier believes that his multis are more comfortable than a monohull sailed at a comparable angle of heel. Owners agree that being able to launch from a beach, or sail into a shallow anchorage, adds to the boat's overall utility and their enjoyment of the sport.