The Albin Ballad 30 Sailboat

The Albin Ballad 30, a moderate-to-heavy displacement masthead sloop, was designed by Rolf Magnusson and built in Sweden by Albin Marine.

Albin Ballad 30: A Classic Cruiser-RacerThe Albin Ballad 30

Published Specification for the Albin Ballad 30

Underwater Configuration:  Fin with skeg-hung rudder

Hull Material:  GRP (fibreglass)

Length Overall: 29' 11" / 9.12m

Waterline Length: 22' 7" / 6.88m

Beam: 9' 8" / 2.95m

Draft: 5' 1" / 1.55m

Rig Type: Masthead Sloop

Displacement: 7,276lb / 3,300kg

Designer: Rolf Magnusson

Builder: Albin Marine (Sweden)

Year First Built: 1971

Year Last Built: 1982

Number Built: 1500

Owners Association: UK Ballad Association

Sail Area/Displacement Ratio: 16.1

Ballast/Displacement Ratio: 47.0

Displacement/Length Ratio: 282

Comfort Ratio: 22.1

Capsize Screening Formula: 2.0

read more about these Key Performance Indicators...

The Ballad 30 was designed as an International Offshore Rule (IOR) Half Ton class cruiser-racer, which means it was optimized for racing under a handicap system that measured various aspects of the boat's speed potential.

The design is an evolution of the Joker S30 IOR racer. The Ballad 30 was very successful in racing, winning several national and international championships in the 1970s.

However, the Ballad 30 is not just a racer. It is also a capable cruiser that can offer comfort and safety for long-distance sailing.

The boat has a solid construction, a well-balanced hull, a powerful rig and a generous ballast ratio of 47%.

The boat also has ample storage space, water and fuel capacity, and headroom.

The Ballad 30 can accommodate up to six people for overnight stays, although four is more comfortable.

Albin Ballad 30 accommodation plan

What are the strengths of the Albin Ballad 30?

One of the main strengths of the Albin Ballad 30 is its versatility. The boat can perform well in both light and strong winds, thanks to its efficient hull shape and rig configuration. The boat can reach a maximum hull speed of 6.8 knots, which is respectable for its size.

Another strength of the Albin Ballad 30 is its stability. The boat has a low center of gravity, a high ballast ratio and a moderate beam. These factors make the boat stiff and resistant to rolling, even in rough seas. 

A third strength of the Albin Ballad 30 is its durability. The boat has a robust fiberglass construction that can withstand wear and tear over time. The boat also has quality fittings and equipment that are easy to maintain and repair. Many owners have reported that their boats are still in good condition after decades of use.

What are the weaknesses of the Albin Ballad 30?

One of the main weaknesses of the Albin Ballad 30 is its age. The boat was designed in the early 1970s, which means it may not meet some of the modern standards and expectations of sailors today. For example, the boat may have outdated electrical systems, plumbing systems, navigation systems or safety features that may need upgrading or replacing.

Another weakness of the Albin Ballad 30 is its limited interior space - it may feel cramped for some people. The boat also has a small head with no shower or holding tank, and may not offer enough comfort or privacy for long-term living aboard.

A third weakness of the Albin Ballad 30 is its availability. The boat was discontinued in 1982, which means it may be hard to find one for sale today. It may also be expensive to buy or maintain, depending on its condition and location.

Who is the Albin Ballad 30 for?

The Albin Ballad 30 is for recreational sailors and sailboat enthusiasts who are looking for a classic cruiser-racer that can offer them both performance and comfort.

The boat is ideal for weekend trips or short vacations with family or friends.

The Albin Ballad 30 is not for people who are looking for a modern or spacious sailboat that can offer them luxury or convenience. Nor might it be best suited for people who are unwilling or unable to invest time and money into maintaining or upgrading an old sailboat.


The Albin Ballad 30 is a classic cruiser-racer that has proven itself as one of the most popular sailing yachts of its size ever built in Scandinavia.

The boat has a versatile design that can handle various sailing conditions, from light winds to offshore voyages. It has a stable and durable construction that can offer comfort and safety for long-distance sailing.

However, the Albin Ballad 30 is also an old sailboat that may not meet some of the modern standards and expectations of sailors today. 

So the Albin Ballad 30 is not for everyone, but it may be perfect for those who are looking for a classic cruiser-racer that can offer both performance and comfort.

Other sailboats in the Albin range include:

Dick McClary wrote this article, and used GPT-4, OpenAI’s large-scale language-generation model, as a research assistant to develop source material. The author wrote the final draft in its entirety and believes it to be accurate to the best of his knowledge.

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