The Young 88 Sailboat

Designed and built by Jim Young Marine Ltd in New Zealand, the Young 88 is a cruiser/racer yacht as well as a family boat.

A Young 88 Cruiser/Racer sailboatThe Young 88 Cruiser/Racer is a multipurpose sailboat with speed and agility for racing, and space and comfort for cruising

There is an active Young 88 class racing series and it has recently been announced that a two-handed mixed offshore keelboat event has been added to the programme for the 2024 Paris Olympics - it's something the Young 88 class association have embraced. 

Published Specification for the Young 88

Underwater Configuration: Fin keel with spade rudder

Hull Material:  GRP (fibreglass)

Length Overall: 29' 4" / 8.94m

Waterline Length: 26' 4" / 8.02m

Beam: 0' 10" / 3.30m

Draft: 5' 9" / 1.75m

Rig Type: Fractional Sloop

Displacement: 5,843lb / 2,650kg

Designer: Jim Young

Builder: Jim Young Marine Ltd (NZ)

Year First Built: 1981

Published Design Ratios for the Young 88

Sail Area/Displacement Ratio: 19.0

  • Less than 16 would be considered under-powered;
  • 16 to 20 would indicate reasonably good performance;
  • Over 20 suggests relatively high performance.

Ballast/Displacement Ratio: 38.0

  • Under 40: less stiff, less powerful
  • Over 40: stiffer, more powerful

Displacement/Length Ratio: 143

  • Under 100: Ultralight
  • 100 to 200: Light
  • 200 to 275: Moderate
  • 275 to 350: Heavy
  • Over 350: Ultraheavy

Comfort Ratio: 13.9

  • Under 20 indicates a lightweight racing boat
  • 20 to 30 indicates a coastal cruiser
  • 30 to 40 indicates a moderate offshore cruising boat
  • 40 to 50 indicates a heavy offshore boat
  • Over 50 indicates an extremely heavy offshore boat

Capsize Screening Formula: 2.4

  • Under 2.0 (the lower the better): Better suited for ocean passages
  • Over 2.0: Less suited for ocean passages

read more about these all-revealing numbers...

Sailboat-Cruising.com says...

The Young 88 is a fiberglass sailboat that was designed by Jim Young in 1981. Young was a renowned New Zealand yacht designer and sailor who had won several national and international championships. He wanted to create a boat that was fast, easy and affordable for the average sailor. He based his design on the successful Young 780, but made it bigger and better.

The Young 88 can carry up to 450 square feet (41.81 square meters) of sail area on its fractional rig, which consists of a mainsail, a genoa and a spinnaker. It can also be fitted with a masthead rig, which has a larger genoa and spinnaker.

The Young 88 has a roomy cockpit that can accommodate up to eight people. It also has a comfortable cabin that can sleep up to six people. The cabin has a galley, a head, a dinette and plenty of storage space. The interior layout can vary depending on the builder's preference, but it usually follows the original design by Young.

What are the strengths of the Young 88?

One of the main strengths of the Young 88 is its speed. It has a high aspect ratio rig that gives it excellent windward performance. It has a deep fin keel that provides stability and lift. It has a light displacement that increases its power and acceleration.

Another strength of the Young 88 is its comfort. It has a wide beam that gives it plenty of room inside and outside. The cockpit is large enough for sailing and socializing. The cabin is cozy enough for living and sleeping. The boat can carry enough supplies and equipment for short or long voyages.

A third strength of the Young 88 is its fun factor. It has a responsive helm that makes it easy to steer and maneuver. It has a spinnaker that adds excitement and challenge to downwind sailing. It has a lively personality that makes it enjoyable to sail in most conditions.

What are the weaknesses of the Young 88?

One of the main weaknesses of the Young 88 is its maintenance. It requires regular attention and care to keep it in good shape and performance. It can suffer from osmosis, delamination or cracking in the fiberglass hull or deck. It can also have problems with the rigging, hardware or systems.

Another weakness of the Young 88 is its versatility. It is designed for racing or cruising, but not both at the same time. It can be hard to balance between speed and comfort, or between performance and safety. It can also be difficult to adapt to different sailing conditions or preferences.

A third weakness of the Young 88 is its availability. It is not mass-produced by a major manufacturer, but rather custom-built by individual builders or owners. It is not easy to find on the market, especially in good condition and at a reasonable price. It is not well-known or popular among the sailing community, especially outside New Zealand.

What are the limitations of the Young 88?

One of the main limitations of the Young 88 is its light wind performance. It has a low sail area to displacement ratio that reduces its power and acceleration. It has a heavy keel that requires more wind to move. It has a fractional rig that is less efficient and aerodynamic than a masthead rig.

Another limitation of the Young 88 is its offshore capability. It does not have a self-righting hull that can recover quickly from a knockdown or capsize. It does not have a watertight bulkhead that can isolate a leak or a collision.

A third limitation of the Young 88 is its suitability. It is designed for experienced or adventurous sailors, but not for beginners or cautious sailors. It is suitable for inshore or coastal sailing, but not for ocean or bluewater sailing. It is suitable for racing or cruising, but not for fishing or diving.

Why should you choose the Young 88?

Despite its weaknesses and limitations, the Young 88 is still a great sailboat for the recreational sailor and the sailing enthusiast. It is a boat that offers speed, comfort and fun in a simple and affordable package. It is a boat that can take you on thrilling races, relaxing cruises or festive parties. It is a boat that can give you joy, satisfaction and pride.

If you are looking for a sailboat that has character, history and charm, you might want to choose the Young 88. This popular design has been around for over 40 years, but it still has a lot to offer to the modern sailor. Whether you want to race, cruise or party, the Young 88 can be your flexible and enjoyable companion.

This additional info was drafted by sailboat-cruising.com using GPT-4 (OpenAI’s large-scale language-generation model) as a research assistant to develop source material and believes it to be accurate to the best of their knowledge.

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