Nicholson 35

Nicholson 35 drawings

Henry Hill

It seems I’ve gone full circle here, but family is family. In my years at C&N, I saw a few Nicholson 35s being built, and I even got to sail on one or two. I also admire the work of Ray Wall, who designed this boat and several other classic Nicholsons, including the Nicholson 55, which was one of the best designs of its era, if not all time. You can see the lineage in the 35’s hull and feel it in its comfortable motion.

It packs all the components of basic yacht layout—forecabin, saloon, head, galley, chart table (yes—very important), and quarter berth—into 35 feet with enough room left over for a decent-sized cockpit that has wonderfully deep coamings that’ll help shield the crew from cold breezes.

The accommodations plan features a U-shaped galley, quarter berth (on later models), straight settee on the opposite side (two proper sea berths), and cozy dining area. The head occupies the whole width of the boat between the saloon and forward cabin, which gives it lots of elbow room and isn’t a logistical obstacle with just a couple on board.

Early boats had a fairly miserly sail plan to suit the sailing conditions in the English Channel and neighboring waters. An “American” version had a slightly taller rig for the lighter winds of the U.S. East Coast, and this rig was later adopted for all boats.

In some areas, the early boats, although sound, appear a little cheap, but C&N gradually steered back toward the “quality” end of the market, where it could leverage its 200-year history of building for the aristocracy. I could be very comfortable aboard a later Nic 35.

Nicholson 35
Price Range $46,000 (1976) to $77000 (1973)
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