The new Beneteau Oceanis 35.1 offers two-cabin and three-cabin arrangements, and a new L-shaped galley that will make cooking easier and safer underway. Her large cockpit proves equally useful for daysailing, cruising, club racing, or entertaining on the hook. An optional fold-out transom makes for easy boarding from the dock, a convenient step into a dinghy for a night ashore, or an ideal snorkeling platform. Twin rudders and wheels are handy in a boat that carries her wide beam well aft.
- Twin helm station
- Wide cockpit
- Stowage locker
- Ventilation and aerator on deck hatch for natural ventilation
- Private fore cabin and two aft cabins accommodates six people
- Head with toilet and shower
- Gently sloping 45-degree saloon companionway
- Wide aft cabin, spacious berth
- L-shaped Galley
|Length Overall||34' 3'' / 10.4 m|
1.90 m (max)
Currently no test numbers
1 x 30-hp Yanmar Diesel Sail Drive
Contents of Report
Mission of the Beneteau Oceanis 35.1
Beneteau designed the Oceanis 35.1 to satisfy most sailors' needs in a modern, aesthetically exciting package. Below decks, there are two-cabin and three-cabin arrangements, and a new L-shaped galley that will make cooking easier while underway. Buyers can choose Essential or Exclusive trim levels, and select many individual options to create a boat that meets their specific preferences.
Beneteau's Oceanis 35.1 is an evolution of the company's popular Oceanis 35. Like the earlier boat, the 35.1 rides on a contemporary, high-performance hull designed by Finot-Conq. Her deck layout is uncluttered, her sailplan efficient and easy to handle, her profile simple and, we think, attractive. Below decks, there's an important change compared to the earlier boat: the Oceanis 35.1 now has an L-shaped galley just to port of the companionway in place of the starboard-side galley in the Oceanis 35. This change not only makes for a safer, easier to use galley (especially underway) but also doubles the seating around the cabin table (the side galley of the Oceanis 35 is still available in the 35.1 boat, on request).
The Oceanis 35.1 on Deck
No matter what arrangements below decks, the Oceanis 35.1’s large cockpit proves equally useful for daysailing, cruising, club racing, or entertaining on the hook. An optional foldout transom makes for easy boarding from the dock, a convenient step into a dinghy for a night ashore, or an ideal snorkeling platform.
Two Sails + Two Optional
The standard sail plan is mainsail and roller-furling headsail; self-tacking gear is optional. The mainsail falls into lazy jacks and a sailcover bag is standard; in-mast roller furling is an option. Beneteau calls the standard headsail a Genoa, but at 102% it's just a hair larger than a working jib. Folks used to cranking on a 150% Genoa sheet might be surprised at how efficient a working jib can be, and how easy to handle. Unless you're racing, a working jib is all you need. Genoa jibs were developed to sidestep racing rules, and first used in 1926 in a regatta in, you guessed it, Genoa, Italy.
Nevertheless, most buyers will add either the optional Code 0 sail on a furler tacked to the also-optional bobstay, or the asymmetrical spinnaker. A Code 0 is a cross between a genoa and an A-sail, but can be carried almost as close to the wind as a Genoa. When the wind picks up, or one wants to point as high as they can, unroll the jib, roll up the Code 0, and it’s good to go. For downwind sailing, use an asymmetrical spinnaker, also on the Oceanis 35.1's options list.
The mainsail halyard and sheet both lead to a winch on the cabin top. Once the sail is hoisted, the halyard's secured by a sheet stopper, and the self-tailing winch handles the mainsheet.
Mainsail Sheet Arch
The optional mainsail sheet arch frees the cockpit or cabin top from being cluttered by the mainsheet. This allows unhindered movement within the cockpit and from cockpit to deck. Equally important, since the boom is over 7' (2.13 m) above the cockpit deck the captain does not have to worry about crew injury in the event of an unexpected maneuver. This means that less experienced guests or family can be put on the helm and be allowed to stand in the cockpit in most conditions without. Cruisers will appreciate the arch as a stout place to secure the spray dodger, and the dodger’s forward end is not hindered by a traveler across the front of the companionway.
Headsail Sheet Winches
These winches are located port and starboard within reach of the captain behind either wheel or by crew sitting in the cockpit. They handle both the genoa sheet and the roller furling line and are used for the sheets for the asymmetrical spinnaker, if one is used.
Helm and Cockpit Seating
Long seats down either side of the cockpit are separated by a permanently affixed folding table with storage within and handrails for safe passage in rough water. A removable folding table is another option here that leaves the cockpit sole completely unimpeded when not needed.
The helmsperson sits on seats (polyester is standard, teak optional) outboard of the helm or on twin bench seats that fold out of the way when using the full width of the stern swim and boarding platform.
Steer from Leeward or Windward
The advent of the twin steering stations was started in America's Cup racing so that the captain could optimize his view of the sails, seas, and competition. Usually that meant steering from leeward, but sometimes from the high side and during the maneuvers at the start twin wheels were a definite advantage. It wasn't long before this concept was picked up in cruising boats and now many of them are so equipped.
Twin wheels in cruising boats have all of the advantages mentioned above but others as well. For example, when sailing short-handed, as most cruisers do, the captain can be positioned near the sheet winch that will need attention and steer at the same time. Some boaters simply prefer to sit either to leeward or windward close to the rail, and this is best accomplished by twin wheels.
Redundancy is Good
Each helm also includes an additional handrail and compass as well as space for electronics. The downside to having two helms is that some might opt for duplicate port and starboard electronics, so in this case there would be some added minor expense. The upside is that today’s networking of navigation and radar displays syncs port and starboard units or allows independent usage. Duplicated displays also provide redundancy if one fails. We'd spring for dual instruments.
Visibility is Excellent
Having two helms located far outboard becomes particularly convenient when maneuvering alongside a dock. Engine controls are located inboard on the port helm pedestal. Reaching the shift lever from behind the starboard wheel requires a half a step inboard, but not more than the required step outboard from a centerline helm to look over the side at a low floating dock. Depending on interior cabin configuration, the cockpit also includes a huge storage locker accessed through the starboard cockpit seat, or a shallower locker here when the third sleeping cabin is below.
Stern Boarding Platform/Teak Beach
The folding transom creates a 8’4” (2.54 m) wide platform for swimming and boarding from a dinghy or floating dock. Wood-covered twin helm seats are options, part of Beneteau's new Exclusive trim level package. They fold down from outboard, enclosing the area while underway. Twin lifelines across the stern add safety.
The entire assembly lowers using the swim ladder as a handle, but this was much easier than it might seem. Anyone able to trim a sail in moderate wind can certainly handle this task. Once lowered, this platform is the perfect height for boarding from most floating docks or dinghies, and it’s ideal for swimming and sunbathing.
Hull Shape and Below the Waterline
The hull carries her wide 12’2” (3.71 m) beam all the way aft. The hard chine widens the boat above the waterline, where it adds interior volume in the aft staterooms and optional shower stall -- as well as form stability.
That chine also helps sailing in several ways. The boat is narrower at the waterline, thereby reducing wetted surface and drag while also allowing the boat to heel just a bit in light wind. But as the wind picks up and the boat heels, that chine puts progressively more beam in the water, which provides more buoyancy aft to reduce heeling and lift atop following seas. The Oceanis 35.1 -- like all Oceanis sailboats -- is designed to sail on her lines without an excessive amount of heel. This is a welcome design parameter for most guests and newbies who are often disoriented by inordinate heeling.
Twin rudders ensure full control if the boat should be heeled beyond her lines, and offer an extra measure of control when sailing down wind in fresh or sloppy conditions.
If operator sails where the water's a little thin, they might prefer one of the Oceanis 35.1's optional keels. A deep keel, with 6’1” (1.85 m) draft, is standard, but Beneteau will fit your boat with either a 4’9” (1.45 m) draft shoal keel, or a 3’9” (1.14 m) draft lifting keel. In this way the Oceanis 35.1 can be tailored to the local waters, or the draft needed for one's waterside dock during a moon tide.
The Iron Jib
Standard power for the U.S. market is a 30-hp Yanmar diesel powering Yanmar’s saildrive. A 3-blade folding prop is optional, and recommended to get the most from the Yanmar. When we tested the Oceanis 35 with the same drivetrain, it proved quite responsive to both throttle and rudder commands in forward gear. While it took quite a bit of throttle at times to illicit the desired response in reverse -- a common characteristic of props that fold -- her twin rudders and adequate horsepower ensured positive handling around the dock, even while backing into a slip.
Two Cabins or Three? In the two-cabin layout, the area beneath the cockpit, and aft of the galley and head, is divided roughly two-thirds into a very large sleeping cabin to port, with an athwartships double berth, and one-third stowage locker accessed through a cockpit hatch. The other option divides the same space into two equal cabins with a fore-and-aft quarter berths. The cockpit locker overhead is made shallower to maintain headroom over the berth.
The real difference between the two-cabin and three-cabin stern is this: With the two smaller aft cabins, guests crawl into bed across the head of the bed, and then turn 180-degrees to sleep, head toward the bow -- a typical maneuver in quarter berths. If the single, larger aft cabin is chosen, guests still crawl into bed, but from the side, which is much more natural -- like a queen bed pushed against a bedroom wall. In either aft cabin configuration, portlights open both to the deck and into the cockpit, providing cross-ventilation.
Head and Shower Option
In the two-cabin layout, buyers can opt for a separate stall shower adjacent to the head. This keeps the head compartment dry, and makes more room for ablutions. The shower includes a seat with storage beneath, cubbies for soap, shampoo and the like, a mirror and an opening portlight.
With three cabins there's no room for the shower stall; instead, the head is fitted with a pull-around curtain and retractable shower curtain, making it a wet head. Another option retains the wet head, and installs a nav station where the shower stall could go.
While it isn’t uncommon for builders to offer an array of options to further tailor a boat to an owner’s needs, Beneteau has really taken the concept well beyond what’s common. The buyer can select the number of cabins, the placement and design of the galley (the side galley of the Oceanis 35.1 is still available in the new boat), and choose among many options.
To make it easier, this year Beneteau has collected popular options into two trim levels: The Essential trim level includes B&G wind and boat instruments, a Windex masthead wind vane, an electric windlass, 110-volt shore power, a hot-and-cold cockpit shower, a sound system and two extra 12-volt batteries. The Exclusive trim level adds the swim platform, helm seats, indirect LED lights in the cabin and halyard bags to prevent them from getting underfoot in the cockpit. And there's still a long list of individual options, too -- the Oceanis 35.1 can be built virtually a la carte.
While the ordering process might seem daunting -- which options can accompany which others, and what can or can’t be added later -- Beneteau teaches dealers how to assist purchasers through the choices. The end result is the unique creation of each buyer. An added advantage is the ability for an owner to buy a basic model and then add to the boat later, perhaps when next year's bonus comes through. In this way the cost of the deluxe version of the Beneteau Oceanis 35.1 can be spread across many years.