Gord, I am sorry that you are not a big fan of J-Boats, we owned a J/30 for 9 years, and it was great boat. I think your friend might want to consider the J/30 instead of the 28 - there are a number of J/.30's around (teh 28's are rare), thre is an active class association, and they are bigger, faster, and less money
that the 28.
The biggest dfown-side to the older J/Boats is the cored hull
(they are in good company here). But, if you can find a good one, then it is just a matter of maintenance
to keep it dry.
Something to consider.