||Please send any comments to me.
This page updated: October 2005
Morgan 50: LWL == 42, Beam == 14.7, Draft == 7.9, ???-keel, sloop, Disp == 28k, SA/D == ???, D/L == ???, B/D == 0.46.
Morgan M-50: LWL == 44, Beam == 14.7, Draft == 5.7, ???-keel, ???-rig, Disp == 36k, SA/D == ???, D/L == ???, B/D == ???.
Morgan 462: LWL == 39.3, Beam == 13.5, Draft == 5.3 or 6.0?, ???-keel, sloop, Disp == 30k, SA/D == ???, D/L == ???, B/D == 0.28.
Morgan 461: LWL == 39.3, Beam == 13.5, Draft == 5.3 or 6.0?, ???-keel, sloop, Disp == 33k, SA/D == ???, D/L == ???, B/D == ???.
Morgan 46: LWL == 39, Beam == 13.5, Draft == 5.3 or 6.0?, ???-keel, sloop, Disp == 30k, SA/D == ???, D/L == ???, B/D == 0.28.
Morgan 454: LWL == 36, Beam == 13.5, Draft == 5.0/7.5, centerboard-keel, ???-rig, Disp == ???, SA/D == ???, D/L == ???, B/D == ???.
Morgan 45: LWL == 39, Beam == 13.5, Draft == 5.5, ???-keel, ???-rig, Disp == 30k, SA/D == ???, D/L == ???, B/D == 0.28.
Morgan 44: LWL == 35, Beam == 13.5, Draft == 5.0, ???-keel, sloop, Disp == 24k, SA/D == 15.6, D/L == 239, B/D == 0.35.
Morgan 43: LWL == 35, Beam == 13.5, Draft == 5.3, ???-keel, ???-rig, Disp == 24k, SA/D == ???, D/L == ???, B/D == 0.35.
Morgan Out-Island 41: LWL == 34, Beam == 13.9, Draft == 4.2, full-keel, ketch or sloop, Disp == 27k, SA/D == 15.7, D/L == 307, B/D == 0.33.
Morgan 382: LWL == 31, Beam == 12.0, Draft == 5.0, ???-keel, sloop, Disp == 18k, SA/D == 15.9, D/L == 283, B/D == 0.38.
Morgan was bought by Catalina in 1978.
Morgan 462 review by David Pascoe
From Steve Honour on Cruising World message board:
OI's were built in Florida for the purpose of hitting
the outer islands of the Bahamas.
You need a shallow draft boat for this and being a
relatively short trip, interior stowage was reduced in favor
of voluminous cabin interiors.
The resulting large cabin also is bereft of sufficient
bulkheads for serious sea work.
From David White on World-Cruising mailing list:
When I was young and inexperienced, I used to wonder why so many large boats had
their interiors chopped up into small spaces. I
couldn't understand why with a large boat you couldn't have a large cabin space.
I was more impressed by the boats like the OI which had
relatively large interiors. After 38 years of sailing, I now know why.
The sea and big waves impart tremendous stresses on a boat with a
keel under it, a big rudder on the stern and a rig on top.
These forces impart a twisting effect on the hull/deck as if giants hands have siezed
the vessel and are attempting to wring it out like a little rag.
The result is that the entire hull and deck "work".
They move slightly with respect to each other.
This "working" motion causes fittings, hatches and ports to shift ever
so slightly in their beddings and become leaky. The
worst case is that eventually things fail and the entire assembly rips apart.
You don't want to be in a boat when this happens. You want a big
keel and to have it deep down there for stability.
It takes a stronger boat to support this.
The OI, with its shallow keel is the opposite.
Bulkheads add strength to the structure. The more, the stronger.
That is why serious offshore boats are all compartmentalized off. Because
of strategic placement of bulkheads and partial bulheads. You can hardly have too many.
When you see a boat like a Hunter (NOT an
offshore boat) it looks impressive to the inexperienced because it is large and airy inside.
Looks like home. But lack of structure and
multitudes of large cheap ports and hatches are a bad combination in a big sea.
When you see a boat like a Hinckley, it may not show as
well but that is the one which impresses my experienced eye more.
You get what you pay for.
Steve Honour is correct in everything he states. However, sailboats are compromises. Would I sail
around the world in a Hunter? I might. Would I do it in a Morgan? Sure.
There are people who would not leave the dock without every electronic gadget made. They would
then think, anybody that did do the above would be foolish.
O/I's with their huge cabins are just the thing for live aboard. They can be modified inside with
all kinds of storage. We put a new thru-hull in one here at the marina and the hull was over an
inch thick. They don't like going to windward, but love running downwind.
Overall the Morgans seem to be a lot of bang for the buck.
(I have been to the BVI and all over the Carib on one. Plan on taking one through the canal next year.)
From Jeff H on Cruising World message board:
They are cheap and they resell cheap meaning by the time you
upgrade one to be a "serious blue water cruiser" you will have enough in the
boat to buy a real "serious blue water cruiser"
but you will never be able to sell for the boat for anything like what you have in it.
None of the OI's sail very well but some of the smaller OI
are notoriously bad sailers to the point of being dangerous in a blow. They have a
lot of windage, wetted surface, small sail plans and comparatively little ballast.
These are not good traits for a "serious blue water cruiser".
The cockpit is high above the water line and this results in more motion
for the helmsperson making seasickness a bit more likely.
They were never intended as "serious blue water cruisers".
While the hull glasswork is pretty solid, in my experience with several different
models key hardware not only does not have backing plates
but some key pieces of deck hardware are only installed with self-tapping
screws. This is not an exceptional procedure.
Having personally pulled cleats out of the deck I can
assure you this is not what you want on
a "serious blue water cruiser".
On most OI's the deck is joined to the hull
with 3M 5200 and a few widely spaced bolts.
In most cases in light use this holds up OK, but
when it fails, it fails badly.
Many of the OI's have little or no ventilation beyond deck hatches which
is not acceptable in the tropics underway. Most have almost no
cabin height leaving no lee to get out of the weather.
From bernie on Cruising World message board:
[Morgan 44:] the 44 offers liveaboard comfort,
great performance and a big bang for the buck.
From bernie on Cruising World message board:
[Morgan OI 416:] By far, one of the most popular boats ever built.
For the type of sailing that you're going to do (ie the Bahamas),
for about 55K, you'll get the most fiberglass for those dollars.
They're a good value.
You'll have size, interior room and a good sailing boat if the wind blows.
There's different models of the OI41 out there, do your research
and get it surveyed properly.
From Todd on YachtWorld.com Sailing forum:
Morgan OI 50, NO WAY I'D SAIL ONE OF THESE in Long Island sound,
let alone around the world. The absolute worst garbage produced,
and only built to service the Caribbean Charter business.
Leaks, well, let's just say, you can tell a Morgan OI, by the
streaks on the inside hulls.
From John on Cruising World message board:
I used to build them. Worked for Morgan for two years in Largo.
I was there around '86-'88. If you are concerned with hull shape
and sailing improvements or differences you should contact
Charlie Morgan Yacht Brokerage in St. Petersburg.
I can't say a thing about how they sail, but just look at them
and that should give you a real good idea. They were having
problems with the skeg and were doing a lot of patching and
correction work on them just after they came out of the glass
shop and the Yanmars were installed. I'm not certain exactly
what was wrong but there were definite problems with the skeg,
I think gudgeon problems.
I recall more than one hull on the MEP line (mechanical,
electrical and plumbing) that had to have the beam pulled back
into specs with come-alongs because guys in the glass shop would
forget to install the temporary cross beams to hold the hull
until the bulkheads could be set and the deck installed.
It would distort by spreading apart. It was interesting because
the tension that built up trying to pull the hull beam
back by the shear flanges was some anxious moments. Once the
hull was pulled back in shape the deck was quickly attached
with 5200 and screws, then through-bolted with the toe rail.
Some folks used to joke that the deck would fly off with the
first decent sized swell it would hit. Certainly not funny if
it was your boat. It amazed me they even delivered those boats.
The boats had the small pan liner instead of the full liner
that the original OI's had. The boat had a new version of a
Lewmar porthole that there were a lot of problems with installing
initially. The battery box was relocated closer to the distribution
panel to shorten battery cable runs from earlier boats (my idea).
I didn't like the way the wiring harness was run around the deck
edge and strapped in with wire ties, difficult to service later
on and the wiring passed over some rough glass areas. At least
the 12volt and 110 circuits were in separate harnesses.
All the systems were very well-labeled in the boat. A lot of
work was put into the companionway joinerwork and hatch, and
the stern cap. The engine compartment had good access from all
sides of the engine but you have to crawl through the tight
access door. Most of the hardware was decent quality, some of
the lighting could have been better quality. The hatches were
good and installed well. There were a lot of factory options
available for the boat.
The glass work was pretty good and neat on most boats. They
really are good charter boats. That's their best use, putt
along from one island to the next and just hang around on the
big deck and in the decent sized cockpit.
If you want a nice Morgan get the 43 center cockpit. That's a
nice boat for a production boat. It took a lot of man hours to
build one of those. One thing to keep in mind though is that it
is a two piece hull. It had a real nice cabin if you like wood.
If you like plastic and vinyl stick with a 41.
I'd say when Frank Butler and Catalina took over Morgan some
good and some bad changes were made. They incorporated some fresh
ideas but some of the production methods left something to be
desired. I can think of a lot better boats and yes some worse
ones also. Like I said, I like the 43. I'd stay away from a 41
unless I ran a charter operation. By the way the factory was
filthy and disorganized and there was a lot of waste, Irwin's
factory was worse though. Endeavour was about the same. All
three of those factories were poor examples of a builders
operation. On the other hand S2's factory up in Michigan that
I once toured was a fine facility and I think their boats
reflected that. To me, how clean and neat a factory is speaks
a lot about the product they produce.
From Bob Walters on rec.boats.cruising newsgroup:
... Morgan OI-41. It is NOT a boat that sails
well. Having said that though, the question was about finding a good
cruiser for the Bahamas. For this, the 41 is pretty good.
There are lots of them out there, they don't cost much money, and most of
them have big engines to take them to weather. They certainly have lots of
room for stuff and they're reasonably comfortable. They're also pretty
stout, just in case you hit something.
If you aren't afraid of ugly, the OI-41 has lots of attributes that make it
a great cruiser, which is NOT the same thing as being a good sailing boat.
From Melinda Carver
on IRBS live-aboard mailing list:
We currently own a 1980 Morgan 46, Pegasus, but used
to own a ('79? or '81?) Morgan 41 OI (my partner had
the boat when I met him). The 41 was a very
comfortable boat for living-aboard and for
inland/close inshore sailing. The ketch rig was an
advantage...no huge main to deal with. And her
relatively shallow draft, helped keep us out of
trouble in the ICW. Because of her full keel, you had
to backwind the headsail to tack her. This was not a
problem. We have heard of another owner who said "he
had to start the engine to tack her". We never had to
do that! She had a lot of storage room, a comfortable
main salon and nice roomy V-berth. The config. in the
aft cabin was 2 "single" bunks in a V-shape ... not
great for a couple. But I did like the opening ports
in the stern, above the bunks. Nice large head
forward ... This particular model had access to the
aft cabin from the main salon...I understand earlier
models had access to the aft cabin only from the
We sold her to buy the 46 for several reasons: I'm
short (5') putting the large majority of grab rails
out of my reach. Also, the storage areas in the galley
were extremely hard for me to reach (too high and/or
too deep). Also, she had two 12V "dorm-type" fridges
under her nav station (it was counter height...no
sitting). They were power hungry monsters away from
shore power and, if we were on port tack, everything
fell/rolled out when you opened the door. So they were
essentially useless (except at the dock!). Secondly, we
plan to make trans-Atlantic passages, and possibly
venture into the Pacific. We took her offshore to
Charleston SC (from Beaufort NC) and the boat had a
motion we didn't like. We talked about remodeling the
galley and nav station, tossing the fridges and making
a double bed in the aft cabin. Not much we could do
about the motion. So we decided to take the money and
put it into a different boat. We are delighted with
our Morgan 46, Pegasus. We took the boat to Bermuda in
May '99 and were ecstatic about her easy motion etc.
And I can reach all the handrails and all areas of the
galley (well, almost; I still need a small stool to
reach the bottom of the icebox!).
From Michael Toledano:
If you're looking for comfort and shallow draft in
a coastal cruiser, don't overlook the much maligned Morgan Out Island series,
up to and including the Out Island 41. They're very comfortable with lots
of interior and deck space and often available at very low prices when
considering how much boat you're getting. Florida is full of them and for a
good reason. Just don't expect to sail to weather very well. (But if you're
retired, well, there's always tomorrow...).
From Capn Ron on alt.sailing newsgroup:
The 41 O/I is a tank of a boat, very strong at sea. Shallow keel makes her very
rolly with beam seas, raising a sail steadies her some. Stern quartering seas
are a bit hard to steer in, but no big deal. We experienced 13 knots on the GPS
crossing from Marathon to South Riding Rock, Bahamas with the genny up riding
the stream. Seas were 4-6 with a northwest blow. She was real steady and quick
until I had to take in the headsail approaching the Bahama Banks pre-dawn, then
it was a real rolly ride for two hours waiting for sunup.
From Paul Martin on alt.sailing newsgroup:
next time, leave the genny up, put up some main and
heave-to ... the ride is like being anchored even in the
out island 41, and you don't need the engine.
From Flagport on alt.sailing newsgroup:
What to look for [during a sea trial] on a Morgan 41 O/I:
1. Check the stanchion bases all round for corrosion and cracking at the base.
You probably won't get them replaced, but could affect the price.
2. Portlights for visibility, screens, and dogs.
3. If it has a Perkins 4-108, you're going to have oil leaks. Take along a few
clean oil absorbent pads, putting them in the drip pan to determine how much
oil is leaking out.
4. Look under the aft cabin trunk, rear bilge area to see how much water is
leaking into the bilge. Mine has always had seepage from the top of the rudder
post, expensive to repair so I live with it. Also check the drip if any from
the shaft packing nut area.
5. Lots of thru hulls on the boat. Might want to check each for movement.
6. With hydraulic steering look for seepage around the wheel shaft where it
goes into the pedestal. Mine has developed a continuous seepage from this area.
The steering unit inside the pedestal can be replaced, but not easily.
7. Pay attention to the water temp vs rpm, should be in the 180 to 200 degree
range. If you can't hold max power for over 15 mins or so without reaching the
200 degree area, you may have heat exchanger problems.
8. The Morgan 41 is certainly a cruising boat, so don't expect great sailing
performance. The best point I can get is only about 50 degrees off the wind.
9. Maybe it's my sailing skills, but I've found mine hard to tack in light to
moderate winds. I have to backwind the headsail or power thru the wind in some
cases to get around.
10. Check ease of headsail furling, if so equipped. My 78 had the original
headsail furling system that was in bad need of repair or replacement. It was a
fight to get the headsail furled. I've recently replaced it with a Profurl.
11. You might check the type of fuel used in the stove. Mine was originally CNG
or safe gas, and was hard to find. I eventually replaced the stove with a
12. Mine has three water tanks, a port and starboard saddle, and a 50 gallon
spare starboard of the engine. If you have a similar layout, check that all
three feed water. My tank valves are under the sink.
This is getting a little long now, but are some things that I've experienced. ...
From Gary Elder, who owns a 1978 Morgan Out Island 41:
... This is a great compromise boat, big enough to be a comfortable liveaboard,
wonderful in an anchorage, great coastal cruiser, Bahamas, and Carib. You get
a lot of very serviceable boat for your buck.
We have had green water come down on us from above the boom, making the
waves nine or ten feet, and felt completely safe but soaked with salt water.
These boats have a reputation of being very sturdy.
Some negatives...These boats don't go to weather well, but neither do most
cruisers (people). We motor sail to weather. They don't back well, but that
has not been a problem. They don't like to sail 'on their ear' and will
make leeway if heeled beyond about 20 degrees, again, not a problem. They
don't do tight quarters maneuvering real well, but planning ahead makes it a
very minor problem. Some people think the hydraulic steering is a negative,
but I have no problem with it.
Would I buy another one? You betcha! ...
More from Gary Elder:
> Does your boat have a teak deck ?
No, it is fiberglass with a non-skid pattern in hi traffic areas.
> Do most Morgans have a teak deck ?
No, the standard for the O.I. series was fiberglass. Some people may
have opted to have teak installed over the fiberglass. One requirement for
us was a minimum amount of teak on deck. What teak we do have is covered
As promised, here are some quick headroom measurements.
V berth area: 6' 4", add 5" more directly under hatch.
Fwd head: 6' 5"
Main salon: 6' 6"
Galley: 6' 6"
Walkthru: 5' 2", almost no one stands up in there. The width is 22".
Aft stateroom: 6' 4 1/2"
Aft head: 6' 4"
Also, the aft bunk is about 55" wide, at the aft end it is about 86" long,
and at the fwd end it is about 114" long.
The mast is 53' above water, the anchor light is approx 6" or 8" above
the mast (bolted on), and the VHF antenna is 3' above the mast...The total
height is 56'.
More from Gary Elder:
> What do you know/think of the Morgan 44 and 46 ?
Catalina Yachts purchased Morgan Yachts in the early '80's (not sure
exactly when). I'm not sure if Morgan built 44's and 46's prior to that. I
know that Catalina built a 'Morgan 43' that I didn't like. It seems like
they followed that with a 44, but I'm not sure. Either way, If Morgan built
it, the construction is probably better than what Catalina built. Catalina
'Morgans' started with the Morgan Classic (41'), and then came out with
successively larger 'Morgans', mostly sloops. It was about that time that we
toured the factory in Florida, they were definitely building 'chevys'. I'm
sorry that I don't know more about them.
> Should I be careful to draw distinctions between 41, Out Island 41,
> Out Island 414, Out Island 416 ? Do you know the differences ?
Some owners and brokers tend to lump them all together, which is confusing.
Catalina built 'Morgans' tend to have names like Morgan 43, while the older
Charlie Morgan built boats were the Morgan Out Island series (Charlie also
built Morgans that were not O.I. series boats). You just about have to look
at the year model to tell what it is.
The basic model designation for the Out Islanders is Morgan Out Island 41,
or Morgan O.I. 41. The 413, 414, 415, and 416 designations refer to model
changes within the basic O.I. model (I don't know the smallest number).
Most of those changes were layout changes only, things like dinette
location, galley configuration, vee berth vs the over-under, etc. Some of
the other changes within the O.I. model designation were addition of the
walk-thru (the early ones were walk-over), changing from non-opening ports to
opening ports, and it seems like at some point the main mast was relocated a
small amount. The basic boat stayed the same until Catalina bought Morgan.
The bigger the number, the newer the boat. The 'Buck Book' or the 'NADA
Book' can probably correlate the sub-model designation with when a particular
boat was built.
More from Gary Elder:
> How would you respond to some of the nasty comments about Morgans
> on my web page ? Such as:
> 1- "While the hull glasswork is pretty solid, in my experience with several
> different models key hardware not only does not have backing plates but
> some key pieces of deck hardware are only installed with self-tapping screws."
With my boat, I have not found that to be true. I have had no failures
related in any way to the way hardware was installed.
> 2- "On most OI's the deck is joined to the hull with 3M 5200
> and a few widely spaced bolts."
On my boat, the hull/deck joint is bolted all the way around with 5/16
bolts on 4" max centers. And yes, there is 3M 5200 in the joint.
I have sailed boats (not Morgan) that had the hull/deck joint held
together with aluminum pop rivets, and no sealant, now that's bad.
> "In most cases in light use this holds up OK, but when it fails, it fails badly."
I'm sure, considering the large number of O.I. 41's that were built, that
some failures occured, but I have never heard of any. I have seen photos of
them beached, banged around on the hard due to storms, etc that did just fine.
> 3- "Many of the OI's have little or no ventilation beyond deck hatches
> which is not acceptable in the tropics underway."
My '78 has 8 opening ports on the stb side, 6 opening ports on the pt
side, and 2 opening ports in the transom. There are 7 deck hatches that can
be opened. Depending on conditions, some or all of those ports and hatches
can be opened while underway. Some people (not me) keep most of them open
all the time. I also have 2 air conditioners that can be run while
underway. If that isn't enough ventilation, get a hotel room.
> 4- "Morgan OI 50, NO WAY I'D SAIL ONE OF THESE in Long Island sound,
> let alone around the world. The absolute worst garbage produced, and only
> built to service the Caribbean Charter business. Leaks, well, let's just
> say, you can tell a Morgan OI, by the streaks on the inside hulls."
Some of these boats have been very successful world cruisers. Some may
criticize "built for charter", but that is some of the most abusive service
one can expose a boat to. If a boat survives, it is pretty stout.
When we decided that we did not want a boat that big, we only looked at a
couple, and they looked just fine. I saw no evidence of leaks.
> 5- "you had to backwind the headsail to tack her. This was not a problem.
> We have heard of another owner who said 'he had to start the engine to tack her'."
I don't know that I have ever sailed a boat that at some time didn't
require backwinding a headsail. However, it is not my normal practice to do
that with this boat. Keep in mind, this is a full keel cruising boat not a
fin keel daysailor. Another side of the full keel vs a fin keel is that you
can leave the helm for extended periods of time without needing to worry
about the boat suddenly rounding up or jybing.
I have been lucky enough to be aboard some upper end boats in my time, and I
could easily find fault with all of them, but I choose not to. Any product
that comes off a production line has manufacturing problems, even those that
were "built with fierce pride" as the Saber manufacturers used to advertise.
What happens after that is that the dockside bs is mostly bs with little
foundation in fact. Yep, reputations are sometimes built on bs. It's
fairly easy to find out what boats have been successful cruisers.
It has been a while since I read those comments on your web page, but if
memory serves, some of them appeared to be isolated cases or opinions that
someone tried to generalize in an attempt to apply it to the entire
production of every Morgan ever built. ...
Morgans were mostly production boats built to sell as less than top end
boats, no question about it. They also have proved to be some of the most
successful cruising boats ever built.
From John Dunsmoor:
There are lots of Morgans, if you mean Out Island series they are big leaky
boat with an emphasis on big. And they are cheap. You could score a 41 OI
for 40 to 60 grand and it's big enough to hold a banquet.
Down side, they have a queer hull to deck joint and that either is leaking or
did leak and they have junk for hardware including port lights that either
are leaking or did leak. I can use the past tense with authority, all of the
Out Islands' are twenty plus years old and they have all had the chance to
succumb to low design and construction standards. (... probably a good thing.
All the faults have surfaced and either been
repaired or are completely evident and await repair. ...)
On the plus side they are OK sailing boats, with a focus on being able to motor
well. I think a 41 would be enough boat. The 51 is so large you could rent
part out to another family.
They draw only four feet of water or so and with a long keel they track easy.
I would think this would be an excellent coastal cruising choice. And you
could venture far, they will take some wild abuse.
I have two sailing buddies
that have Out Island 33's, they love the boats and one has probably spent in
excess of forty grand in repairs and upgrades. He plans on owning this boat
till he dies and maybe he will be buried in it. The other has
sailed the boat for more than twenty years as his home and probably will
keep it forever. I think they made a 36 footer also.
Once you get to the 41 you have quite a large vessel. I have sailed on all
these boats. Are they going to win races, probably not. But who cares ? The
thirty three you can hold your arms outstretched and turn a turn without
touching anything. A lot to say about a 10 meter boat.
From Jim Mitchell on the IRBS live-aboard mailing list:
> ... the Morgan 41 Classic
> is the boat that Catatina made when they took over Morgan. As far as
> he knows it is the same hull as his. The classic was a sloop and the
> Classic has less teak in the interior than his 1982 OI ketch has.
A very good summation - little to add, except a well set up example can be
quite comfortable to live on, and a decent sailor when reaching/running.
Charlie Morgan was no fool, he designed some very quick race and race/cruise
boats, so while the O/I 41 may look tubby and wide, it's got a fairly
'modern' underbody with relatively low drag. I believe that these boats were
intended for the Caribbean charter trade,so they needed to carry at least
two couples in comfort through fairly shallow waters.
BTW, there are several layouts for the O/I 41 - my personal favorite has the
galley to starboard and a walk-through (er, ah, 'creep-through' might be a
better term ...) to the aft cabin to port. The version with no walk-through
and the galley across the aft bulkhead of the main cabin is an ergonomic
... I believe that the Morgan 41 'Classic' was produced
by Catalina using the Morgan molds. Not statements of fact, just dim
memories, but they were supposed to have redesigned and 'freshened' up the
interior with a better layout than the original O/I 41. I seem to remember
that the word was that the Catalina version was a little lighter, more
habitable, and easier to get used to - but that the quality of the rigging,
electrics, and hull-to-deck joint had been cheapened and you should have
your surveyor pay particular attention to these areas.
From Gary Elder:
Today I talked to the owners of a 1985 Morgan 43 (Catalina) sloop. You may
find some of the specs and their comments interesting. Everything below is
paraphrased from what they told me.
The mast height is 59' 6", put an anchor light on top and it's 60' above
water, put a VHF antenna up there and it's 63'. The draft is 5' 6", shoal
for that model. The keel is almost a fin keel with a skeg rudder. The
designer was Nelson Merrick.
They cruise SW Fla, the east coast, and the Bahamas, with a home base in
The Pine Island Sound area is quite a challenge for them because of their
draft. For example, they don't even attempt to go into Tween Waters because
of the charted depth. Redfish Pass is another example.
Any bridge lower than about 61' causes them to "go around that bridge".
The boat came standard with a bathtub that is too small to use for bathing
so they use it for storage.
The boat has no on-deck storage lockers except for some shallow ones in the cockpit.
There are places in the Bahamas that they can't go because of their draft.
They think the boat sails pretty well.
I looked at a 1972 Morgan Out Island 413 for sale,
then I asked Gary Elder some questions:
> it had bolts in the toerail (I assume they were
> the hull-deck fasteners)
> on 8-inch centers, I think. Same as your boat ?
No. If the toerail is aluminum, and the bolts go through the toerail
flange and deck (vertical), they simply hold the toerail in place. The
hull-deck fasteners are vertical, but completely inside the cabin, a few
inches below the deck.
> only one small lazarette in the cockpit (but someone had done some
> custom fiberglassing). Does yours have more ?
One small locker under the helm seat and a larger one under the stb
seat. My friend installed a dock box
on the aft deck on his boat.
> cockpit sole is teak.
Probably installed aftermarket, if you look at the underside of the
cockpit from inside the engine room, you will see the bottom of the real
fiberglass cockpit sole.
> Same on yours ?
No, mine is fiberglass.
> walk-thru passage was about 4 feet high and pretty narrow.
I think the standard height was a little more than 4 ft (I can measure
mine if you want). I walk through mine with one shoulder ahead of the
> supposedly had an aft companionway that someone had glassed shut. Does
> yours have both a walk-thru and 2 companionways (walk-over) ?
We have the walk-thru and both companionways, but seldom use the aft one.
We NEVER open it when underway, I'm afraid of 'falling in'. The Morgan
Classic (Catalina) eliminated the aft companionway and installed a vanity
where the ladder had been.
> The OI 413 we saw did not have a mainsheet traveller; the mainsheet went
> through 2 fixed blocks set at the aft corners of the cockpit. Is this the
> same on yours ?
Yes. A great many boats were designed that way. Cheap, easy, and it
works well on cruising boats. A boom vang helps, also.
From Thomas, s/v Elusive on World-Cruising mailing list:
The Morgan OI 41 Ketch was one of the few boats on my short list when
I was looking for a boat. And, in fact, I tried twice to buy one, but
one had too much work to do inside, and the other wanted too much and wouldn't budge.
The boat is an excellent (IMHO) cruiser; very roomy belowdecks with
great storage and a good layout. It is (for me) a boat that I can
easily singlehand, tracks well, and has a good sail plan. The
pre-1980 boats have a bit shorter mast and a single set of spreaders.
The post-1980 boats have double spreaders (also typically a 4108 vs. 4107 engine).
From SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
MRY = Always same.
This number is assigned by USCG.
Identifies the builder as Morgan.
26 = Code Number for model (see below).
001 = Hull Number (must be three digits).
M = declares the HIN to be formatted in the "Model Year" format.
79 = Model year (starts August 1).
A = Month scheduled to ship (see below).
- = Always put this dash in.
461 = Model Number (see below).
|Model||Code Number||Model Number|
|OI-36MS||32||363 (only one built)|
|M-45||40||453 (racing version)|
|M-45||41||454 (cruising version)|
|M-36||42||364 (racing version)|
|M-36||43||365 (cruising version)|
|M-36||45||366 (update of 364)|
From Dave Doolin on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
The Coast Guard mfg id numbers were not required until 1973 or so, and
won't be found on any sailboat from the 67-71 era. An earlier Morgan
registered in Florida will have a FLZ hull number id issued by the Florida DMV.
From SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
Some places people have found hull numbers on pre-1973 Morgans:
- On the forward bulkhead of the lazarette where it can be seen only if
you get into the lazarette or hang into it head down.
- On the hull inside the port, or left side, cockpit locker.
- On the inside of the seat, under the hatch on the port side.
- In two places in the lazarette: at the stern, port-side and on the forward
bulkhead (of the lazarette), again port side.
- On the hard back sides of the back cushions for the dinette.
- Stamped on the insides of the triangular aluminum plates that reinforce the wooden spreader roots.
- On the far end of the fuel tank which is the end not seen after the tank was mounted in place.
- Paper sheet stuck on the port side inside the anchor locker and then 'glassed over.
If the inside of your hull has been painted over, look for a roughly 6" x 8" area
that's smoother than the rest of the surface.
- On the transom under the cockpit and on the under side of the cockpit wall for the the top section.
- Stamped on the end of the boom.
- On the inside of the hull, port side, adjacent to the rudder.
From Vic Copelan on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
I own a 382. She does surprisingly well up wind and is not slow in light
air. I will do about 85 degrees between tacks and about 4.5 to 5.5 k up wind in 10 knots or
better. The hull deck joint is similar to the Tartan 37 - screwed and glued with 5200. I
too questioned this construction but it seems very strong. I have no leaks at present and
the boat is 1977 hull 4. From listening to friends on the Morgan 38 web page and
bulletinboard there are few problems with the hull deck joint. She is a strong relatively
fast cruiser. The galley works. The head is great. V berth a little tight but OK for 6'1"
or less. Storage is exceptional for a boat her size. Engine access is better than most.
Stuffing box access is OK. Her side decks pass the "2 grocery bag" test. Rudder and
quadrant access are excellent. I currently live aboard and she is a good liveaboard. The
boat is easy to single hand and is well-behaved in most sea condtions. Her biggest negative
to me is she likes more heel angle than I do - 22 degrees and then like a rock.
Would I buy a 382 again? Absolutely.
You can spend 3 times the money and not get as good a sailboat.
From David Green on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
I own a 383 and sail in the Galveston Bay area. The boat is a good performer
in most conditions, however, if you compare it to newer light displacement
hulls then they will obviously have better performance in light air and
little chop. The 383 has four more feet of stick than the 382 but a
shortened boom in order to move the traveler amidships and out of the
cockpit. ... My 383 balances very well and is a joy to
sail offshore as well as in the bay. ...
From Jeff H on Cruising World message board:
Few boats are more controversial than the Morgan Out Island series.
On the "good news" side, they offer a lot of living space for not a lot of money.
The bad news is that they are slow and don't point worth a darn.
They are very heavy but (at least the pre-Catalina Out Islands) were not all
that well-built. Still they have a loyal following.
From Jeremy McGeary on Cruising World message board:
The original boats were all ketches. They had simple open interiors with lots
of exposed formica, very simple and not extremely reliable electrical systems.
They were known for hull to deck joint problems and hardware mounting problems.
The early ones had very shallow draft and not a lot of ballast and so really
did not stand to its sail plan very well. This combined with their shoal draft
and long keels resulted in boats that were not too good in light air or
heavy air or beating to windward.
When Catalina started building them they went to a deeper draft and re-engineered
much of the boat. The Catalina boats were called Out Island "Classics".
The Classics were lighter, had diesels, had better hull to deck joints.
They were available with sloop or cutter rigs. They had better stability and
generally better sailing abilities although not exactly what would be called high performance.
Both versions do not have a lot of ventilation but otherwise are fine for coastal
cruising or island hopping. T Lip's post mentioned that a number of them have circumnavigations.
In reading and talking about boats that have done circumnavigations, I have never
heard of one doing a circumnavigation. The fact that I have not come across any mention
of a OI circumnavigation does not mean that any OI's have not gone around.
Still and all, these are not the boats that I would choose for offshore work.
They are just not that robust and I really hate their motion which tends to be very rolly.
There have been two builders Morgan Yachts and Catalina-Morgan.
The boat was designed by Charlie Morgan. The key dimensions are LOA: 41', LWL: 34'0
Beam: 13'10 Displacement: 27000 (24,000 classic) Draft: 4'2 (4'10"- Classic)
Ballast: 9000 Lbs. They originally had 30 h.p. gas Universal Atomic 4's but were
later fitted with diesel engines. Tankage varied over the years but fuel is generally
quoted as 60 gal on the early ones and as much as 85 gals on the later boats.
Water gets quoted 140 gal to 220 gals.
I sailed OI41 #6 from Grenada to Stamford CT via Martinique, St. Thomas, Jost,
Morehead City (they hadn't invented Beaufort yet) etc. Sloop rig (as were all of the Stevens
Yachts and Moorings bareboats) Westerbeke diesel (ditto). We were a little flotilla -- 4 OI41s
and a Columbia 43. 8 days Jost Van Dyke to Morehead. That's not slow, especially when keeping
pace with the slowest (me on some days). The boat was far from perfect; several of the
early boats reached Grenada partially disassembled after their maiden voyages from
St. Petersburg. But it did its job well. ...
From Jeff H on Cruising World message board:
I stand corrected on the availability of Sloop Rigs.
From Bernie on Cruising World message board:
I had remembered that the original Morgan OI 41 only came as a ketch and I also had
remembered a Catalina salesman at the Annapolis Show years ago saying that they had
added a sloop/cutter rig as a part of the upgrades they had done.
I probably got that wrong. Thanks for keeping me honest.
As to the slow part, I still stand on my statement that they are slow.
If you compare their PHRF rating at 195 with a Whitby 42 at 165 or a cutter rigged
Brewer 12.8 at 129, or a Valiant 40 at 132 to 138,the Morgan is quite slow.
Then again people don't buy OI's to go racing.
... A lot of folks have taken their OI41's around the world, Earl Hinz in his
book "Landfalls of Paradise" being one of them. The new me for 2001 is to "just be happy"
that folks are sailing. Buying a OI41 when you only have 50-60K to spend isn't that bad of a choice.
About the Out Islander 41, I really think that it's a great value, capable of fun sailing,
great liveaboard and able to take you almost wherever you got the balls to sail her to.
Sure, the quality or lack of, is something to talk about. But any vessel that has that
many sailing needs a little respect. Sure they're floating tubs, sure they don't point
for sh*t, sure they leak...But for the Bahamas, on a fifty thousand dollar budget,
YOU AIN'T GONNA FIND ANY BETTER.
Looking at an Out Islander 41 and thinking that they're crap is like being a vegetarian,
thinking that you're healthier than the guy next to you that eats cheeseburgers.
Both are gonna sink and fall apart someday, but both offer a great ride in the right conditions.
From bernie on Cruising World message board:
[Morgan 46:] big, slow, roomy, strong, good value, a little ugly, big roomy (said that already).
The Morgan 46 is just one of those big floating hotel fiberglass designs of the
late 70s/early eighties, when boats were built with the theory of 10 pounds of
boat in a ten pound hull...instead of a 10 pound boat in a 5 pound hull as today...
The M46 isn't that bad really. I do think that if you like that sort of thing, that
the boat will work for you. As a liveaboard and as a Bahamas/Island cruiser, she will work.
Don't expect super fine contruction and attention to detail, don't expect great sailing
performance expect on a beam reach in 20 knots.
Did I say, the M46 is big, roomy, slow, strong, a good value ...
It's the low end Chevy of the boat industry ... lots of old Chevys are still
cruising the highways...with proud owners.
From Night Swimming on Cruising World message board:
[Morgan 46:] Friends own this boat.
We cruised with them for about a year. Very roomy, as you know.
I was always jealous that they had actual "rooms" in their boat.
Most of our get-togethers were held on their boat.
Pretty slow, except when the wind really blew. Their center cockpit was enclosed.
We called it the sunroom. On our boat, we'd be wearing eight layers and freezing,
and we'd look over at them wearing t-shirts in the sunroom.
Their main was hard to raise, because the boom was so far above the deck.
Frequently they sailed with jib and mizzen alone.
From Gary Fuller on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
I've had a Morgan 34 for about 8 years now.
[Weaknesses:] The centerboard lifting mechanism is a problem in the early boats with
the heavy bronze centerboard. I don't think that it adds enough stability
to be worth the headaches. The later boats with glass boards are more
desirable. The access to the stuffing box is difficult for anyone that's
not very limber. I'm considering one of the new shaft seals. The rest of
the problems are common to most 30 year old boats. The electrical system
and water system are pretty primitive unless theyve been upgraded, and the
gelcoat is about shot, and the teak coamings have been scraped and sanded
until their isn't much left. The genoa tracks need to be pulled and
rebedded with new bolts. The cockpit is narrow. The formica on the bulkheads
[Strong points:] The boat has a classic look that I love. They were as ocean racers. The
side decks are wide enough to run laps around the deck. There are plenty of
handholds below decks. My boat is tiller steered and is so well-balanced
that steering is a one-or-two-finger affair. The construction is robust,
so is the rig and the deck hardware. The shoal draft is a big plus.
From Scott Hawley on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
... I am currently in the market for a Morgan 41 O/I and am looking at 73's up
to Classics. I don't know if I am better off trying to find an older model
and performing upgrades, or newer with less work needed. I plan to live
aboard with my spouse, so it needs to be operational and able to float-
i.e.- no peels and paint. I hope to relocate to the West Coast of FL- I'm
currently in Orlando.
From Tom Harley on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
My questions is this - I have come across some 41's that are sloop rigged - a
73 and a 76. Were these most likely modified from a Ketch rig, or
originally built this way?
If they were original, how would sail performance compare to a Ketch rig?
Some brokers have told me that you need to start the engine to tack an O/I
other than a 416 or Classic. Is this really the case? I know upwind
performance is not a strong characteristic of any of these boats, but do you
really have to crank the engine just to make a turn?
I was also told that a lot of ketch owners (like 80%) sail the ketch rigs as
sloops anyway? Would most of you agree? Where does the mizzen affect
I asked a lot of these same questions about a year ago before I bought my
76 OI 41. The thing about the engines being needed to tack is BS. Mine will
tack through about 95 degrees as long as there is at least 8 knots. Any less
than 8 knots and it becomes a struggle. You're right about the upwind
performance of at least the early Out Islands, but as long as you know it
going in, it won't be a surprise. I have found the only place you notice the
lack of pointing performance is inshore in protected waters. Offshore, no
boat I have seen or heard of points tight on the wind, it just gets too
rough. We have a Bristol 32 that will tack through 33 degrees, but offshore
if you don't foot her out to about 45 she'll pound you to death.
From John Owen on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
Before we bought ours, I was nervous about a lot of the rumors floating
around out there about the Out Islands. We have been extremely pleased with
ours and if I had to do it all over, I'd still take this one.
... Both sloops and ketches are original.
Sloops had slightly higher mast and are a little better upwind, but unless
you are racing the few degrees won't make much difference.
From Guy Vanier on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
[Re: lot of owners sailing ketch as sloop:]
True, but 80% ??? Just another sail to deal with on an afternoon daysail, so
why bother. From beam to broad reaches, the mizzen can add significantly to
your performance. If you get serious about sailing offshore, or in strong
winds, the mizzen gives you many more options of sail area, reefing,
When you get your OI 41 you will love it and so will your spouse (very
From Bill Pittman on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
If you like to work on boats and are very handy at it, buying an older model
could be a solution but plan to put in many hours of hard work. Some people on
this list have gone this route and will I am sure be in a better position to
1) the sloops you have seen are originals; they came that way. The one I have
is a sloop.
2) the sloop version sails very well and you have more room at the back.
Someone else will have to comment on the advantages of the mizzen. I only
sailed a ketch once many years ago and did not see any big difference.
3) anyone needing to start their engine to tack an OI 41 needs sailing
lessons. Sometimes when not too windy you might have to do like you would do
with a cat: hold off letting go the genoa till the wind is pushing on the
reverse side of it but only in light winds. This will work very well.
4) this boat is a cruising boat not a racer like a C&C or Bénéteau but will
get you there in comfort. I always say that when in a hurry use your car it
is at least 15 times faster. And flying ...
5) My engine is a Perkins 4-108 approx. 52hp. it will keep the boat going at
its hull speed of 8 knots easily at 2800 rpm. It do not think it was the factory
installed engine on this boat.
I have a 1980 OI ketch and I sail her with the mizzen 99% of the time.
In light wind, I have had difficulty tacking without the mizzen. The only time
I have ever had to motor through a tack was with very light wind and against
a strong tide. On a beam reach, the mizzen adds noticeable horsepower, and
while working to windward I balance the helm with the mizzen. With a steady
breeze, I have left the balanced helm unattended for 20+ minutes at a time.
I don't regret buying the Out Island despite its poor windward ability.
The other positive advantages of the boat far outweigh this defect.
From Bob Phillips on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
It's generally accepted that the classic will point higher and
faster, but I don't know if it's ever been proven. On the
other hand the main and jib on a classic is a lot of sail
to handle. I added a small winch for RF Jib as at plus 20
knots my wife could not furl it. Sometimes I wished I had
a mizzen mostly when I sail off the wind; the mizzen mast is
also a nice place to mount the radar.
From Lou Carreiro on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
The Yanmar 44 HP Motor which is on mine is excellent, runs
like a swiss watch and starts better the my honda.
THE BEST THING ABOUT THEM FROM MY FIRST MATE'S POINT OF VIEW IS
LOTS OF ROOM, A REAL DOUBLE BED AND
SHE DOESN'T HEEL. We take a reef in the main at about 22
knots mainly because of weather helm. I sort of miss the go
fast feeling that our catalina 27 had when heeled about 30
The one downside is that they don't back up very well; you
can make little circles to port and big circles to port ;-).
The previous owner added a bow thruster to BETTY JANE and I
love it, saves a lot of face and paint.
... the 41
O/I is a great cruising boat. We have a 415 which has both walkover and
walk-thru which we felt gave us the best of both worlds. We really like
the ventilation that the aft companionway adds to the aft cabin. She
also has the split, over under bunks up forward instead of a normal V
berth, which is great for a family boat with the kids sharing the
From Gene Schenck on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
Our boat has the normal height rig, instead of the double spreader tall
rig as found on some of the 416s. She sails well, with the exception of
sailing to windward, but that's part of life with a shoal draft cruiser,
especially if the jib is sheeted as far out as the one on a 41 O/I. Also,
with a ketch there is no traveler for the main and therefore you can't
bring the boom across the center to try and get a little higher. In
fact sheeting the main so it's in line with the centerline usually gets
the mizzen some real bad air coming off of the main so the mizzen
doesn't get used getting as high as you can. On a reach you can
definitely feel the difference with the mizzen up. We use the mizzen
On the subject of mizzens, it does help in shortening sail, we have used
jib and mizzen and she handles nicely in heavier weather. It is a nice
place to 'stick' stuff up high. Trimming it is no additional work at
all. It doesn't take up much room on the aft cabin top. Makes for a
really nice lift for getting the dinghy's outboard on the aft rail.
Con's are the additional costs with stepping and getting someone to
connect the traiatic stay between the two masts. Overall, we like a
Tacking has not been the big problem that some say it is. If the wind
is light we just delay on letting go of the genoa during the tack and
let it backwind a little to push the bow over. Same as with a
catamaran. We have never used the engine to tack. (Karen hates the
sound of the engine when we are sailing. She would almost rather change
our destination then start the engine.) BTW, our engine is a Perkins
154, which I understand is the optional larger engine for the 415.
The real problem has been backing. She just seems to have a mind of her
own. We haven't figured out the secret... yet.
Overall, the Morgan 41 O/I is great and we liked the 415 model best of
all: Walkover and walk-thru, ketch rig, normal(short) mast height. And
we have been VERY happy with her.
We bought a 415 last April and found we could not back her at all --
turning sharply to port one time and then to starboard another time.
Eventually, I determined that once the boat began moving backwards the water
pressure captured the large rudder and overpowered the hydraulic steering,
pushing the rudder to one side or the other. The secret turned out to be
keeping the rudder as close to centerline as possible, and the key to that
is a Raritan rudder position indicator. Cost me a couple hundred, installed
it myself over a weekend. Sending unit attaches to the quadrant under aft
berth and it sends electrical info to an indicator on the binnacle. What a
difference it made. I pull up to a slip, turn to get my alignment, center
the rudder according to the indicator and just back right in. I recommend it.
We concur with all your comments on how much we love our 415. We're
not racers, but we sail whenever there's air and tack fine without using
engine power. In very light air, we just fall off ten degrees toward a reach
to maximize speed then tack as soon as the boat's moving nicely. Wouldn't
want to be without our Morgan; beats the tar our of our old Irwin 37.
From Gary on Cruising World message board:
[Morgan Out Island 41:] You may want to keep in mind that there are several different layouts,
and variations of those layouts. Also, some people have modified their own layouts prior to selling.
There were also several different engine sizes used, and some rig changes too.
That just means that if you have seen one, you have NOT seen 'em all.
From Gary Elder on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
As usual, everyone has their own opinion, here's mine. The OI 41 is in a
class of boats that you are likely to find anywhere, but not necessarily in
your own back yard. When we were in the market for one I looked from
Seattle to San Diego and from Boston to Key West. There are a great many to
choose from, so don't rush.
As far as looking at a Morgan OI, the most serious issue I have
seen (beyond the usual things as with any boat) is the mainmast step. As an
aid to manufacturing, many of these boats have a mild steel plate under the
aluminum mast step that sits under the mast. The steel plate rusts, and the
aluminum/steel combination is dissimilar metals which is not a good thing.
On my boat, the steel plate was rusted to the point of failure, and the
aluminum mast step was badly corroded. I got on the phone with Sally
Morgan (now deceased) and Charlie Morgan, and together we designed a fiberglass
repair that replaces the steel plate. It worked great! I can describe it
in detail for you later.
Also, I have walked on several boats that had soft spots on deck - not good.
There are a great many layout variations in the OI series. The very early
ones were walk-overs with tiny engines. The early walk-thrus were were more
like crawl-thrus with kneeling headroom in the walk-thru. Our '78 is tall
enough that at 5'8" I just duck a little and turn one shoulder slightly
forward to walk thru. Engine size ranges from about 30 to 85hp - ours is
65hp. Most are ketches - a wonderful rig. My best suggestion is that you
look at many of them, because they can be very different
I would not worry about a boat that has been in charter. The issue really
is what is the condition of the boat today. Most of the boat is bolt-on
stuff that you can buy from almost any retailer. Many of the charter boats
have been rebuilt ... Many of the non-charter boats have not.
From Molly on Cruising World message board:
We have a Morgan and we love it! We have a 41 Classic. Built by Catalina after they
bought Morgan, fin instead of full keel, 4'10" draft. Looks like an Out Island,
sails just fine. We can do 4-5 knots with 8-10 kts of wind. 15 kts of wind we
can get hull speed of 7.5. And our mainsail is blown out!
From Ric on Cruising World message board:
I had an '88 M44 and loved her. Very solid boat, Nelson Merek hull sails well,
nothing like the 41OI. Reportedly hull blistering in the 43, but saw none in 12 years on 44.
Hull to deck joint has history of leaking, but saw none. Sold mine 8 years later for
same as she cost used.
The 44 has centerline aft berth so both sleepers can get out without
crawling over the other one -- important to us.
From Charles Cohen on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
The Morgan ports, and many replacements, have the body of the port screwed
to the inner liner, and a trim ring (which does very little) screwed to the
outside of the hull. So, the port "works" against the hull, and eventually
breaks the caulking between the hull and the port.
The "right" way to build ports is to cast (or fabricate) the outside trim
ring integrally with the port body, and mount the port from the outside of
the boat. This is not popular -- New Found Metals does it in bronze, and
possibly some Hood ports in s/s.
From Dave Doolin on SailNet's Morgan mailing list:
Morgan built three different Morgan 30's and they all have different
sailing personalities. The first 30 was a keel-centerboarder, the second
was a fin keeler that was 2 feet wider in beam, the third was a
Winnebago-like Out Island cruiser. It would help to know what year the
30 is to identify the model. Charley Morgan drew all three 30's.
The 38 was similar in that there were 4 different Morgan 38's built. The
first one was a keel-centerboarder like the first M30. The keel-cb M30 and
M38 share the same basic design and hull shape as the boats were
influenced by the CCA Rule as racer-cruisers. The other 38's were drawn
by Ted Brewer after Charley Morgan was no longer associated with Morgan
Yacht. The Brewer-drawn 382, 383, and 384 fin keelers are related, but the
first 38 is not.
Morgan built 22, 24, 25, 28, 30, 34, 38, 41 foot models of the
successful keel-centerboard design in production numbers.
The CCA-influenced boats are narrower in beam and the accomodations
are more cramped than later boats, but in my opinion are the better
sailing boats. Later boats had more interior room at some sacrifice in
seakindliness and the keels were fixed with deeper draft.
I own a 1969 M30. I have raced her in club level racing (round the buoys
and some offshore events) and Angel's Wing has aged gracefully. I won the
1999 PHRF trophy in North Florida and won the Daytona-Charleston Race in
2000 with her. She is a nice sea boat for a 30 footer, and is easy to
singlehand. The keel-cb 38 (1969-1971) is very similar in handling and
layout to my boat, and shares a light, well-balanced helm.
From Jon Doornink:
I have read all the negatives on this web site regarding
Morgan sailboats. Interesting, but perhaps not the full truth.
Our 1977 Morgan 37 OI Mark II does not answer to many of the objections
written here. For example, the hull to deck joint is ss bolts 4 inches
OC and epoxy bonded not 5200.
Why this model and not the others written about here?
In our green and blue water experience the past 5 years,
Seadream has sailed with like-waterline length boats on all courses.
She is definitely better on the the wind than off which is
strange when one reads the 41 OI is so poor on a reach.
The specs on our boat are almost exactly the same as the
current Island Packet 380s except our interior is not
nearly so nicely finished. Yet IPs get high marks??
We are sailors, not liveaboards, although we do live aboard 7 months
a year. For the money and the additional money we have
invested I still can't find a boat I would rather be sailing and
My understanding is Morgan Yachts built 50 of the Mark Is
and 46 of the Mark IIs before ending production in 1978.
Our hull is number 19 but I am not certain if that is in
the full line of 96 or just the Mark IIs.
The difference in configuration was ketch vs sloop
and our interior is traditional whereas the Mark I's
had an aft dining settee under the cockpit (we have the
tradtional aft 3/4 berth). The gelcoat finish was so
good that others frequently ask us where we had her painted.
We did have small gelcoat blisters below the waterline
when we purchased the boat in 1977 but did an Interlux job
and no reoccurence. We have beaten her to windward in up to
45 knots true and short seas 10-12 feet and run off in winds
to 45 knots in seriously breaking seas to 20 feet and she
has been dry except for two waves. I know there are more
comfortable boats in big seas, but she is safe and none
the worse for the wear we have put her to.
From Jon Doornink:
People seem to forget the compromise part of buying a boat.
We have a Morgan 37 OI Mark II. Contrary to what some OI 41 folks say,
this design sails BETTER to weather than off the wind!
Yes, with the 4' shoal draft she rolls more than some, but we
have sailed with Mason 43's and Morgan 38's (Ted Brewer designed ...
very different with the 7' keel) and we are with them all the way
in our Morgan 37. Again, as many have said, for the money we could not
ask for more. So, we keep adding upgrades as we think Seadream is worth it.
We had plans of sailing the world, but are still in Mexican waters.
Our Morgan has 'survived' 20-24' breaking seas for days, 10-12' square
wave upwind passages, squalls hove to, and many other dangerous water
conditions without a groan or a leak.
So, if we had all the money in the world to spend we could not be happier
than we are with our Morgan 37 OI Mark II ... I mean when you can
anchor with the multis in shallow water out of the swell, what a deal!
From Paul on "Adios":
The way to sail a Morgan OI 41 is to never make it heel: sail it flat all the time.