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Old 09-03-2016, 11:27   #16
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I believe they are 'convertible'. But first you want to set that centerboard free.

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Old 09-03-2016, 11:44   #17
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

The engine is another thing that I do like about this boat - so far.

It's a Perkins 4107. That's one of few that made it to the top of my "good engines" list in this era of sailboats.

I'm fairly mechanically minded and have wrenched on plenty of gas engines, so I think I should be able to learn my way around a 4107 without too much trouble.

The engine has apparently been well maintained with records and receipts along the way. I'm working on collecting copies of all that as well.

In my mind, at least at this point, the priorities list goes something like -

#1 Hull
#2 Engine
#3 Rig
#4 Everything else

A quick question to you seasoned gents -

Does weight alone hold the centerboard in the down position?
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Old 09-03-2016, 11:59   #18
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Yes, weight. The perkins are great engines. The other thing to watch for on old boats is tanks... and how east to get them out for replacement. A boat that old may have monel tanks though.. that's a big plus!
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Old 09-03-2016, 12:06   #19
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Thanks. I'll keep a look out for Monel tanks.

Concerning that - right now my thought, and our plan, is to ditch the traditional head and holding tank altogether and install a composting head. Removing the holding tank would also give us additional storage area.

Also, depending on the condition, capacity, and accessibility of the water tank(s), I may be tempted to do away with that as well. Right how, I'm of the mind that we will be transporting water by dinghy in jerry jugs. We don't have the budget for a water maker, and I don't like the idea of having to dock for water when needed.

Somehow, as difficult as it sounds, the idea of jerry-canning water sounds to be the preferred way for us.

Just throwing that out there since you mentioned the storage tanks.
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Old 09-03-2016, 12:40   #20
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

There is more than one thread here regarding composting toilets. Check the toilet dimensions to be sure it will fit. At least in my old boat the water tank is plastic and seems to be doing fine. Hauling water ain't that bad when you are young and spry. A Morgan 38 with a Perkins in good condition for 8K? OK there must be something else wrong with it or it seems to be one very good deal.
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Old 09-03-2016, 12:46   #21
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

There's no benefit in glassing over the centerboard and someday that peg or whatever is holding it up will give way and it will TRY to crash thru whatever you put in the way.
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Old 09-03-2016, 12:48   #22
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I am sorry, but the idea to glass the CB in makes no sense to me. I very much understand wanting to keep it KISS, but there's a reason that boat has a CB. And trust me, you'll regret not having it at some point, should you go that way.

(Yes, I owned a CB boat once.)
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Old 09-03-2016, 13:00   #23
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Hi boat hunters.
As a centreboard boat owner I can say that the boat will sail well board up or down but you will make more leeway and not point to windward as well with the c/b raised. Also if you are planning on racing around the cans c/b down is needed to turn quickly.
I used to change the cable (4.8mm 1/19 stainless) that controls the c/b every 5 years. This was 'bugger' of a job since the c/b needs to be dropped out completely. Antifouling the c/b and the opening was also a pain in the bum.
On the ocean the c/b would swing around a bit (probably needed new bushes in the swing pin) so I would often just leave it raised.
I hardly sailed with the c/b down so 15 months ago it was sealed up into the cavity with a 5mm stainless plate welded to the bottom of the keel. Saaremaa is a steel Adams 35 cruising boat.
I thought about adding 300 mm to the keel but after travelling through the shallow waters of The Great Sandy Strait, Queensland, Australia I decided that our 1.4 metre draft is very useful.
I have not missed the c/b since it was sealed in place and the antifouling job is much easier.
Good luck with the Morgan.
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Old 09-03-2016, 14:14   #24
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I'll stand with those that suggest you keep the centerboard as is and retain the option of returning it to full function in your future. By the way, the underwater design of the Morgan 38 and the original Morgan Out Island series are long keels, but not technically full keels.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailboat Story View Post
.............................
............................. another boat that we've been looking into a lot is the Morgan Out Island 33. It's a full keel boat, and I've heard that it sails like a pig, but I'm actually alright with that because I'm more concerned with interior space and comfort over being able to sail super-good.

To me, I'm thinking that I could remedy the centerboard issue by converting it to a full keel, and basically ending up something like a 38 foot Out Island. Of course I do want to have the ability to eventually sell the boat, and I don't want to hurt the boats resale potential either. ...............
I had a Morgan OI 33 that I lived aboard with my family for 13 years before we moved to our somewhat better performing Morgan OI 41. Certainly these boats are not performance vessels, but they do sail somewhat better than actual pigs! LOL I'm sure your Morgan 38 would do well with the centerboard option. Yes, I'd not make the effort to glass the board in.
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Old 09-03-2016, 14:16   #25
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Have a Pearson 35 centerboard boat with an underbody much like the Morgan you are looking at. The only time I've used the board is short tacking out the rather long channel of the Oakland/Alameda Estuary. It did cut down leeway which shortened the number of tacks and time to get into open water but usually powered out if wind was straight down the channel. Other than that boat has been sailed with board up and really haven't missed the board. Some people, one T37 in particular, removed the board before their circumnavigation.

Having said the above, would just leave the board as is. Would want to look into what the reason is for the board being inop. Would leave it as is if the cost to reactivate was more than I wanted to spend. You know when it comes to sell, a prospective will turn down the boat if the C/B is NLA. Had a Morgan 35 C/B that had electrolysis problems with the cable. It got to be a hassle to haul regularly to replace the wire so blocked it up with wedges in the trunk. Today it would be an easy fix replacing the wire with Dyneema line. No more electrolysis problem. Have used Dyneema line with my current C/B boat even though the metal cable was no problem.

LEAVE IT. Leaving it alone won't affect your use of the boat whether you remove the board and glass its opening in or not.
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Old 09-03-2016, 15:15   #26
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailboat Story View Post
Thanks. I'll keep a look out for Monel tanks.

Concerning that - right now my thought, and our plan, is to ditch the traditional head and holding tank altogether and install a composting head. Removing the holding tank would also give us additional storage area.

Also, depending on the condition, capacity, and accessibility of the water tank(s), I may be tempted to do away with that as well. Right how, I'm of the mind that we will be transporting water by dinghy in jerry jugs. We don't have the budget for a water maker, and I don't like the idea of having to dock for water when needed.

Somehow, as difficult as it sounds, the idea of jerry-canning water sounds to be the preferred way for us.

Just throwing that out there since you mentioned the storage tanks.
My advise is to keep systems in tact, bring what you can up to snuff and use the boat for a while. What you want or don't want will become much more clear after using the boat a while. No point in taking out tanks, just leave them empty for now. If you go out for a cruise fill them... jerry canning water is a pita.... been there done that!
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Old 09-03-2016, 15:26   #27
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Depending on where you cruise, catchment water may make Gerry canning water on board unnecessary. In French Polynesia went more than a year and never had to schlep water to the boat. Had an awning that covered the boat aft of the mast which you should have if you are going south. Installed through hulls in the awning on each side of the boom. Pulled them down to create a depression and ran the captured water to the tanks with a hose.

Voila, no need for Gerry Jugs or a water maker. Won't work in Baja or other areas where rain is scarce but awning will keep the cabin temp way way cooler.
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Old 09-03-2016, 15:44   #28
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

First, if you are getting a Morgan 38 in good condition for $8K buy it today. Second, the centerboard on these boats can be left up and she sails great. The only real advantage is up wind performance when you are racing. The same with the Tartans, most cruisers who have them never use the centerboard. They either pin them in the up position or glass over them. The Morgan has a hydraulic system for raising the board and if its broken it isn't worth fixing.

I have sailed several Tartan 34s and 40s with centerboards that the owner never used. The Morgan I sailed performs so well with the board down you will not be disappointed.

As for cruising the Morgan 38 has a very small quarter berth but, the trade off is lots of storage.

Buy and first then decide what to do with the centerboard.
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Old 09-03-2016, 17:11   #29
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Thanks for all the insights everyone.

One more oddball question from a person (myself) who has a lot of unfounded fears at this point simply due to inexperience...

From what I can tell from my research, the centerboards are often held up by a single cable. If from age, disuse, lack of maintenance or whatever - that cable decides to break while the centerboard is up, how quickly and violently will it come crashing down?
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Old 09-03-2016, 20:25   #30
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I understand, for YOUR purposes the question is, do all the positives of this (or any) boat outweigh the negatives. The unknown centerboard and costs associated with it is a big negative now, especially if it decides to come down on its own. I don't think that would cause any damage, BUT I have not seen a Morgan cb set-up. It may be that since you are looking for roominess, the Out Island may be more appealing. For me, from a sailing standpoint, the M38 being preferable, I'd be asking the local yard how much it is to haul it (the boat out of the water) and get a good look at it. But that would be me. Even if you decide not to use the CB while sailing, you don't want a source of worry nagging at the back of your mind. Perhaps the owner will work with you on solving the CB puzzle and put that part of the boat to rest.
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