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Old 10-03-2016, 01:39   #31
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

It seems that much advice about this centreboard and keeping it in place is coming from a lot of non c/b owners. If you choose to peg it up and glass over it for now you can always look at restoring it later if time and funds permit.
You are only paying $8,000 for this boat, it is either a bargain or there are other major problems. Tread carefully with a good survey/surveyor. Every boat has a few problems that manifest themselves later usually minor and can be dealt with readily.
Good luck and happy sailing.
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Old 10-03-2016, 08:39   #32
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Charlie Morgan knew what he was doing when he designed this boat. I would respect his talent & fix the centerboard. Going from under 4' to over 8' is a big difference & it will make a big difference in how this boat sails. If you don't care how the boat sails maybe you should consider a trawler. I know that sounds like an insult but it's actually not.
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Old 10-03-2016, 09:01   #33
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I have a c/b on a much bigger, heavier boat (Bristol 45.5) and think it is a very useful feature. You can go in shallower water, you do go to windward much better, and something that is often overlooked, is that lowering the c/b partway allows you to balance the helm quite precisely. We found this very helpful when using our Monitor vane.

I would leave it alone for now and fixing it at a later date. The cable that is used for hoisting is way stronger than is needed for the weight of the board. Even if it is a bit frayed it is still plenty strong. Never experienced a free-fall board but it would not do serious damage I think.
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Old 10-03-2016, 09:15   #34
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I would have to go with Cheechako's suggestion of just fix the CB. Probably less work and not having the neg. effect on resale that jury rigging would have. Not that it may not work well but a prospective buyer is going to say, OH!
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Old 10-03-2016, 09:32   #35
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I have owned and sailed a Chas Morgan centerboard allover the Carib. I would leave as is and plan on repairing it in the future . Believe me , some time in your future there will be a time when 4 or 5 degrees of pointing ability will be very important to you health and safety .
Why remove a water tank">fresh water tank ? Jug your water out and pour it in !
Early Morgans had bronze boards and hang down like a butter knife blade and will cut a anchor line if in a situation where wind fights current . A cable break and board drop will hurt nothing and you may even not realize it happened .
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Old 10-03-2016, 09:39   #36
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I would suggest that you move aboard and ' live ' this boat before making changes and spending lots of cash . Jobs that cost lots of money today may not seem nearly as important two years from now .Also in a year or two you will attack jobs yourself that today you might pay big bucks to have done today !
During the survey look at mast base , many of these sticks will need to be cut down several inches as the alum mast sits on a mild steel base .
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Old 10-03-2016, 09:53   #37
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wunderluster View Post
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.
OK I confess I have not seen a hydraulic system for centerboards, any idea where there is a link to a photo of it? I think Story is worried that if he leaves it as is, the pin holding it may break some day without warning. How are they pinned up? BTW, bronze centerboard...pretty cool. I found this on info for a '67 Morgan 34:
"Morgan's construction was robust and practical. The hull was heavily laid up solid fiberglass and the deck was balsa cored. Lead ballast was internal, fitted into the keel cavity and glassed over. The original bronze centerboard weighed in at 250 pounds. Later in the production run the board was changed to fiberglass."
Sheesh, I'd almost fly out there to have a look at the boat myself!
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Old 10-03-2016, 10:45   #38
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

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Originally Posted by Sailboat Story View Post
My mentality, especially since we're so new at sailing, is to have everything as simple as possible. My thinking is that even if I fix it, then I have a centerboard that I have to take care of and worry about.

To me, the centerboard just adds complexity, more things to break, and more to maintain. There's the centerboard itself, the cable, stuffing box, etc. That's a lot of components for something that I probably wouldn't use anyways.
If you are worried about maintaining a centreboard, wait till you see the engine, plumbing, steering gear, and electronics.

I had a Paceship29 with a swing keel. The keel worked fine, but I rarely dropped it. The boat sailed just about the same with the keel up or down. Off the wind, I imagine it sailed better with the keel up. On the wind, it sailed poorly either way.

Perhaps you should ask yourself what kind of sailor you might be? If the wind is on the nose, most people just motor anyway...or choose a new destination so that the wind is aft of the beam.

I agree with the other posters...fix it. It was designed by someone who knows more about boat keels than either of us.

However, I have found that sailing ability is possibly the most important aspect of a sailboat. If it doesn't sail well, you will never be happy.

We would all like to have big sailboats that draw 3'....that would be great. But you make sacrafices to have shallow draft...upwind sailing is sacrificed.
Perhaps what you really want is a CAT?
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Old 10-03-2016, 11:26   #39
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

I have a 1969 Morgan 41/CB and although the centerboard requires additional maintenance, the performance improvement is well worth the effort. I have club raced mine and have done very well and the wife and I have cruised the Bahamas, staying for the winter ever other year for the past 10 years. Charlie Morgan's CCA designs are great sailing, solidly built and great looking boats well worth preserving.


Does yours still have the C/B winch in the starboard locker or has it been removed? I have the original design drawing for these vessels and if you need more info I can e-mail you a copy


newtoncollyar@gmail.com
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Old 10-03-2016, 16:53   #40
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

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Originally Posted by Sailboat Story View Post
Hello there!

This is my first post!

My family and I have been on the hunt for a good liveaboard sailboat for the last several months now.

Initially, part of our sailboat criteria was that the boat be in the 33'-37' range and that it have a full keel, with less than 4 ft draft.

Now that we've been looking a while, I feel like we're going to have to loosen up a bit on our wants in order to find a workable compromise.

For instance - I've come across a boat - a 79 Morgan 38' with centerboard. The boat is in good overall shape, and we can get into it for only 8k.

There's a lot to like about the boat, but there's one big problem that is worrying to me...

Here's the trouble -

The centerboard doesn't function and has been pegged up into the truck for the last 5 years or so.

Now, personally, my first thought is that I could just permanently cover the opening of the centerboard truck with fiberglass - essentially making the boat nearly a full keel (which I wanted anyways). I've read that the boat points pretty well even without the board down, so it doesn't seem like it would impact sail-ability that much.

To better explain my thought process - 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.

... so many variables.

Anyways, I'm curious if this "center-board problem" actually represents an opportunity for us to get into a good boat at a low price, or if this is an issue that has a deeper negative impact that I'm not seeing for myself.

Any thoughts on the matter?



PS - I'm a forum virgin... be gentle if I make any weird posting errors.
I would go for the morgan oi33 as it has more room than the 38 and sails much more upright so is a lot more comfortable. these boats are well proven in charter work.
I doubt the difference in speed is a minute a mile and that will reverse when you put the 2,000 lbs of crap that is necessary for live aboard and cruising. the 33 is much more weight tolerant.
mike
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Old 10-03-2016, 17:51   #41
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

There is a very good reason for the big engine in the OI Morgans, they do not sail in light air. The "keel" is short and fat. Yes they have more room but they are slow in any point of sail other than a broad reach.

For 8K I could own two CCA Morgans?

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Old 10-03-2016, 22:31   #42
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Having owned in the past a 44' Rhodes center board Sloop, I would not do anything to the bottom, just leave it and don't put any more ballast in the boat, the center board is part of the ballast, fixing it probably is not a big job, that boat has lots of room for the family, you will need every inch of it, don't go smaller or else you will have a mutiny.
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Old 10-03-2016, 23:16   #43
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailboat Story View Post
Hello there!

This is my first post!

My family and I have been on the hunt for a good liveaboard sailboat for the last several months now.

Initially, part of our sailboat criteria was that the boat be in the 33'-37' range and that it have a full keel, with less than 4 ft draft.

Now that we've been looking a while, I feel like we're going to have to loosen up a bit on our wants in order to find a workable compromise.

For instance - I've come across a boat - a 79 Morgan 38' with centerboard. The boat is in good overall shape, and we can get into it for only 8k.

There's a lot to like about the boat, but there's one big problem that is worrying to me...

Here's the trouble -

The centerboard doesn't function and has been pegged up into the truck for the last 5 years or so.

Now, personally, my first thought is that I could just permanently cover the opening of the centerboard truck with fiberglass - essentially making the boat nearly a full keel (which I wanted anyways). I've read that the boat points pretty well even without the board down, so it doesn't seem like it would impact sail-ability that much.

To better explain my thought process - 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.

... so many variables.

Anyways, I'm curious if this "center-board problem" actually represents an opportunity for us to get into a good boat at a low price, or if this is an issue that has a deeper negative impact that I'm not seeing for myself.

Any thoughts on the matter?



PS - I'm a forum virgin... be gentle if I make any weird posting errors.
A retractable keel is an excellent feature. It allows gunkholing in shallows without compromising windward performance. It was a fairly expensive feature to have in a boat compared to fixed ballast. It does require some maintenance, which yours apparently has not received. In all probability the cast iron keel is rusted and swollen, and loaded up with marine growth jamming it in the trunk.

If the boat price is low due to this condition, and it is a fairly easy to fix, bonus for you. If the keel trunk is swollen due to other issues, it could be a moe involved repair.

If you glass it in, in my opinion, you just devalued the boat.
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Old 11-03-2016, 13:12   #44
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

Even better, it's bronze!
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Old 11-03-2016, 20:12   #45
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Re: Convert Morgan 38 Centerboard To Full Keel?

we have a centerboard boat.

don't glass it in. you said you don't have much experience sailing, yet you think you can improve on somebody else's design?

Fix it or leave it pegged up.

You'll find with the board up, if you're going to weather, your COG will be 30 degrees leeward of your heading. Although this would affect you if you're racing, you're not buying a race boat, but if you are trying to get somewhere to weather you will find it takes a long ass time without the board down.

I don't see why you would want to spend the time or money to glass it in. If it's not hurting anything being pegged up leave it alone until you have time to deal with it. Trust me, for $8k you are going to find a lot bigger fish to fry than glassing in the centerboard.

It's a pretty simple setup. If it pivots, there will be a cutlass bearing that it pivots on. If that is in ok condition, the rest is easy. There's a pennant to raise and lower it, that is likely shot. Replace it with dyneema, get it from amazon, 50' which is way more than you need is $20-$30. It will never corrode and fail like the stainless steel that was probably on it. If the winch is dead, by a 12V electric ATV winch for $100.
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