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Old 11-04-2012
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Re: Questions of living and travelling under sail..

'nother fish, My wife and I lived aboard a 1973 Morgan OI 33 from 1973 until 1985 incliding the time from our children's birth until they were seven and nine. We liked this boat so much, when our children needed more space, we traded it for a 1973 Morgan OI 41. The boat sails adequately, but it is certainly not a "performance" sailboat. Our best day was 124 miles from the Bahamas to Florida, but part of that was with a favorable Gulfstream current.
There are a few specific concerns to look for when surveying a Morgan OI:
1- Look for excessive corosion where the base of the aluminum mast is seated on the steel mast step. This has often been resolved in an older boat by changing or alytering the step (base plate).
2- Inspect the rudder where there may be a hairline crack between the port and starboard laminated halves. Water intrusion here can cause the rudder to eventually fail and proactive repair is advised including a fiberglass tabbing along the seam.
3- Look under the stemhead fitting by crawling to the forward of the V-berth and removing the access cover to the anchor locker. Look for corosion of the back-up aluminum plate or, worse, any separation of the hull deck seam here.
4- The older Morgan OI's had the hull deck seam under a black rubber rail and this location made it subject to damage. If the boat has evidence of damage at this rail or excessive water damage below from rail leaks, it might be wise to walk away.
5- You may find some soft spots on the deck due to water intrusion into the balsa core. Some spots may be acceptable, but they are a labor intensive repair. These soft spots are more of a cosmetic than a structural problem with this design.
These are some specific things to look for with this boat. All the other concerns with rigging, sails, equipment, engine, etc still are as important.
I would not recommend a reliance on being able to make a living plying your skills in foreign countries. Many laws restrict working while cruising through.
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