Nelson Merek did not design the 43. They designed the 45. I have seen the 43 ascribed to Ted Brewer but I have also seen this denied as well so it is not clear who designed the 43. The 43 is a heavy, center cockpit cruiser/aft cabin cruiser. They are reasonably good boats that were reasonably well constructed. They sail well for what they are although are useless as sailboats in lighter air. They can be found quite cheaply but a lot of these boats ended up in the charter trade and I believe they were also marketed as Hirsh 43''s as well.
The 45 began life as a grand prix level IOR era race boat. They were constructed in three levels of finish from an out and out racer to a very nicely finished centerboard cruiser. There was a club level race boat that fell in between. In their day they offered reasonably good performance but came with all of the problems associated with an IOR design. This is especially true of the Centerboard versions which had substantially higher center of gravities than the deel fin keel full race versions.
I researched this boat some time ago. It is essentially a Catalina/Morgan with that level of contruction, fit and finish. It was designed as an island cruiser/livaboard and in that does well. They are very comfortable at the dock and the accomodations are excellent.
I am not sure what a good sea boat it is. I don''t think it has any true sea berths. I was only able to find one strong comment about them and it was somewhat negative. I found it by searching on Google.com in the "groups" section. The comment was from someone who chartered on and stated that the sailing charateristics were less than desireable. But that is only one person''s opinion.
I find the following resources helpful:
Sailnet Boat check
Google.com (both web search and group)
Keep in mind that many of the "owner''s reviews" as are on Sailnet and Boattalk are positive... as you would expect from an owner. Its hard to find real critical data.
Whoops... yes, Stan, there is a Nelson Marek 43. Sorry for any confusion... there is a Morgan CC and a Morgan N/M 43. The former as discussed above is a heavier displ cruising boat. The other a light racer. According to my Mauch''s guide, the data is:
I think there is some confusion here. As far as I know, there is a Morgan 43 which is an aft cabin-center cockpit boat that is still being constructed by Catalina-Morgan. There was a Morgan built, Nelson-Merek designed 45 foot, IOR rule based, race boat that was also produced as performance cruiser. These are referred to as Morgan N/M 45''s. There was also a Nelson-Merek designed 43 footer than was not built by Morgan and which was an aft cockpit boat but which was not constructed by Morgan.
All of that said, I am not sure which one is the boat in question.
Sorry, I may have added to the confusion. My Mauch''s guide has the boat and design team but not the builder. It was my assumption that it was built by Morgan or Morgan div of Catalina. And yes, the NM 43 I gave the specs for above is an aft cockpit boat, not to be confused ... with the Morg 43 CC.
The Morgan 43 CC was built by Catalina, at least the sail plan has "Morgan, a Division of Catalina" printed on it.
By the way, Mauch''s also lists a N/M 46, but no 45. A Morgan 45 is listed in the Morgan section.
So, all that said, *I* am not sure which boat the original poster wishes to discuss?
I just read the message regarding the Morgan 43. I am presently researching this boat for possible purchase and appreciate any comments for or against regarding sailing characteristics and suitability for cruising the Bahamas and Caribbean. I was told by Morgan''s Landing that the 43 was built by Morgan and that Catalina changed to the 44 and 45 when they started constructing the Morgans. Does anyone have further info?
Thanks John and Jeff for your responses to my initial inquiry re:cc N/M Morgan 43''s. I am looking into purchasing a boat to replace my recently sold ''85 CS 36 and have received info to the effect that the 85 N/M morgan 43 is a well built, good sailing/cruiising boat. I would have a concern taking a Catalina built boat into the Caribbean for extensive cruising.
I was told by 2 sourses, one being Morgan''s Landing that the ''85 N/M cc Morgan was built by Morgan before Catalina took over. ???
You are most welcome. Sorry for any confusion on my part.
As for Morgan vs Catalina, I think you are quite correct. Morgan was not bought by catalina until the late 80''s, certainly after 1986. I personally believe that Morgan built a strong boat. I base this solely on my inspection of several Morgan 382''s (which unfortunately were not finished very well).
I have read good things about the Morgan 43 CC and have seen them come down in price as of late. There is one on the market asking 99k. The posts I have read have stated that the boat is built quite well. As mentioned, I have read only one negative post about its sailing ability and that was from someone who chartered one (probably should never judge a boat by any charter).