Moleoba - A Carter 39 "Offshore"

These photos were taken just after Moleoba had been polished to a shine.    

Below is a copy of a magazine article that my father found in the American SAIL magazine from August 1973.

I have copied the text and dropped in my own photos as the page did not scan very well.

The Carter 39.

Designed as a flat-out machine.

The Carter 39 sailing machine is not built from conventional wisdom.

The hull shape of the 39 has been tested; racing, on the ocean. The shape is derived from the YDRA, the prototype Carter One Tonner that the sailing press called "fastest One Tonner in the world."

With a large sail plan, it excels in light/moderate air. Yet it can hold its advantage in a breeze.

So the Carter 39 is designed with two steering stations - one port, one starboard. With the wheel in front of the helmsman, steering is more natural. A comfortable helmsman concentrates better.

When the helmsman needs to see his waves, he steers from the weather wheel.

When he wants to watch his jib, he nestles comfortable to leeward.

In rough conditions downwind, it has been proven that two-man steering is the fastest technique.

Two helmsman have more precise boat control with less fatigue.
A fast shape though is not enough.

Flat-out racing is also a function of crew efficiency.

Move crew speed up a notch and boat speed moves up with it.

There are deck innovations on the Carter 39 that appear for the first time on a production boat.

Under deck halyards, leading to halyard winches on either side of the companion way.

Three speed winches that link to ant hills, which cross-link to each other.

With cross-linked ant hills, two grinders can apply power to one winch.

They can stay in high gear longer, and the tailer can work without a winch handle in his face.

Tacks are faster, and around the buoys its tacking efficiency that counts.

For sailors who want to combine racing with fast cruising, the Carter 39 is also built in an offshore version with a trunk cabin and a beautifully detailed interior.

Sailors who are interested in a Carter 33, 37 (one tonner), 39 (competition or Offshore) or custom design, can call or write the Tower in Nahant for full information.

Or if you are near Boston for the day, why not drop in?
The Tower is 20 minutes from Logan airport, and the view of the North Atlantic is Spectacular.


My Carter 39

Moleoba has flush decks with two cockpits, twin steering wheels, twin spinnaker poles and a whisker pole.
All the halyards are run down the inside of the mast and then under the deck emerging in-front of a considerable bank of winches.
The four large black winches are Lemar 55’s, they have 3 gears, which connect via large hinged struts running under the cockpit. When a switch is turned in the cockpit wall, these winches can be operated individually or in unison.
Crew members can then combine their efforts using three winch handles to haul in one sheet, from the high side of the yacht. i.e.
The opposite side to where the sheet is wrapped around the winch.


Feet Meters Litres Tones Kilos
Lenght Overall 38.11 11.88
Water Line Length 29.11 9.14
Mast Height 50 15.85
Beam 12.8 3.88
Head Room 5.10 1.80
Hot Water Tank 80
Berths 7
Water Tanks 2 x 200
Diesel Tank 200
Displacement 14.43 14661
Engine Yanmar 3JH4E 40hp


Moleoba III, which is her official name was made by Olympic Yachts in Athens, Greece in 1974.
From her chart inventory it appears that she was extensively cruised, from the west coast of Italy, up the east coast to Venice and down the old Yugoslavian coast line, before exploring some of the southern Greek Islands and some of the Turkish coast, before coming to rest in Samos.
In 1989, she was lifted out of the water with a propeller-shaft misalignment that was cracking her P-bracket and sold to two Austrian brothers. The engine was taken out of the boat, the cutlass bearing cut away and the shaft re-aligned. The whole of the hull was then re-epoxied and re-sprayed.
Moleoba then remained in the yard for the next 14 years.
A cockpit drain hole failed along with a few smaller leaks along the toe rail, resulting in the hull slowly filling with rainwater. This wasn’t noticed until the spring of 2003, when the two Austrian brothers put the yacht up for sale.
By the time she came to my attention a Turkish man had already made an offer which had been accepted. Fortunately for me, he was unable to come up with the funds, and being next in line, I bought her.
A month after that I flew out to Samos and saw her for the first time, the photos on the website made her look great, but she looked at lot bigger and a lot more serious when we met face to face!
She was also very green on the inside, with nearly all surfaces being covered in well-established colonies of mildew. I spent the next 10 days with a water hose, many plastic brillo pads and bottles of Jif or Sif, as it is called over there, cleaning and scrubbing.
This is an excellent way to get to know your new yacht, from the bilge’s up, every locker door and hatch was cleaned and inspected.

Samos marina has its own on-site professionals, although they don’t speak English. I made use of the mechanics, almost English speaking secretary to commission the work that would need to be done to have Moleoba sea worthy again.
For no logical reason I can remember, the first thing I had done was to have made, new teak cockpit hatches and seat and a cockpit floor, engine hatch.
A few of the floorboards in the cabin had warped from being underwater, these were replaced and a new intermediary step between the cabin sole and the first step out to the cockpit was made, as this seemed uncomfortably large.
The toe-rails on both sides of the yacht along with several deck fittings were removed, as these were suspected as having let in some of the water, flooding the yacht over the past years.
Using an angle grinder a fresh channel was cut into the deck and then filled with fresh epoxy.
The fittings and toe rail was then re-screwed into this new epoxy.
The local rigger fitted a new furling system and took away some 9 sails to be valeted. The No 1 Genoa needed to be slightly altered to fit the new foil. The main sail is going to be fitted with new Lazy Bags and Lazy Jack system.
These things I managed to organise in the 10 days, the rest of the work has been in my absence, communicating via E-mail and with the help of two visits out to the marina by my father.
A re-conditioned, Perkins Prima 50hp, diesel engine was bought locally and marinised.
I installed two 200ah system batteries and two 90ah batteries for the engine start. These would be charged as pairs by two separate alternators, a 90amp and 40amp alternator for each twin set.
Ideally the alternator wants to have an amp hour charging rate of at least 25% of the battery it is trying to charge.
The system would draw from a bank of 400ah’s but the engine would start from two 90ah batteries.
The system batteries, weighing 50kgs each, are located at the bottom of the forward cabin, bunks.
This gives the shortest run for the cabling to the anchor winch, which is the biggest drain on the system.
The weight in the engine, various tanks and batteries are distributed evenly fore and aft as well as port and starboard, the fresh water tanks are located beneath the two saloon seats.
The engine is fitted into the boat backwards, connecting to a V drive, in turn driving the propeller shaft out of the stern of the boat. This is so the engine can be fitted under the cockpit and not located in the middle of the cabin.
It was mounted on thick rubber feet and connected to the V drive with a universal joint.
New access hatches were cut into the side of the pilot berth to allow easier access when changing the oil filter, and a blower, air fan was installed in the engine room compartment to extract hot air from around the engine.
All the wiring, plumbing, clips and ties were replaced throughout.
A hot water system was installed, supplying hot water to the galley and shower in the heads.  The clarifier was custom made and operates either from the engine heat or from a newly installed A/C circuit when connected to shore power.
It was decide that the shower along with the chain locker would drain into the main bilge and is extracted using a large automatic and manual bilge pump.
I am having a small hatch fitted into the deck of the boat just forward of the mast, replacing the two small air vents.
This is to provide better air circulation to the heads as it will now be fitted with a shower unit and will also allow more light into the cabin.
An 80 litre dirty water tank was made and installed into the toilet plumbing system.
Eight carbon fiber sea-cocks were made and fitted, as the mechanic didn’t like the look of the modern plastic ones and metal was too prone to electrolysis.
The original sea-cocks were removed when the hull was re-epoxied and just screw heads were now visible protruding from the hull, marking their previous locations.
The original compressor for the fridge-freezer system was past renovation so it was replaced.
Many of the ideas I have incorporated within the new installations have come from two books called, Boat Owner’s Mechanical and Electrical Manual: & How to Maintain, Repair and Improve Your Boat's Essential Systems, by Nigel Calder.