By Capt. Ken Kreisler
Designed and built to supply comfort, performance, and safety, the new MJM 42 is all that...and much more.
Being able to occupy a very special place in the highly competitive and rarified air of personal yachts takes an equally exceptional boat building vision; one whose foresight can not only stay ahead of the curve, but define it as well by utilizing all that the latest technology can offer. In addition, the end product must possess all those important design features such as performance and seaworthiness, ease of operations, proper onboard storage, roominess, and other factors in order to be really successful. And yes, it has to possess head-turning good looks as well. Such a company is MJM Yachts and its newest model, the MJM 42, fulfills all its promises.
The MJM philosophy has always been forward-looking with its designs and engineering all focused on comfort and safety. Since 2002, when the 34z first made its debut, the company has embarked on a mission to provide its owners with the finest, most well-built and seaworthy vessels it can deliver. And there are lots of reasons why the new MJM 42, available in both outboard and stern drive models, with the ability to furnish as exciting an interior for extended cruising as possible in a boat of this size, is already ahead of the pack.
The Michael Peters design is based on actual live-aboard experiences from what MJM Yachts considers its finest couples cruising boat, the MJM 40. Wanting to up the experience, the MJM internal team, board, and boat owners collaborated with the Peters studio to expand on the concept and see how it could be improved, if at all.
Starting with the enhanced hull design, which is the result of extensive fluid dynamic testing, has brought about something new in terms of efficiency, an important factor MJM has always stood on, and has set the bar for Peters and the team going into the future.
Part of the considerations in planning the lower deck design was to provide the kind of large head space found on MJM’s 53-footer to this boat as well and I have to agree with this line of thinking. With the concept calling for a top-of-the-line couples-cruiser, and arrangements for family or guests, it would make sense for the rest of the accommodations to be conceived around this idea.
Continuing with this vision, the aesthetics of this model are something I took particular note of and again, especially on the way Peters and the MJM team handled outfitting a boat of this size both outside, inside, and when on the water. On all counts, she hits the marks dead on.
There’s no doubt the MJM 42 is a well-balanced, beautiful to look at boat in harmony with her environment. Her aforementioned and distinctive classic Carolina Downeast flared lines, soft tumblehome, beautiful fit-and-finished woodwork everywhere, and raised trunk cabin, easily indicating outstanding headroom below, is a proper invitation to discover more.
To begin with, eliminating the traditional port side ‘co-pilot’s’ station inside on the main deck— a deck by the way, that is level from the transom to the helm—not only increases the seating there but also allows direct, mid-line access to the two-cabin accommodations below with a forward-looking design sure to be incorporated on future MJM projects.
Upon entering, you are greeted by a spacious ‘salon-like’ seating area. Here, as with all the living and entertaining spaces aboard, you will find more than ample storage for those times, and there will be many, away from the dock on extended cruising adventures.
The exceptional design-strokes continue with the Peters and MJM team collaboration figuring out how to make the best out of the 12-foot beam. The solution they came up with incorporates both accommodations areas and offers the choice to combine the spaces or keep them separate.
The unique design here, by opening up the forward doors, creates one spacious area. The first large door to starboard gets you into the queen berth while the one closest to the bow leads to the head.
Extended hull and trunk cabin windows allow for plenty of ambient light to enter the spacious forepeak stateroom, here seen looking aft with the doors to both amidships suite and head in the open position.
This design results in the kind of attention to detail everyone involved in the MJM 42’s interior wanted and were quite satisfied with the outcome.
With every new build, it all starts with construction and again, as with every detail aboard, it was well thought out, planned, and executed using the latest techniques, materials, and careful attention to detail, all on the cutting edge of design and engineering.
Hull designs, materials, and a new set of manufacturing practices are all incorporated into the MJM 42. With vacuum epoxy infusion put under 2,000 lbs/square foot of pressure, the result is a 30% epoxy to 70% E-glass ratio. That in turn brings about 35% less weight and 25% better mechanical properties. And once that is completed, she is baked in an oven before being individually painted in dedicated, climate-controlled cleanrooms.
On the performance side, all of Peters’ calculations called for a 50-mph rate of speed. And to that end, several power options are offered. The first are a pair of Mercury 600-hp outboards while inboard Volvo Penta 400- or 440-hp twin sterndrives completes the offering.
No matter which MJM model I have been on, I have always been impressed at how its design makes maximum use of all available space. To begin, one only has to look at the layout of the indoor/outdoor, all-weather pilothouse. Surrounded by super large sliding windows to port and starboard, a glass entry door and fold-up window aft, and electrically-operated forward windows, this entire space not only allows for a light and airy experience but for excellent views while underway or at that special sunset anchorage.
This space also provides a comfortable area for entertaining and relaxing after a day’s voyage even if you have invited another couple to join you on a particular adventure. With the galley to starboard and an adjoining hi-lo table, the full-size couch to port offers plenty of comfortable seating. The galley up design keeps everyone in the fun, even when preparing drinks and meals.
Stepping out of the glass sliding door from the salon allows for safe and easy access to the aft seating area. With wraparound seating to port, this space provides an excellent spot from which guests can enjoy the passing scenery while underway or yet another comfortable extension of the salon given the ability to open up the glass door and aft window. And a huge deck hatch here affords entry into the machinery space or, aboard the outboard-powered model, a sizable storage lazarette.
The well-built, highly engineered MJM 42 possesses a timeless yachting style, has rugged offshore capability, and shows stunning Carolina Downeast styling, all resulting in the latest evolution of couples liveaboard performance cruising. But knowing how things at MJM develop, and using the perceptive Shakespearean quote that, “What’s past is prologue,” is sure to be the first of many innovative designs that will, as this boat has, set new limits for the company to achieve. No doubt they will.
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