Avalon – Sam Ford Launch
A friend of mine was working last week on an Auckland property and spotted the above woody on a neighbouring property. Being a friendly chap he introduced himself to the property owner, who god bless her is well into her 80’s and lives alone. The boat has been in the family since the 1970’s and she and her late husband used to cruise the gulf in her. She even went solo after he passed away 🙂
What we know is that the owner is fairly certain the launch is a Sam Ford, 24’ in length but the husband added a few feet to the stern.
Prior to being hauled out she was kept on a swing mooring in the Beachhaven Wharf area. She may have been named Avalon.
Note the ‘eyebrow’ over both sets of forward facing windows – its an often over looked feature that really adds a salty look to the right vessel.
I’m interested in ID’ing the launch and also agreeing on the design / builder – I’ll be shot down in flames, but to my eye, she has a hint of Couldrey to her. Nathan H………….. help me 🙂
Now the interesting thing is, to the right buyer, she could possibly be acquired. Price tba but you wouldn’t need to see the bank manager for a loan 😉
I have kept names and boat location out of the story – the last thing the owner wants is a stampede of people knocking on her door.
Input from Cameron Pollard – She is a Sam Ford and named Avalon. 1954 launch day photo below.
WAIWHETU – Sailing Sunday
The 30’ keeler – Waiwhetu, was built in 1965 by Des Townson and his father in Des’s Morrin Road factory for Tulloch Kebbell. She was launched 31st January 1966.
Tulloch Kebbell owned her for 48 years, selling her to the current owner Blu Steven in Feb 2014.
Blu commented that these days she has a Drofin 12hp diesel twin engine (that replaced the original Ford petrol unit) and he has added several of mod cons such as a VHF radio, GPS unit, twin battery setup, new water tanks, wiring, engine mounts, stern gland, and a fire extinguisher, but Blu has deliberately kept it as close as practicable to how it was in the 1960’s. That means hanked-on head sails, below deck anchor storage (no windlass or even a bow-roller), and an ancient gas stove (that replaced the original Primus).
Waiwhetu is a darling to sail, and has a very good motion and can be balanced to provide a neutral helm that will track in a straight line while conditions are stable.
Refer below the original copy of the – specification of materials, work and payments – if to hard to read – below is a link to a viewable PDF file.
SS ALICE SOS
Yesterday I was contacted by Paul Drake in regard to the 26′ steam ship Alice. Alice has been sitting on trademe for over a year, crying out for a buying.
She appeared on WW back in Feb 2019 –
Paul told me their local paper – the Taupo Times yesterday ran a feature on the boat and the owners desire to find a good home for her.
Alice is from the Kaipara and was completely and very thoroughly rebuilt by a partnership at Taupo in the 1990’s. Paul’s brother Michael was one of the partners.
Paul commented that she is a remarkably successful boat of her type but needs TLC to get her going again.
Remarkably she carries no ballast – the heavy boiler sits in just the right place
longitudinally and sits her down to her marks perfectly.
She is beamier than many of her ilk which makes her a very good load carrier and very stable.
The owner is currently in Taupo (from UK) for not much more than a week, and intends to see her off before he leaves. So woodys – sounds like a bargain.
Would be a perfect candidate for a berth at the CYA’s Heritage Landing – but my spies tell me that venue may / will be lost to the waterfront redevelopments.
Sally has just popped up on tme (thanks Ian McDonald) her listing is a tab light on details. We know that she is 26’ in length, has a 8′ beam and draws 3’6”. Power comes via Ford Dexter 36hp diesel engine. Built from single skin kauri.
Her owner believes that she was built c.1930’s in Wellington for the Harbour Company (Board?), probably as a work boat. Currently based in Picton.
Can anyone tell us anymore about Sally?
Several woodys (Barbara Cook – Waitemata, and Dean Wright – Bay of Islands) have sent in photos of Stargazer mooching around our waters.
Stargazer is a tender to a sailing super yacht. For us Kiwis calling a 75’5’ vessel, powered by twin 925hp Scania engines a tender is a bit of a stretch 🙂 but with the upcoming Americas Cup regatta we will be seeing a lot more of these beasts in and around the Hauraki Gulf.
Stargazer was launched in 2019, built by Claasen Shipyard and their sister yard Vitters Shipyard working with the navel architects – Hoek Design.
Built from aluminium, she has a beam of and draws 4’9”. The twin Scania engines give her a top speed of 25 knots, but most Stargazer cruises at 15 knots. But Barbara reports she easily pulls two water skiers.
Link below for construction details and photos.