This weekend is the last chance to experience ’Sculpture on the Gulf’ on Waiheke Island, I’ll be doing the 2km walk that features 26 new sculptures along the stunning Waiheke coastline including Oneroa village and surrounds. Organisers say to allow around 2 hrs to enjoy the walk.
Woody Angus Rogers snapped the above photos of Rebecca last weekend, built by legendary kiwi artist Jeff Thomson from corrugated iron and to quote Jeff “she references early NZ classic yacht designs and the long history of boats moored at Matiatia and elsewhere around Waiheke Island”.
She was inspired by her namesake Rebecca, a 1902 gaff-rigged yacht, now sailing under her original name – Dolphin (see link below for more info & photos) https://tinorawatrust.co.nz/dolphin
Note: no woodys library would be complete without a copy of the book ‘Rebecca – The restoration of an old yacht’ (cover below) by the late yachtsman, artist and educator – Peter Smith. I currently own 4 copies, whenever I see a copy for sale (on-line or in a secondhand book shop) I grab it. They make great gifts.
As part of a recent email exchange with Mark Powell, Mark sent me the above photos from the launching of Florence Rose launching at the Chas Bailey and Sons yard.
In a previous WW post Gil Littler confirmed that Florence Rose was designed by Billy Rogers and built at Bailey’s in the 1960’s while he was serving his apprenticeship there. Gil was given the job of lofting her out and making up the frames before Kenny Hitchens (and other tradesmen) became involved in her construction. The hull was built on the mezzanine floor before being brought down to the slipway level by a large forklift to be finished off.
Gil believes she was built for Harry Rose, which we now know is correct, in the photo below we have Mark Powell’s mother, Joan Powell, with Mark in short pants and the gent on the helm is Harry Rose.
I took the 2nd photo below of Flo Ro in October 2013 in Station Bay, Motutapu Island.
Today’s story features the Chas Bailey built steam tug Hipi and comes to us from Mick Kelly via Harold Kidd. Mick was prompted to write by a recent article by HDK in Boating New Zealand.
Mick commented that Hipi ran aground just south of Whangamata in the mid 1970s. He used to own the farm adjoining the beach where this occurred. The previous owner of the farm was called in the middle of the night to rescue the crew. For his efforts he was presented with the ship’s wheel, which he attached to the bar in his house.
The story as Mick remembers it was that she was towing a barge with a digger to pinch sand off the beaches in the area, and it all went a bit pear shaped. A local bought the wreck, and bulldozed a track down onto the beach. He cut off the metal superstructure and towed the hull up to where he could salvage the engine/s which Mick imagines had replaced the original steam engine.
Mick salvaged a few brass fittings, and some bits of Kauri decking which he incorporated into the first launch he built. He also used the hardwood keel timber for a beam in the shed he built on the farm.
Update from John Bullivant – ‘newer’ photo below, she was built by Baileys in 1909 and was converted to twin Gardner 8L3s at some stage (apparently)
Input from Baden Pascoe – Hipi was built in 1909 for Nelson Bros who owned the Tomoana Freezing Works as a lighter tug. In these days Gisborne had no deep water port so the frozen sheep carcases were loaded into insulated lighters and towed out to the roadstead. Initially she had two Simpson Strickland triple expansion steam engines and later replaced with a set of compound engines. The photo above with a wheel house fitted was after a major refit at WG Lowe & Son in 1933. The steam engines were removed and two Petter Atomic T25/2m diesel engines of 50 hp each were fitted. She then returned to Gisborne to carry out the same duties. By this time Nelson Bros had bought into the Kaiti Freezing Works and formed Gisborne Lightering and Stevedoring Co Ltd and their tugs and lighters assets transferred over. During the WWII she came back to Auckland as she was loaned/sold to the NZ Navy to work the submarine nets protecting the Auckland Harbour and based at Islington Bay. After the war she was sold by tender to Parry Bros, a well-known local owner of scows and the tug Glyn Bird. They phased out their scow fleet and replaced them with tugs and barges. Their early tugs were, Glyn Bird, Lady Eva, Hipi, Sibyl (now owned by the Pollards). They removed the Petters and replace them with two Kelvin K4’s of 88 hp each. As the old wooden barges become too small or became too hard to maintain they replaced them with steel barges. Hipi’s barge was Onewaka with a capacity of about 500 ton. She was employed on the sand run to Parengarenga and sometimes carried superphosphate to Te Paki Station with a supply landing at Parengarenga Harbour. The Kelvins were replaced with twin 8L3 Gardners of 150 hp making her the fastest tug on that run and their flag ship. I first saw Hipi in about 1964 while she was delivering super from Tauranga. My father knew one of the crew and I can remember boarding her and stepping over the very high wheel house combing. While she was returning to Tauranga from unloading at Whitianga in March 1976 she went aground below the cliffs at Papakura Bay as mentioned by Mick. The boys had spent the afternoon in the pub, had too much to drink and after a few hours bunked down and put the youngest crew member on the wheel. He too eventually fell asleep and was woken when she drove her self between a rock ledge with the Onewaka trailing behind. At this stage she was not making any water and was basically uninjured. Before they could get her off the wind came up and she became a total loss. They went ashore phoned Buster (Norman) Parry to inform him of the grounding. The farmer looked after the crew until the next day when Buster and Keith Penney the operations manager arrived. I understand her skipper George Little was already in Buster & Keith’s bad book and he was sacked on the spot. Ask any of the old school tug masters and crew and they will tell you about Hipi. She was the superstar wooden tug. Mick, have you a photo of her wheel?
The painting below artist is unknow and was gifted to Baden Pascoe by Keith Penney
If you believe her trade listing the above 33’ launch is a McGeedy design and built in 1956. McGeedy’s a new name to me, spelling maybe? Or maybe I’m slow off the mark.
Typical broker listing e.g. no mention of the vessel’s name and no details on the motor.
All that aside a nice boat.
Update: Ken Ricketts has advised the launch is Arcturus built by Supreme Craft, (Mac McGeady) in the late 1940s or early 1950s (refer below) for Mr & Mrs John Warren.
She was originally powered by a 4 cyl Buda diesel which he replaced, by approx. 3>4 years later, by a 6 cyl Ford diesel. The Buda had been installed by Tracey Nelson, as were the majority of the McGeady boats.
She was however built several years before 1956, as John Warren sold the Buda to Ken’s father in 1956, who put it in the Juliana that year, when he sold her, which replaced a 6 cyl Leyland diesel. (edited by Alan H)
Input from Harold Kidd
The name is ARCTURUS. She was partly built by McGeady’s company Supreme Craft in November 1950 for John Warren of Mission Bay who finished her off at home and eventually launched her in late 1952 (Sea Sprays of November 1950 and March 1953). Her lines were in the November 1950 issue. Named amend AH
Following on from the stunning WW post on the McMullen & Wing built 74’ brigantine – Fritha, Chris McMullen has shared with us a gallery of photos from the build.
In Chris’s words – it shows a bunch of mainly young guys building a proper sailing ship. Chris commented how lucky they all were to have had that opportunity. The photos should be credited to M&W ex apprentice Grant Thomas who was the leading hand on Fritha.
The Fritha was built traditionally but certainly not by eye. You may notice the cabin trunks were well underway before the hull was planked. This was possible because M&W had a very experienced team. The workmanship got better every boat they built but the estimate of time was exceeded. (Chris stressed how lucky they were to have an understanding owner who appreciated what he got). Further, it became almost impossible to get good wood. Chris’s business partner Eric Wing was by then running their haul out yard at Westhaven.
Sadly “Fritha” was the last real boat M&W built. M&W was sold and became a ship yard rather than a boatyard.
While most people associate M&W as metal boat builders, Chris said that they did that, as we had to. There is nothing wrong with a wooden boat providing it is built properly of good timber. There was no wood left so it was metal or frozen snot. They chose to build metal boats but employed mainly woodworkers.
Chris would like to pass on thanks to the late owner of “Fritha” Mr JR Butland and the loyal team he had that built some beautiful yachts.
1962 Woody Ski Boat – Coastguard Wanaka Lakes Funding Help
As passionate boaties we are all very aware of the funding needs of the Coastguard, todays story is about a unique woody funding opportunity.
The Wanaka Lakes CG have been given a mint 1962 wooden ski boat, with original Mercury 2-stroke 50hp outboard. It is in very good condition and was supposedly the first ski boat on Lake Wanaka. It’s been stored very well for the last 20+ years and looking at the above photos appears ready to go boating.
I understand the owner has said that he would like GC to be able to sell the boat and have the proceeds as a donation. The family of the current owner had the boat built in Dunedin, but can’t remember the boatbuilder. He also said that there was an article on Whizz Ski Galore in a NZ boating magazine in the 1960’s or 1970’s.
If any woodys are looking for an easy manageable classic woody – contact David Balls on 027 517 6866 or email email@example.com