Cara Mia


CARA MIA

photos & details ex Ken Ricketts & trademe

Cara Mia, 37.7 ft, was built by Maurice Palmer at Devonport in 1961 & has a 6 cyl. 120h.p. Mitsubishi diesel, present owner has had her for 10 years. Currently for sale on trademe, it might take a while to sell – the listing only says “This boat is for sale. Make an offer” 🙂

On first viewing Ken saw her as a classic 1950’s McCeady, but the owner has strong evidence she is not + the bow portholes are “rounded” at the ends & McGeady’s were always oblong.

The two boat photo is Cara Mia & Arohanui in Coromandel Harbour in 2006

Harold Kidd Update

CARA MIA (proper spelling – fixed) was indeed built by Maurice Palmer of Devonport in 1961 for T. Harrison. She was 36′ x 34’3″ x 10’3″ x 2’9″. Later owners included R.M. Waite and L.W. Moore in Auckland. There was also a CARA MIA gamefishing from Tutukaka owned by Ray Dinsdale but I’m pretty certain it’s another boat.

This CARA MIA’s original engine was a 100hp Fordson diesel.

Palmer was well regarded as a designer/boatbuilder. Included in the yachts he built were the 22ft mullet boats STARDUST (I) and CONTROVERSY and the Stewart 34 PANIA.

 27/10/2014 – Chris McMullen Update

I was Morrie Palmers only apprentice. First at his house in Meola Rd Point Chevalier. He then moved his boatbuilding operation to 15 Clarence St Devonport. He purchased an old house that I believe had been the Police Station. He removed all the interior walls as the boats got bigger. The Council building inspectors were not happy. Cara Mia was built in the this old house. She was one of two built drawn by Morrie but definitely based on a Billy Rogers design.  I remember Morrie telling me about the advantages of the Rogers flam bow in a launch.  He said ” Only Aircraft carriers have flared bows.” I guess (now) he was referring to “Wirihana”.  The Flam Bow has more room in a small displacement launch and contrary to what you may think, the extra buoyancy is better in a big head sea. At the time I was only interested in Mullet Boats but I remember most of what he told me. Years later from my own experience. I believe he was right. And yes, We did use large Kauri demolition timber from the Rutland St Drill Hall but not for planking. I did about half my apprenticeship with Morrie until he closed the doors, the balance with Max Carter.  Two very good hard working and knowledgeable Tradesmen. I was very fortunate to be an apprentice Wood boat builder in the early 1960’s.when you could still get good Kauri.

11 thoughts on “Cara Mia

  1. Pingback: Lady Ethel | waitematawoodys.com #1 for classic wooden boat stories, info, advice & news

  2. I personally have wonderful memories and stories of Cara mia when the Moore family owner her. We travelled far and wide in an Auckland Woodie convey on many great family vacations. One story is a 9 hour trip back from Fitzroy to the bottom on Waiheke – large walls of green water, myself, Linsday and a bottle or two of Teachers. She is a great family boat and extremely sea worthy – well done to the builder.

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  3. I was Morrie Palmers first and only apprentice. First at his house in Meola Rd Point Chevalier. He then moved his boatbuilding operation to 15 Clarence St Devonport. He purchased an old house that I believe had been the Police Station. He removed all the interior walls as the boats got bigger. The Council building inspectors were not happy. Cara Mia was built in the this old house. She was one of two built drawn by Morrie but definitely based on a Billy Rodgers design. I remember Morrie telling me about the advantages of the Rodgers flam bow in a launch. He said ” Only Aircraft carriers have flared bows.” I guess (now) he was referring to “Wirihana”. The Flam Bow has more room in a small displacement launch and contrary to what you may think, the extra buoyancy is better in a big head sea. At the time I was only interested in Mullet Boats but I remember most of what he told me. Years later from my own experience. I believe he was right. And yes, We did use large Kauri demolition timber from the Rutland St Drill Hall but not for planking. I did about half my apprenticeship with Morrie until he closed the doors, the balance with Max Carter. Two very good hard working and knowledgeable Tadesmen. I was very fortunate to be an apprentice Wood boat builder in the early 1960’s.when you could still get good Kauri.

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  4. We are the current owner of Cara Mia and the last owner has informed us that his research prior to purchasing his vessel was:

    ‘Lindsay Moore (Accountant) owned her 1968-1975,

    Maury Palmer built her in Devonport. He told me before he died( he was in
    his late eighties) that he got the kauri for her from demolishing some
    1860’s army barracks for the Auckland City Council. The keel is from one
    stick of 12’x4′. Normally keels were two pieces.

    I’m not sure who he built her for but he mentioned a name Price? A garage
    proprietor in Grey’s Avenue?’

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  5. Not so, according to the APYMBA records at the time she was built. There’s no doubt that Morrie Palmer built her, but it’s always possible that there was some input from Billy Rogers in her design. After all Palmer and Rogers knew each other well and Billy was hugely respected and influential around St. Mary’s Bay. Also, that photograph that Harrison showed Morrie could well have been of a Rogers boat.

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  6. I would like you all to know that Caramia is a Billy Rogers design and I under stand built I was one of her owners for a few years.

    Michael Chopping

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  7. I should have been working and filling in time sheets this morning, but, having established that Morrie Palmer died last year, I got hold of his widow, Vivienne, though Errol Fensom. She was a Bagnall………..enough said. So what she told me is gospel. She knew Pam McGeady very well (Mac’s daughter who was badly burnt when Mac’s Sam Ford bridgedecker LADY PAM blew up) and visited Mac’s yard at least once a week for some years with Pam.
    Harrison approached Morrie with a photograph of a launch and instructed Morrie to “build me one like that”. Vivienne is sure she would have known if it was a McGeady launch, but doesn’t think it was. Anyway, Morrie drew the lines and built it.
    BTW Morrie served his time with Collings & Bell and had Cal Crooks working for him and Chris McMullen as an apprentice, so there as plenty of quality work done.

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  8. I have very little doubt, that CAR MIA is a MacGeady design — refer my recent post on the ANTARES — KEN RICKETTS

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  9. Palmer was well regarded as a designer/boatbuilder. Included in the yachts he built were the 22ft mullet boats STARDUST (I) and CONTROVERSY and the Stewart 34 PANIA.

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  10. CARA MIA (proper spelling) was indeed built by Maurice Palmer of Devonport in 1961 for T. Harrison. She was 36′ x 34’3″ x 10’3″ x 2’9″. Later owners included R.M. Waite and L.W. Moore in Auckland. There was also a CARA MIA gamefishing from Tutukaka owned by Ray Dinsdale but I’m pretty certain it’s another boat.
    This CARA MIA’s original engine was a 100hp Fordson diesel.

    Like

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