Rangiora

RANGIORA

photos & details Karen Moren & Harold Kidd

The above b/w photo of Rangiora was sent in by Mac McGeady’s grand daughter Karen Moren ex her mother Lyn McGeady, Mac was her father in law. Karen gathered the story below a couple of years ago from one of McGeady’s apprentices – Ben Hipkins.
“Mac’s condition deteriorated and he was very confused and at this time we received an order from Gordon Collie for a 48ft bridge deck Motor Launch. Mac still had the ability to design the hull. This boat was too big to build in Summer Street, so we built the backbone and frames in the factory and built the boat in a shed supplied by Mr. Collie on a poultry farm at Pakuranga.
Gary Wheeler and I built the hull from the deck level and Gordon and his cousin Ralph laid the decks and built the superstructure and furniture, a truly excellent job. The name of this boat was Rangiora”.
Harold told ww that Rangiora was built in 1964  & she was a breakthrough McGeady design with the substantial beam of 15′ on an overall length of 52′. Her original engines were twin Fords. Tony Vazey bought her in the 1980s and replaced the Fords with twin GM 4/51 supercharged diesels. He kept her at Westhaven, always absolutely immaculate as you can see from Harold colour photo below. In late 2001 Tony sold her to Nick Tansey of Wellington. These days she can readily be seen from the shore on her marina berth in Wellington, a very beautiful hull with totally aesthetically pleasing topsides.

 

02-04-2020 – Input from Brian Hewitt – My company Sea Services had the pleasure of owning Rangiora for 4 or 5 years, my business partner was Fred Keith and we bought Rangiora in Whangamata, she was owned by Stan who ran the local putt putt golf park beside the movie theatre, he was in the middle of a very messy divorce and had to sell her. She was very tired in the exterior but good and sound and we brought her to Auckland to the Shipbuilders slipway and rebuilt the decks, took all the brightwork back to clean timber and applied 8 coats of varnish, recaulked and repainted the hull using Transocean paints. We serviced the Ford engines including replacing the injectors, serviced all the pumps etc…replaced the funnel, beds and squabs, the toilet, radio, steering cables, carpet etc and she was quite a picture and gave us a lot of enjoyment. This included 2 seasons in the BOI with trips to Whangaroa, The Cavalli Islands, Poor Knights and Cape Brett, many trips to Barrier and Coromandel and 2 trips to Mayor Is. We had on-going overheating issues when under max revs as her heat exchangers were barely adequate when the engines were in their full glory, the engines were also slightly out of sync and we tried changing propellers, fine balancing the drive shafts and realigning the motors with new mounts but never really solved the issue. We were originally on ‘A’ marina then moved over to (I think T) when Westhaven expanded the southern side. Fred left Sea Services in the early 80’s and I was also getting divorced so we sold her to fund the business. Rangiora was a Lloyds Registered vessel (I think she was 36 tons). We sold her to Murray from Chanton Apparel who took the engines out and had them balanced, replaced the cable steering with dual hydraulic steering and I think it was Murray who also rebuilt the stern into a walk through transom. In reality Murray bought Rangiora for the marina as 18M marinas were very sought after and he had a new 54′ launch being built by Salthouse. I saw Rangiora some years later at Tutukaka and she looked fabulous, also saw her in Wellington 3 years ago still looking good. I live in France most of the year and have some photos there and will revert with them when I return to France. Brian Hewitt

30-04-2020 Update from Brian Hewitt“I’m back in France now and found my photo album that had some photos of Rangiora, I think we sold her in 1984. I also had an earlier 34′ launch called “Joel” built by Ship Builders, the new owners renamed her, I had a quick search and couldn’t find anything relating to her, is this a name anyone may have come across ?

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16 thoughts on “Rangiora

  1. There was a little more to the story, some our our pals mischievously called her “Miss Piggy” in honour of Prime Minister Rob Muldoon as it was his Export Incentive program pay out that paid for her. Sea Services as suppliers to international ships are registered exporters and there was a very generous tax incentive scheme running for 3 years, we all struggled to vote for Rob after his Government withdrew the program, though it was corporate welfare 🙂 Brian Hewitt

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  2. My company Sea Services had the pleasure of owning Rangiora for 4 or 5 years, my business partner was Fred Keith and we bought Rangiora in Whangamata, she was owned by Stan who ran the local putt putt golf park beside the movie theatre, he was in the middle of a very messy divorce and had to sell her. She was very tired in the exterior but good and sound and we brought her to Auckland to the Shipbuilders slipway and rebuilt the decks, took all the brightwork back to clean timber and applied 8 coats of varnish, recaulked and repainted the hull using Transocean paints. We serviced the Ford engines including replacing the injectors, serviced all the pumps etc…replaced the funnel, beds and squabs, the toilet, radio, steering cables, carpet etc and she was quite a picture and gave us a lot of enjoyment. This included 2 seasons in the BOI with trips to Whangaroa, The Cavalli Islands, Poor Knights and Cape Brett, many trips to Barrier and Coromandel and 2 trips to Mayor Is. We had on-going overheating issues when under max revs as her heat exchangers were barely adequate when the engines were in their full glory, the engines were also slightly out of sync and we tried changing propellers, fine balancing the drive shafts and realigning the motors with new mounts but never really solved the issue. We were originally on ‘A’ marina then moved over to (I think T) when Westhaven expanded the southern side. Fred left Sea Services in the early 80’s and I was also getting divorced so we sold her to fund the business. Rangiora was a Lloyds Registered vessel (I think she was 36 tons). We sold her to Murray from Chanton Apparel who took the engines out and had them balanced, replaced the cable steering with dual hydraulic steering and I think it was Murray who also rebuilt the stern into a walk through transom. In reality Murray bought Rangiora for the marina as 18M marinas were very sought after and he had a new 54′ launch being built by Salthouse. I saw Rangiora some years later at Tutukaka and she looked fabulous, also saw her in Wellington 3 years ago still looking good. I live in France most of the year and have some photos there and will revert with them when I return to France. Brian Hewitt

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  3. Rangiora was still running 120hp ford’s in the early 90s when Murray Wagstaff owned her. He was a family friend and we spent a few years cruising with him. At that stage she ws berthed on H pier at Halfmoon Bay. She was excellent in both a head and following sea, we had green waves over the windscreen a few times and an epic trip back from Cuviar which saw the inflatable flying like a kite out the back while being towed. He traded her when he purchased a property in Whitford down by the roundabout. He was living on her at McMullen and Wing when the boat next door caught fire and scorched the side of her there was an article in the Eastern Courier or the Howick and Pakuranga Times about it. He put the 2 wooden dinghys on not long before he sold her. Prior to that was an avon inflatable. An absolutely beautiful boat.

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  4. Apologies this post is a little late….been away for a week or two.
    On our return from our four month sabbatical in the Sounds back in 2004/5 we spent a week parked next to Rangiora at Chaffers marina in Wellington. At the time Mark Tansey rented a house with an enormous garage on the hill overlooking Oriental Bay for the sole purpose of keeping his collection of classic sports cars which he zoomed madly about Wellingtons narrow streets. He told us that Rangiora initially had a piano aboard which had been removed but the pink bath and ornate gold taps were still in place up forward. As one can see she’s a lovely charming vessel, well proportioned and solidly built. I believe Mark ended up living aboard. Not sure what became of the cars. I assume Rangiora is still in Wellington?

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  5. You got it: Inward rotating gives power and not such great twin engine manoeuvrability. But she had quite a broad section aft so there might not have been much of a problem. She has a single spade rudder and not much of it. Wonder what it was like in a following sea. Wow, plenty to hook ropes up on….

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  6. Just noticed that RANGIORA’S engines turned “in”, at the time the pic was taken, instead of the much more common rotation concept, of them turning “out.”– Not sure it this was with the Fords or GMs — unusual — KEN R

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  7. Further to Karen’s great input above, & the lovely pic taken on the apron at Okahu Bay, when I was talking to Ben the other day, we were chatting about the chicken farm, & that there were various opinions originally, as to where she was actually built, (refer original post on her) & he told me he had great recall & fond memories in a way of the shed, which was actually fairly ramshackle, & it either fell down, or they had to pull it down, after RANGIORA was finished. — KEN RICKETTS

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  8. Gordon Collie sold Rangiora in 1973, unfortunately she was almost lost the first time the new owners took her out when she ran into the Noises. on the night of 22.9.1973.

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  9. A good ship! Good that they used circular scuttles fwd. So many times in that modern era, they used rectangular ones and that, with the generally flatter sheers, tended to make them look a bit angular IMHO. Circles are softer……

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