photos & details from Alan Craig ex Ken Ricketts, rewritten by Alan H

Well folks I now know the first boat I will be checking out at the 2016 Lake Rotoiti Classic Wooden Boat Parade 🙂

Manowai has spent the the last year tucked away in boat builder, Alan Craig’s boat shed, Alan has recently taken over the former shed of Tony Mitchell at Lake Rotoiti.

Ken has known the boat for over 70 years, first going aboard when he was around 8 years old.

Alan Craig advises that Manowai  is 32′ with an 8′ beam & now owned by Lake Rotoiti local Dennis Walsh, Dennis intends to keep the launch on the lake where she will be a stunning additional to the classic fleet.. Dennis bought her off a Mr Andy Culpin of Hampton Downs. It is understood he had kept her in a shed  for approx. 2 years & had started the restoration work & Alan has spent the last 12 months working on her. The target for relaunching is prior to Christmas 2015.
Alan commented that when purchased by Dennis Walsh she was powered by a BMC Commander, 4 cyl diesel, this is being replaced with a much lighter, brand new,  4 cyl. 40 hp Lombardini diesel, similar to what powers the launch Marjorie Rosa (ex Juliana) which also resides on Lake Rotoiti.

From the photos, the finish looks outstanding & given its been achieved just with elbow grease, lots of sandpaper & putty is a credit to Alan the boat builder.

Alan Craig has asked for help in sourcing  early photos of her & any info from previous owners.  The original builder & launch date are own known.

MANOWAI update ex Colin Brown via Ken Ricketts.edited by Alan H

Until today, I did not know that Colin B had significant roll in the refurbishment programme on MANOWAI.

He first became involved with her about 2003, when she was owned by Ralph Power & worked on her for an 8 year period in total, with around 3 years in his shed at Kumeu & also in the shed in McLeod Rd, Te Atatu South. During this period she changed hands from Ralph P., to Andy Culpin who sold her to Dennis Walsh.

The work included replacing the planking “hood ends” where the planking is fixed to the stem, with a new apron & new big pohutukawa stem knee. He also replaced most of the interior, except the middle section, where the engine was fitted over about a 3 year period

Colin told Ken he believes she was built by Bailey & Lowe in 1921


14 thoughts on “Manowai

  1. Pingback: MANOWAI – Gets A Visit To The Beauty Shop | #1 for classic wooden boat stories, info, advice & news – updated daily

  2. Yes it was a 4cyl 55HP BMC . I owned her for a number of years then sold her to Andy. Colin B carried out work to the hull for me then worked for Andy. I will look her up when I next visit Rotorua. It looks like a very beautiful job has been done. Regards Ralph P.


  3. Yes you are right it was a 4 cyl, 55 hp. BMC. I owned and worked on her before selling her to Andy. Colin B restored the hull for me before I sold her. She was a beaut, craft and it looks like she has found a good home. Next time I get to Rotorua I will look her up. Regards Ralph P


  4. She looks beautiful, as to provenance her hull looks remarkably similar to my David Reid built boat Waiata circa 1913 also 32 x 8 ‘ > Just speculating !


  5. Jason,it may not have been a Commander, but I can vouch for BMC making a 6 cylinder motor that was marinised. I threw a pair of them out of Mahanui when we did a major on her in 2012.


  6. Oh Ed – did you not see the foils in the dim recesses of the shed? They make up for the change in buoyancy going to fresh water apparently.


  7. When Andy had her in one of his sheds in Henderson, I felt she just needed someone to grab her as the bones were good, modern engines make these old girls go like they were designed to, without too much stress on the fabric, another sporty one Jase?


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