WAITOA – Sailing Sunday


WAITOA – Sailing Sunday

Waitoa is a yacht from Ken Ricketts childhood,the  photo above was taken by him in Islington Bay, during a night stopover on route to Kawau Island pre Christmas 1952.Ken recalls she was an F class but is unsure of the designer / builder. She may have been a Woollacott, but she doesn’t show on the Woollacott list.
When Ken knew the yacht (1955-60’s) she was owned by Fred McGehan of Mt Albert. Ken sailed to Kawau on her once at Christmas c1953-55, to catch up with his parents on the family launch Juliana.
Any of the woodys able to advise more details on Waitoa & what became of her?

Harold Kidd Input – 28 footer WAITOA F10 des. Bob Stewart built by Phil Barton 1947-8, so she’s a good ‘un. I saw her in 2005 at Nelson.


I was recently sent the photos below from Bob Cofer who resides in Bellingham, Washington, USA. Bob pro-formed a top chop on his 1972 Grand Banks ‘Ebbtide’ – if you ever need proof that going topless is the cool thing to do – check out the before & after shots 😉



18 thoughts on “WAITOA – Sailing Sunday

  1. Pingback: Waitoa F10 | waitematawoodys.com #1 for classic wooden boat stories, info, advice & news

  2. The photo is not the Waitoa.The Waitoa was owned by my father Merv and his brother Ron. I have photos of the Waitoa on launch day at the Royal Akarana and various photos of her sailing on Auckland Habour. I also have photos of other yachts from the early 50,s including some o the A class fleet on Regatta Day ifanyone is interested


  3. Hi Guys the yacht in Question is definitely not Waitoa, Waitoa was a sistership to Anita, Bob Stewart’s first design. Waitoa was rigged as a cutter with inner forestay tacked down to the bow not out on the bowsprit. Waitoa also didn’t have the dog house added and cabin top raised until Gordon Reynolds ownership at shelly Park Howick approximately 1970. I also feel this boat pictured is a Wollacott and not a Bob Stewart design as Waitoa is. Waitoa was not built by Phil Barton although this rumor does seem to persist but I believe he may have been an advisor the boat was built by Charlie Hardman who had a yard under where the current harbour bridge approach road is at St Mary’s Bay. Waitoa was launched 1947. I have a number of Box Brownie pictures of launch day and various cruises around the Hauraki Gulf. Waitoa was also not owned by Fred but was owned by his two sons eldest son Merv and youngest son Ron.


  4. I owned Sheryl for a long time and then my son. I’m pretty sure it is Sheryl in the photo. I have photos of the same vintage of Sheryl. Not much Stewart in that one I’m afraid.


  5. I’m a bit worried about what Ken was up to “overnighting in Issy Bay” on WAITOA.
    Tous les chats sont gris par nuit, peutetre?


  6. There are a lot of pictures of her being launched and sailed over the years, its Sheryl, or to have it Kens way someone copied her exactly, down to the bowsprit chain plates, sliding windows, scuppers in the toe rails etc etc.


  7. The first Kiwi boat with a doghouse as far as I know, and as such a piece of history – so well proportioned. Mac Taylor, Mays st Devonport 1945
    Having spent weeks sanding that hull and living aboard and noting the many differences to the other ‘Sheryls’ (she is two skin Kauri) I know her rather well.


  8. I was overnighting in Issy Bay on her, & I took the picture whilst there, so I know for certain what boat it is. — I have never heard of Sheryl.– KEN R


  9. 28 footer WAITOA F10 des. Bob Stewart built by Phil Barton 1947-8, so she’s a good ‘un. I saw her in 2005 at Nelson.


  10. Much nicer with the flying bridge as intended. Think Bahamas/ Jaws sport fishing, it’s a classic look. Looks like a landing pad now without the mast and other gear on roof.


  11. My guess at the little keeler is Bob Stewart as the designer.
    As to the chopped small Grand Banks, I’d disagree. The flying bridge is part of the original design and IMO suits the style. Chopping the flying bridge off is practical only when, as here you can step out on deck from the helm (If you look closely at the upper shot you can see the side door open on the port side. IMO her looks haven’t been improved by the chopping. I believe that in the US this style of upperworks is called “Euro” (because of the sunken side decks) rather than “Sedan”.


  12. Hard to tell her LOA but to me she looks like a 22 footer of the Sheryl class. Quite pretty and I do think the dog house is well designed


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