Woody Speedboat – Help Wanted

1930’s Speedboat – Help Wanted

Serious woody boat restorer, Peter Murton contacted WW with an update on a recent boat shed find, I’ll let Peter tell the story – he is also on the hunt for some ‘bits’ to complete the project.I have posted two photos below of a 1895 fantail clinker work boat / launch that Peter restored, it had spent 25 years as a garden feature before Peter saved her – proof that the mans not afraid of a challenge 🙂

“We pulled the old girl above out of a shed in Ngakuta Bay in the Sounds. She is 18′ x 5’, probably late 1940’s, but there is talk she could be as old as the mid 1920’s. Have been told she was built in Dunedin, she is all kauri. She is very lightly built with canvas covered decks, planks are all 1/2″-12.5mm thick, frames are all 5/8-16mm thick. Seam battens on all planks and under decks are all copper riveted. Her frames are brass screw fastened with 1/8th 3mm iron brackets to brace the chine joint and one bolt on the vertical frame into chine rail deck framing. Has 1/8th- 3mm iron brackets holding some framing members in place, rudder is iron. Shaft is stainless steel with a thrust bearing mounted on the inboard end, shaft is stepped at the bearing and a iron bracket supports it on engine beds. She would have been direct drive, she has two shaft holes forward one is oldest. The aft shaft hole has been hacked in very roughly done. Looks like she had a re-power and had to shift the shaft aft to accommodate new motor.”

Wanted to complete this project

• Kauri Planks 8×1 for planking and frames

• Flathead V8 or flathead or straight 6 with or without gearbox 

• Windscreen hardware crome center and side brackets

• Rudder is transom hung we are missing the steering pulleys that mounted on each side of the transom to guide the cables on to the rudder arm

06-09-2020 Input from Peter Krans – Peter sent in the photos below of the speed boat Miss Waikawa which Peter commented that while nothing confirms Peter Murton’s shed find is Miss Waikawa, they are a similar size and shape… Peter M may be able to tell if his boat once had a dickie seat.Peter K thinks that Miss Waikawa was built immediately after the war, she was sold about 1958 to 1960 after the family head passed away. Possibly sold to the Fishburn’s at Drydans bay.There is quite some story attached to her, but all those who had first hand knowledge are no longer with us. The second shaft outlet is a bit of a clue, story goes that there was a hunger for speed, and a pair of post WW2 trainer aircraft were purchased from Woodborne, and one on the engines was fitted. Miss Waikawa had her own boat shed by what is now the old rowing club. The aircraft sat in a paddock in Waikawa bay for a number of years next to what is now Findlay Grove. Peter Beech who has commented on here may also have some recollection.

RSVP waitematawoodys@gmail.com

9 thoughts on “Woody Speedboat – Help Wanted

  1. No, not the Miss Waikawa…. Dick will know for certain. Neat old boat none the less, shame she is on the bottom.

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  2. Not Miss Waikawa. She lies at the bottom of Queen Charlotte Sound after being run over by the Rio Rita. The Fishburn boys shot in front of the then mail boat and the V8 stopped at the wrong moment

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  3. I have sent some photos to Allan to post here, nothing confirms it is the Miss Waikawa that I can see although similar size and shape… Peter may be able to tell if his once had a Dickie seat.
    We think the Miss Waikawa was built immediately after the war, She was sold about 1958 to 1960 after the family head passed away. Possibly sold to the Fishburn’s at Drydans bay.

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  4. We are looking for some old photos at the moment, there is a possibility she may be the “Miss Waikawa” I have seen photos of her on the water. The family that owned her back then had her built. There is quite some story attached to her, but all those who had first hand knowledge are no longer with us. The second shaft outlet is a bit of a clue, story goes that there was a hunger for speed, and a pair of post WW2 trainer aircraft were purchased from Woodborne, and one on the engines was fitted. Miss Waikawa had her own boat shed by what is now the old rowing club. The aircraft sat in a paddock in Waikawa bay for a number of years next to what is now Findlay Grove… more to come as we search the family archives. Peter Beech who has commented on here may also have some recollection.

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  5. This is very similar to my boat which at the moment is called Comet, although I was suggested it was a comet design from the 30s Ive since got the original plans for this design and worked out its not. Search comet on WW. My boat has nearly identical construction method to this.

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  6. There are heaps of Ngakuta Bays, at least 3 in the Sounds, but I’m guessing this is the one in Queen Charlotte Sound’s Grove Arm? If so, given that location, the name “El Legato” sprang from one of my few functioning memory cells. Just a guess based on a dim and distant memory.

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  7. Hi
    I don’t have any Kauri to speak of but l have plenty of Lawson Cypress clears in 8×1 or if you wanted a colour match then Macrocarpa is available from us at Ruapehu Sawmills.
    Regards
    Vaughan

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