Zircon

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ZIRCON
 
Zircon made her debut on WW back in November 2015, when she had been purchased by Kevin Peet. At the time Kevin knew very little about Zircon’s provenance, over the next 4 years with the help of several WW readers, mostly past owners, we have ‘unpeeled’ her past. You can read / view this at the WW link below, make sure you read the comments sections – lots of chat there. https://waitematawoodys.com/2015/11/04/zircon/
In a nut seal – she is 34’ in length, built by Phil Lange in 1964, carvel hull and is still powered by her original 130hp, Perkins 645 diesel engine.
 
Fast forward to last week (Jan. 2020) and I was contacted by Matt Fearnley whose 84 year old father, Don Fearnley, bought Zircon in the mid/late 1960’s and owner her until 1979. Matt lives in Perth and mentioned that he was catching up with his father and  would send in some details and photos from the Zircon’s past – I have reproduced Matt’s note to me below, enjoy the read 🙂
 
“Well I spent the afternoon reminiscing with Dad about the old boat – it almost brought a tear to his eye. Great stories that I’ve heard a million times before but never get tired of.
Anyway here’s what dad told me that may be of interest :
 
Dad bought the boat in 1965 from a bloke called Chamberlain from Chamberlains Island? (Probably Ponui from what I’ve read on your site). The boat was called ‘Bette’ after Chamberlain’s wife and had been used to pull the barge mentioned on your site, and also cart sheep to the island. According to Dad the boat had little use and was like new. He paid 4000 pound – and Mum didn’t know until a stranger knocked on her door to say Dad could have the boat! Those were the days. I’d be gelded if I tried that….
 
Dad renamed the boat Zircon for a simple reason – He was in the coast guard at the time and had a jet-boat he had built at night-school called ‘Zip’ (because it was fast! – photo below of Zip on the trailer behind the EH wagon). Dad had the only boat that started with ‘Z’ in the coast guard, and he liked that hence the new boat had to start with a ‘Z’ too. Hence the birth of Zircon. 
 
One of the photos shows ‘Bette’ at anchor on the Wade River just prior to purchase.
 
The boat was used for many search and rescues including one near Gt Barrier Island during a bad storm and some damage was sustained to the hull. The story goes that Dad and his mates secured Zircon to some trees at high tide and when the tide went out they were able to effect some running repairs – not bad considering it’s a 12 1/2 ton boat.
 
Dad had some mods done in Auckland (Milford) before we moved to the BOI where the boat became part of the family, used every weekend for family and the local dive club. More mods done around ’74- ’75 on Arthur Smith’s slip opposite Opua. Dad added the fore-deck and the faux flybridge (no steering or controls) plus some other general maintenance.
 
Mum and Dad bought a bach at Whangaruru in 1977 and after that the boat sat at the mooring in Opua to be used by seagulls only. It was a very sad day when it sold but we were glad to know it was being re-modeled at Ashby’s boatyard to be loved by a new family. 
 
Thanks for the site Alan. You’ve put a smile on Dads face and he loved looking at the new photos, and to know the new owners have kept the only ‘Z’ in the coast guard.
 
Hope the above answers some questions the new owners may have.
 
The photo below of Te Kouma, is a cracker – lots of woodys there, have asked Matt to check to see if a higher res version of the photo exists. 
If Kevin Peet still owns Zircon – sends us some photos 😉 
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Traveler

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TRAVELER TAUFALE

The 1931 L. C. Coultard built 31’ launch – Traveler has recently popped up on tme, another example of the number of wooden boats out there that are under the radar. She is a newbie to me.
Her hull is kauri planked and she is powered by a  1965, 70 hp, Ford (Lees) 2701E diesel engine (rebuilt). A nice entry level woody for someone looking at getting into classic wooden boating.
Can we expand on where she has been for the last 89 years?
OOPS SLIGHT BALLS UP. TRAVELER IS ACTUALLY TAUFALE. I DID THIS STORY FROM MY MOB PHONE SO  DID NOT SEE THE PHOTOS IN LARGE FORMAT. THE NAME TAUFALE IS ON THE NAME BOARDS. OWNER IS A DICKHEAD FOR USING THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE VERSION ON THE AD. I JUST ASSUMED IT WAS ANOTHER COULTARD LAUNCH. 
Taufale has appeared on ww before.

Woodys Cruising The Bay of Islands – Summer 2019/20 – Part One

 

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Linda – 1927 – Colin Wild

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Nautilus – Oliver & Gilpin

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Darleen – 1920 – Possibly Bailey & Lowe

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Echo – 1935 – Les Coulthard

 

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Thetis – 1955 – Lane Motor Boat Company 

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Lady Crossley – 1947 – Colin Wild

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Lady Ngaio – 1928 – Collings & Bell

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Manapouri – 1960 – Parkes

WOODYS CRUISING THE BAY OF ISLANDS – SUMMER 2019/20 – Part 1

Just got home yesterday from 10 days mooching around Waiheke and while clearing the in-box I spotted an email from Dean Wright, now Dean is a Bay of Islands based professional photographer with a passion for wooden boats. He even owns one  – the 1917, Arethusa.

Now any email from Dean normally contains some stunning photos and yesterdays one was a cracker – too good to run all as one, so I will split them in two.
Today we have featured pleasure launches – the first being one of the smartest classic wooden launches in our fleet – Linda. She has appeared on WW many times so if you want o know more just enter Linda in the WW search box.
I love the photo above because its the personification of our classic wooden boating movement.
Below I have included a photo of the 2018/19 built ‘spirit of tradition’ launch – Grace, and with her beautiful lines, she could only ever be a Salthouse 🙂
I have captioned the Woodys that I have been able to ID. To read more on the boats featured, use the WW search box 😉
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Grace – 2019 – Salthouse

 

Dolphyn – Sailing Sunday

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DOLPHYN – Sailing Sunday

During the week I was contacted by Joe Pallante who along with his partner has just purchased the 34’Don Brooke designed yacht Dolphyn. Other than the length, possible build date of c.1970 and designer Joe knows very little about the yacht. Via the comments section on WW Robert Brooke has kindly ‘pointed’ Joe in the direction of brother Don.
The yacht was purchased off a Canadian gent and is moored in Shoal Bay, Auckland.
Can anyone help Joe out with some history on the vessel?
LADY ELLEN – Re-Launching
Have spent the weekend in Russell for the re-launch of Bruce Mitchinson’s 1950’s Supreme Craft – Lady Ellen – check out tomorrows WW story to view the action. Stunning weekend in the bay.
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Arethusa – New Wheelhouse Project

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Arethusa – New Wheelhouse Project
 
Back in October as part of another story I mentioned that Arethusa was inline for a treat – her Bay of Islands owner, Dean Wright has decided to a build / install a new wheelhouse. Arethusa is almost 100 year old (99) so a perfect centennial present for the 33’ Bob Brown built ex gaff rigged cutter. Arethusa these days is configured in work-boat / launch style.
 
The new wheelhouse is being made from Iroko by John Gander – John is a shipwright extraordinaire, served his apprenticeship and worked for Careys for many years. 
Included above are the design drawings for the wheelhouse and an existing photo for comparison. 
We will be following this project on WW with much interest – love a good project.
 
To see / read more on Arethusa, including restoring & installing a Gardner 4LW – more links there  https://waitematawoodys.com/2017/12/31/restoring-installing-a-gardner-in-arethusa-revisited/

Twilight

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TWILIGHT
The 32’ carvel planked launch Twilight was built in 1954 by Strongman in Coromandel.
Power comes from a Perkins 4. 108 diesel engine.
Over the last 8 years Twilight has undergone an extensive ‘rolling restoration’ that included reconditioning the engine and gearbox, photos below.
Thanks to Ian McDonald for the tme heads up.

Classic Wooden Boat – Waiheke Island Party – 50 Woody Photos & Video

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Classic Wooden Boat – Waiheke Island Party – 50 Woody Photos

At the weekend anyone thats serious about classic wooden boats headed to Patio Bay, Waiheke Island for the best event on the calendar – the Classic Yacht Association yacht race + Xmas party BBQ at Margaret and Bert Woolicott’s waterfront bach. Last year was cancelled due to bad weather, so we were all way overdue for this years gig.
As is almost always the case with woody events – the sun shone, the wind blow at the right time and everyone had a blast.
The race down saw an impressive mix of yachts – the numbers boosted by great support from the Townson fleet.
Lots of new faces and a healthy mix of ages. To those that think Patio Bay weekend is a ‘boys weekend’ – check out the photos, the movement is in good health 🙂
If someone could bottle the smell / taste of the Pohutukawa fired BBQ’s – I’d buy it – whether its bangers or venison steaks, everything gets equal status on the BBQ’s.
CLASSIC WOODY LAUNCHES IN THE BAY
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YACHT RACE FINISH
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MORNING CHAT
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See below another stunning video of the race / passage down by master camera man Roger Mills 
Patio Bay Race 2019 from Roger Mills on Vimeo.