CENTAURUS – A PEEK DOWN BELOW – Before she is sold

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CENTAURUS – A PEEK DOWN BELOW – Before she is sold
Recently we featured on WW the magnificent motorboat Turongo and she will be bought by someone looking for the pinnacle of classic wooden boating, one of only 5 vessels of her size and grace – but at  56’ she is a ship and not everyone wants a woody that big. So today we featured  what I believe is the best sub 45’ classic motorboat available for purchase – the 1967 Bailey & Sons built CENTAURUS.
There are lots of boats supposedly ‘on the market’ but none in the condition of Centaurus or with a realistic, motivated vendor. Centaurus is a genuine turn-key vessel, just add food and water and you will be boating this summer.
Centaurus is what I call a lucky boat – her first owner had her for 45 years and since then there has only been 3 custodians, each passing her on in better condition than when purchased. I have been on most classics and with out a doubt Centaurus has the largest main cabin – seating for 12. She spent a long period in the South Island so has been ‘off-the scene’ in Auckland until returned home to the Waitemata a few years ago.
PLUS – in todays tight marina market – Centaurus has the bonus of a 14m Westhaven marina.
I would encourage anyone looking for a iconic classic motorboat to contact waitematawoodys immediately, Centaurus will be snapped up before the start of the summer season. Expressions of interest, initially to  waitematawoodys@gmail.com
Snapshot
• 42’ x 13’3” x 4’
• 1.25” heart kauri carvel planked
• Cummins 215hp V6
• 6 berths
• 800L Fuel / 800L water
• Webesco cabin heater
• Uroxsys varnished
WW Links

Woody Classics Weekend – Stillwater Picnic – 26 Classic Wooden Boat Photos 

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Woody Classics Weekend – Stillwater Picnic – 26 Classic Wooden Boat Photos 

All week, the weather gods have been saying that Sunday was going to be the best day for boating – well folks that it was 🙂
Barbara Cooke summed it up perfectly in an email  – “Great day today team! Great to see people enjoying the good weather, relaxing and lolling about on picnic rugs, some with pooches. Interesting bikies! Nice boats too! 
 
Today’s story is just really a photo gallery of the day – the boats and bikes, the venue and the people + a few woodys I spotted along the way. 
A hell of a lot of work goes into organising these events – and I would like to acknowledge the team that bring it all together, without their help and input there would be no Woody Classics Weekend events. Barbara & David Cooke, Sue & Mark Edmonds, Nathan Herbert, Jason Prew and lastly yours truely.
 
Lots of chat about the next event in November – just working thru the logistics, more details ASAP.
 
The day was made extra special by the inclusion of a display of classic motorcycles ( see below) and their owners were big admirers of our classic woodys.
 
Enjoy and as always, click on photos to enlarge – alan houghton

A-Class Racing on the Waitemata

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A-Class Racing on the Waitemata

Today’s feature photo is from a photo essay that Mike McGehan sent in. If my eyes and memory are correct Left > Right

A15 Prize, A17 Ngatoa, A14 Ngataringa, A18 Tawera, A27 Arohia

Anyone able to put an approx. date on the photo?

Mondays WW story will be a goody30+ photos from the camera of Kere Kemp who has just returned from the 2019 Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival. Great photos from a gent with a good key for woody talent 🙂 A tease below

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RSVP – you and your boats name + approx. numbers to sueedwards@xtra.co.nz

 

 

Patina

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PATINA
Patina’s trademe listing states she was built in 1906 from double plank kauri, measures 39’ in length and is powered but 54hp Yanmar diesel engine. Cruise speed is 8>9 knots.
Home port is Chaffers Marina, Wellington.
The photos do not show it but she has a torpedo shaped stern.
Can anyone expand on what we know about this woody?
A lot of windows to clean 🙂
Harold Kidd Input –  PATINA was built by Ernie Lane at Picton in 1913, not 1906, as LA REINE (“The Queen”) for C.W. Philpotts of the Sounds Motor Launch Company as a passenger vessel. She was originally fitted with a 20hp Bolinder semi-diesel reversing engine. Later she went fishing out of New Plymouth with a Fairbanks-Morse and spent time recently in Tauranga too.

The Story of Marguerite

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The Story of Marguerite

Some boats are very lucky and others seem to have a hex on them – Marguerite was one of those boats.
 
On Sunday I posted a black & white photo of the 1948, 42’ Des Donovan built launch – Marguerite on WW as a ‘Mystery Launch’ tease. Surprisingly no one ID’s the boat, she did appear on WW back in 2014 (link below). In this story we read about how she was effectively ’skuttled’ at the back of Rangitoto Island and the subsequent insurance claim / prosecution. Ken Rickets also told us about an oops just prior to her launching, details in the link.
 
Over the weekend I was contacted by Christoph  Hoessly who relayed ex his mother – Margaret Cooper (nee McLeod) – the story of a grounding off Motuhue Island in 1949 – I’ll let Christoph’s mother tell the story in her words, below.
But the questions today are:
 
1. Can anyone tell us the name of the culprit that sank her? and what became of them. Was Tom the Torch around back then?
2. Was the boat re-floated and if so what became of her?
 
Margaret’s story below
 

“The motor launch Marguerite (named after the owner’s wife) was built in the Ponsonby boatyard of builder Des Donovan in 1948. She was commissioned by my father Ken McLeod of Rotorua and was 42 feet long and built of solid Kauri without a single join.

Usually, the boat was moored at Tauranga but from time to time Ken sailed it up the coast to Auckland.  It was on one of these trips, I believe it was in 1949 that he decided to take it to Motuhue Island because I had a friend who was a young naval officer stationed at the base there and it was decided to take him out for the day. 

On board were Ken’s wife, myself and an old friend of Ken’s, Mick Fahey, his wife Zelda and daughter Robin. On the way Ken decided to investigate a minor problem in an engine so he gave the helm to Mick with instructions to head for a certain headland. Within about 10 minutes there was a terrible thud. Mick had misinterpreted Ken’s instructions and the boat had hit a rock. 

It started taking on water and Ken hunted in vain for what was obviously a hole in the hull. It eventually transpired that it was under a locker in the bow and almost impossible to reach. Meanwhile the situation required removing all but the two men from the boat to the island and seeking help as fast as possible.

All the others were put in the dinghy and I rowed them ashore. The rocks all over the beach were hard to navigate in bare feet but eventually I reached the naval station where I found the captain hoeing his vegetable garden! He was immediately galvanised into action to try at least to tow the boat to safety.

Meanwhile Ken had managed to reverse the boat off the rock on which it was stuck and had almost beached it nearby. The captain rallied his young naval trainees who completed the beaching task with a couple of lifeboats.

Next day, the Marguerite was repaired sufficiently by Des Donovan to be towed to his boat yard and eventually repaired both inside and out. The tide had gone through the hull overnight and a good deal of the interior had to be replaced. 

Mercifully, the insurance company paid for the entire cost of the repairs.

The McLeod family subsequently had many wonderful holidays on the Marguerite not withstanding Rita’s low tolerance of rough seas!

Eventually after Ken retired he felt that he could no longer manage the boat safely on his own (the real Marguerite got terribly sea sick and did her best to be enthusiastic about boating) so it was sold to someone who assured Ken that he would take good care of it.

Within a year or so this owner had on sold it to another person, now unknown. Their motive for buying it is still a mystery but within a short time the Marguerite was reported sunk at the back of Rangitoto Island.

The insurance company “smelled a rat” and did a thorough investigation which revealed that the boat had been deliberately scuttled in order to claim the insurance. Anything of any value such as the compass and other nautical gear of any value was gone.

I do not know whether the hull was ever returned to Auckland but the whole dreadful history was heart breaking for Ken.”

Des Townson – A Sailing Legacy 
I’m a little excited today (it doesn’t take much – I’m a country boy at heart) because tonight is the launch of Brian Peet’s brilliant Des Townson book at the RNZYS. I was privileged to get a preview copy and have been devouring it for the last 3 weeks – its a monster, 343 pages and packed with insights, intel, line drawings and photos. Post the launch I will do a WW review on the book, but Woodys, save your pennies this is a must have.
And even better news for the those of Scottish descent – I will be giving a copy away on WW, but with the daily WW followers/readers being so big these days – best you buy a copy 🙂 More details tomorrow 😉
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Te Hauraki

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TE HAURAKI

The b/w photo at the top shows the 1920 William Clare built launch Te Hauraki, built for the Auckland Harbour Board.
The two colour photos show came in her current presentation, as owned by Roger Moore.
Previous to Roger Moore, Te Hauraki was owned by John Street – in the video below John talks of his ownership period and sale to Roger. Turn your sound up, its a great tale.

Input from Martin Howson – Great story from John Street, for many years Te Hauraki was stored in a barn in Wellsford while owned by George and Alma Hansen, they bought her after she had languished on a mooring in Little Shoal Bay and motored her up to Mangawhai Harbour from there she put on a transporter and into their barn waiting for George to fit a new engine ,that never happened meanwhile she just sat surrounded by vintage cars and covered in bird droppings. After George died she was sold to the Kaipara Harbour where she had a powerful engine fitted and blew away the opposition at the next Pahi Regatta. The rest of the story we all know thanks to John.

Woody Classics Weekend Riverhead Trip Report

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Woody Classics Weekend Riverhead Trip Report

We had 23 classic launches confirm for Sundays Riverhead cruise but folks I can report that the weather at times was a little evil. Not too bad for the big girls but the sub 30’ crowd were rocking & rolling. Lots of white water over the top. But it was only for a short time, after Herald Island things improved 🙂
On the day, 15 launches travelled to the Riverhead Tavern and had a ball, neat people , stunning boats, lots of good chat. Big ups to those that came by car to join the gathering, nice gesture.
Now – confession time – on the email I to sent the skippers that had RSVP’ed I gave everyone a big wind up about behaving e.g. Indian File, follow the leader, no over taking etc etc and bugger me – Raindance went aground. Last bend before the hotel & I’m up on deck laying out the lines & fenders and  the ‘duty’ skipper puts us in the mud. No amount of forward / reverse would move her. Thank goodness for my boatbuilder Geoff Bagnall and his wife Theresa on board Achillies, who came to our aid and pulled us off. Not before 1/2 the fleet passed us – very embarrassed. Hopefully the oops cleaned off some Baywater sludge. But I was not alone………. 2 others parked up as well 😉
Not a great day for photos, overcast and drizzle but the sun shone thru at the important times 🙂
Remember to put a big circle in your diary for the weekend of 19/20th of October for the next Woodys Classics Weekend. Its a picnic cruise to Still Water motor camp – Master of ceremonies / Officer of the day / Rear commodore / Chief Poo-bar / Mark Edmonds (who like titles) is finalising dates and details but there could be a band, classic cars / motorbikes and vehicle access for the boat less Woodys – more details soon.
Special thanks to Brendon Gardiner, Margo Hudson, Jason Prew and Alan Houghton for the photos.
Photos below from Michelle Maitland onboard Cleone

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And more ex David Plummer and Geoff Steven

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B/W photo below ex Mike Mahoney

WCW Riverhead ex McH

Great view of Jason Prew’s – My Girl below. taken by Angus Rogers. Really shows off her lines, no wonder she is so quick 😉

My Girl @ Riverhead Sept2019