Little Jim – A16 – Coastal Classic Race Report

Little Jim – A16 Coastal Classic Race Report

Today’s story and photos comes to us from Little Jim’s skipper and owner James Mortimer and crew – Ash Smith, Rodrigo Salas, Janez Mikec, Max Goutard, Erwann Jooris.

I’ll let James share the story with you, as always – click on photos to enlarge. Enjoy 🙂

“After four long months out of the water at the Milford marina yard over winter, I know that Little Jim had been wanting to stretch her legs and get a good long sail up the coast. She feels fast with her newly reinforced decks, rebuilt rudder, and all over paint job. Or maybe it’s the long winter without any sailing that has made her crew push her along that little bit more.

The weather forecast for Labour weekend had been looking challenging, with light northerlies and rainy weather predicted. On Tuesday night we got together on the boat to go over safety and systems, not at all confident that we would even start the race. Over the next two days the forecast slowly got a little better, with the wind direction moving ever so slightly toward the east. On Thursday night, we made the call to go, knowing full well it was going to be tough. 


Early Friday morning and with enough food and beer to supply a small army, we got ourselves into racing mode and set off for Devonport. There is something special about this race, with more than 150 yachts lining up across the harbour, a sense of anticipation building as the gun gets closer, an adventure ready to start.

We made an early call to cross the channel toward Rangitoto and escape the worst of the incoming tide. Little Jim made excellent ground on most of the fleet who were busy short tacking up Cheltenham Beach in very little wind. A long tack due east across the top of Rangitoto and Motutapu Islands allowed us to finally turn north and lay the outside of Tiri Island and and make some miles to the north. As it turned out, the short stretch between Tiri and Kawau Island was to be the best sailing we would get all day, with a perfect NE’er of 12 to 15 kts, and boat speed above 7 kts.

On any Coastal Classic, there is a decision to make off Takatu Point. Is the boat and the crew in good shape and ok to go on. In any adverse weather this is no small call to make. As all boaties know, crossing Bream Bay can be brutal, and there is no decent shelter until Tutukaka. An easy decision this time, and it was champagne sailing as we passed Cape Rodney. It didn’t last though, and as afternoon slid into evening the wind eased away and turned back north. A frustrating night of slow tacking between the Hen & Chick Islands and Whangarei Heads began, with not a lot of northward miles being made. What the wind failed to deliver the night sky made up for, with an impressive meteor shower, a crystal clear Milky Way, lots of phosphorescence, and an incredible sunrise.

At 8.30am, we made the difficult decision to pull the pin on the race just south of Elizabeth Reef. The forecast was light until afternoon and we had little hope of reaching Russell before cut off at 3pm. 

Ending the race early wasn’t going to put a damper on the weekend though and we spent the next three days sailing downwind back to Auckland under spinnaker via the Poor Knights Islands, Tutukaka, the Hen & Chicks, and Kawau Island. 

Little Jim, built in 1934, was the oldest boat to enter in this year’s race, and it is a fitting testament to the skill of New Zealand’s early boat builders and designers that we can often keep up with boats that are 60 or 70 years younger! 


Can’t wait till 2021”

LITTLE JIM

A16 – bermudan rigged, she was designed & built in 1934 by Arch Logan & Bill Couldrey.
LOA: 42’10”, LWL: 28′, BEAM: 9’1″, DRAFT: 6′

Mystery Napier Launch

Mystery Napier Launch

Today’s photo is another from the lens of Dean Wright, taken on a Napier marina walk-about. Looks familiar but I can not put a name to her – anyone able to help out?

Input from Michael O’Dwyer This boat was called the Graham John when first purchased by the current owner Mark Parvin. Talking to his father Peter, he was told the boat was built by a farmer in Motueka around 1947. Originally 36 feet long it was extended aft to 43 feet when converted to a scallop dredger, hence the appearance of a somewhat droopy stern. Currently powered by a 170 hp Isuzu. Mark has completely overlaid the hull with a ply and glass.

Woodys On The Catwalk

Well almost – Karen Walker in a collaboration with the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron has just launched a range of merchandise celebrating this extra special season – A-Cup and 150th RNZYS Anniversary. WW have supplied woody items – clinker dinghies, model yachts etc to support the collection in Karen Walker stores.

Check out the range here  https://www.karenwalker.com/nz/collections/squadron

Rocky Bay Woody Weekend – CYA Launch Race

ROCKY BAY CYA LAUNCH RACE
Saturday was one of those days that started out looking good, turned crappy (on lots of fronts), got better and then finished average. A gallery of photos above – launch race and in the bay, not a great day weather wise for good photos.
From a launch view point, it was the first launch race in the CYA’s summer racing series and excuse the pun – it got off to a rocky start e.g. start boat broke down and had to call Coast Guard for a tow. Jason Prew deputised me into starting the race, only 4 boats so that was easy. Then 3/4 of the way into the race I got a call from the CYA finish boat, “running late, won’t be there to take finish times”. Bet they weren’t late for the yacht finish…………. Alan Good on Lucille was given the job of recording the times and these were relayed to Jason Prew who calculated the handicap results. All that aside Lucille, Kumi, Ngaio and Meloa all  played well together and crossed the line in that order. 

Handicap results were 1st Kumi – 2nd Meola-  3rd  Lucille (& 1st cross the line)

As a woody treat for the launches WW arranged with Waiheke residents Tim Evill and Mark Stratton to secure access to moorings in the bay for the night – thank you Mark and Tim 🙂 Several more launches cruised down but conditions in the bay were ‘unpleasant’ so they and it would appear a large % of the yacht race fleet, either went else where or headed back to the city.

Along with the mooring access came an invite to attend Happy Hour/s at the Rocky Bay Memorial Cruising Club, with a 3pm start time it was perfect timing for a catch up before the CYA prize giving in the village hall. The club rooms are perched on/over the western end of the bay and a pleasant time was had by all. The club has a very cool, new t-shirt – details at link below
https://www.rockybaycruisingclub.co.nz/for-sale


We had to be back in the city later in the evening, so departed the club around 6pm, collecting CYA secretary – Joyce Talbot, who also needed to be city-side. Trip back was very average but the company was good.
SCORE CARD Weather – 4/10 Organisation – 2/10 On-The-Fly Recovery 11/10 Hospitality – 10/10

RBMCC photos below

Too rocky (rolly) for Centaurus – did a drive by and headed off for a quieter bay 🙂

Muratai II

MURATAI II

I received an email yesterday from Peter Grant and as I started to read it I was thinking – this is a doozy and I’m sure Harold Kidd will be able to shed some light on the the history of the boat and the accuracy of the tale.


Recently Peter was working at the Queenstown boat shed and I was asked to look at the Muratai II, tied to her jetty. His online search for information only came up with one photo (b/w above) ex the Hochen Library at the University of Otago.
Peter mentioned that the current Kiwi owner of three years now lives in Switzerland and has never set foot on the boat and is disillusioned with the supposed refit progress and the boat yard in Invercargill is tired of waiting for it to be sent down, so have washed their hands on the project.

The previous owner who has owned her for 28 years and where she is still berthed, wants it gone of course.
Prior to his ownership she was a passenger launch on the lake in the company of another 36 footer Moana, powered by a Ford engine of some type.


Apparently the Muratai II was built in Auckland, or somewhere northward, for the then King of Tonga (edited) who wouldn’t settle as he was unable to enter into the vessel due to his size.
Muratai II is 42′ LOA, kauri, and fitted with a very tidy 3 cylinder GM of 65hp which was installed in 1946.


So Mr Kidd and other woodys, can we tell Peter any more about this vessel and her history?

Harold Kidd Input – HMMMMMMMM. King of Tonga??? Which one? MURATAI is wrong. Way back she was MURITAI (correct Maori) then SOUTHERN STAR. My guess is that she was built for the passenger trade in Lyttelton by Chas Bailey 1911 (he built the yacht ONELUA for King George of Tonga shortly after) and gravitated to Lake Wakatipu by 1922. A Trade Me ad recently said she was built for the King of Tonga in 1924. The monarch at the time was Queen Salote. Tourist BS I think.

Miller and Tunnage – Double Ender

Miller & Tunnage – Double Ender
If you spend as much time as I do stalking wooden boats on-line you will have noticed the growing trend for work boat conversions, you either love them or not – me I’m in the love them camp. We do not know a lot about todays woody, thanks Ian McDonald, other than she was built by Miller and Tunnage in 1922, out of kauri, is 40’ in length, has a 9’ 10” beam and draws 3’7”. A Gardner 3LW 150hp diesel pushes her along at a comfortable cruising speed of 7 knots. Appears to be very well fitted out.


Can anyone put a name to this woody ?

18-11-2020 Input from Mark Erskine – I was interested to read about the above Miller & Tunnage Double Ender. I agree it’s a real nice boat and was interested to read about her Gardner 3LW engine.

Depending on the fuel and governor / rpm settings, the 3LW engines produce between 36 to 53.5HP from their 4.184 litre capacity.

The “Gardner 150” badge on the Miller & Tunnage control panel is for a 6-cylinder 6LXB Gardner (127 to 150HP) or possibly the 8-cylinder 8LXB (150 to 200)

Gardners are great engines and although the whole range are all low on HP for their considerable size, capacity and weight, they all produce a lot of torque at low rpm and are very reliable.

Although 36 to 54 HP seems a bit low for the size of the boat, I’m guessing the 3LW is a good match for a double ender hull because torque turns the prop rather than HP and the 3LW should also be very economical to operate at 7 knots.

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Wooden Boat Yard Visit – 50 Photos

New Zealand Wooden Boat Yard Visit – 50 Photos

Yesterday afternoon, Auckland based woodys got to rub shoulders with an impressive collection of classic wooden boats at one of New Zealand’s leading wooden boat yards – the Peter Brookes ‘Brookes Boatbuilders’ complex in rural Waimauku, West Auckland. I have been privileged to visit numerous times but every visit is a treat, where else would you see over eight classic yachts and launches in varying stages of restorations.


I’ll let the photos tell the story, if I have a photo mixed up, let me know 🙂 – enjoy – remember as always if you click on the photos they will enlarge 😉


Amakura II – 1936 Colin Wild, 52’ Bridgedecker


Impala – 1960 Fife, Teak planking 


Matia A23 – 1939 Lidgard, 50’, triple skinned kauri


Kenya II – 1940 Lidgard, 50’, triple skinned kauri. Gardner 6LXB


Pilot Cutter – 50’ 


Kotiri – 1897 Logan


Ladye Wilma B26 – 1895 Logan Bros, 43’, triple skinned kauri


Katrina II K100 – 1944 Bob Stewart, K-Class

Raumati

RAUMATI
Raumati was built by John Ewen to a Colin Wild design for Alf Walker of Whangarei. The bridge-decker was launched in early December 1938 and measured 42’ in length, with a beam of 11’6”.The only mention I can find of her is a HDK comment about a NZPBA race on 24/11/1934 in which a launch named Raumati was an entrant. The dates do not match so the first question today is – same boat?


The second question – was she a forerunner to Raumati II (re-named Moeraki in c.1957) built by Low Bros. in Whangarei in 1948 for Alf Walker (again) . Thanks HDK for this intel back in a WW story in March 2014.


So if I haven’t confused everyone – what became of the original 1938 Raumati?

HAVE YOU RSVP’ED ? waitematawoodys@gmail.com

Beaulieu River Wooden Boat Gathering

Beaulieu River Wooden Boat Gathering
Today we join the crew over at classic yachtTV when they attended the Beaulieu River Wooden Boat Association get-together at Buckler’s Hard, UK.

It is a great read with stunning photos and words from the very talented Emily Harris. Clicking on most photos will enlarge them. Enjoy 🙂
Hopefully a lot of you will be afloat today enjoying the public holiday.

LINK TO STORY HERE http://www.classicyacht.tv/journal/an-invitation-to-beaulieu?fbclid=IwAR0t3bb2r60BESnqE44izKexo6HXSu5mVDSIROjHFPGvmCAd59Q5J7DyZyU

Wanderer II

WANDERER II
Wanderer II was built in 1965 by Owen Woolley and measures approx. 39’ with a 13’7” beam. Powered by a Ford Lees 100hp 6 cyl. diesel she gets along at a comfortable 8 knots. A recent addition to tme (thanks Ian McDonald).


Can we uncover where and what Wanderer II has been up to for the last 55 years?

Input From Nigel Drake – Below is another photo of Wanderer 11, I am a friend of the present owner. The previous owner showed me this photo of her when he sold her 5 years ago. She is in her original colours. Not sure of the date but interestingly the name on the side is Wanderer not Wanderer 11. The previous owner had her for about 17 years to my knowledge and kept her in Doves Harbour, Bay of Islands. The owner before him, who was the 2nd owner, also had her for about 17 years apparently.

Mystery Launch 09-10-2020 (White Cloud)

MYSTERY LAUNCH – 1968 Sam McGreedy
The above 39’ carvel planked, 1968 launch popped up on trademe, light on photos, the tme ones are very average. The stated builder is Sam McGreedy, thats a new one to me.Power is from a 130hp Ford diesel. Appears to be well fitted out.

From the photos I suspect it a Panmure boat – can on of the river rats enlighten us more on the boat?

That was easy, thanks Ken R – its White Cloud see more here 

https://waitematawoodys.com/2013/11/18/white-cloud/

Also video of launch day

https://waitematawoodys.com/2017/06/10/white-cloud-movie-leaving-the-shed-launch-day/

HOST VENUE: NZ Traditional Boatbuilding School 17 Totara Rd, Te Atatu Peninsula, Auckland – Saturday 17 October 2020 – Sunday 18 October 2020

This is a two day course introducing you to the use of hand tools. Over the two days you will build a small tool box and a bench stop incorporating a number of woodworking joints and skills including cutting a simple scarf joint and then using copper nails and rivets to turn that piece into a handy Bench stop. Marking and cutting pieces for the tool box, preparing the timber with planes and a cabinet scraper, marking and cutting a dovetail joint, marking and drilling dowel joints, turning a square piece of wood into a round handle, final assembly and clean up.

This is a great course for someone wanting to learn how to cut accurately and use chisels and planes and other hand tools in a practical manner. Students will leave with a completed toolbox and bench stop and an introduction to many new skills. The tutors for this course are Olaf Wiig and Allan Hooper.

NOTE: Min of three students required, max of six students- COST $290 – includes materials for toolbox.

Click link for more details on NZTBS + space bookings http://nztbs.org.nz/course/an-introduction-to-fine-woodworking/