Screen Shot 2018-05-21 at 6.04.39 pm


Anyone looking for a bargain classic woody? Kingfish is listed on trademe (thanks Ian McDonald) with a $1 reserve & an oh to familiar tale “its leaking and sinking and due to a marriage breakup its not getting the love it needs” 

I can tell you she was built in 1914, is double skinned kauri, measures approx. 33’ in length, & powered by a 120hp diesel.

The owner is after a quick sale as the bilge pumps are shot. Listing details here

Sorry about the quality of the interior photos – but thats all that was available.

Interested to learn more about Kingfish – anyone able to help?

Input from Harold Kidd & photos below from Cameron Pollard

I’m certain KINGFISH has been on here before. She was built by H.N. Burgess at Judges Bay in 1914 as a hybrid yacht/launch, expressly for game fishing and spent her early life based in Gisborne and Tauranga. Unrecognizable from her original configuration with quite a big rig.



Lorne Doone



The game fishing boat Lorna Doone has been mentioned in numerous WW stories but I have never had a photo – thanks to Lew Redwood we now do.

She is pictured above at the Black Rocks, Bay of Islands. The photo was taken by Tudor Collins.

Lorna Doone is a sister ship to Otehei, Alma G (the first of the Collings & Bell clones) & Manaaki. All were powered by Redwing engines & were capable of 16 knots.

For comparison below is a photo of Alma G, off Cape Brett.


Input from Martin Howson – In the late 50’s both Lorna Doone and Matareka 11 were moored in the Tamaki River at Bucklands Beach L D was owned and operated by a Des Shimanski and M was owned and operated by Rex Sly both vessels were long lining at that time, great to see that both remain both , Des’s son Brian went on produce Briski propellors .On one occasion Lorna Doone came ashore on Hooks Bay on Waiheke with a big easterly blowing and Bert Surbritski with Romo would not tow her home because he knew that he would lose her on the way home with her riding up on the tow and dropping back with a heavy shock load. It was always rumoured that LD had the end of a sword fish bill through her bottom planking beneath the cockpit sole, I never saw it myself.

Some Advice Sought

I have been approached by Graeme Finch the owner of Te Arahi looking for some advice on his name boards (see below). They have a paint effect that appears to have been done to look like a varnish finish. The name / letters are done in gold – which Graeme believes is gold leaf given how well they have weathered.

Graeme is intending to paint the edges white, and would like to find someone who understands the “brown paint that looks like varnish aspect” to touch up the front surface – it’s not too bad at present, but he wants to attend to it before it becomes a major.

So in summary he is trying to preserve the gold leaf lettering so hoping to leave the lettering in place and work around it touching up those small areas, which have started to deteriorate – rather than removing everything and starting again.

So woodys anyone know the paint/varnish effect & who might do a small job like this?

My initial thought was it might be aged Cetol? A horrible product.



Screen Shot 2018-04-11 at 1.34.43 pm

Screen Shot 2018-04-11 at 1.34.55 pm


I spotted the bridge-decker Manu in late January when Trinidad was berthed at the Waikawa Marina (my photos below). Now she is 4sale on trademe, thanks to Ian McDonald for the heads-up.

Built by Bailey & Lowe in 1913, measures 37’. Zoom zoom is via a 125hp Yanmar diesel.

While her beam is listed as 9’10”, she appears very narrow, but the camera can lie 😉

Do we know anything more about her past?




Harold Kidd Input – Briefly, MANU was built by Bailey & Lowe for J.A. Holloway of Stanley Bay. She has B&L’s standard 35 foot hull. About 1917 Holloway sold her to Lt Col Phil Andrew the Auckland Port Medical Officer of Health. He sold to W.A. Wilkinson (“Speedwell”) in June 1920 and he sold to Miss Arkle of Arkles Bay later in that year. The next owners were the O’Brien brothers of Waiheke about 1928. She spent some time on the Manukau owned (either then or later) by Albie Parkes. Henry Hansen of Mangawhare bought her in 1952and sold her to Les Bird of Silverdale c1967. Bird kept her at Wenderholm on the Puhoi River. Bird sold to Stirling Sports c1977. Then Peter Haywood had her at Milford where he was Commodore of the Club. She was in Havelock by 2000 and is still there. There were probably a few other owners in between all these but there are just so many MANUs!
Apart from the bridgedeck which has been on her since at least Hanesn’s ownership she’s pretty original. Pauline and I went over her a few years ago and were most impressed. A lovely launch.


Screen Shot 2018-04-18 at 3.51.20 pm


This Akaroa based woody is listed on trademe as a ‘Project’ & is offered for sale ‘as is where is’ so she’s a bit of a lucky dip 😉

She measures 30’ & is carvel planked. Has a Ford Lees 110hp diesel for the zoom zoom, & appears to have all the bits to bring her back to life. trade listing heads-up ex Ian McDonald.

Anyone know anything about her past?


Classic Steam Launches







Two Saturdays ago I mooched down to the Salthouse Yard (ex?) / Greenhithe Wharf to catch up with the crew from the Auckland Steam Engine Society gathering. Primary reason for attending was to see the new steam launch – Kotare, which unfortunately was a no show, rumour was he experienced a mechanical oops on-route (update – arrived later in the day, after my departure). The morning was still a winner with 4 steamers present. I have said it before, but I could own one of these, I’m a closet pyromaniac – so fire & classic boats, it’s a win / win.

We had – Tui, Janice Helen & Victoria present + one with one name.

Enjoy the photos – here is a WW link to some photos & details on SL Kotare

The Potae on the gent below, was always going to go for a swim – I lost count of the saves. It sank but floated below the surface long enough to be rescued 🙂





The Tyne Street Boatshed



The Tyne Street Boat Shed – Oamaru

On recent jaunt down south Fiona Driver & Rod Marler discovered The Tyne St Boiat Shed in Oamaru, the shed is the home of the the Friendly Bay Boat Society. Their tagline is “For the use & appreciation of Classic & Traditional Boats & Boating in Oamaru” – nice!

The photos above show a wonderful collection of classic woodys in various degrees of condition. What a wonderful facility to have, I would love to see Auckland’s  Vos Shed be like this.

The photos below show a 43’ Millar & Tunnage built vessel that is powered by a Kelvin diesel currently being restored by the owner, looks a big project but she is in a great location for the work.



Royal Falcon Restoration



Some news on the 38’ Cox & Filmer 1934 built bridge decker – Royal Falcon from her owners Steve & Colette Pople.

Having languished on the Waipuna River for the last 10 years and now 20 – 25 years behind in maintenance its owners have moved her into a shed at Waipuna.

They have a long road ahead of them, as they plan to almost completely rebuild from the deck up plus some hull work. I’m very pleased to say they have already removed the flying bridge, due to rot, and intend to return the exterior to its 1940 shape as per the WW photo at Mansion House Bay Kawau Island (see below).

RF’s engine, a Commer TS3 has already had extensive work done it but is being further worked on by TS3 specialist Mark Erskine and will be good for another 20 years.

WW will follow this project & keep to updated.

You can read more on her here, make sure you read the comments section – lots there

Screen Shot 2018-04-04 at 9.27.20 am