TURONGO – Once In A Lifetime Opportunity 

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TURONGO – Once In A Lifetime Opportunity 

Turongo has had a very low profile on the classic boating scene, as she spends most summers in the Bay of Islands.
Turongo is the biggest of the 5 Colin Wild inspired, John Salthouse built motor-yachts. The term ‘launch’ just doesn’t fit a vessel of her elegance and bearing, she is the Bentley of the wooden boating world.
Her vital specs are – built 1966, one year after Trinidad, 56’ in length with a 14’6” beam, she draws 5′ but unlike Trinidad and the earlier launched Lady Crossley, she was the recipient of at the time, some radical design which sees her only drawing 18”at the stern, this along with her twin CAT 3208 diesels results in Turongo being able to do up to 18 knots under power.
Turongo is a very lucky boat, she has been in the same family for the last 25+ years and been very well maintained thru-out this period. She was originally built for JR Butcher and after launching sat on a mooring for a period of time waiting for her two 200hp Cummins V8’s to arrive from the States both of which had been extracted from a tractor unit. They were installed and fitted out by John Butcher and his son Tony,  both gents were in the engineering business. Even back then with the smaller motors, she had an impressive turn of speed..
In recent times she has received the Uroxsys ‘varnish’ finish.
Well woodys, the headline kind of gave the game away – Turongo is for sale and it really is a once in a lifetime opportunity to own one of the best classic motor-yachts in NZ. Her owner has made the decision to hand the keys to the next custodian – so who will it be?
Whoever it is had better act quickly, her owner is very realistic in terms of price and after making the difficult decision to let her go, wants a sale. Take my word for it, Turongo will not be on the market for long.
Initially expressions of interest should be directed to  waitematawoodys@gmail.com

Happy Hours V13




Photo below taken when Happy Hours was collected ready to transport to Alan Craig’s shed.


I have been contacted by Alan Craig from Craig Marine looking for he next owner of the18’ mullet boat – Happy Hours V13. 
Built by Billy Rogers in 1949 to an earlier Logan design, she was a copy of Secret  (V3) but is a much fuller boat so must have been modified during building. She was first owned by Billy Rogers’ brother in-law and then by Lieutenant Commander J. Lennox-King.
Happy Hours is currently sitting in one of Alan’s sheds waiting to be finished. But Alan commented that he has not been near it in a couple of years, he is a very in demand wooden boat builder and the current work schedule is very motor-boat focussed.
The yacht was acquired from the NZ Traditional Boatbuilding School before being passed on to Alan. 
I understand that Alan’s exceptions in terms of a price are not great, he is more interested in Happy Hours going to a good home.
Alan has the mast and rudder plus fittings etc for it too.
So woodys – anyone looking for a classic wooden boat project?
23-09-2019 Input from Robin Elliott

N.C. Wensor 1949?/52+?; F. Simkins 1955?/56+?; Peter & Frederick Boyle 1958+?; R.D. Wood 1959?/60+?; Lt.Cdr J. Lennox-King 1961?/68+? ; Dean Herbison 2007/16+?; Alan Craig ?/2019+?

Happy Hours was built for Noel Wensor (billy’s Bro’ in law) in 1949. Lennox-King did not own her until the early 1960’s. Dean Herbison bought her in 2007 when she was hauled out at Okahu Bay.

Maree Anne


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Anne Maree was built in 1950, kauri planked, 26’ in length and powered by a 3 cylinder Lister18hp Lister diesel engine.
Home port is Dargaville, Northland.
Thanks to Ian McDonald for the heads up on this woody.
That folks is all me know – anyone able to expand on her provenience ?


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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.







EMERALD – 1970’s
Recently I was contacted by Peter Grant in regard to the launch Emerald which he owned in the late 1970’s. Emerald was owned by a Kawau Island resident and Peter swapped an MGB roadster for her. I’ll let Peter tell us the story.
“Emerald was twin engined with small Yanmars of either 8 or 12 HP, I can’t remember exactly, but do recall they were both hand start and noisy with in built diesel tanks on top, much enjoyment was had with her and even ventured right up to the Matakana wharf, quite a feat those days as it was almost all choked up though the old concrete wharf was fine.
Some time after that I has the misfortune to tie her up at Milford Creek and was unable to retrieve her as I was away on board and could not get back on time due to the tide.
When I did get her back to Auckland I had her out on the hard outside the old Westend rowing club where we proceeded to give her new decks and cabin top, but this work was discontinued half way through, as I went back to working away and she was stored on my parents section in Henderson courtesy of Bob Wylie.
After two or three years my parents, now sick and tired of the launch in their backyard back yard wanted to sell the section and up came a deal with Mr Davern, who provided them with a solution, he bought the section for one of his houses, and in turn would transport the boat away, (my father later told me he was sick and tired of people wanting to buy her) that was the last time I heard of her until an advertisement popped up on Trade Me recently.
She is much altered and now powered by a single cylinder engine and is reputed to now be built in the fifties or so.
Can anyone shed some light on her provenance, I have sent in some very old scans of negatives of the time and how she looked at the time in the old Westhaven Marina and alongside the old cleaning piles, now long gone af course, mores the pity.
I have to say I’m impressed with Peters taste in cars – the Mercedes pillar-less coupe would have been a great investment if he had kept her for 44 years 🙂
Keen to learn more about Emerald’s days before and after Peters ownership.
EMERALD – 2019
Below are a selection of photos from the current trademe listing for Emerald, as Peter stated above, its certainly a ‘different’ look / style.
The listing states she is 32’, with a kauri hull (now glassed). Power is via a marinised Ford Trader Diesel engine that gets her along at 7>8 knots.
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Lady Jane

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Lady Jane is described in her listing as a 12’5” Squirt model and while is was built in 1975, she ticks all the classic boxes.

Tucked away under a cover is a 25hp Johnson that is more than enough to make her 12’ hull fly along.

Being easily trailerable Lady Jane would make a great family fun boat for the beach or lake. Christmas is only 14 weeks away 🙂
A neibour of mine has a teak ladder 2.5m long 580mm wide (photos below) that is surplus to their needs. They are keen to sell it to someone who needs it as part of a restoration or whatever. It was in their house when they bought it so could be ex Navy, maybe it was an old engine room ladder. Anyone interested call David 021 793 439


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The 35’9” Golandrina was built in 1964 by Alan Orams as his own pleasure boat. She has a 8’ 7” beam and draws 3’3”.
Power is via 2006 Iveco 90hp diesel that’s gives her displacement hull an easy cruising speed of 7 knots.
Her trademe (thanks Ian McDonald) listing says in the 2016/17 period she had a 4000 man hour refurbishment.
Home is the Bay of Islands Marina in Opua, Northland.
I know she has spent most of her life in the North, but do we know any more about her?