What Are You Doing This Winter


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Today I’d like to intro boatcrafts.nz  the new initiative from the NZ Traditional Boatbuilding School – in my words its a very hands-on series of workshops where we can learn / brush-up on the basic fundamentals of maintaining, restoring or building a wooden boat. The trustees, sounds a bit posh 🙂 are just a bunch of passionate kiwi boaties that care about the future of the wooden boating movement and unlike most of us are actually doing something to help us all out.
I’ll let the NZTBBS guys tell the story, see below. Note: Links to the individual courses are at the bottom of the page. Or check out the website.
Have a read and decide what interests you the most – I’m sure the 1st – “ Marine Propulsion Systems” would appeal to all boat owners – but note – numbers are limited to 20, so get in quick. Shortly we will be running a survey asking for your help on what subjects appeal the most – more details soon.
BUILD A 1/2 MODEL                             

Faith + The Milford Slipway opens



Woody Steve Horsley on a recent trip down south snapped the above photo of Faith on Lake Te Anau.
I recall seeing previous photos but can not find her in the WW library – can anyone tell us more about her?
Input from Cameron Pollard – Faith was built in Scotland in 1935. Sailed to New Zealand in 1980 after cruising the Med. Currently has a 6L3 Gardner.
I was told by one of her old skippers the late Bill Anderson that she was originally twin screw. Bill could certainly tell a good yarn so that info cant be held as gospel.
Input from Dick Fisher

“Faith was built for an English Lord I believe his name was Shalcroft ( I can be corrected on the spelling of this).. Faith was purchased in England by a Roy Ryan who was employed by me at the time of his arrival in NZ having motor sailed all the way from the UK with all their household furniture & belongings. The crew consisted of his wife & young daughter.
Engine power at that time was from twin screw P6 Perkins Diesel engines. Faith was next purchased by Peter McDonald & berthed in Whangarei, he then commenced a major refurbishment
wherein the 2 Perkins were taken out & a rebuilt 6L3 Gardner was installed. At the same time the wheelhouse was rebuilt along with much other woodwork most of which was done by Nick Rodokal
The Gardner engine was from an ex fishing vessel purchased from Happy Yovich in Hikurangi.
The teak single skin planking is fastened with bronze bolts.
I have seen Faith hard at work on Lake Te Anau where my step-son now lives .

Hope this fills in some gaps for you.”
Dick Fisher
MV Akarana

New (old) Railway Haul Out Boat Yard – The Milford Slipway
I’m very happy to be able to tell you that Geoff Bagnall’s Milford yard is now back in business and operating under the watchful eye of woody Jason Prew.
Its called The Milford Slipway and if your a regular reader of WW I do not have to tell you the benefits of hauling out on a railway slip + they offer just about every service marine to would need.
So whether you just want to haul out for a quick bottom scrub and anti-foul or you need a boatbuilder, electrical, or engineer – The Milford Slip can sort you out + there is a covered workshop for vessels up to 55’ – I will do a full feature on the yard soon, but in the mean time I would suggest you give Jason a call on 027 454 2490 to book a spot, I have already slotted Raindance in 😉
If you have been hauling out city-side you will be pleasantly surprised with the yards rates 😉
Ps If you are like Mark Edmonds on Monterey and a little apprehensive of coming into the marina via the creek, the boys will meet you and pilot you in.

Lady Ellen Restoration Update – March 2019

Lady Ellen Restoration Update – March 2019

Owner Bruce Mitchinson sent in the photos above & report below:

“About half way through the interior fit out so far.
Galley joinery is complete and has been shifted back to the workshop ready for paint.
Built in electrical and navigators consoles, and the new helm station in the queue for paint too.
Down below the new cabin soles and cabin partitions are all in, apart from the partition for the head, which is made, but out of the way while the space is being made into a wet room.
Hull lining and bunk slats all prefinished, ready for fitting.
Plumbing, thru-hull fittings and holding tank all set out, in the next week or two we will have a session with the hole saws to fit all these.
New exhaust pipe fitting will go in at the same time.
We have the engine in bits and all the parts have been stripped back and primed. 
Final coat of paint goes on this week so it can be reassembled and tested before it goes back in.
Electrical and fresh water plumbing coming up soon”
To see/ read more on this restoration project – enter Lady Ellen in the WW search box.
Photos below to show you how far Bruce has come with the LE project – very impressive.

Building Fritha – Sailing Sunday

Fritha 4

Building Fritha –  Sailing Sunday

Following on from the stunning WW post on the McMullen & Wing built 74’ brigantine – Fritha, Chris McMullen has shared with us a gallery of photos from the build.
In Chris’s words – it shows a bunch of mainly young guys building a proper sailing ship. Chris commented how lucky they all were to have had that opportunity. The photos should be credited to M&W ex apprentice Grant Thomas who was the leading hand on Fritha.
The Fritha was built traditionally but certainly not by eye. You may notice the cabin trunks were well underway before the hull was planked. This was possible because M&W had a very experienced team. The workmanship got better every boat they built but the estimate of time was exceeded. (Chris stressed how lucky they were to have an understanding owner who appreciated what he got). Further, it became almost impossible to get good wood. Chris’s business partner Eric Wing was by then running their haul out yard at Westhaven.
Sadly “Fritha” was the last real boat M&W built. M&W was sold and became a ship yard rather than a boatyard.
While most people associate M&W as metal boat builders, Chris said that they did that, as we had to. There is nothing wrong with a wooden boat providing it is built properly of good timber. There was no wood left so it was metal or frozen snot. They chose to build metal boats but employed mainly woodworkers.
Chris would like to pass on thanks to the late owner of “Fritha” Mr JR Butland and the loyal team he had that built some beautiful yachts. 
View the previous WW story on Fritha here – lots of photos  https://waitematawoodys.com/2019/02/24/fritha/

Fritha 18

Australian Wooden Boat Festival 2019 – Photo Parade – Part 2 – 337 photos





Australian Wooden Boat Festival 2019 – Photo Parade – Part 2 – 337 photos

One of the interesting things reviewing all the photos that have been sent in from the festival is that each person ’sees’ the festival through different eyes – so what they end up photographing is very different from someone else.
Todays collection from Fiona Driver and Rod Marler is a perfect example, it is a very different view from yesterdays and also shows the scale of the event. Worthy of its own WW story.
I could have edited the collection down, but the photographer/s are very passionate woodys so if the image appealed to them, I’m confident it will to you. Enjoy 🙂
Scroll down after todays photo gallery to view more of the festival in Part 1 of the coverage.
And remember , click on photos to enlarge.

Lady Ellen Restoration Update – December 2018



Lady Ellen Restoration Update – December 2018

Owner Bruce Mitchinson sent in the photos above & report below:

“The focus over the last few weeks has been on the exterior and cockpit. We have gone through 65 litres of high-build surfacer, and sanded half of it off, to get the topsides and below waterline fair.
Barrier undercoat applied to the topsides and another round of sanding to take out minor blemishes.
The above photos show polyurethane undercoat going on the topsides last Friday, the wet look gives a taste of what’s to come after the finishing sand and the top coat goes on later this week.
While we are on a roll, the cockpit will be painted, the deck head will be undercoated, and the interior bulkheads finished off before interior work kicks off again.
Everything is ready for the bottom paint so we might get this on before my painter goes on holiday.”
To see/ read more on this restoration project – enter Lady Ellen in the WW search box 😉

What Does Electrochemical Deterioration In a Wooden Boat Look Like

What Does Electrochemical Deterioration In a Wooden Boat Look Like
Todays story is in two parts – firstly the photos above were sent in by a concerned woody that viewed this boat, with purchase in mind. I share to highlight what electrochemical deterioration in a wooden boat looks like. This decay is the result of ignorance.  The builders of this launch would have used the best kauri and proper Aluminium bronze for the stern gear. Marine bronze does not require an anode but you can see where one has been mounted (rusty mounting) You can see the copper strap used to connect all the metals to the anode. A perfect example of what you should not do on a wooden boat. After about two years you will see discolouration of the wood around the so called protected metal , in ten years the wood will be soft and in twenty years uneconomical to repair. So woodys – read below an abridged version of Chris’s WW article. I do encourage you to take the time to review the long version as it appears on WW – link below    https://waitematawoodys.com/2016/04/28/electro-chemical-damage-in-wooden-boats/
Firstly I should point out that Chris repeatedly points out he is not a consultant and does not have a degree in chemistry. But his views are the result almost 60 years of working in boatyards. 
“If you connect a positive and negative metal in any electrolyte (sea water)  you will make a battery and create an anode and a cathode. The positive anode gives off Oxygen and Chlorine gas. The negative (protected) metal is the Cathode and this gives off Hydrogen gas.  That is why battery compartments have to be ventilated. Back to the Cathode. In sea water the Hydrogen from the protected Cathode mixes with the salt water and the by product is Sodium Hydroxide or Caustic Soda. Caustic Soda is used as paint remover and to pulp wood in the paper industry. Want that on your boat?
While a lot of boats may have no bonding, they do have anodes on the shaft. The shaft is in affect the bonding wire between the (+) Anode and (via the white metal bearing) the (-)bronze stuffing gland.  Zinc is at the bottom of the galvanic scale and bronze and copper could not be more dissimilar.  So there is your battery, the salt water is the electrolyte.
The Sodium Hydroxide is washed off the outside of the hull so you don’t see it but the chemical is trapped under huge pressure round the stuffing gland and slowly forces it’s way out. That is the white powder you see. Unfortunately, even if you remove the Anode the chemical will remain in the shaft log and soften the wood. 
A proper fix is to remove the gland and soak the wood in vinegar.
Cathodic protection is necessary on a steel hull but should never be used on a wooden boat. Marine surveyors round the world are now awake to this after seeing some ruined wooden boats.  Wooden Boat Magazine, Professional Boatbuilder Magazine and Classic Boat Magazine have all written on this subject. Some of the articles are thirty years ago, but few people in New Zealand seem to read this technical stuff and they fork out $ for anodes every year i.e. Loving their boat to death. Refer below re these articles”
For the people who doubt what I say about anodes and bonding. Please check out this article in the “ Professional Boat Builder” Magazine.  # 64 page 38 – 51 Here is the direct link https://pbbackissues.advanced-pub.com/?issueID=65&pageID=44  For any one with a wooden boat it is essential reading.
On a wooden boat it is extremely difficult to recommended bonding of any sort, due to the extreme problems created for any wooden structures in proximity to the noble fittings. Consider the following: In the galvanic couple created by bonding, the protected fittings are the cathodes and the remotely placed sacrificial zincs are the anodes. The water-soaked wood below the waterline is electrically conductive. In the area around each of the noble metal fittings (the cathodes) highly alkaline sodium hydroxide is formed, and the wood is destroyed. A white fluff is formed that looks like small ice crystals or snow, and is very caustic. The lignin is stripped out of the cellular matrix of the wood leaving only soft spongy cellulose behind. Sodium hydroxide, where found, can on the surface be neutralized with vinegar, but the problem is not cured. On a wooden boat, the system put aboard to protect the underwater metals eats the boat instead! 
Cathodically Protected Metal The formation of alkaline conditions at the cathode and the resulting wood degradation describe the phenomenon that occurs in wooden vessels around embedded metal that is being protected cathodically against sea water corrosion. It is common to protect the immersed metal on ships from corroding by cathodic protection. This is accomplished by attaching zinc or magnesium anodes to the vessel, and connecting these either directly or by a conducting wire to the immersed metal. The anode is a sacrificial metal, and it corrodes preferentially to the immersed metal. For a wooden vessel, the metal to be protected is purposely made the cathode. However, it is often overlooked that the alkaline reaction product at the cathode, in time, can result in loss of strength of the adjacent wood. The end result is that, although the metal does not corrode, the wood surrounding the fastener may fail. The vessel can literally “stew in its own juices.” It probably requires more than 10 years to produce conditions that can cause some loss in strength to the wood, and severe strength loss has been noted in wood vessels after 20 years’ service. Figure 2 shows some planking removed from a 20-year-old vessel. The wet hull planking was fastened to internal silicon bronze structural straps that were protected cathodically. Salts with a pH of 11 were found in the wood in contact with the bronze where the wood deteriorated. 
“You may be wondering why I say not to bond and others say to bond. Why should you believe me? It turns out my boat is very old. The things I am saying have been tested in real conditions on my boat for 50 years. For example, last year I replaced two bronze through hull fittings just because they were over 50 years old and happened to be the last two old fittings, the others having been replaced or removed for other reasons. As I said, bronze has a shelf life in salt water of about 100 years so I was giving myself a 2:1 safety factor. These through hulls had never been bonded in over 50 years. They have been in salt water the entire time and near the shaft and other metals I might add. We cut them in half in the process of getting them out. They were pristine. I could have left them in there another 50 years.”