Amakura II Re-launched

AMAKURA II RELAUNCHED

Seems its the time of the year for relaunches, recently we had Haunui back in after a 2+ year rebuild and yesterday it was the turn of Amakura II.

The 52’ Colin Wild designed and built woody was launched in 1936 and excluding a few minor additions has remained very original. I have been aboard several times and was always impressed with her presentation.

Nearly (maybe longer) 3 years ago her owners made the call to haul her out and engaged maestro boat builder / restorer Peter Brookes and his team to intake a complete refit. 

Regular followers of the WW site will know that work at the Brookes yard is a bit like the breeding of elephants, whose gestation period is > 2 years but the workmanship is second to none. Supported by the fact that numerous classic owners have returned to the yard with other craft.

Fast forward to yesterday and Amakura II was gently set afloat again at the Hobsonville Marina in West Auckland.

As we have come to expect from anything that comes out of the Peters Waimauku yard she is a work of art – well done to Yvonne and Chris for this amazing restoration. 

Below are links to previous WW stories on Amakura II – the first one, shows the extent of the refit.

Nov 2020. https://waitematawoodys.com/2020/11/02/wooden-boat-yard-visit-50-photos/

May 2018 https://waitematawoodys.com/2018/05/05/amakura-ii-in-the-old-days/

April 2017 https://waitematawoodys.com/2017/04/01/amakura-ii-a-great-story/

SHENANDOAH  Q03

SHENANDOAH  Q03

The 1929 Chas Bailey & Son built motor launch – Shenandoah has made several appearances on WW and we have seen her – as launched, in her war fatigues, restored and sadly neglected – way too many mentions on WW to list the links, just type her name in the WW search box to view.

Today thanks to Bruce Papworth we get a look at Shenandoah at sea and her crew war crew ashore – in the 2nd photo we get a rare sighting of the photographer – Tudor Collins, that is him second from right. He would have been on board Shenandoah in his role as photographer.  Bruce P commented that he believed Hick Goodfellow was the captain.   In the third photo, showing the Whangarei Town Basin there is a great collection of craft that had been commandeered by the NZ Navy for war service – that I can identify- we have:

Q03 – Shenandoah, Q08 – Lady Margaret, Q01 – Wirihana, Q02 – Maristella, Q12  – Lady Shirley and Z38 – Ranoni. In the last photo we have L>R Lady Margaret, Maristella and Wirihana. For more background on these craft, click on this link  https://waitematawoodys.com/2019/11/23/whangarei-town-basin-1943/

Lady Margaret – Dick Lang

Lady Margaret – Dick Lang

Todays woody story features the Dick Lang built launch – Lady Margaret.  And comes to us from Bruce Papworth – I’ll let Bruce tell the story (minor edits) The photos are from the Ted Clark photo album, taken by Tudor Collins           

“I was a personal friend of William A Clark (Ted ).  Ted had this boat built in 1938 at a cost of 13,000 Pounds,  a lot of money in those days. I have written this to fill in a number of gaps in the history of the Lady Margaret named after his wife.

Like Johnny Birch I had a number of trips away on this boat with his grandfather Joe Birch and Ted and can still remember them well. Up until Ted sold the boat due to poor health at the time to Jim & Nancy Francises. Nancy France as young girl and pre marriage to Jimmy would also go away for weekend with Ted & Margaret as they had no children of their own, they enjoyed having young people aboard. Even though more than once the odd tea pot got lost over board when helping out.

Lady Margaret was loaned to Navy (NAPS # Q08) for the duration of the war and Ted joined the Navy as its Captain. Margaret his wife ran his business, Clark Potteries, which manufactured earthenware Clay pipes for sewage systems. He told me that they never refused an order to sail even though other boats did due to the weather. Not every day was a calm day over that period you just go. Based In Whangarei they would cover the area between Whangarei and Leigh out as far as Great barrier with trips often to the radar station on the Mokohinau Islands he told me.

The boat had two Fairbanks morse engines fitted when new, later being replaced by two Foden’s in the early 1960’s. She was armed with a Bren gun on pedestal on the roof of the wheel house and on the stern where two depth charges. The Bren gun was often test fired at the goats on the cliffs of miner’s head Great Barrier. Ted said he had the fuses for the depth charges set to maximum as if we rolled one off the stern we would not be far enough away if it went off.

At the end of the war the Navy returned the Lady Margaret having restored her back to her pre war state. New paint and varnish job top and bottom as its colour was a grey colour like Many of the Navy vessels of the  time.

The interior of the boat has changed since the sale from Jimmy Frances – in the bow were 4 bunks, then a bulk head to a toilet and wash room (no shower ) either side and another bulk head up a couple of steps to the wheel house beneath where the twin Foden’s and to one side a Stewart Turner generator.

Lady Margaret was fitted in those days with an auto- pilot (Bendix brand), around the spokes of the helm,  Ted had fitted a stainless band around the outside of wheel, this was to stop you getting thrown to the floor when the auto pilot was engaged as if a spoke grabbed you in the pocket of your pants  you would end up on the floor. In those days the helm had an electric motor driving the chain to the shaft of the rudder

From the bulk head of the wheel house you went down two steps and the galley on one side where the sink and small oven sat. Across from the galley on the opposite side was a large heat absorption refrigerator then another bulk head into the main cabin and in the middle of the main cabin sat  a folding island table, underneath the table were the biscuit tins. The seating either side could sleep four, moving towards the stern two cupboards one either side  that contained the wet weather gear and the outboard motor for the dinghy, on the stern there where two davits .

There was no landing tuck on the stern in those day Jimmy Frances added that in his time .

Memories are made from the people you have known and the things you do together.

Recent photos below of Lady Margaret – looking very regal 

Tamure

TAMURE

 The photo above of the launch – Tamure comes to us via Mitchell Hutchings family boating album. The photo was tagged 30-01-1978, and that woodys is all we know about her. Safe to assume its ex Navy, but I’m often wrong.

Do we know more about her and what became of Tamure?

Hopefully lots of boating photos tomorrow from my Labour weekend sortie in / a around Kawau Island.

RSVP waitematawoodys@gmail.com

The Green Parrot

THE GREEN PARROT

Have had a request from Mike Mulligan as to what happen to / the where abouts of the ex NZ Navy launch, nick named the Green Parrot , and at some stage named Lindauer. 

In the above photos ex Mike’s family collection, we see her in North Cove, Kawau Island. The date is 27-12-1980

I’m sure Chris Leech will be able to comment on her past.

09-10-2022 INPUT ex John Newham. – photo below of her inc.1953/54 9n Naval service – with the Queen onboard. 

A Whiff Of A Bad Odor At The CYA

Those of you that follow my observations on the tide going out at the NZ Classic Yacht Association will be interested to learn that the newly elected CYA committee has hit a few rogue waves – only two meetings into the new year and the vice chairperson and a general committee member have resigned – not for me to say why but here’s a clue – waterfront docks…………

Sadly as per the past, the two won’t be replaced, or if they are it will be with more ‘also-rans’ so the committee ends up weaker, as normally its the talented free spirits that protest with their feet……….

A Woody Stranger Hauled Out – Valsan

A Woody Stranger Hauled OutValsan

Down at the Milford Slipway Milford during the week and spotted a woodys that we do not see much of these days.

The 46’ 1948 Lidgard built launch – Valsan, in for some TLC, including a Jason Prew Paint Job. Valsan has been a regular woody on the site but in recent years with her owner, Ian Nicholson being based off shore we haven’t seen a lot of her. 

To my eyes the keel > shaft > prop > rudder set up is a tab unusual – interested in others thoughts.

Links below to WW past stories – the 1st (2013) has a lot of photos and intel.

More on Iona II next week 😉

WW 2013 https://waitematawoodys.com/2013/08/29/valsan-an-ageless-classic/

WW 2013b https://waitematawoodys.com/2013/08/25/valsan-3/

WW 2016 https://waitematawoodys.com/2016/07/12/valsan-4/

WW 2017 https://waitematawoodys.com/2017/04/24/valsan-5/

Norana

NORANA

The 40’ launch Norana was designed by Joseph Gillanders and built in 1913 by Miller Bros at Port Chalmers for Charles William Sundstrum. She had a beam of 9’ and draw 3’6″.

Sundstrum was a Dunedin dentist who was a key figure in Dunedin yachting circles for many years. His first launch was the 31’ clinker double-ender Valmai of 1910 which had a Dunedin-built 5hp Viking engine. He raced her with the Otago Yacht Club including one of their Ocean races to Timaru.

He replaced Valmai in 1913 with Norana, which had a 16-18hp Jersey Standard marine engine, that gave Norma a cruising speed of 8 3/4 knots. He sold her to Arthur Brett of Auckland in 1927. During WWII she was taken over by the RNZAF and sent to Fiji for towing work.

In the top photo that appeared in a supplement to The NZ Yachtsman, June 5th, 1915, ex Lew Redwood fb, Sundstrum was the then Rear Commodore of the Otago Yacht & Motor Boat Club.

In the bottom photo which appeared on WW back in Sept 2015 as part of a story on the launch Thetis. Sundstrum sold Norana and had J McPherson, Dunedin, build Thetis for him. Thetis measured 35’1” x 8’1” x 2’9” and was launched in 1929. A serious speed machine – as launched she was good for 18 knots. During the war years with a bigger engine, that speed increased to 26+ knots – read / see more at this link https://waitematawoodys.com/2015/09/07/thetis/

Thanks to Harold Kidd for the back story 🙂

ENA – Australia’s Finest Steam Yacht

ENA Australia’s Finest Steam Yacht
The other day I stumbled across a photo of an amazing classic woodys named – End, I assumed that it was of US / Europe  origins but a quick search online and there she is next door eg Australia. Some background 

Ena is a 116′ steam yacht that was designed by Sydney naval architect Walter Reeks and built by WM Ford Boatbuilders, Sydney, in 1900  for Thomas Dibbs, the commodore of the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron. It was used as his private vessel for entertaining guests on Sydney Harbour and Pittwater until the beginning of World War I. In 1917 the yacht was purchased by the Royal Australian Navy and used as the auxiliary patrol vessel HMAS Sleuth in the waters around the Torres Strait and Thursday Island, before later being used as a training ship tender based in Sydney. In early 1920, the navy disposed of the yacht and it returned to private use until later in the early 1930s when it was sold to Tasmania.

Based in Hobart and under different owners SY Ena was used for a number of purposes including transportation of produce and fishing. It was converted to diesel power in the mid-1940s and renamed Aurore. After sinking in the early 1980s, the yacht was re-floated and eventually restored as a steam yacht close to its original configuration.

Ena subsequently circumnavigated Australia, as part of a visit to Western Australia during the 1987 America’s Cup and then served as a private charter vessel. Ena is now owned by the Turner family, one of Australia’s leading maritime families ( they founded the Sydney Maritime Museum) and she is based in Sydney at the Australian National Maritime Museum where it is part of the National Maritime Collection, and is also listed on the Australian Register of Historic Vessels.

Ena considered to be one of the finest examples of an Edwardian period steam yacht in the world.

Mystery Launch 04-06-22

Mystery Launch 04-06-22

I know there is a name (its very short) on the life rings but I can’t read it. But given the very distinctive design of the launch, I’m sure we can ID the boat.

I came from a very old file I had so hopefully I have not posted the image before 🙂

How Well Do You Know The WW Site ? Hopefully on Sunday (if Saturday is a crap weather day) I will do a story on the WW site, I have spoken to several people recently that were unaware of the full functionality of the WW site – so I’m putting together some ‘flying’ instructions.

Matanui – she could be yours

MATANUI – she could be yours

Matanui was built by Lanes, Picton in 1923 and for a launch that will celebrate its 100th birthday next year she has travelled to life with very few alterations / additions. In the interests of comfort at some stage a dog-house has been added to the rear cockpit, which was enlarged at the same time.

Stepping aboard there are numerous original fittings, including the antique Simpson toilet. 

Lanes built Matanui using 1 1/4” full length kauri planks, ribs 6” apart and pohutukawa stem. Her cabin top is American redwood t&g and the wheelhouse mahogany.

Matanui is one of those boats that attracts admirers anywhere, at anchor and even when she’s hauled out.

Matanui measures 42’x11’6” x4’8” and is powered by a 130hp Ford Dover 6cyl Diesel engine fitted reconditioned in 1990. At the same time she underwent a significant refit.

Matanui is a British Registered Ship and during WWII was purchased by the NZ Navy and taken to the Soloman Islands for patrol work, she sports a Lewis gun on her foredeck and depth-charges from the stern.

For the last 40 years Matanui has remained in or contacted to the same family, but the time has come for a new custodian/s to be found – so woodys if you are anyone you know is looking for a serious piece of NZ maritime history – contact waitematawoodys@gmail.com for more details.

Check out the ER Lane hand written specification sheets below.

Click photos below to enlarge