Corinthia – A Peek Down Below

CORINTHIA – A Peek Down Below

The launch Corinthia was built / launched in 1967 at the Shipbuilders yard in Auckland. She has made several cameo appearances on WW, link below to a 2013 story that showed her alongside the jetty at Arran Bay, Waiheke Island. It appears that the exterior has not changed much but now today thanks to a heads up from Ian McDonald re a tme listing we get to have a peek down below.

Corinthia is 45’ in length , has a beam of 14’ and draws approx. 5’. Forward motion is via a 180hp Detroit 671 that gives her a top speed of 12 knots. FEB 2015 WW LINK

LAURA JO + Last Chance To Save A Woody

LAURA JO + Last Chance To Save A Woody

The very salty looking woody – Laura Jo was one of the craft that Dean Wright recently photographed at Havelock Marina. And that woodys is all we know – can we added more details to her history and how she came to call Havelock home.

08-12-2022 UPDATE ex David Martin –

The Laura Jo was originally the launch Laura. She was purchased in the early 90s as an ex fishing boat needing a lot of TLC by lovely couple living in Sumner. The ladies name was Jo, and the boat was re-launches as Laura Jo. Her huband was Bruce (I recall?) who passed away in the late 90s. LJ was re-built, cabin extended, and berthed in Lyttelton at that time.
I have more photos and a drg of her (I drew many of my friends Boats around that period). I will dig up all the info I have and add at a later date.

FRIDAY IS EXECUTION DAY – PARMA HAS A DATE WITH THE CRUSHER – To save her call Manheim at 09 918 0500 – the actual boat is offered up at no charge.

Mystery Lake Okataina Launch – Can We Now Confirm Her ID

Mystery Lake Okataina Launch – Can We Now Confirm Her ID

Back in February 2022 we ran a story, link below, on an unknown launch (2nd photo above) at an unknown location. At the time the location was ID’ed as Lake Okataina, Rotorua. The was a couple of potential ID’d on the launch from the two of the WW wise men 🙂

Harold Kidd suggested it may have been the bridgedecker – Merlin, owned by Beamish-White, that later went to Kawhia

Paul Drake was keen on her being the launch – Karina, that was in commercial service at Taupo in the 1960’s, owned by Jim Story.

Today thanks to Greg Philpott uncovering the top photo from the Archive NZ collection – taken by JG Duncan, we get a much better view of the launch, which was tagged 1951, Lake Okataina – so hopefully we can confirm her name and builder etc

Link to previous WW story

Classic Wooden Boats At Havelock Marina

Classic Wooden Boats At Havelock Marina

Back in late October 2022 Dean Wright was in Blenheim attending John Gander’s significant birthday, all birthdays are significant but the ones with ‘0’s’ in them are more significant.

While down south Dean did some marina mooching and todays photo gallery comes to us from the Havelock marina. Nice to see a couple of our bigger northern woodys now safely tucked way down south – Turongo and Durville. Sad to lose them from the Waitemata but if we were keeping score I think we win more than we lose 🙂

A lot of craft unknown to WW and will probably morph into WW stories in their own right. As always click on photos to enlarge.

Trevassa – AWBF ‘Boat Folk’ Film


Another short video from our friends at the Australian Wood Boat Festival has just been released under the ‘Boat Folk’ series.

Todays one features the 1971 Tasmanian built 48′ yacht – Trevassa 

Trevassa was designed and built by noted Tasmanian boat builder – Jock Muir. They is a great tale about delivering the boat to Sydney across the Bass Straight. After many years in Sydney she was acquired by Jock’s three sons and returned home to Tasmania in 2013. Jock’s son John took over his fathers business – Muir’s Boat Yard and Trevassa is a regular sight in Hobart.

Enjoy the video , I did 🙂

Remember – the next festival is this coming February 10>13th more details here:

Southern Woodys at Riwaka

Southern Woodys at Riwaka

One of my southern woody spies – John Burland, has just has returned to NZ after summering over in Germany (he lives there, well at least in the northern summer).

Not long after unpacking the bags he was heading down to the Riwaka riverside marina, close to Motueka, Tasman. As the photos show the area is seriously tidal and John’s visit was at low water. 

While John commented that the photos were of the usual suspects, it always good to see what’s normally hidden.

In the photos we see Varlene getting some TLC, as an aside looking at the finish on Varlene’s rail and the tin – it looks like at last Cetol is an ok finish – used to be a horrendous orange/yellow colour, similar to what actor George Hamilton used to use as fake tan (photo below)

Carvel Planking – Caulking The Hull at Smithy’s Boat Shed 

Carvel Planking – Caulking The Hull at Smithy’s Boat Shed 

Have been a regular follower of Ian Smiths fb posting from the Sydney Wooden Boat School, where Ian is principal. The level of work going into the (new build) carvel-planked ranger class gaff-rigged woody he is building is amazing. The two most asked questions on WW are #1 Electro-chemical damage in wooden boats and #2 Advice on caulking a carvel planked hull. Well woodys todays WW story goes a long way to helping answer the #2 question. BUT remember as Ian says numerous times in the video “To do whatever the best shipwrights in your local area do”.

In the video Ian gives us a different look at traditional caulking from an Australian perspective and discusses the tools, materials and methods of traditionally caulking a hull with cotton and oakum. He shows how the Australian way of doing it follows the English tradition and differs from the way it’s done in the USA and Canada. The video is full of tips Ian can pass on after a long career in wooden boat building and boat building education. He also pays the seams (fills them with seam compound) using traditional linseed oil putty.

Enjoy the video and file the link away 😉


Clinker Runabout – Seeke II

Clinker Runabout – Seeke II

You will have heard me in the past prattle on about the future growth of classic wooden boating being trailerable boats – something you can take home and tinker with. This growth is driven by two key factors – the cost of keeping a boat afloat (marina $) in any of our metropolitan cities and the maintenance of larger craft as the owners get older and less mobile.

Todays woody popped up on Lew Redwood’s fb and at the time the seller was looking for around $13k – try buying a classic car for those dollars.

Approx. 15’ in length and powered by a 25hp Evinrude.

Hopefully Seeke II sold and is now someones pride and joy 🙂


Ex 1930’s Pilot Boat

Ex 1930’s PILOT BOAT 

Todays woody was built by L C Coulthard, Onehunga in 1931 for the New Plymouth Harbour Board. Not sure of her name, possibly still called – ‘Pilot’ 36’ in length, these days she resides in Houhora, at the top of the North Island.

Interested to learn more about her and what powers her these days, looks like she could get along with that hull.

Photo below as launched. The photos come to us from John Dawson ex Graeme Kearney fb.

INPUT ex Paul Nattrass –

“Launch Pilot ” was her surveyed name but even more simply “Pilot ^ call sign.
Back in the early to mid 90s I was working for Sea-Tow Ltd barging coal into New Plymouth and said to the senior pilot that I would like to buy her he said that I would never get the opportunity, someone from the port would get her. however couple years later in a tender I made sure that I did just to prove him wrong.
The late Graeme Wigg and I steamed her round the top to Houhora
Had a 4 cylinder ford that I later changed to a 6.
The Capital Gbox 2:1 bolted straight on.
Has been a great predictable little work vessel that has taken on the new role of game boat with distinction that “Sucks up the fish”


Mystery Miller & Tunnage – Tuatea

TUATEA – Miller & Tunnage

If we believe her tme listing todays woody ws built in 1936 by Miller and Tunnage.

36’ in length she has a 60hp BMC diesel that gets her along at a top speed of 11.5 knots.

Home is Whangarei in the north and that woodys is all me know about her – can we put a name to her and expand on her past.

Heads up on Saturdays Woody Boat Boot Sale at The Slipway Milford yard – we have some serious collectors of marine ‘stuff’ dusting off their lockers so should be some treasure up for sale – remember CASH ONLY.

INPUT ex Paul Drake – The boat is TUATEA. Photos below of her on the Paremata Harbour in the 1980’s. I was told that she was Miller and Tunnage, about 1925. She was a Lyttelton boat, and went to Picton after I photographed her. Subsequently, while on her Ivy Bay (Paremata) mooring, she was struck by lightning and required extensive rebuilding. Whoever rebuilt her did a magnificent job. She re appeared at Seaview Marina, Wellington. Interesting that she is now in Whangarei.  She appeals to me because she is a straight stemmer (nearly), has a full length sweeping belting, is low wooded, has port holes, and has a mast! What more could you want. Note that she is clearly not a double ender.

25-11-2022 INPUT ex Harold Kidd – TUATEA was designed and built by Jas. McPhersoin of Dunedin for Jack Hudson of Cadbury, Fry, Hudson chocolate manufacturers in late 1930.Hudson moved to Christchurch and took TUATEA with him, basing TUATEA at Lyttelton. There were various statements that she was built by Miller & Tunnage and even by J. Miller Ltd of Lyttelton, but not so. Original engine a 30hp Thornycroft. In NAPS as Z124 1942-4 skipper Magnus Smith.