Classico – Launch Day

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CLASSICO

A few weeks ago I was tipped off by Adrian Pawson that one of his buddies – James Ledingham, had ‘acquired’ a very special Frostbite named Classico, one of things that makes her special is that she was built but never launched, so effectively is a new boat. Adrian is the owner of – Kiteroa, the ex Brooke family boat, which Adrian has restored and ’tweaked’ a little, thats her in the photos with the orange hull.

I was onto James quick smart to get more details. But before that I have to say how cool it is to see these ‘young’ sailors getting into the classic wooden dinghy sailing scene. The guys sail out of Taikata Sailing Club in West Auckland (Te Atatu), on a good Sunday there are upwards of 15 Frostbites racing. Both Adrian and James would be too modest to say this – but both work at the very pointy (high tech) end of world sailing, which makes their passion for these woodys even more special 🙂

Adrian also supplied for our review (see below) a copy of Doug Sharp’s secret copy of the ‘Frostbite Go Fast Tips’ by Kevin Lidgard.

I’ll let James tell the story –

“Recently I was fortunate enough to purchase ‘Classico’ a wooden frostbite dinghy.

What made this boat unique, aside from her immaculate timber detailing, was that she was brand new and had never been sailed. Something of a rarity in the frostbite class these days.

‘Classico’ is the result of a labour of love by her builder and previous owner David Strickett (Brother in law of Rex Maddren – a well-known Frostbite sailor and champion in his day). Looking for a wooden boat project and with a love of the clinker style, the Frostbite dinghy was a natural choice for David to get stuck into. Having picked up his wooden boat building skills at Carrington Tech under the guidance of Robert Brooke (son of Jack Brooke, who designed the original frostbite back in 1937) he was certainly well equipped to tackle such a build. Robert helped him source some temporary frames from Wakatere Boating Club and he got stuck in.

The boat is built in kauri, the majority of which was sourced from a farmer in Mangamuka, just south of Kaitia. The exception was the single piece transom, which came from a kauri slab that David already had in his garage.

Many hands make light work and during the build David sought help with the planking and ribbing from Robin Dew, who had built several wooden Frostbites himself. Whangarei boat builder Nick Rodokal also lent a hand in constructing the gunwhale, having previously built David a Lotus 9.2 (Pursuit).

David kitted the boat out with modern aluminum spars, a Quantum Mylar sail, and the latest Harken deck gear. Adding a touch of performance to the classic kauri hull.   

It was a bittersweet moment to launch ‘Classico’ down at Taikata Sailing Club on the first Sunday of March 2020, ahead of the regular afternoon sailing. She would have been equally at home in a museum (or the lounge!) and once wet and raced, unlikely to ever be quite be as immaculate again. However, they are such great boats to sail I was looking forward to getting out and seeing what she could do. She was appropriately blessed by another frostbite legend, Doug Sharp, and champagne was poured. A successful first sail ensued with minimal leaking.

While the quality of the boat couldn’t be faulted her performance was an unknown. However, she certainly seems to be fast (when the skipper sends her in the right direction) so far grabbing a 2nd in the first race of the Taikata Sailing Club winter series held earlier in March.

I plan to race her regularly down at Taikata Sailing Club, where the Frostbite fleet is thriving – with 12+ boats on the start line every fortnight. Wooden boat enthusiasts are welcome to come down to the club and have a yarn. There are a good number of well-kept and restored timber Frostbites amongst the fleet, and no shortage of stories! 

The name ‘Classico’ stems from a holiday dinner in Tuscany where David and his wife were enjoying a bottle of traditional Chanti wine – Chianti ‘Classico’.”

Frostbite Go Fast Tips 1

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Bay Of Islands 1950’s Gallery

1957 BOI - a

(Launches – L>R) Lady Eileen, Crusader, Makura (ID ex K Rickets)

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1957 BOI - d

1957 BOI - c

Bay Of Islands 1950’s Gallery

Thanks to a prolific burst of Bay of Islands photos recently on Len Redwoods fb page we get to have a glimpse of boating in the BOI’s back in 1950’s.
Most are taken in or near the waterfront township of Russell.
Make sure you check out Mondays WW story – a wonder full gallery of photos and a special request for help to find a woody.
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Telstar II – Vintage Speed Boat

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TELSTAR II – VINTAGE SPEED BOAT

I came across this ‘classic’ speed boat while trolling thru trademe. All the Masterton, Wairarapa based seller knows is that its 13’ in length.
Maybe the number on the hull, W.P. 45, will help us ID the boat.
Unless she held the NZ water speed record (which I highly doubt) the vendors asking price of $3.5k is a tad bullish.
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2020 New Zealand Classic Yacht Regatta Photo Gallery – 100+ photos and videos

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2020 New Zealand Classic Yacht Regatta Photo Gallery – 100+ photos and videos

As I have mentioned in the last two WW stories, the Classic Yacht Association of New Zealand have over the last 3 days been running its annual classic yachting event on Auckland’s Waitemata Harbour.
The near perfect conditions on all three days made for happy skippers and a relieved race organisers. I was on the water for two of the three days and had a blast. The gallery above is a mix of Races 1/2/3. If your boat doesn’t make an appearance, I apologize, I was only a passenger, so captured those that were within range.
On the second day, James Dreyer and myself hosted the world acclaimed marine photographer Benjamin Mendlowitz onboard Jame’s motorboat – Laughing Lady, the perfect platform for recording the on the water activities.
For me it was a master class in boat positioning and photography angles, I tried to keep out of Ben’s way and took the above photos / videos when I could without being in Ben’s line of sight.
These days the CYA run the regatta using the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron as Race HQ and entertainment hub, it is the perfect venue and as always the service and staff were 10/10.
 Scroll down for the official regatta results below
As always – click on photos to enlarge.
Race Course Videos Below (Races 2/3)
RANGER

PRIZE

A DIVISION

ARIKI

RAWHITI

CORONA

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Nancy

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NANCY

Today’s story features another woody spotted by Andrew Hewitt during his recent trip to Tasmania , Australia – the launch Nancy is one of the lucky ones as she is in the ‘Living Boat Trust’ collection. The trust is based in Franklin on the Huon River, south west of Hobart.

Nancy was built in 1917 by well known Hobart builder – AA ’Tucker’ Abel. Was used as a ferry on both the Derwent and Huon Rivers, until at least the 1950’s. Sent time also as a flying boat tender on the Derwent River.

Andrew commented that Nancy’s continued existence is much thanks to the generosity of the donors Martin and Judy Krynen, who took her to Noosa in Queensland, restored her and then decided she really belonged in Tasmania and donated her to the Living Boat Trust, including paying for road freight  to return her to Franklin. (Judy  is an ex-pat South Islander and both lived in NZ for many years)

Nancy is available for hire to LBT members, and based at the marina in Franklin. More info at  http://lbt.rfoster.org/about-us/boats/nancy

Andrew also wishes to acknowledge his contact (and LBT member) Martin Riddle

Is that a St Ayles skiff alongside?

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Pavema + Do You Need An Engine?

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PAVEMA
Wow how cute is the above launch – I received an email from Neil Couch about an offer on an engine and the above two photos were included to show what the engine came out of. Of course I forgot about the engine and started admiring the boat. Back to engine later 🙂
 
What I can tell you is  –  the engine was installed in the early 1960’s when the then owner, a Mr Howden of Howden’s Jewellers of Hamilton re-furbished the boat. Neil is unsure as to the date his father-in-law purchased the boat but in approx.1980 the launch was scrapped on the father-in-laws property in Raglan. Neil believes the timbers had started to rot around the copper nails so it was eventually burned and the copper salvaged. The mast, rope ladder, and other minor parts were salvaged and stored and some are being incorporated into a new house build.
When the launch was scrapped, the engine, a Lees Marine Ford Consul 122e petrol engine with Paragon reverse and reduction gear box (photo below), was kept covered in the basement of the FIL’s house.
 
ALMOST FREE* Engine – *For a donation to Coastguard Raglan, Neil will hand the engine over to a good woody home. Collection is ex Raglan.
Contact Neil on nscouch@outlook.com 
 
Now back to the launch – anyone able to tell us more about her? She is very distinctive so someone must recall her.
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Zodie

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ZODIE
I have a request from Barrie Abel (MV Matira) in regards to a 19’ Shipbuilders launch that he purchased in 1995 from a long forgotten address in Otahuhu, Auckland.
Zodie is built with double diagonal kauri construction and when purchase was powered by a single cylinder Yanmar 8hp diesel. Barrie replaced the Yanmar with a 2 cyl. Ford which Barrie commented “bounced her along at 5 knots.
Barrie paid $1,500 for the boat and sold her 1997 to someone on Auckland’s North Shore.
Barrie is keen to learn if 23 years later she is still afloat and if so where ?
Update – 2 more photos from Barries  archives –  the Yanmar installed as purchased.
And the Ford installed under new engine box.
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