Rebecca

Waiheke Coro Iron Yacht

REBECCA 

This weekend is the last chance to experience ’Sculpture on the Gulf’ on Waiheke Island, I’ll be doing the 2km walk that features 26 new sculptures along the stunning Waiheke coastline including  Oneroa village and surrounds. Organisers say to allow around 2 hrs to enjoy the walk. 

Woody Angus Rogers snapped the above photos of Rebecca last weekend, built by legendary kiwi artist Jeff Thomson from corrugated iron and to quote Jeff “she references early NZ classic yacht designs and the long history of boats moored at Matiatia and elsewhere around Waiheke Island”.
She was inspired by her namesake Rebecca, a 1902 gaff-rigged yacht, now sailing under her original name – Dolphin (see link below for more info & photos) https://tinorawatrust.co.nz/dolphin
 
Note: no woodys library would be complete without a copy of the book ‘Rebecca – The restoration of an old yacht’ (cover below) by the late yachtsman, artist and educator – Peter Smith. I currently own 4 copies, whenever I see a copy for sale (on-line or in a secondhand book shop) I grab it. They make great gifts.
Rebecca book
 
  

Building Fritha – Sailing Sunday

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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/

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20th Lake Rotoiti – Antique & Classic Boat Show – 200+ Classic Wooden Boat Photos

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20th Lake Rotoiti – Antique & Classic Boat Show – 200+ Classic Wooden Boat Photos

On the 1st weekend of March we travelled south to Nelson for a wee escape. Just by chance (yeah right says the wife) there was a classic woody event on. I have seen and heard a lot about the Antique & Classic Boat Show that is held every year on Lake Rotoiti, one hour south of Nelson but I had never attended. We were staying with good friends in Mapua so early on the Sunday the men folk packed up the car  and headed off. We arrived at the lake as everyone was dusting off  / polishing their pride and joy – I understand there was a social event on the Saturday night and a few looked a little ‘dusty’ themselves.
The venue is just mind blowingly spectacular – and I have not seen so much varnished wood in one place in NZ before. Combine this with a very laid back southern friendliness and we had a great morning.
The woodys on show ranged from vintage radio controlled speedboats, sailing dinghies and speedboats to 100 mile-an-hour hydro-planes. Check out the movie of the hydro-plane Elray III below.
The photos above are intended to give you an insight into the show, warts and all – it’s not a gallery of perfectly presented craft.
Enjoy, we did.

Prudence

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PRUDENCE
 
I have been contacted by Graham Paddon looking for information regarding Prudence – his 36’, 1965 Bob Swanson designed and built launch. Graham purchased her as an unfinished project about 3 years ago.
 
You will see in the photos above, ex the front cover of the November 1965 issue of the Mana Cruising Club newsletter – how Prudence looked when launched, the 2nd photo is the newsletter story on the boat. 
Graham knows very little of the boats history between her launching and when he bought her 3 years ago. If any woody can help Graham out it would be very much appreciated. The photos below show her today…….  I have to say she has lost the classic look. The newsletter photo and the fact she is triple-skinned kauri is just enough to sneak into WW 🙂
 
Classic Yacht Association Yachting 2019 Regatta
Last weekend saw the biggest fleet of classic yachts competing on the Waitemata in years – well done to the new CYA crew for pulling it all together. 
I was out of town but Roger Mills, aboard James Mortimer’s Logan – Little Jim, filmed and edited a very cool video from Day 2, Race 2. Check it out below – stunning footage of the old girls racing on our magnificent harbour – speaking of which – if you can, remember to join todays protest flotilla to stop the Auckland Council stealing more of our harbour – meet at 3pm off Queens Wharf – details here.  
 

Old Jack’s Spray

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OLD JACK’S SPRAY
 
I returned late last night from 4 days in the upper South Island, attending the Antique & Classic Boat Show at Lake Rotoiti (Nelson Lakes) – there are over 300 photos in the camera that need to be downloaded and edited so the show story will be a few days away. It was stunning, both in terms of the venue and the craft on show – we arrived early on Sunday morning so I got some photos before the lake ‘filled’ up – below are  couple to show you the location wow element.
We did a lot of stuff in 4 days, including a 4 hour walk in the Abel Tasman National Park – now that was special, if you are ever down that way – do it. I bumped into a couple of woodys during the walk so I’ll post more on them and the walk later. One photo below.
 
Todays story features a yacht that I spotted berthed at the Riwaka Wharf, which is located between Motueka & Kaiteriteri. She would be the pick of the woodys sitting in the mud in the creek. Very very salty and well cared for.
Can any of the southern woodys tell us more about her?
I would suspect a name change (or 2) along the way.
Input from Brian M – she is a replica of Josh Spray. Built by the late Jack Guard (boat builders) in Nelson. Hence the name “Old Jack Spray”.
Now owned by the Wilson Family.
2015 Photo below sent in by John Burland
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Lake Rotoiti

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Lake Rotoiti – early morning

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Abel Tasman National Park

CYA Classic Yacht Regatta 2019 – Race #1 – 37 Photos

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Rawhiti & Ariki

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Ranger

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Little Jim

 

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Rainbow

CYA Classic Yacht Regatta 2019 – Race #1 – 37 Photos

At the end of the day I shot down to Devonport Wharf with the tele-lens & just caught the fleet sliding down the harbour, a little overcast but that would have been a + for the crews.
I’ll attempt to ID the yachts – scroll over the photos to see names – if I get it wrong, let me know 😉
 
As you read this I’ll be winging my way south to Lake Rotoiti (Nelson Lakes) for the 20th NZ Antique & Classic Boat Show, mooching around Nelson for a few days so should have some good southern content next week.
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A Woody Tour of the Tamaki River – 70 photos

A Woody Tour of the Tamaki River – 70 photos

Todays story so needed to be done, and woodys, John Bullivant is a legend for grabbing his camera and heading out on our behalf. I’ll let John tell his story 🙂

“Thought it was about time I got a few photos on the Tamaki River boats before they disappear, (and they are going fast by the look of some). There are only a fraction of the numbers of wooden boats that were moored there in the 1960s and 1970s and as I previously mentioned, living on the waterfront at Bucklands Beach for around 25yrs I had seen most of them go by (was like Queen St on Friday nights most summer weekends) I did 2 trips down from Orewa and took pics from Panmure Boat Club and up to and under the new Panmure Bridge, end of Gabadore Pl (off Carbine Rd), the old Panmure Marina, (going with many houses from Panmure to Pakuranga Town centre, to make way for new highway widening), along the Tamaki River walkway for about 4km (Rotary Walk,- starts at the old Panmure Marina and goes all the way to Gills Rd in Howick, for those who like walking), Half Moon Bay and Bucklands Beach.

I also went down to the 1960s site of the private ex RNZAF W1  haul-out ramp below the old Alright property (well covered in bush now and a near vertical climb down a 30ft bank), – lost a bit of blood but well worth it for me, as I last stood on that spot 50yrs ago when we sneaked on board W1 to have a look around while she was up there. Original ramp and haul-out dolly is still there (see pics) although time has taken its toll. I’m amazed, looking at the crude set-up today, how Mr Alright got a 64ft boat weighing many tons, sitting on rubber tyred dollies (which ran in grooved concrete) lined up and hauled out with a winch and by the looks of it, the large tree in line with the ramp, not to mention getting it back out again (I’m assuming he must have winched it back out somehow). Massive effort not only to build the ramp on mud, (all by hand, no concrete pumping trucks) but to be able to use it.

Hope these photos are of interest to people who may be able to identify some of the mystery boats (especially the light blue launch with the chrome ventilators and light, (looks ex RNZAF ?). The yacht hidden near the big boatshed is around 45ft looks very old and has been there for many years, as has poor old Imatra, a once grand yacht which is in a very sad state and in urgent need of care (must have been there 30 yrs odd now). I have included a few other launches and yachts to show the sad state of many good looking (and once expensive) boats on the river crying out for attention, but I guess many people have other priorities and sadly their dreams are just floating slowly into oblivion. It’s pretty hard to get rid of a rusty rotten hulk, so there they will stay till it’s “business time” (flight of the Conchords) for the 20 ton digger.

I may have some of the boats names wrong as I was using a telephoto lens for most of the pics and with enhancing colour, contrast etc was as near as I could get. I’m sure someone will correct any if wrong.”

NOTE: With the photos that John has named, I have tagged the photos with those names. Scroll over the photos to view the names 😉
I could have used the individual images on WW over an extended period, but they need to be together in one spot. Enjoy 🙂