Alex Stewart bought her in the 1930s and called her MARGARET S.
1985 Chas Bailey Gaffer – Ida – Invitation To View
1985 Chas Bailey Gaffer – Ida – Invitation To View
Harold and I have finally sorted the mystery of Matatua (well it was only a mystery to us, the rest of the world couldn’t care less 🙂 ).
Matatua was built as a 33-foot ketch by Roy Lidgard in 1938 at their yard in Freemans Bay Auckland for C.T. Jonas who originally named her Landfall.
NZ Herald 13/8/1938 has a photo of her on page 12 being built ‘for C.T. Jonas’.
Landfall was launched 19/11/1938 and described as an ‘auxilliary ketch’ 33ft overall, 26ft on the waterline with 9ft 6in beam. She carried 600 sq ft of sail and it was reported that her owner intended making a cruise to the islands at the end of the 1938-39 season.
From then on, no more mention of Landfall and it appears that C.T. Jonas and his co-owner Harry Gillard, renamed her Matatua quite soon after launching.
The ketch Matatua first appears in print in February 1939 racing with other boats in the Lidgard employees picnic from the Freemans Bay slipway to Motuihe. She raced regularly with RNZYS and RAYC for the rest of the season. Her registration number was B-9.
The ketch rig clearly wasn’t a success because in September 1939 the NZH 26/9/39 reports ‘aux yacht Landfall owned by C.T. Jonas which made an appearance last year under ketch rig has been converted into a cutter’. This reference to Landfall is odd because she had been named Matatua since at least the beginning of 1939, but maybe they were just making the connection back their earlier articles.
In the winter of 1940, yet more improvements.
NZH 2/7/40: B-class yacht Matatua owned by C. Jonas has had 2ft 6in added to her counter by Lidgard Bros. OA length now 35ft 6in and will enable carrying a permanent backstay,
NZH 9/12/40: Photo of Matatua with her new cutter rig, B-9 on the sail.
The war intervenes and Matatua ceases racing.
During this time the Auckland yacht registration records, probably having been moved about or in storage during the war, had fallen into disarray. By the time a new list is published in July 1946, Matatua has been registered twice, first by Harry Gillard, who retained B-9, and again by C.T. Jonas who got a new number B-24. The error was picked up and B-24 lapsed but it remained in the official lists for a couple of seasons until another purge of obsolete registrations in 1948.
Clarrie Irvine raced Matatua, as B-9, for the next couple of seasons and sold her in 1949 to R. Campbell of Wellington. The trip to Wellington under delivery skipper Terry Hammond was hard and they were missing for several days after hitting a nor’westerly gale just off Cape Palliser that blew them as far south as Kaikoura. After getting back to almost the same spot, they ran into a westerly gale that blew them back out to sea. Eventually Matatua got to Wellington, her crew had been battered for 84 hours.
Matatua remained in Wellington (registered as Wellington A-10) for the next 12 years or so. She was purchased by K. Stutter in 1957, and in 1962 was sold to D. Fletcher of Epsom who brought her back to Auckland where she picked up her old number of B-9. Fletcher didn’t appear to do any racing but in 1968 he sold her to George Retter of the Richmond Yacht Club who owned and raced her until 1981.
Matatua has had no registered owners since then. Her NZYF number is 109
One major confusion with Matatua has been the Bob Stewart design Mata-a-tua built for George Gresham of Tauranga in 1947. When Matatua was sold to Wellington, her B-9 registration became vacant and was issued to Gresham’s Mata-a-tua thus beginning a series of tortured confusions in boating magazines and newspapers between the two boats.
This was continued when Mata-a-tua was also sold to Wellington in 1958 where she became Wellington A-9. Her owner Brian Millar brought her to Auckland in 1964 and she entered the 1965 Anniversary Regatta under her Wellington number A-9. (A-9?.. A-9??.. That’s Moana and We can’t have that!!) In February she was re-registered as B-47.
Another tedious ‘golly gee’ point. Both Clarrie Irvine and George Retter owned the Bailey built C-class Matua C-54. Both of them sold Matua to buy Matatua
I have been told to ‘get a life’ by many people.
MANAROA BAY (Lady Leila)
TIME – 4 Sale
Clarionet – Sailing Sunday
Today’s woody is the Chappelle designed schooner- Clarionet, seen here early one morning in Whangamumu, Northland getting ready to get underway.
Lake Rotoiti – Okawa Bay Holiday Camp
IDA DIPS HER TOES
After a full restoration and a Covid19 lock down delay, the 1895 Chas Bailey designed and built by C&W Bailey, Ida finally left Horizon Boats shed on the 1st May 2020 and headed to the water (Stillwater) to be rigged. Yesterday she was lowered into the water with all sails and equipment on board so that the team could determine her water line ready for anti-fouling. At 7050kg and with her slender lines she is going to be a slippery challenge for the rest of Auckland’s A class fleet. Check out the gaff collar – talk about bling 🙂
One of the many woodys that contacted WW for a copy of Chris McMullen’s docking tips was Mike Empson, owner of – Maureen II, a Matangi, built c1967-68 by Brin Wilson. Maureen II is 100% kauri, 36′ long and weighs approx. 9 tonnes.
As you know I’m a big fan of the website – Off Center Harbor, the site is probably best known for jaw dropping boat tours and in-depth how-to series, but the OCH lads also know how to slow down and soak up the scenery. Given the craziness of the last 5 weeks I have found myself trolling the OCH online library more than ever, looking to a cure to my boat less blues. I have some favourites that I would be embarrassed to say how many times I have viewed 🙂
Woodys On Tour – Halls Boat Yard, New York
A few years ago, woodys Jim and Karin Lott were ‘parked up’ with the masts on deck in their kauri ketch – Victoria, on the Hudson River. More specifically in the middle of New York State in a city called Albany. The Lott’s waited there for three weeks for the Erie Canal to open. Jim commented that Albany definitely does not feature on anyone’s ‘place to go’ list. They were not alone as Wellington old salt Richard Watt and his wife Enid anchored alongside them in their launch (photo below of both boats), as well as dozens of other impatient US and Canadian sailors.
To while away the time they hired a car and headed to Lake George to look at woodies at Halls Boatyard, one of the many inland homes of wooden boats in New York. Jim commented that floating boat garages are common in North America and they spent several hours admiring a sea of varnished ash, cedar, spruce and mahogany. There was a slipway and boatyard all under cover inside the shed complex. The yard specialises in rebuilding and restoring classic motor-launches but a few yachts were getting the same TLC.
After the long wait, the canal stayed closed so they had to forgo the Great Lakes and continued up the Hudson. Eventually they locked into Lake Champlain and down the Richelieu River to the St Lawrence near Montreal in Canada.
21-04-2020 Harold Kidd Update – The 1938 date is a canard gleaned from “Mullet Boats ‘n Quotes” at page 46. Newspaper reports of the time say she was under construction by J. Graham of Otahuhu for his son Scott Graham in September 1939. Scott Graham was her original owner and raced her until the 1941 Lipton Cup when she was described as “new” and then in the Anniversary Regatta a week or so later.
Billy Matthews was shown as owner in the APYMBA records for 1946.
Graham Cole of Karaka Bay and L Good owned her in 1946. They sold to Ross Weaver of Whangarei c1948.S Hammond of Regina St Grey Lynn owned her in 1952. S Daniels of Webber St Grey Lynn in 1953. M Aitken of Mt Roskill in 1973. Ray Esdale Northcote c1980 followed by Howard Pascoe of course.
22-04-2020 – Robin Elliott Input – Ah … Mullet Boats N Quotes. Duck soup.
I don’t think she actually went into the water until some time in 1940, hence the ‘new’ tag in the 1941 Lipton Cup Report. I have an unconfirmed note that J. Graham and S. Graham were respectively the father and brother of Mark Graham the Kiwi rugby League Player – but he was not born until 1955, so I am not sure.
Billy Matthews entered her as Zamira in the 1946 Anniversary regatta, she came 6th across the line from 12 starters. He entered her as Ngahere in the 1947 Regatta so the name change was ‘possibly’ from the start of the 1946/47 season although he could have changed the name the day before the placed his regatta entry in January 1947. 🙂
Messrs Cole & Good enter her in the 1948 and 1949 Regattas, R. Weaver in the 1950 Regatta.
No regatta mentions until S. Hammond enters her in the 1953 and 1954 AAR
Nothing until 1961 AAR when entered by ‘Naylor, and then 1962, 1963 by N.E. ‘Taylor’
Other Registered owners were : K.W. Skinner, Wharf Rd, Herne Bay 1955+?; R.E.(N.E.?) Naylor, Hauraki St, Birkenhead 1960?/63+?; Munro 1966+?; M. O’Brien, Cameron St Ponsonby 1966+?; M.C. Chitty, East Coast Rd Browns Bay. 1968+?; H.L. Whitcombe, Onewa Rd Northcote 1970+?; M. Aitken, Tory St, Mt Roskill 1973+?
After that, darkness descends as the Auckland Yachting Assn stopped publishing their year books (or rather no one has given me anything after 1973.)
Question is – can a boat be considered to be a premise?
Checking the mooring strop, flapping halyards, bilge pumps etc is part of normal boat security, particularly when grumpy weather is forecast or has just been.”
Chatting with Tinopai (2hrs north of Auckland) based woody Greg Schultz he tells me advancing old age has forced him to make the reluctant decision to pass on one of my most prized possessions.
Greg built this boat about 10 yrs ago off the original 1905 Arch Logan plans (modified by Chapman1921). Construction is clinker lapstrake using 6mm ply with epoxy glued laps which gives a good lightweight watertight hull (originals leaked like sieves and weighed a ton). All other timbers are kauri and totara. He also added 3 buoyancy compartments for added safety (2 side seats & forward compartment all epoxy sealed inside). Greg commented that she has only been sailed approx. a dozen times.
The Silver Fern class (12’6″) was designed as a training boat for teenagers before they moved on to the bigger M class and is therefore almost a miniature ‘Emmie’.
Spars and rigging are s/s and sails by Fife. Pivoting centerboard and rudder for shallow water sailing. Permanent reef lines for shortening sail without coming ashore.
Woodys this is a stunning boat to both look at and sail so if you are frustrated with paying big marina fees and the hassles of organizing crew – maybe now is the time to add a woody to the fleet so that you can sail single handed or take the grand kids for a sail.
YOUR OWN COPY OF WOODENBOAT MAGAZINE
In response to the COVID-19 worldwide pandemic, and to help ease your time while practicing social distancing, the publishers of WoodenBoat have very generously decided to make the digital edition of WoodenBoat No. 274 (May/June 2020) free for all to read and enjoy. Please share this digital edition with all friends and family you think might enjoy, or need, a fun distraction. With the forecast for long overdue rain for most of NZ later today – this is perfect timing for a lazy afternoon on the couch 🙂 Enjoy
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’.”
Wooden Boats @ Whangarei Town Basin
Bay Of Islands 1950’s Gallery
2020 New Zealand Classic Yacht Regatta Photo Gallery – 100+ photos and videos