The Endless Summer


Peter Loughlin Photos Below

Lady Margaret

The Endless Summer 

I know I’m tempting fate with the headline, but who can remember when it last rained? Todays gallery of woodys comes to us from the camera of Nathan Herbert (Pacific) as he mooched around the Hauraki Gulf last week. The last 5, are from Peter Loughlin (Lady Margaret -CW) doing the same thing.

We see Tasman, Viveen, Pacific, Arihi, Escape, Chandos, Zoe, Motunau, Waiari, Juanita, Pacific, Lady Margaret (CW), Rehia, Ngaro and a few that I can’t put a name to.

A question – did Colin Wild ever design / build an ugly boat? 

It was a pretty wild and woolly weekend in some parts of the north and reviewing the news and photos, Tutukaka took the brunt of it – sad to see the carnage. Angus Rogers sent in the photo below from Russell last night – tagged ‘After the Wind’ showing the Russell ferry and the launch Miss Brett, bottom right closer in.


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Kotuku was designed and built by Milford boat builder Alan Williams in 1960. She measures 32’ with a 9’ beam. Power is from a BMC Commodore diesel that was new when launched.
The bridge decker is kauri carvel built and has recently changed hands after a lengthy period on trademe. New owner’s Todd and Catherine sent in the photos above of her recent TLC.
Can anyone tell us more about Kotuku’s history.

Input from Mark Erskine‘Reviewing the above photos, in particular the ‘work in progress’ one, I see a note on the engine photo that the owner has used 5W 30 synthetic oil in the engine and gearbox.

Generally, older diesel engines have larger internal clearances than modern engines and (generally), a 5W 30 synthetic engine oil is used in a modern, close tolerance, high revving petrol engine. 

Older diesel engines have piston ring, cylinder liner and bearing materials that require a basic, heavier viscosity, mineral oil, such as a heavy duty, high detergent / dispersant / SAE30, SAE40, 15W 40 or 20W 50 grade.

I recommend the owner contacts either Castrol or Shell technical services for their lubricant recommendation for that particular engine and the gearbox.Tthere are a lot of old diesel and petrol engines in older boats and using the wrong oil can damage the engine.’







Lara was built in 1977 by Alan Williams & measures 28’6″.  She is a Banshee displacement design , kauri carvel construction. Zoom zoom comes from a 72hp Ford with a Lees Marine Paragon 2/1 transmission, this sees her cruising at 7-8 knots on 4 litres per hour.

Any woodies able to tell us more about her?

Silver Sea


details ex John Ellis & Ken Ricketts, photos KR.
(edited by AH)

Silver Sea is according to her present owner, John Ellis, a  36′ Alan Williams launch built in 1960. Powered by a 120 hp Lees marinised Ford diesel, driven by a vee drive, integrated into the gearbox & 2 to 1 reduction gear. Home has been Gulf Harbour for a number of years as John bought her off a Frank Steed 4 years ago, who also kept her at GH.

Given that she sports a chart of the Whangarei cruising area mounted in her cabin, it is highly probably that at some stage she spent time in the Northern region.
Its rumoured that she featured in a 1963 issue of Sea Spray magazine –  if anyone can find the article & scan, please email to 🙂

During Jan 2016, Silver Sea was in Brin Wilson’s Gulf Harbour shed having some routine TLC, including tightening up the caulking & re-puttying, painting etc. Now ready for re-launching.

Silver Sea pre relaunch

Harold Kidd Input

I always thought that she was designed and built by E Buckland in the North around 1946. She was in Whangarei for many years owned by Buckland, then Richard Ahlers then came to Auckland when bought by Frank Stead in November 2001, but perhaps that 36 footer SILVER SEA(S) was another boat of the same name?

21-01-2016 Food For Thought

Chatting with Harold K on how she could possibly have been mistaken for an Allen Williams launch & Harold suggested that its likely that someone has seen the BANSHEE article in Sea Spray magazine (March 1963, see below) & jumped to the conclusion that SILVER SEA was a Williams.
Williams took several whole back page ads in SEA SPRAY later in 1963 showing BANSHEE so it was a well-known image at the time.
Anyone else able to expand on this supposition? May Ian Mason ?


10-07-2016 Hauled Out At Milford Cruising Club




photo & details ex Harold Kidd

Selena  was built in 1963 by Alan Williams at Milford for Stan Blundell of Fisher & Blundell. She was a Williams Banshee design but Stan wanted her no longer than 30ft oa so she finished up at 30’x27’x9’6”x2’9”.
She had a 4 cylinder 60hp Ford diesel. Stan’s son John thinks they probably fitted a Parsons marinisation and marine gearbox as they were the importers, to the annoyance of Lees Marine.
Stan didn’t keep her long, swapping her with F.J.H. Leighton for a bach at Maraetai around 1965.
So where is she now?

It is  very hard to design / build a  sub 30′ motor launch that proportionally looks ‘right’. Over the next week I’ll be posting on some smaller launches that tick all the right boxes.

Input from John Blundell ex Harold Kidd

Hi Harold,

The picture of Selena on the WW website today looked great.Re your comments on Lees Marine,they probably didn’t mean much to most viewers. The import restrictions in those days meant that you could not import marine engines unless you had a “special” license or overseas funds.
F&B managed to import a few on these terms but Ted Lees took it up with the Customs Dept and Ford Motor Co and got “protection”. However F&B continued to import gearboxes and other conversion parts from Parsons which were then sold on to local Ford dealers.
Keep up the good work!
John Blundell



Built by Allan Williams & launched in 1972, this 34 ft launch is built with a mix of kauri and teak. The story goes that Williams built the boat for his personal use and  due to its popularity the design was replicated several times in the following years.
Banshee was re- powered in 1994 with a 210hp Cummins that gives her with a max speed of approx. 14 knts.
A very practical ‘modern’ classic, her varnished coamings get a big tick from me. Currently for sale.

16-07-2021 Update – for sale again – photos ex May 2021 at Sandspit Marina




Juanita has appeared several times before on ww, but always in b/w, her current owners, Marty & Lena Pooley of Whitianga after ‘discovering’ the b/w older ww postings, sent Ken Ricketts some stunning colour photos of her & some updates on her previous ownership & length – she is 32′ not 36′ as previously reported.

Built by Allan Williams at Milford Creek for Cyril Bertrand of Bell Rd. Remuera c.1953, she had an Osco converted Ford V8 originally. When she was sold, she lived for a good number of years, at the Sandspit Warkworth, had a 6 cyl For Diesel fitted & was maintained (tbc) by Lees Boatbuilders, for the then owners.
She was owned by Ernest & Rae  Blumenthal from the mid 1960’s to the 1994, when her husband died, Mrs Blumenthal sold her to Eric Nicholson Vickers in 1994. Vickers sold her to James Brown in Whangarei in 1997. James Brown sold her to Greenwoods in Napier in 2007, who took her to Kinloch Marina on Lake Taupo.  Her current owners, the Pooley’s, bought her in January 2009 and she now lives in Whitianga Marina.

Juanita today remains almost identical to ‘as launched’ & her past owners need to be thanked for this. Marty & Lena say she is a babe – that she is.

Harold Kidd Update

JUANITA was built by Alan Williams at Milford in 1951 for Cyril Bertrand. The APYMBA records show her dimensions as 32’6″x31’3″x10’2″x2’10″ and being fitted with an Osco Ford V8 as Ken states. She was sold to M.T. Burrill in 1959 and then to John L. Gilbert in 1961.Her call-sign was ZMZF.
She was part of the honour guard for the arrival of the GOTHIC in Auckland in December 1953 for the Royal Tour.
What confuses me a bit is that she was called JUANITA II in APYMBA records after 1966 when Gilbert still seems to have owned her, and was JUANITA II when the Blumenthals owned her in the 1970s. Any reason? Same boat?

Photos above – with ‘mast’ is at Lake Taupo & minus ‘mast’ is at Ohinau Island Mercury Bay

Photos below – taken a Mercury Islands 3/4 May 2014

Alan Williams Sedan Cruiser

Alan Williams Sedan Cruiser

Reputedly designed & built by Alan Williams in 1972 for his own use. Williams built several more of this 34’1″ sedan cruiser to the same design, which were known by the design name ‘Banshee’.

Currently for sale on trademe

Harold Kidd Update

Alan Williams built BANSHEE for himself in 1966. She was built at a time when Williams was fighting the Takapuna City Council to remain in business with his existing use as a boatbuilder in Omana Road, a predominantly residential area. There were allegations at the hearing of noxious noise from “shipbuilding” on the site, with overtones of clanging steel and grinding, when he was in reality producing lovely wooden thoroughbreds like this.
I acted for the local residents and regretting taking that brief!


details & photos ex Ken Ricketts
36 ft long, circa 10 ft 6″ beam, built of 2 skins of Kauri, one full length,  & one diagonal, by Alan Williams, at Milford Creek, circa 1950, either built for, or bought, when almost new, by Len Pepper of Lake Rd Takapuna, a substantial building contractor of the day.
A beautiful example of Alan Williams work, with a low profile, & real balance & individuality in her exterior styling.
One thing however they sacrificed a little headroom for the low profile, & taller people would have to bend a little inside her. She had a very “open plan” layout with open bulkheads, from one section of the boat to another, with the engine under a box in the centre of the bridgedeck, fairly well forward, as indicated by the side exhaust outlet, in the above pic I took, circa 1951.
Sadly, from the perspective of  lovely low profile & aesthetic balance, she has been “modified” through the years with the combings raised & the beautiful varnish work now long since painted (such a shame, in my view, as the varnished combings gave all classic boats such character, as perhaps many would agree), & whilst still fairly recognisable, unfortunately, her beautiful lines have been lost, also the addition of a flying bridge did not help.
She was originally powered by an 8 cyl in line, Buick petrol engine, with a label on the side push rod cover, saying, “Buick Detroit Marine,” however notwithstanding the label, I feel it may well have been added, by the person, or people, who actually marinised the engine, as a “one off,” as I have never seen or heard of another one.
The current engine, when I last saw her, about 1 &1/2 years ago, was a 6 cyl Ford Diesel, & she was living at Port Fitzroy, Great Barrier Island, being used, more or less, just as transport, & for a little fishing, by a family living there.  She could have done with some TLC at that time.
I know she belonged to a plumbing contractor in the mid 1980s, as I was aboard her, at Mansion House Bay wharf, at Kawau Island, one day, when he was the owner.

Nov 2013- Ken Ricketts Update – She has been owned for many years by “Bruno” A Swiss gentleman & his wife, who live at Port Fitzroy Gt Barrier Island & as you can see, in the “before & now”  pics., she has sadly had very substantial changes & has lost the “bloom of youth,” she had, when I took the first pics In 1951.

One intersting thing I picked up on, in my recent inspection is, that she is built of 2 opposite diagonal skins of Kauri, which is not that common & is different from her sister ship Juanita, which the outer skin fore & aft & the inner skin diagonal which is more usual.

The colour photos was taken on the hard stand at Gulf Harbour (Nov 2013) where she is presently having a little TLC.

The present owners use her for transport to & from their home & Bruno also goes fishing of a few days at a time from time to time to the Broken Islands, Kawau, etc., & enjoys living aboard & cruising in the usual way, as well as the essential transport aspect. He has owned for around 20 years.

Updated photo 15/01/2015 ex Colin Pawson

Updated photo 15/01/2015. This ones an Auckland Anniversary Day Regatta photo, the 18 footers race, ex the National Libarary. Ex Nathan Herbert.


15-03-2016 photos below ex Ken Ricketts, hauled out at Gulf Harbour. Looking a lot smarter post her visit to Geoff Bagnall’s yard.


At Gulf Harbour – Dec 2020 – photos ex K Ricketts