Dixie – Motor-Sailer


Dixie –  Motor-Sailer

The above photo was sent in by Simon Smith, details are unknown but being such an impressive looking craft, it won’t be long before a woody ID’s her for us.
Update – chat in the comments section between Paul Drake & Harold Kidd around whether she could be Ponui. HDK has advised that he agrees with Paul in that the stem is too plumb for Ponui, but HDK commented that she’s very similar in layout for the time, even to the conning tower in the cabin top. Photo below.
Update 11-02-2019 As ID’ed by Nathan Herbert & endeared below by Harold Kidd – it is Dixie.
DIXIE. Built by H.N. Burgess October 1913 for Jas Kennedy of Putiki Bay, Waiheke (a Squadron member hence the flag). 18hp Automatic kerosene engine later 30hp Twigg. In Kennedy’s family until 1985. Recently in Thames.



Today’s post features a launch by the name of Dixie, I do not know much about her but I have been aboard. I was tipped off early this year that she might be for sale & had been sitting at her Westhaven berth unloved for quite a while – unloved might be the wrong word, maybe unused would be better. What I do know is that she was glassed several years ago by Wayne Olsen & aside from the ‘low maintenance’ angle, this had the added bonus of strengthening her up, her original owner wanted a fast launch & ordered her ‘light’. I was told she was more than capable of hitting 18knts. You will see from the above photos that post glassing the owner did little more e.g. the portholes have not been trimmed out & re-fitted. Her owner has an engineering business & that side of the vessel was very impressive, all she needed was a renovation to bring her back to her finest.  In fact most of the hardware was on-board just not fitted. Given the rectangular shaped portholes she could be from the McGeady stable?

I learned recently that she sold for as they say ‘a song’, someone has a acquired at a very low entry point the makings of a nice classic wooden boat. Fingers crossed she gets the time & attention she deserves.

Anyone able to added for details on Dixie?

Harold Kidd Input

She started life as AQUARIUS, built by Owen Woolley in 1966 for motorcycle legend Len Perry. About 1995 Perry sold her to Steve Harris  who renamed her DIXIE. She had a Perkins H6 354TD horizontal/slant 354cu in engine, quite a rare beast, introduced in 1960.

Shamus has advised that Adonis is a sister ship built on the same frames but just a wee bit longer.
HDK confirmed that ADONIS was 40ft, built by Owen Woolley for Martyn Uren, a really fine man, in 1965. She had twin 100hp Fordson diesels. She was later owned by Bob Green.

Photo of Len Perry below ex HDK