Sandspit Yacht Club Yard Visit

Sandspit Yacht Club Yard Visit

Following on from yesterdays semi Sandspit story, I was there again during the week and did a quick loop of the SYC yard – nice collection of both traditional classics and spirit of tradition old hauled for some TLC.

If any of you are around any boat yards – get the phone out and take > send in some photo 🙂

Classics at the Sandspit Yacht Club

Rotomahana & Tuna 1

Rotomahana & Tuna



Classics at the Sandspit Yacht Club
photos ex John Pryor

John sent in the collection of photos above of woodys currently hauled out at the Sandspit Yacht Club & asked the question is SYC the new ‘Traditional Boat Yard’ ? I think I would have to agree with him, a grand line-up & with their impressive haul out set-up + the legendary Greg Lees Boat Builders alongside, you would struggle to find a more woody friendly facility.

All the woodys above have featured on ww before, so to read more on them, use the ww search box.

A true woodys smoke-0


The rebirth of Juanita

Juanita 021

The Rebirth of JUANITA
photos Greg Lees & Alan H

Yesterday I was privileged to be asked by Greg Lees to attend the re-launch of the 32′ classic launch Juanita, a 1951 Allan Williams (Milford Creek) built beauty that has  just spent the last 4 months in the Lees Boatbuilder shed at Sandspit. In Greg’s words she was in for a ‘refresh & to bring her back to her original appearance’ – well Mr Lees, I do not think she has ever looked this good before so you have exceeded the brief, but we have come to expect that from the yard. Greg commented that Juanita’s new owners (Nick & Anna Davidson) contribution to the work was huge, every weekend for the 4 month period.

Juanita has had a busy life having called numerious places home – Auckland, Whangarei, Lake Taupo, Whitianga & now Sandspit.

Juanita’s past has been well documented on ww – some links below for details & photos

I took the photo of her below late last year, moored off Greg’s wharf looking very sad & tired as she awaited her turn in the shed. Arohanui was in-residence at the time mid restoration. One of the reasons Nick chose the Lees yard was the long association the yard & Greg personally has had with Juanita, in fact Greg told me that he once got very close to adding a flybridge to her, luckily that never happened 🙂

Again I’m so pleased to see so many of our classic launches being returned to their finery – so woodys who’s next in the shed?

Screen Shot 2016-03-19 at 7.35.46 AM


Took the opportunity to have a  peek at Karros hauled out & chat to Dave Jackson, with a 14′ beam she is a rather pretty big bottomed old girl 🙂

Tainui On The Move

Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 3.06.01 PM

Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 7.54.18 PM

photos ex Pam Cundy

One of the ww woodys, John Sloane, recently purchased the 1967, 38′ kauri plank carvel launch Tainui from the Great Barrier Island. We do not know a lot about her but she did start life as an Auckland Harbour Board work boat.

John has retained the service of the Whangateau Traditional Boat Yard to under take a two year restoration of Tainui. Pam & George had previously travelled to the island to inspect her & yesterday (10-02-2016) the real work began with Pam & George towing Tainui back to Whangateau with the help of Dave Jackson & his wee ship Karros. Pam reports it was a very pleasant trip & Tanui’s now tucked up at T Point and will go up the creek to the boat yard later today.

Tainui is a great looking launch & I’m sure John picked her up for a good price. She is also a very lucky boat because she is now in the care of one of the best classic friendly yards in NZ.
We will follow the work at WTBY with great interest.

Still keen to learn more about Tainui’s past – anyone able to help?

More details on Tainui here

15-06-2018 Update – photo below ex Whangateau boat year fb  showing Tainui’s rebuilt Gardner being delivered ex Dave Shaw’s workshop. Looking stunning 🙂 well done John. 

Visit the yard fb page to see / follow the restoration


Update 10-09-2019 – Tainui seen here off Cape Brett, in the 1958>1966 period. Her owner John Sloane commented to me that she was probably ‘working’ in her role as an Oyster Inspector boat.

Screen Shot 2019-09-10 at 12.43.08 PM

Screen Shot 2019-09-10 at 3.57.54 PM

Screen Shot 2019-09-11 at 6.36.17 PM