Mystery Launch at Kawau Island

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Mystery Launch at Kawau Island

The above photo ex Lew Redwood’s fb is tagged 1900>1920 & other than the location, thats all we know.
Any thoughts on the name of the launch in the foreground ?
Harold Kidd Input – The launch at Kawau looks very like one of the Harrison Smith designs built by Bailey & Tyer at Hall’s Beach…….. MANUKURA, ELECTRA, but probably not KOTAHI now at Auckland Zoo.
Looking for a well priced classic woody?
The 1914 Lane built launch Rosemary M has featured several time on WW, in recent times she has been mainly used as a floating apartment, now for sale at what appears a very fair price of $19.5k ono, someone needs to save her from life as as an apartment & start using her again. Details below.

Sou’ East



The 39′ 1947 Lanes built Sou’East is seen above weighing in a thresher shark at Paihia in 1984. Photos ex Dean Wrights collection.
Sou’East has appeared on WW before, but not as above – to view as launched photos & current day, click the link below.

I have include below another of Dean’s photos, this one of the very ‘salty looking’ commercial fishing boat – Lady Karen – photo dated 1984, when owned by Frank Goodhue.



Lane ‘Bridge-decker’

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Given the recent debate on ww as to what constitutes a bridge-decker, today’s boat has the potential to have a major identity crisis 🙂 But if we park the owners trademe description & just take the boat on face value, she a pretty looking classic wooden launch.

Built by Lanes Boatbuilders in 1915, she is 30′ in length & built with carvel kauri planks & her decks are plyed / glassed.
Her owner has had her for 20 years & uses her regularly. Back in 2000>2003 she had a total refit (refer above photos).
Zoom zoom is via a Standard 23C engine, which is an early (1958) 35hp Massey Fergusson 4 cylinder, 2200cc. This easily sees her cruising at her hull speed & 7 knots is a comfortable speed without pushing anything too hard.
I like this classic & at $26k she would make a very affordable entry into classic wooden boating. Spend a few dollars & she could be made very special.

Sorry no name – so the question, as always 😉 woodys is, who is she & what do we know about her?


Nor'west Lochmara Bay 31 12 2007

Nor'west with [Te] Atatu (1919), Lochmara Lodge mooring 1 Jan 2008.


Nor’West is one of 2 identical boats built by Lane’s at Panmure circa 1948-50, Nor’West & Sou’East, given the year of their design, they had a very futuristic, low, sleek, appearance.
Both were used extensively for game fishing for many years. You can read more here in the comments section
I was sent the above photos dated 2007/2008 by Frank Stoks who crewed on her back them.
The photos below are from Brian Worthington.

Input from owner Daryl Brighouse – edited by AH
“I own Nor’West, when I bought her in Picton she was a little sad with very tired Ford diesels (two of the 1,000 units imported by Lees Marine ex Germany – and apparently the very first of the overhead cam diesels – now with no parts available world wide so magnificent anchor projects) I have recently replaced the engines with Nissans and at the same time replaced the vee drives that were well past use by date with decent American units. The rest of the vessel is absolutely solid and as good as the day she was built. Based in Havelock now she is still a very pretty and well founded much treasured vessel.  
The external fibreglassing on the cabin and some parts of the internal fine paint job had unfortunately covered up patches of dry rot / black water disintegration … in the extended coamings – looks as if, while the original coaming materials were kauri and in perfect condition, oregon or similar had been used to do the extension and end grain water ingress did the damage on the very course grain timber.  The silastic put into the hull instead of putty no doubt looked good when first completed however turned into a disaster after a season with all planks and joins showing badly and the silastic peeling out while under way.  With putty replacing the silastic and professionally painted she is starting to look as she should.  However I am really pleased to say that the heavy work is now done and only the cosmetic touch ups on the coamings and interior are left for me to play with this season / winter – which I do get a great deal of pleasure out of pottering around with, she is a fabulous vessel, handles magnificently and very comfortable. I remembered her as a child sailing in the Bay of Islands watching her thunder past with her nose in the air and stern well tucked down.
Any details from past owners would be well received.


MV Mavis



Mavis started life back 1918 as a Lanes 40′ trawler. Fast forward to 2004 when she had a  major refit that included –  hull refastened and splined, new decks and cabin, new  John Deere 150HP engine and re-wired. Given that she was recently in MNZ survey, she is very highly spec’ed and looks like she could handle just about anything that mother nature could throw at her. Thanks to Ian McDonald for the heads up re the trademe listing.

Do we know anything more about her past?

Yesterdays story on the Classic Launch Parade just got better – more photos ex Jason Prew added, scroll down to view.

Rosemary M – A peek down below



Rosemary M – A peak down below

Rosemary M has appeared numerous times on ww in various ‘states’, in todays photos she is looking very smart, possibly the best she has in her 102 year life.
She was built in 1915 by Lanes & named Rothesay, which became Maude T, that became Speedwell, that became Jean, that became Rosemary M. No wonder we get confused on the provenance of these classic motor boats 🙂

As a result of her trademe listing we get to have a peek down below, again very impressive.  Enjoy the tour 🙂

If the weekend has gone to plan, tomorrow there will be coverage from the Mahurangi Regatta – the biggest on-the-water classic boating event in NZ.
I promise lots & lots of photos.

If anyone has photos from either Mahurangi or yesterdays Auckland Anniversary Day Regatta – email in to

New photos added 16-11-2017

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photos & details ex Dave Murphy via Zach Matich

OK woodys, today’s launch is the Lane built kauri hulled ‘Irene’ – 31′ long with a beam of 9’6″ & 2’10” draft. Other than that ww does not know a lot about her past. She is currently powered by  a 120hp, 6 cylinder D series Ford which was rebuilt 2012, with approx. $6,500 spent on her & has only done 100 hrs since then. You will see from the photos that she has all the things that make life easy on these old girls – auto anchor, gas fridge etc. If this is starting to sound like an advertisement, that is because Irene is for sale & at around $20k in my eyes is very good value + she has not been too mucked around with. Throw $5>10k at a good wood friendly boat builder & you would have a very smart classic. Not that there appears to be anything wrong with her now, as the architects say ‘the bones are there’.
Her owner Dave Murphy can be contacted on 09 439 8609

Can we uncover more about her past ? home at the moment is the Kaipara Harbour.