The 40’ launch Norana was designed by Joseph Gillanders and built in 1913 by Miller Bros at Port Chalmers for Charles William Sundstrum. She had a beam of 9’ and draw 3’6″.
Sundstrum was a Dunedin dentist who was a key figure in Dunedin yachting circles for many years. His first launch was the 31’ clinker double-ender Valmai of 1910 which had a Dunedin-built 5hp Viking engine. He raced her with the Otago Yacht Club including one of their Ocean races to Timaru.
He replaced Valmai in 1913 with Norana, which had a 16-18hp Jersey Standard marine engine, that gave Norma a cruising speed of 8 3/4 knots. He sold her to Arthur Brett of Auckland in 1927. During WWII she was taken over by the RNZAF and sent to Fiji for towing work.
In the top photo that appeared in a supplement to The NZ Yachtsman, June 5th, 1915, ex Lew Redwood fb, Sundstrum was the then Rear Commodore of the Otago Yacht & Motor Boat Club.
In the bottom photo which appeared on WW back in Sept 2015 as part of a story on the launch Thetis. Sundstrum sold Norana and had J McPherson, Dunedin, build Thetis for him. Thetis measured 35’1” x 8’1” x 2’9” and was launched in 1929. A serious speed machine – as launched she was good for 18 knots. During the war years with a bigger engine, that speed increased to 26+ knots – read / see more at this link https://waitematawoodys.com/2015/09/07/thetis/
Ok I’m getting older and boring but when out and about (driving) I normally listen to Radio NZ – Nine to Noon show, but with CV-19 lock-down I missed Wednesdays show. And woodys I missed a goodie, but Charles Rogers via Angus (Centaurus) Rogers pointed me to the RNZ website for the story.
That story involves the 27’ 1915 Milner & Milner ex workboat – Elsie and how Brian Railton the commodore of the Dunedin classic boat club, came to own her. There is a link below to the full on-line interview between Brian and Kathryn Ryan (RNZ), but a quick overview looks like this.
Elsie started life as a hand lining fishing boat on the Otago Harbour, she remained as a commercial fishing boat until the early 2000’s when she was retired. Like a lot of oldies Elsie didn’t like retirement and escaped i.e. broke her mooring and took herself on a tour of the Dunedin waterfront, eventually ending up on a rock seawall. Repaired but then she suffered damage on a sandbar. Luckily for Elsie the boat was spotted by Brian who acquired her and transported the boat from Carey’s Bay near Port Chalmers to his home in Wyndham in eastern Southland where Brian and a retired boat builder friend, are undertaking a rolling restoration. Most importantly – they intend to use her for what she was designed for i.e. fishing. In the photo above, taken by Brian, the pumps are working overtime to keep her a float. Click below to hear the full interview
Harold Kidd Input – ELSIE was built by the MILLER brothers.