The 40’ Aoroa was built in 1928 by Miller & Tunnage and is kauri carvel planked. She has a beam of 9’11” and draws 3’5”. These days she is powered by a 100 hp Ford diesel, which I would suspect works hard to push a boat of Aoroa size along. But I’m sure I’ll be told its all about gearbox / prop configuration.
Thankfully her tme listing included some old b/w photos (below) from when launched and of the alterations over the years – from these we can see the bones of a very smart woody, that hopefully one day someone will do a top-chop on 🙂
Can we expand more on her past?
Harold Kidd Input – Original owner was J.T. Paul; original engine a 100hp S4 6 cylinder Gray.. Did a trip to Akaroa in 1931. Owned by W.R. Carey of Lyttelton in 1953. VERY handsome vessel.
20-03-2021 Input from David Lackey – Wren Carey, the proprietor of the Kaiapoi Woollen Mills (then a substantial South Island manufacturer) was a friend and business associate of my father, Keith Lackey and, in the 1950s we would we occasionally call in to see him at his property in (I seem to remember) Blackwood Bay, Queen Charlotte Sound. The property was both immense and immaculate, boasting magnificent gardens and even a citrus orchard (which, for those familiar with QC sound, was a rarity if not a miracle. At one end of the beach was a large boatshed in which Mr Carey kept the immaculate Aoroa. Assisted by his caretaker, Mr Carey would launch the ship and take off for a day cruise in the sound, putting her away again in the evening just as nonchalantly as if she were a runabout or dinghy. She was like a piece of chippendale furniture, with glowing topsides and gleaming brightwork. I believe she still had the 6 cylinder Gray Engine which was a point of mutual interest because our Marinus was powered by twin 144hp Graymarine Luggers. Wren Carey was the father of CR (Roger) Carey, the noted Picton builder of many fine commercial and private vessels.
Requests for info on boat on WW can be a lot like paying the pokie machines – you ‘feed’ the machine and pull the handle – sometimes it spins and nothing comes up, most of the time we get a small payout, just enough to keep us motivated to keep playing – then sometimes you hit the jackpot.
Today’s story is a jackpot pay out – starts like this – over the last 5>6 years the 1939, 56′, Miller & Tunnage built – Koputai has popped up on WW and we have been trying uncover more of her history. Back in May 2015 she was for sale and the then owner, the late, Louey Sandiant told us everything you would want to know about the photo + photos. Then in Sept 2020 Keith Foster, who purchased Koputai off Louey contacted WW and supplied some updated photos and a request for any further intel on the boat.
It took a few months but Matt Siddells made contact and advised that his grandfather – Russell Bramwell purchased Koputai as a retired pilot boat and did the conversion to pleasure boat. Matt has very kindly shared the gallery above of photos from the family album. You can see and read more about Koputai at the WW links below
KOTARE – The Most Affordable Waterfront Apartment In Auckland
Over the last few years we have seen a surge in the number of workboat > pleasure boat conversions. Bang for bucks you can end up with a lot of boat.Todays woody Kotare has appeared on WW before, link below.
At 50’ Kotare would be one of the best conversions I have seen and is now offered for sale – owned by a fastidious passionate woody, everything is presented in as perfect condition and is ready to motor off into the sunset or just stay at the marina and enjoy waterfront living.
Miller & Tunnage – Double Ender If you spend as much time as I do stalking wooden boats on-line you will have noticed the growing trend for work boat conversions, you either love them or not – me I’m in the love them camp. We do not know a lot about todays woody, thanks Ian McDonald, other than she was built by Miller and Tunnage in 1922, out of kauri, is 40’ in length, has a 9’ 10” beam and draws 3’7”. A Gardner 3LW 150hp diesel pushes her along at a comfortable cruising speed of 7 knots. Appears to be very well fitted out.
Can anyone put a name to this woody ?
18-11-2020 Input from Mark Erskine – I was interested to read about the above Miller & Tunnage Double Ender. I agree it’s a real nice boat and was interested to read about her Gardner 3LW engine.
Depending on the fuel and governor / rpm settings, the 3LW engines produce between 36 to 53.5HP from their 4.184 litre capacity.
The “Gardner 150” badge on the Miller & Tunnage control panel is for a 6-cylinder 6LXB Gardner (127 to 150HP) or possibly the 8-cylinder 8LXB (150 to 200)
Gardners are great engines and although the whole range are all low on HP for their considerable size, capacity and weight, they all produce a lot of torque at low rpm and are very reliable.
Although 36 to 54 HP seems a bit low for the size of the boat, I’m guessing the 3LW is a good match for a double ender hull because torque turns the prop rather than HP and the 3LW should also be very economical to operate at 7 knots.