St Ayles Skiff’s In The Bay of Islands

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St Ayles Skiff’s In The Bay of Islands
 
Time for a break from the miles of Australian varnished wood on display at the recent Wooden Boat Festival in Hobart 🙂
Today we are looking at some very smart St Alyes skiffs that made an appearance at last months Millennium Cup in the Bay of Islands. Woody Dean Wright snapped the above photos at Russell. It appeared that the crews from several of the super yachts ran their own mini regatta – a rowing race around the bay. Dean captured this on video (below) and commented that given the speed they hit the beach obviously the racing crews weren’t the guys in charge of the paint job.
 
I assume that Mike Mahoney was behind the rowing race as one of the skiffs – Wee Tawera, would have been aboard his magnificent super-yacht – Tawera. Mike was one of the people, including Baden Pascoe and Steve Cranch and others that introduced St Ayles skiffs and the concept of coastal rowing to New Zealand. Wee Tawera was built at the NZ Traditional Boat Building School. View more on her here. https://waitematawoodys.com/2015/03/29/wee-tawera/
 
 
 

Boatbuilding School Looking For New Home

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Boatbuilding School Looking For New Home – Can You or Anyone You Know Help Out?

 
The New Zealand Traditional Boatbuilding School is on the lookout for new premises that will allow the delivery of an exciting new chapter of services to the broader wooden boating fraternity and other practically minded members of the public.
The Trustees have acknowledged that times are changing in the wooden and traditional boating world and are looking to bring a more inclusive program together in 2019 and beyond, while also maintaining the essential skills required to preserve traditional vessels.
To facilitate the new direction, more appropriate premises are being sought with workshop space of at least 150m2 and ideally reasonable facilities to hold small lectures.
Perhaps someone in the broader community knows of a suitable space? This may even be part of a larger facility under utilised by the current tenant or owner.
 
Interested parties in the first instance should contact Colin Pawson at  
 

Kotimana

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KOTIMANA
On my last visit to the NZ Traditional Boatbuilding School I got chatting to one of the trustees – Kere Kemp & he casually dropped in that he was building a Dark Harbor 17 1/2’. Thats cool I thought & then I discover its being built in Port Hadlock out on the Olympic peninsula oppposite Seattle, Washington USA.
The yachts name is Kotimana – Maori for scotch thistle in recognition of Kere’s mother – Scottish, and his dad – Maori.
Kere commissioned her in September 2016 at the end of a post-retirement year at the North West School of Wooden Boatbuilding in Port Hadlock.
She was built by the classes of 2017 and 2018, & was launched at Point Hudson Marina, Port Townsend on August 29th. She is heading down under but with a few stops on the way – firstly Kotimana will be on display at the 42nd Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival, second weekend of September and will then head via container to the 2019 Australian Wooden Boat Festival in early 2019 before finally making it home to Auckland in mid February 2019.
For those of you scratching your head thinking “what is a Dark Harbour 17-1/2 below is a description excerpted from a pre-launch write up that the NWSWB wrote when announcing the launch.
Dark Harbour 17-1/2

Originally designed for the Manchester Yacht Club in Massachusetts USA and called the Manchester 17, the first boats were built by the Rice Bros in 1908. As the design’s popularity spread it acquired a number of different names including the Bar Harbor 17 and eventually the Dark Harbor 17-1/2. The plans for this yacht are credited to BB Crowninshield and were completed by R. N. Burbank, an employee of the firm at the time.

 
The Dark Harbor 17-1/2 is a pure sailing machine of great beauty, but large enough to offer considerably more comfort through a larger cockpit well and a small cuddy cabin. Low freeboard combined with a wide, self-bailing cockpit well that seats you “down in” the boat puts you very close to the water. The lovely, slender hull lines, long ends, deep draft and large rig provide wonderfully sweet feel in this powerful, fast, wet, responsive and handy boat.

BB Crowninsheild was a US Naval Architect from the late 1800’s / early 1900’s who designed a number of boats including an America’s Cup contender and the largest ever steel hulled sailing boat (just prior to the introduction of the steam engine to sail boats).
Kerry commented that he fell in love with the lines of a Dark Harbor back in 2010 and decided that he would ultimately build one for himself.  Sanity eventually crept in and he commissioned her instead – Kerry was able to do some work on her prior to his move to New Zealand in mid 2017.
I’ll get a sneak preview of her at the Australian Wooden Boat Festival in Feb 2019 so will update this story with more photos.
Kotimana will be a magnificent additional to Auckland’s classic fleet.

Jack

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JACK

The clinker Jack belongs to woody Dean Wright, they got Jack from Picton back in 2008, a 8’6″ kauri clinker. From what Dean has learnt she was probably built by the Jack Morgan yard in the 1960’s. If anyone recognises Jack and has any more history, he would love to hear it.

 The story of Jack as told by Dean

He’s always been a leaker despite long spells in the briny to take up. You’ll see from the photos 3-4″ of water sloshing about and the bailer afloat, we decided that 2016 was going to be his birthday and he was going to get tight.

We stripped him back to bare, cleaned out the lands then took him to boat builder Bob Van Pierce (owner of the mullety Cora) for his opinion.  He thought she was recoverable but she’d need three and a bit new planks and a general refasten. And while we were at he’d fix the bulge in one side of her hull and bring her back into her original shape. Bob did all the smart stuff and I got on the end of the dolly. Thanks Bob, you did a fantastic job.

The first photos show the general condition of the planks we replaced, splits and bits missing.

A few replacement planks & Bob scarfed one in. Spotted gum for the ribs. The steam box was cranked up, ribs loaded in & then bent in. A few broke but where were spares. Ribs were nailed from below and riveted.

Then primer, Prekote and topcoat prior to new purple heart thwarts being fitted. Bob also added rubbing strakes.

Then Jack came back home to your the shed and was ready for bottom paint & signwriting by artist Lester Hall. Thanks also Lester for the beautiful oars complete with welcome swallows. These have been decorating my wall for the last 5-6 years, they got a hell of a fright being immersed in salt water.

Then the bronze rowlocks were fitted & new floorboards in + nylon rub rail secured with copper wire. 

First outing was planting trees with Project Island Song. Over a day, we got half a litre in the bottom, pretty happy with that.

The old dinks – Ken is not happy, he’s been relegated to barge duties.

 

And While On The Topic Of Wooden Boats

The NZ Traditional Boat Building School has just released details on its latest courses, see below. The presenter / instructors are legends in the wooden boating community. In the past the courses have been oversubscribed, so get in early or miss out.

To register – email tanya@nztbs.org.nz       or call 027 – 45 33 55

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A Classic Sailing Dinghy

7’6″ – Selway Fisher Redshank Clinker Stem Dinghy

CYA member Alan Good (MV Lucille) has been busy over the last 12 months delivering this little beauty into the world.

Alan started the project at The NZ Traditional Boatbuilding school & then moved her home for the final fit out. Still a few more tasks on the list in regard to the sailing rig. I will update this post with some sailing photos when available.

The mix of timber is amazing – Kauri, Jarra, Dumari, American Ash, Kwila, Hoop pine, Kavalu, Hoduras Mahogany, Kahikatea, Yellow oak.

Well done Alan, I look forward to seeing her in a bay 🙂 AH