Woody Winter Weekend


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Woody Winter Weekend

Given the weather in Auckland last Friday you would struggle to believe the above photos were taken over the weekend. I escaped the Principality of Devonport early Saturday morning & headed down to Waikehe Island. Did not even stop on-route to the marina for supplies. The forecast said variable so I was planning on dining ashore.

Well for once all the forecasters got it right – Saturday was a stunner. After a few months of cleaning oil out of the bilge several times & numerous repairs I was very much in the “bugger this old boat gig” mode. We are a shallow lot – one good day / night & I had the bug again J

If you do not like crowds – winter cruising is the way to go.

Coming back on Sunday afternoon I rubbed shoulders with the magnificent ship Felicitare & the 1927, Colin Wild built, Lady Margaret – both looking stunning & doing the same as me i.e. slopping off for some R&R. I was sure Felicitare had featured on ww before but my search showed nothing – what do we know about her?

Great Workmanship

I own several dinghy’s from classic clinkers to what Harold Kidd once called a ‘Baby Riviera’ – he was referring to my American built Walker Bay dinghy. I bought her 2nd hand & have owned her for 10 years – towed behind a woody, she is pig ugly but without a doubt the most stable tender I have come across.

She was looking very sad & the inflatable tube patches were out numbering the good areas. So had to make the big decision – take the tubes off & just have a normal dinghy or order replacement tubes from the USA (US$850). Enter Terminator Boats (Kevin Tomlin) in Albany. They said they could manufacture a new set of replacement tubes, I was a little hesitant about the final look, but went with it & as you’ll see in the photos below, they have done a brilliant job, in fact better than new. I highly recommend them https://www.terminatorboats.co.nz

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A Woody 100th Birthday


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A Woody 100th Birthday

I mentioned last Friday that on Sunday, Sierra the 1917 Joseph Fell designed & built motorboat would be celebrating her 100th birthday at the Panmure Motor Boat & Yacht Club.
Sierra’s owner Dennis Christopher (photo above) must have bribed the weather gods because the weekend was probably the best this year for classic motor boats. We made the decision to head to the Waiheke Island area on Saturday & then head over to Panmure on Sunday afternoon for the birthday party. Never made the party – see below.
Thanks to Baden Pascoe for the above photos & after speaking with Baden I can report that nearly 100 people turned up to celebrate the occasion, including members of the Fell family & the Andrews family (previous owners).
Its great to see these old work boats still being actively used & presented so well – I love the ‘beard’ on Sierra in the photo above.

Now the reason I didn’t make the party was Raindance had a mechanical oops, the 1st in 10 years that I have not been able to fix & we had to call Coast Guard for a tow. Hats off to the CC crew from Matiatia, Waiheke Island – they were on the scene pronto & had us back at Bayswater faster than I could have under her on steam 🙂 In fact the bottom probably got a good clean 😉
I spent Sunday morning cleaning 10+L of oil from the bilge – not my idea of a fun day.
A call to James Mobberley at Moon Engines will be top of the to-do list today.

(too many other classics out on the harbour to keep this below the radar – thanks guys for the txt’s 🙂  )

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There is always a silver lining – after we got home, decided to have a bbq & put a match to the lounge fire, first of the year.

A Woody Cruise


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A Woody Cruise

Family commitments & the weather meant that this years Xmas / NY cruise was a tad short this year e.g. 7 days & the location was a lap of Waiheke Island. A lot of classics were in the same boat (pun) with the weather so we tended to be in the same spot at the same time – good for photos 🙂

I’m sure I missed a few so I apologize upfront, I have also saved a few for separate ww posts.
Enjoy the gallery of classics, most I have been able to name (scroll over image) & you can enlarge photos by clicking on them 😉

I can’t wait for the Mahurangi Regatta weekend……………………

Merry Christmas


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MERRY CHRISTMAS

Good Morning woodys.
Merry Christmas to you, where ever in the world you are. ww has followers in just about every country in the world, outside of NZ the biggies being Australia, USA, Canada, France & the Pacific Islands (I think this is cruising yachts) – the numbers are amazing with site views just about to hit 2,500,000 views.

On a personal note I hope Santa has found you & you received what you wanted – I learnt years ago that there was only one way to be happy on the present front, either buy it your self or leave very clear instruction 😉 ( see below)
I intend to keep posting stories over the Xmas / NY period but at times may be challenged by internet reception so bare with us if we miss a day 😉
A request – use your camera (even the phone is good) to take any interesting woody related photos when you are out & about over the break & email / txt them to waitematawoodys@gmail.com.

Have a great break & if you are on or near the water take care, play nicely & be kind to fellow woodys. Alan

Now I mentioned above that I liked to be ‘involved’ in my xmas present selection – this year I was lucky to have a daughter living in London & when she asked what I wanted for xmas I pointed her London’s 400+ year old marine chandlery – Arthur Beale. Your similar to what your Foster’s used to 😦
The present is magnificent boat horn, made in Italy & delivered by hand from London by a friend of the daughters returning home for xmas. It arrived 2 days ago & was installed yesterday by my good friend Colin Pawson – I can hear Harold mumbling about it being too shiny, Jason P saying that it sticks out like dog balls etc but I love it & most importantly it makes a noise closer to a Harley Davidson than a Vespa scooter.  It replaced a horn that was more suited to a Honda Civic 🙂

 

Upper Harbour Cruise to the Riverhead Hotel


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Upper Harbour Cruise to the Riverhead Hotel

Yesterday had the makings of a stay at home day – the forecast was looking very average & the All Blacks ‘v’ Ireland test was kicking off at 9.00am. Unfortunately the gods only smiled on us once – the weather never eventuated but the AB’s dropped their guard & for the 1st time ever lost to the boys in green. Given the location – Chicago, I say it wasn’t a real test 😉
The following classics from the CYA launch fleet made the trip – Mahanui, Te Arahi, John Dory, Te Hauraki, Trinidad, Lucille, Juanita, Raindance, Matira, Lucinda, Kumi & the motor-sailer Bliss.  These were joined by others who traveled by car. Over 100 gathered on the outer decks for lunch & one or two cleansing beverages.
Another great day & special thanks to the organizer – CYA Launch Captain Angus Rogers, Tony Stevenson for the use of the Tino Rawa Trust tender ‘Whistleblower’ & the publican, Stephen Pepperell, always nice to greeted at the wharf on arrival.

A Lap of Waiheke



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A Lap of Waiheke

Over Labour weekend we did a lap of Waiheke Island in Raindance – bumped into a few classic’s, some will appear on ww in the next few days.
As we approached Oneroa mid afternoon on Saturday the weather was doing exactly as predicated  & the southerly was starting to pick up, coming around the point & it was blowing dogs off chains. Headed over to Little Oneroa & it was almost a mill pond, dropped the pick between James Mobberley (Moon Engines)  & Dan Ranell’s stunning N. Herreshoff designed yacht – Jonquil, pictured above with George Ranell ‘on watch’. Potentially it could have been a disaster i.e. 3 kids under 5 between the 2 boats – but good parenting saved the day. A few late afternoon coldies on Jame’s launch ‘Cartel’ was the perfect lead in to dinner – a wood fired pizza on the beach from the resident pizza caravan. Saturday was a cracker of a day on all fronts. Nice weather, people & boats.

For the first time (that I can remember) we had a peaceful night in Little Oneroa & woke to a stunning day (Sunday), one out of the bag. A quick breakfast ashore at ‘Wai’ & a few provisions from the ‘new’  store on the roundabout, called ‘The Island Grocer’ – its where the old general store (fruit & veg focus was) used to be. Less hairy armpits on display these days & a great hole in the wall coffee operation. Perfect spot to people watch.

Headed down the north side to the bottom end, very pleasant trip & a lot of people both fishing & catching fish. Mooched around a few bays & anchored in Man ‘o’ War Bay. The vineyard operation was a zoo with Island day trippers, so held off going ashore until late afternoon for a drink. Quiet night in the bay, except for 2 sets of very young children doing laps of the bay in dinghies with 2hp outboards – I do not lie when I say it went from 6pm to 10pm, if I had had a gun – I would have popped the tubes.

Slow start in the morning, had to wait for the tide, appears I had discovered a wee mud bank, never went a ground but I draw 2’3″ & the depth sounder was showing 0.700m (27.5″) 😦 So it was a leisurely breakfast 🙂 Th day was overcast & forecast to rain later on, so we headed home at lunch time. As we were leaving MoW, W1 was coming in – first time I had seen her ‘live’ on the water – way more narrow than I expected given her length, but still an impressive sight & a credit to the owner, who under took a lengthy restoration in his driveway in Herne Bay.
Saw Deodar (#1) in MoW looking very smart – photos tomorrow on ww.

A fantastic weekend, only takes a few days of good weather & one quickly forgets all the cursing & swearing over winter about bloody old wooden boats.

Below are a couple of photos from Rod Marler of the classic’s –  Arohanui, Trinidad, Lady Crossley & Nereides (looking none the worse for her oops at the Whangateau boat yard) at Kawau over the weekend. I hear the Kawau Boating Club was going off on Saturday night for the All Blacks v Aust rugby test.

Photo below of Wairangi at West Bay, Rakino Island on Sunday, taken by her owner & emailed in by Ken Ricketts.

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A Mixed Bag


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A Mixed Bag

One good deed deserves another, I posted the other day that Robert Brooke had given me a ‘stern’ off one of his model clinker dinghies  – I have just returned the favour with a rather large framed photo of his family launch – Linda (below). I purchased it via trademe for next to nothing, after a thoughtful person posted a comment on ww about it being for sale. She was worried someone would buy it for the oak frame & scrap the photo.

Speaking of trademe I also purchased a brand new, never used, full set of signal flags, made in the UK, all hand stitched (not printed), 50cm x 40cm so too big for Raindance but perfect for events & boat launchings. I bought them for $60 – a steal 😉

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I had some left over Uroxsys (Allwood MA) in the shed & gifted it to Richard Dark who was re-doing his coamings on his classic launch – Seafarer. Richard used Uroxsys 2 seasons ago but misread the instructions re using the primer (which provides most of the UV protection) so had an unsatisfactory result. Richard is a perfectionist so back to bare wood & then the yellow primer & lots of coats of Uroxsys. In the photos below I think there had only been one top coat, so will look even better after 6>8 coats 😉

I had a few blisters on the cabin top of Raindance so paid my son to (gently) scrap it off. The end result was great but it looks like I have a chart of the Hauraki Gulf on there at the moment, one wag (Murray Deeble) has offered to drop down & mark the fishing spots with red X’s 🙂

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And the UK ww numbers have improved big time, after a little bit of SEO (search engine optimization) – top ten viewing countries, below, for the last few days.

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