Astrolabe At Sea

Astrolabe _CLP0482

Astrolabe _CLP0425

Astrolabe At Sea

Late last year we featured the stunning 51’ 7” Bruce Clark designed, John Salthouse 1974 built sloop Astrolabe and got to take a peek below. The WW link below will take you to the story – have look, she is a very impressive yacht that has done some serious blue water sailing.
Since then her owner has found the above photos of Astrolabe. The sailing ones were shot from a helicopter and the out-of-water / shed photo (below) was taken when her mast was being overhauled.
When the first story run on WW her owner was considering finding a new owner for her, after a Christmas break – the decision has been made – “sell her, but only to the right family”. So woodys – after a summer cruise or sitting on the beach looking at the boats anchored in the bay – who is considering either up grading their vessel or returning to the fold? Yachts like Astrolabe do not come on the market very often. Interested in a viewing? Initial contact to
Graph below shows the last months daily viewing numbers & the scale of yesterdays performance (red column)  😉
Second image shows the viewing by country ranking – just can not crack the UK scene. FYI, a lot of the Asian readership comes from Kiwi ex-pats working overseas and super yacht crews. I sell a lot of WW t-shirts into this area.

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Woodys Cruising The Bay of Islands – Summer 2019/20 – Part One



Linda – 1927 – Colin Wild


Nautilus – Oliver & Gilpin


Darleen – 1920 – Possibly Bailey & Lowe


Echo – 1935 – Les Coulthard



Thetis – 1955 – Lane Motor Boat Company


Lady Crossley – 1947 – Colin Wild


Lady Ngaio – 1928 – Collings & Bell


Manapouri – 1960 – Parkes


Just got home yesterday from 10 days mooching around Waiheke and while clearing the in-box I spotted an email from Dean Wright, now Dean is a Bay of Islands based professional photographer with a passion for wooden boats. He even owns one  – the 1917, Arethusa.

Now any email from Dean normally contains some stunning photos and yesterdays one was a cracker – too good to run all as one, so I will split them in two.
Today we have featured pleasure launches – the first being one of the smartest classic wooden launches in our fleet – Linda. She has appeared on WW many times so if you want o know more just enter Linda in the WW search box.
I love the photo above because its the personification of our classic wooden boating movement.
Below I have included a photo of the 2018/19 built ‘spirit of tradition’ launch – Grace, and with her beautiful lines, she could only ever be a Salthouse 🙂
I have captioned the Woodys that I have been able to ID. To read more on the boats featured, use the WW search box 😉

Grace – 2019 – Salthouse



John Salthouse Crosses The Bar

John Salthouse

John Salthouse Crosses The Bar
Sad to hear that John Salthouse, the founder of Salthouse Boatbuilders passed away on Sunday night. If you have any doubts as to the extent of the mans input to our classic woody fleet just type SALTHOUSE in the WW search box & you’ll be amazed by the craft that John either built or enhanced in his lifetime. Below is a gallery of just some of the craft that Salthouse Boatbuilders have built.
Our thoughts go out to the extended Salthouse family. While he has left us, his legacy will grace our waters for many many years to come.

Is This The Future Of Woody Boating?



Is This The Future Of Woody Boating?

Normally on Boxing Day you would expect a boatbuilders yard to be very quiet – but if your were anywhere near Greg Salthouse’s Greenhite yard on the 26th Dec you would have witnessed a very special event. The yard launched two sister 10m weekender boats – ARIHI and GRACE.
Below is the story behind these two stunning launches, as told to me by Delayne Salthouse –
“Nick Peal has been with Salthouse Boatbuilders for over 38 years, and in that time construction methods have morphed and developed to achieve better this, faster that, lighter these or more efficient those. While those improvements are important and incorporated where needed, for the likes of Nick there is nothing better than getting back to the beautiful basics of a traditional build.
You can imagine the excitement when the yard received a brief to design & build two traditional looking 10m craft  that would reclaim some of the classic lines and charm of New Zealand’s coastal cruiser. This is in sharp contrast to the imported ‘plastic creations’ we see so many of in New Zealand boating in these days.
The concept plans and line drawings were done by Chris Salthouse, from these Nick has crafted Arihi & Grace utilising double skin ply, with solid timber keelson and gunwale, The boats were then heavily sheathed with double bias glass to make a robust, strong and lightweight boat.”
They are powered by a Hyundai 270hp stern leg, will cruise at 25-30 knts, and top out at around 37 knts. There is a huge super king front island berth + quarter berth with ample saloon seating that can also be a berth. Head, shower, simple cooker, fridge, large cockpit. PLUS Trailerable !!!
The boats are very easy on the eye and I have already had people asking me – who, what, where in terms of the designer / builder.
Well done Greg, Delayne, Chris, Nick & the team at Salthouses – I think you are onto a winner here.

The Launching

Arihi Splashes

Grace Splashes

Photo below sent in by Steve Finnigan – lots of zoom used on the camera/phone



Skacen / Skagen

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Now this wee ship (she is a ship) has been on WW before but she is such a honey & now for sale so she deserves an encore 🙂
Skacen measures 36’ with a beam of 10’7” & draws 4’11”. Zoom zoom comes from a 5LW Gardner (of course).
She was built by Salthouse in 1973, with a carvel kauri hull. You will see from the above photos she is very well fitted out with lots of character.
In the photos you may have picked up something strange – on the port side her name is Skagen & on the starboard its Skacen ?
As Ian McDonald commented when he sent me the trademe link – not many boats of her size have a walk-in engine room.
She would be perfect for a couple wanting mooch around the NZ coast in almost any weather, as she spent over 10 years in commercial fishing on New Zealand’s East Coast.
Woody – David Glen has advised that she was moored in the Whangapoua Harbour, off Matarangi Wharf, for the best part of the last 20 years. She was owned by a local resident who worked in the local forests. She caught David’s eye at Matarangi in 1990’s and she appeared to be well maintained, but seldom used.
And speaking of David Glen, he sent me yesterday the photo below from Amsterdam of this lovely, what I assume is a hire boat. Loving the top & down windows.

Mystery Yacht – Sailing Sunday


Mystery Yacht – Sailing Sunday

Barbara Cooke sent me the above photo of this very cute yacht moored in Barrys Bay, Akaroa Harbour.

Snapped from on-board Trinidad as she mooches her way back North.

Any of the southern woodys able to ID the yacht & supply details?


Pictured below is the 1946 Salthouse designed & built yacht Manutara, she built with the intention of racing the Sydney to Hobart race, but this never eventuated. These days she is owned by Ray Shoebridge & earns her keep doing charter work out of Akaroa – details & photo also ex Barbara C.




I popped down to the Salthouse (ex) yard yesterday to catch up with some of the steam boat crowd & while there spotted Neil Chalmers old yacht Gleam at the wharf – looking very smart – Neil will be very chuffed to see her being loved & back in the hands of the family of the designer / builder – JB Brooke.



Input from Barbara Cooke – Manutara was designed by Jack Muir in 1946. And built by Salthouse Boat Builders in 1962. John Salthouse remembers her being the second full build after setting up the yard at Greenhithe in 1960.
Gleam is now owned by Chris (Curly) Salthouse.

My Big Woody Adventure – Trinidad


My Big Woody Adventure 

Several months ago David Cooke tapped me on the shoulder & asked if I would like to join Barbara & himself aboard their 1965 Salthouse built classic motor-yacht, Trinidad, on the first leg of their circumnavigation of New Zealand – Bay of Islands (East Coast of the North Island) > down the West Coast to Picton (top of the South Island). The short answer was hell yes.

Fast forward to Saturday January 20th 2018 & the Cooke’s, myself & Jamie Hudson (owner of near sister ship – Lady Crossley) are having our last land based dinner at the Whangaroa Sport Fishing Club. Very appropriate that it was fish & chips. An early night was called & we woke at 5.30am Sunday morning to prepare for departure – photos & trip details below – read on & enjoy the journey – I did 🙂

A slightly different format today – magazine style i.e. photos & copy to support them, have also captioned some. When you are doing 3 hours on 3 hours off watches, food plays a big part of the day – so there are a few food shots. When Barbara deemed I needed to be punished for some misdemeanor she would not tell my what was for dinner & keep me guessing all day. To a serious foodie, that was cruel.


Dinner at Whangaroa Sports Fishing Club

We left Whangaroa early on Sunday (21/01) – approx. 515 nautical miles ahead of us. Conditions were a little damp & a combination of sea mist & low cloud meant we saw little of the Northland coast. In fact North Cape / Cape Regina was only an outline.


We crossed the top of the North Island mid afternoon. Gave the Pandora Bank a very wide berth & pointed Trinny in a straight line to the South Island. The rain and drizzle continue into the first night but after that it was a dry run. We had a 10>15 knot breeze from NE most of the way & a 2>3m swell. The combination of a steadying sail & a wee headsail worked a treat, not for speed but simply to help steady the rolling motion. When both are set the wheel can be left and Trinny will hold her course.

They say an army marches on its stomach – well the Trinny crew certainly had no complaints with the gallery – we dined well 🙂


Stunning sunset


Stunning dawn, off Taranaki

The clock on the GPS says 3:58am & we were just off New Plymouth, the gas well / rig lights being the first thing we had seen other than H2O. Mount Egmont poking thru the clouds / mist. This was the view most days – same > same but very wow.

Lots of dolphins (& the odd shark)


The crew – Barbara, David, Jamie & myself below


Closing in on Stephens island at the northern end of the Marlborough sounds, the weather gods smiled on us for the trip across Cook Straight & with the GPS reading 9.6 knots it was a happy crew. It had been a dry trip, so we were hanging out for a cold beer once we had dropped anchor in Queen Charlotte Sound.

We arrived in Resolution Bay at approx. 6pm, a total travel time of close to 60 hrs. And immediately rafted up with friends of Barbara & David’s –  Rob and Mandy Carpenter who own the Warwick designed launch Pandanoosa. When the engine was killed it was so peaceful, but saying that the faultless beat of the 6LX Gardner was quite hypnotic.

I lost the bet on how long the trip would take (only by 45mins) & was forced to wear a bar napkin, take orders and serve drinks while displaying my best manners……….

We had a great night & a superb meal of Blue Cod aboard Pandanoosa.


Captain Cooke – peeling the potatoes for dinner


Bay Of Many Coves Resort



The Crew, brunch & bubbles

We awoke after a great sleep – we had been doing watches of 3 hours on / 3 hours, to the magnificent beauty of The Sounds. It’s just so big & so stunning. The next 2 days were spent mooching around the bays & coves sucking up the scenery(Pickersgill Island, Blumine Island, Endevour Inlet, Anapawa Island). Brunch at the Bay of Many Coves resort was a special treat, as were drinks at Furneaux Lodge.


This is my pick of the waterfront properties we saw. I will do another WW story soon on the boat sheds – some stunners.


Cabin boy Jamie doing his morning chores


A little sad when we had to berth Trinny at the Waikawa Bay marina & clean / pack up. End of the line for Jamie & myself but just the start for the Cooke’s – you can follow their cruise on the Trinidad Travels facebook page – link below

The return journey – I had always wanted to do the Wellington > Auckland scenic train trip, so suggested to Jamie that we took the overnight ferry from Picton > Wellington & caught the train home. A great plan, just had to kill 5 hours in the middle of the night in Wellington. I think Jamie thought Mermaids was a seafood restaurant………..

Train was very cool, a few issues with brakes overheating that extended the travel time – but I would do the trip again.


  1. The crew – Barbara, David & Jamie – perfect mix & just outright 100% nice people
  2. Trinidad – anytime aboard her is a treat, she is such stunning old lady, who has lapped NZ before, crossed the Tasman to Sydney & cruised the Pacific Islands.
  3. The food
  4. The sunsets & dawns off the West Coast of the North Island
  5. Queen Charlotte Sound & Picton town, very cool place to own a woody – I’ll be back.

For the overseas viewers I have included below a few photos of Trinidad, a rather magnificent ship – looking as always very regal. You can see / read more about her here




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Lysander was built in 1974 by Salthouse in 3 skin kauri. She falls under the category of – Mid Pilothouse Bridge decker. She measures approx. 49’ & is powered by a 325hp diesel that pushes her along at 10-12 knots.

As you will observe from the above photos, Lysander is a very well presented & one could easily spend an extended period afloat aboard.

Thanks to Ian McDonald for the trade listing heads up.

Update 27-03-2019 photo below ex Nathan Herbert

Lysander ex NH


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One for the workboat woodys today, Skagen is a 36’ Danish double ender, built by Salthouse in 1973. She has a beam of 10’7” & draws 4’11” with a carvel kauri hull. Powered by a mighty 5LW Gardner diesel, 4 berths in 2 cabins, toilet, gas cooker, radar, 2 x GPS chart plotters, depth/fish finder, autopilot, hyd. steering, electric capstan, easy walk round side decks, wheelhouse side doors, steadying sail.  A very salty ship that you would feel very safe in.

She spent over 10 years in commercial fishing on the East Coast & has recently been restored.

Look at the Kim Kardashian backside on her – that’s a work of art 😉

Thanks to Ian McDonald for the heads up on the trademe listing.

Input from David Glen –  Skagen’ was moored in the Whangapoua Harbour, off Matarangi Wharf, for the best part of the last 20 years. She was owned by a local resident who worked in the local forests. She caught my eye at Matarangi in 90’s and she appeared to be well maintained, but seldom used. She looks good in the pics.


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The above photos of Arima were emailed to me by Ken Ricketts & according to info attributed to her owner, she measures 36′ & was built in 1955 of planked kauri by Salthouse to a Colin Wild design.
Arima has a 110 hp. 6 cyl., Ford diesel that sees her cruising at 8.5 knots. with a top speed of 10 knots. Home port is Whangarei.

What else do we know about her & is this provenance correct?





I was contacted recently by John Managh whose father (Keith Managh*) bought the 36′ Hoani from Charley Turner in October 1979, Charley designed & built her over a 15 year period in Coromandel. Charley was ‘just’ going to build a little fishing boat for himself and his mate but she grew in size & build time 🙂 He wanted to call the boat Joanne after his granddaughter. However he thought Joanne was much to common a boat name. So he asked a local what the Maori translation for Joanne was and he told her Hoani. So that is how she got her name. Quite some time later it was discovered that Hoani is actually John in Maori.
John recently found Hoani’s original log book, below are the first three pages that give us an insight into her specs, launch day & first cruise.

From the photos above you can see she is a straight sedan top launch. A year after the family bought her, Keith took her to Salthouses. They did an extensive reno to make her suitable for a family of seven. Keith told the story that he gave Salthouses the list of all the stuff that he wanted in the boat. They said ‘you need a 45″ boat’. Dad said ‘you will do it…’ And they did.

John would love to know where she is now & hopefully get the chance to view her.

*A little about Keith Managh. He was a sawmiller in Thames. Owned what was called then Thames Sawmilling Company that is now called Thames Timber. He unfortunately passed away in 2006. He was a natural boatie. Albeit he did not grow up boating. His nick name from the Thames crew was Captain Rock Hopper. He would take her places most boaties would never go. It did come with its misfortunes. The family spent more than a few nights on the hard after Keith run aground going where he should not have. Especially in Mania Harbour.




11-03-2017 Input from Mark McLaughlin
Below are a couple of more recent (10yrs ago!) photos of Hoani as she currently appears. She has been based in Havelock for over 10 years. She is beautifully maintained and is in regular use around the Marlborough Sounds and Nelson region.

Hoani at Havelock Jan 2006

Hoani Tennyson Inlet Jan 2006

Woody, Paul Beachman was down at the Devonport Yacht Club yesterday morning post the big SE blow & spotted a lot of flotsam washed up, including timber & some boat gear. Late morning low tide indicated awash alongside a yellow mooring buoy a foundered launch that Paul fears maybe the launch Grace, that belonged to the late DYC member Ken Smith. A certain amount of material such as squabs, plastic objects was also seen ashore.

Paul understands that Grace was about 7m and had that pre 1914 look. Does anyone know more about Grace & whether she was anchored anywhere near DYC?

Hopefully not another centurion lost.

Turongo + Mahurangi Launch Parade Details




Woody Alan Sexton was anchored in Orokawa Bay, Bay of Islands, last week & while doing a dinghy run ashore he spotted Turongo on her mooring.
All we know about her is that she was built by Salthouses following Trinidad. Alan believes she was originally powered by twin V8 Cummins & is still Cummins powered, the exhausts suggest a pair of largish engines.

So woodys can we provide some more details on her. Given her current presentation, she is very well loved



Photo by Mark Lever

This coming weekend sees the staging of the Mahurangi Regatta, without a doubt, on a fine day it is the most spectacular gathering of wooden craft afloat in NZ. For those that are newish to the waitematawoodys site, just type Mahurangi Regatta in the ww search panel & you can view the previous years regatta’s.
On the day the main gig is the actual Mahurangi Regatta yacht race but in recent times the classic launches have been doing a parade on Saturday morning. The regatta organizing committee are notorious for their laid back ‘it will be all right on the day’ attitude so things are always a tad fluid when it comes to start times etc BUT I can tell you that the assembly point will be off Scotts Landing, we will depart there at 10am (a vessell will sound its horn x3 times), so be there early. We will proceed in ‘Indian file’ to Sullivans Bay. Attempts in previous years to be in chronological order have been a shambles & nearly ended in fistie cuffs -so the order will be a gentlemanly thing i.e. just merge like a zipper 🙂

We will approach Sullivans Bay via the right hand side of the bay, past the flagship – Jane Gillord, from where a specially marked (red buoys) fairway should be roughly in line with the driveway to the right of the old homestead down near the beach. Refer photo below. And also view at this link

We will enter the fairway to port to motor across the bay along the red buoy fairway. We will exit the fairway on a bearing towards Pudding Island, clear of which will be a buoy, refer photo.

If all goes to plan, we will do two laps. Its really very simple, as there will be a lead boat, so just stay in line & follow her. NOTE: There will be a minimum of 2m water in the fairway area.
After the parade, boats can head off to enjoy the rest of the day. Remember, the beach side BBQ at Scotts Landing on Saturday night is a must do – BYO food & drinks but BBQ’s provided. The prize giving is schedule for 6.30pm but most people head ashore around 5’ish. The ‘Prohibition Big Band’ will be playing in the marquee till late.

Whether you own a boat or not there is something for everyone during the day – check out details here

When you go ashore, bring some cash – the Mahurangi CC Yearbook (magazine) at $15 is great value & as always a cracker read.



Photo by Chris Miller

Kailua 2016 Refit



ww readers will be familiar with Graham Guthrie’s 1960 classic Bob Salthouse sedan launch – Kailua. During Graham’s ownership Kailua was maintained by classic woody master tradesman Mark Stapleton & always presented in immaculate condition by Graham, refer first photo above.
Early in 2016 Kailua changed hands & her new owner is Stephen Langton. Classic wooden boat enthusiasts will be happy to hear that Stephen has good woody genes, being the son-in-law of Margo & Jamie Hudson, owners of Lady Crossley.

Now while Kailua’s configuration was fine for Graham’s usage, Stephen had other plans & has engaged the services of West Harbour boat builders – Nautique (Neil Williamson and Ben Freedman) to completely ‘make-over’ her interior & at the same time give the exterior paint and bright work job a very big fright. A new boarding platform has also been added. The workmanship & attention to detail looks up there with the best & I can’t wait to see her again once the Awlwood MA (Uroxsys) is applied. I always gave Graham a hard time about the plastic helm seat, so I’m very happy to see the new one !

Kailua is a very deceptive classic, she is fast – several years ago James Mobberley from Moon Engines, shoe-horned in a 160hp turbo Hino engine & this provides Kailua with the means to lift her skirt & dance. Moon’s have done the same transplant to several other classics (Falcon, Romance II) placing them all in the serious zoom zoom category (for old classic wooden craft).
Splash date is late September so will update you with ‘finished’ photos 🙂

ps a few years ago Graham arrived late to the CYA Xmas Weekend Party at Patio Bay, Waiheke Island & in true Guthrie style proceeded to drop anchor right off the beach (on a dropping tide) – “I’m a local, I know where the best spots are” – fast forward 2 hrs & Kailua is starting to sport a wee lean. Now normally few people see our oops but not today – 150+ classic boat owners & crew all had to row past Kailua to get ashore for the BBQ. Again in true Guthrie style, Graham just laughed it off. BUT he told me if I published a photo, I would never enjoy Waiheke’s finest syrah on Kailua again – well the boats sold now…………. photos below 😉
BW photo also below from her early days when named Lady Beryl.





photos ex Barbara Cooke & Ken Ricketts. KR-details edited by Alan H

During the recent CYA meet-up at the Salthouse Boat Yard at Greenhite, we got to see Greg Salthouse’s own launch ‘Shalom’ up close. She was built in 1973 in Browns Bay by local boat builder T K Atkinson as his own personal boat. When launched she was approx.  42′ but while in the ownership of her 2nd owner, Howard Collier, she had an extra 6′ added on by a now non-existent company, in Whangarei.
She is powered by 2 x 350 hp Yanmar diesels & has a top speed  of around 25 knots & cruises comfortably at 17/18 knots. A wee bit faster than his father-in-laws magnificent classic – Trinidad.

Greg & Delayne Salthouse have owned Shalom for 3 years & commented that although T K Atkinson built her for himself, she was owned by Collier most of her life e.g. 25>30 years. Collier kept her at Whangarei during this period. Greg believes she was built to a design ex the American designer, Ray Hunt.

A while ago I (Alan H) was aboard & Greg has sprinkled some of the Salthouse yard magic on her, mainly modernizing the interior to better suit his young family. For 48′ she  is a very big boat. When I was aboard I was in company of Colin Pawson, one of the marine trades most fastidious technicians & he was impressed enough by the T K Atkinson’s workmanship that he was heard to mutter ‘I’d own her’, enough said 😉
While she is sporting a penthouse, it is very ‘light’ in appearance & almost gets a tick 😉

Classic Raft-Up at Salthouse Boatbuilders





Rod Marler, Greg Salthouse, Bruce Marler, Bruce Tantrum, Mrs. B Marler, George & Dan Renall




Classic Raft Up at Salthouse Boatbuilders
photos from Alan H & 2 from Ken Ricketts

Saturday saw the CYA host a visit to Greg Salthouse’s Greenhite boat yard, members had the choice of arriving by water or road. Given the deep water anchorage at the wharf it was ideal for some of the yachting members to join in. Fiona Driver & Rod Marler buddied up with Barb & David Cooke to provide a BBQ lunch that disappeared very quickly 🙂
Greg S gave the attendees an intro to the yard & the work that was being undertaken & then thru the yard open to members to explore at their leisure.
Salthouse is one of the few remaining classic wooden boat friendly ‘railway’ haul-out slips in the Auckland area, so folks to quote that old saying – use it or lose it 😉

And on Sunday, while most of you rested I spent the day picking olives at a friends Ti Point property. Bumper crop this year made the day fly by, helped by a longish yum lunch featuring local produce & wines. If we got bored the view was pretty wow.


Drone photo looking back at property


photos ex Chris Leech

The above photos show the Salthouse launch, Tapui. When these were taken she was owned by the late Ian Ward and Frank Gimson (both life members of the DYC). I’ll let Chris Leech chip in with the story on the prank that two DYC members played on Ian. The two perpetrators were Rob Wallace & Bob Thompson. The painting is a classic David Barker & now hangs in the DYC clubrooms, as the ‘Ian Ward Memorial Trophy’, for I understand a DYC launch Log Rally – won by Chris Leech in Castaway (Islander) .

The photos below are from her launching at DYC

Can we uncover anymore details on Tapui & where she is these days?

Harold Kidd Input

I first came across Ian Ward when we were founder members of the Pupuke Boating Club which operated off Takapuna Beach from a flagstaff on Muir Douglas’ beachfront house. We raced a motley collection of centreboarders, Zeddies, IA’s, Silver Ferns, and miscellaneous sailing dinghies. Ian was about 14 and a character already. Others of his age included David Barker, Adrian Greatorex, Paul Rusden and Bondy. We saw the meteoric Roberts brothers with their crack Zeddie TAWAKI and Murray Follas with his 1st Div IAs KHAMA then THUNDERBIRD on occasion. At first John Chapple and I raced my IA TUNA, a Zeddie whose name I forget, then a succession of Pennants and Q Class 12 footers, GLEE/CAPRICE, DIXIE and finally FLAMINGO with which John won the Interdominion 12 footer Champs 3 or 4 times in a row. John later designed the CHEROKEE class for the Club.
Ian was a considerable character and that was reflected in TAPUI and her exploits over the years.

photos (ex tradeaboat) added.

Just received a current photo ex Mike Quilter, not a bad sailor 😉 , who now owns Tapui & has removed the flying bridge 🙂 – there will be a ww t-shirt in the mail to Mike, anyone that gets the chainsaw out deserves a reward.

Lady Allison (Lady Helen)

Some before, work-in-progress & ready for relaunching photos

Lady Allison (Lady Helen)

On Thursday we had a ‘Mystery Boat’ on ww that had a few speculating on its origins. If there was a 1st Prize it would go to Nathan Herbert who was spot on with his call of both the designer & builder i.e the Salthouse yard & ID’ing the actual boat – Lady Allison.
I was sent Thursday photo by CYA member Richard Farrar who resides in Nelson. Richard until recently owned the wonderful Lidgard motorsailer – Neptune, now back in Auckland & owned by CYA member Paul Burton (we like that).
At some stage Lady Allison has undergone a re-birth with the additional of a ‘second level’, now I like Richard & I like how he looks after his boats so I’ll stop now on that subject. Richard has relied re Thursdays post & sent me photos of her as today. I have posted his reply below.

“Interesting to see what surfaces in the comments about this boat.
Shotguns!, chainsaws!, sledgehammers!, Shame on you.!!!
This boat was designed by Bob Salthouse and built by Salthouse boats and launched in1965.
She would be a sister ship to Seafever and Kailua, so well done to Nathan Herbert and Simon Smith.
Now I have always been a great fan of classic wooden boats and this boat is the fourth that I have had the privilege to own.
The first was a boat built by Mc Phearson in Dunedin,( Lion 1916) the second, a motorsailer built by Mc Gruers in Scotland,( Yvalda 1936 ) and the third built by Fred Lidgard,( Neptune 1956) They  all remained pretty much as when they were first launched plus a few upgrades here and there.
I understand,  that the boat shown as the mystery boat was launched as Lady Helen but I’m not sure about this and someone might be able to confirm this. Soon after the Mystery Boat photo was taken, the new  owner was asked by his grand daughter if the boat was named after Helen Clark. He promptly gave the boat a new  name.
Anyway, after selling Neptune I began to search for a replacement boat.   I looked at many and always had it  in the back of my mind that I did not want a boat with a fly bridge or apartment on top and that is how I felt when I first saw Lady Allison.
It was love at first sight however and I went away thinking about how I was going to remove the apartment. Yes, the chainsaw did come to mind.
As time passed though, I began to get used to seeing the apartment on top. It is well built and is a great place to drive the boat from. Great view and not much engine noise.
Lady Allison as she is named now,  of course had a recent massive facelift both inside and out and she is, in spite of the fly bridge, a really lovely boat.  I don’t think Bob Salthouse would be disappointed with her if he could see her today.”

Now woodys the question of the day is what was the original (as launched) name? Has Harold has advised that neither the name Lady Helen or Lady Allison appear on the list of Salthouse builds. John & Judy Salthouse are ww followers so maybe they can help out.

Photo of Lady Beryl ex Harold Kidd for comparision




Designed by Andrew Donovan & built by the Lane Motor Boat Company in 1966, as launched she was LOA 45′. Beam 13’8″, Draft 3’5″. In 1991 the Salthouse yard lengthened her to 48′.
When launched in the mid 1960’s Arohanui was leading edge in terms of hull design, you can see the influence of the USA Hacker marque in her hull. As a comparison – the Salthouse yard were turning out the likes of Trinidad at the same time.
Her interior fit out & styling was the best money could buy & amazingly she has survived almost ‘as-original’, refer to the photo of the bulkhead storage layout. Her original condition was one of the key factors the helped Fiona & Rod Marler make the final purchase decision.

As launched she had twin 120hp Perkins installed, in 1993 these were replace with twin 300hp turbo Iveco’s – thats 600hp of zoom = 20+knots. A big step up from 7.5 knots Rod’s 1934 Arch Logan yacht, Little Jim will run out at 🙂 Now if you or a group of classic friendly buddies are looking for a classic yacht – Little Jim is on the market & to quote one of the saltiest yachties I know –  “is arguably NZ’s best classic yacht afloat in terms of pedigree, condition & sail-ability” view here

Now I have a few kooky interests in my life, one of them is marine instruments / gauges – the collection on Arohanui caught my eye, I tried to convince Rod to “pull those old things out & fit new digital instruments” but he saw through me on that 🙂

Arohanui was the cover / feature vessel on the April 1966 issue of Sea Spray magazine

Andy Donovan’s Original Drawings

22-10-2015 Update

Arohanui is currently hauled at Sandspit & in the shed at Lees Boat Builders where Greg Lees & his team of artisans are giving her a makeover. The standard of work is A+ & the yard have belong the go to location for classic vessel’s. The next project is outside on a swing mooring waiting patiently for Arohanui to slide out.

Sailing Sunday 19/10/14 – Ranui

Sailing Sunday – Ranui

Ranui was relaunched Monday 13th after a 3 month full hull refit at Salthouses. Owner Richard Allen had lots of nice things to say about the Salthouse yard, ” really performed and they are special , providing owners with use of their facilities and advice without charge and with a wealth of knowledge and practical advice gained over 60 years building many of the finest of  ‘Waitemata Woodies’ . All traditional boaties need to remember Salthouses yard, which of course has its own dock facilities, 2 slips and various moorings in Greenhithe. Of course if you want a high tech carbon racer they love doing those too.”
Ranui would be one of the best document vessels on ww so to view / read more – click here

And as a bonus –  I have included some USA photos sent to me by Randell Colker of the boat he built & has just launched. Randell & his partner Shirley Estes visited NZ in 2012 & I secured them a spot crewing on Thelma in the CYA Classic Yacht Regatta. Randell said it was the highlight of their trip down under, so much so they are coming back in late Feb/March of 2015 & hope to catch the regatta again.

Trinidad at Mahurangi Regatta 2014


Trinidad at Mahurangi Regatta 2014

I have posted lots of photos of Trinny since my winter visit to  Lees Boatbuiders but this is the first one ‘on-the-water’. I went for an early morning row & snapped the lady looking stunning in the early light.



CYA members Barbara & David Cooke have had 52′ Salthouse built Trinidad hauled out for the last 4 months in the boat shed at Lees Boat Builders, Sand Spit.

The original intention was to take the cabin top back to bare wood, replace all the glass & give her the Awlwood MA (Uroxsys) treatment. As happens, the to do list grew just a little & just about everything that could be painted, polished or re-chromed was given a birthday. The attention to detail & workmanship from Greg Lees & his team has impressed every classic boater that has passed thru the shed. The end result is simply magnificent, but you would expect that from Barbara & David as they set a pretty high bar when it comes to Trinidad.

She slipped out of the shed yesterday (12/12/13), with a little help from the little classic work boat ‘Karewa’. At 56′ Trinny was a tight fit & the shed sure looked bare post launching.

My photos will give you a good idea of the ‘new’ Trinny but there were more camera’s there than on a Japanese tour bus so there will be better ones to come.

Also David Waddingham (Mr Uroxsys) commissioned marine photographer Gareth Cooke to film a mini movie of the complete Uroxsys process, so once that has been edited I will post that on ww.

if you enter Trinidad into the ww search box you can view previous posting on her, including a peek down below



photos & details ex Nathan Herbert

The two black & white photos show Kotanui just after she slid down the railway slip at the Salthouse yard on launch day. The ‘urban’ wharf photo Nathan thinks is at Whangarei.  The other wharf is at Elizabeth Brooke’s aunts house in Kerikeri with the Julian’s launch Haunui alongside. And one underway, location unknown.

 TIP:   If you search Kotanui in the waitematawoodys search box you will find a lot more info & photos on this wonderful example of a Salthouse built vessel.

Photo of the bow set-up, hallelujah for auto-winches 🙂

Kotanui bow



While down at Milford CC over the weekend ‘supervising’ the painting prep on Rorqual, the launch Kotanui was being hauled out. A little bit of a tight fit 🙂

I have also posted a photo of her being hauled out at (a long time ago) on the beach at what I think is now ‘Gulf Harbour’. Nathan Herbert will correct me I’m sure, it is after all his photo.
Kotanui is a slightly scaled down version of Trinidad & differs in that she has twin engines/screws.

30-10-2016 Hauled out again – this time at Gulf Harbour (photo ex Ken Ricketts)

20-05-2020 Update ex Glenn Martin – photo below of Kotanui at Milford Marina

Kotanui May2020

A mini wooden boat show.

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A mini wooden boat show.
Popped down to the Salthouse yard on Sunday to catch up with Barbara & David Cooke & got a very pleasant surprize – 3 of our best classics tied up at the wharf looking pretty wow in the afternoon light. Linda was glowing from her recent coat/s of Uroxsys. (photos ex the iphone) . From left – Trinidad, Linda & Luana.

A trip to the beauty parlor

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I poked my nose into the Salthouse yard today to see what David Cooke was up to with Trinidad & you would think you were visiting an old ladies beauty spa.  Two beautiful old girls sit side by side having a yarn about the old days as the beauticians busily grind away the years and reapply a younger, fresher look so the old girls can show off their wares at the coming summer parties.
Finding a boat yard with a railway slip now days is a rarity, the two at the Salthouse yard must have cradled hundreds of classics over the years.
I glanced at the black board & there are still a few vacant spots so if you are going to give your own lady some TLC this winter, best to get your ‘A into G’