Back in Sept 2015 we featured the launch Tauraka on WW, I had photographed the 32′ launch several times at the Lake Rotoiti Classic & Wooden Boat Parade. Sadly Tauraka has been allowed to deterrent over the last few years, but at ‘free-to-a-good-home’ Tauraka would be a great project.
Input From Paul Drake – TAURAKA’s story brought back memories of 50 years ago when we got hold of ROMANCE. The photos below of before and after of ROMANCE might inspire some keen young person to give it a go with TAURAKA.
Now I’m not sure if Tauraka is her current name, but according to trademe she was built in 1912 by Fred Man for F.W. Chalmers. She started life as a gaff rigged sailboat with a 10 hp Frisco engine. About 1925 she went to Tauranga where she had 4 owners before moving to Lake Rotoiti about 2005. Currently powered by a Ford 4 cyl. 60hp diesel engine. The trademe listing says she sold for $4,020, at 32′ that is a huge amount of boat for the price. Someone got a real bargain.
Harold Kidd (brilliant) Input
It’s actually a bit more complicated than that. Fred Mann of John St., Ponsonby built a 24ft launch for Frank W. Chalmers in 1910 called GWEN. Chalmers worked for J.J. Craig. In December 1912 Mann launched another launch for Chalmers, the 32 footer, GWEN C. She had a 10hp 2 cylinder ‘Frisco Standard. Chalmers kept GWEN C until September 1921 when he sold her to Percy Carter of Tauranga. Carter changed her name to HELEN C. Now Carter was a leading light in the Tauranga Yacht & Motor Boat Club and a yachtsman through and through. Although the launch had used an auxiliary rig beforehand, Carter rigged her right up as a schooner and took part in yacht races in Tauranga with her. There had been a number of such launch/yacht hybrids before that in Auckland but they were neither fish nor fowl and generally defaulted to their launch role. HELEN C didn’t and carried her rig for many years. She was allocated the sail number E79 by the APYMBA and raced in the 1932 Auckland Anniversary Regatta on 20m handicap and came 6th on line. Carter sold her when he bought the Woollacott ketch MAY in 1953 and renamed MAY RAUMATI after a small yacht he had owned and raced in Tauranga pre-WW1. HELEN C’s new owner renamed her TAURAKA.