New Zealand Scow

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by dskira, Aug 9, 2009.

  1. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
    Posts: 4,928
    Likes: 123, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 1749
    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    Had a good look around on Google Earth - could be mistaken, but it seems to be beached at 36 47' 29.48 South 175 00' 28.98 East, at the West End of Blackpoool Beach.
     
  2. dskira

    dskira Previous Member


    This is a great story, thank you for sharing. Your grand'father was a lucky man, what a beautiful vessel.
    I you refer to me by saying Daniel (I see we have an other Daniel in the Forum) if I find more information of course I will be delighted to pass on to you.
    I am very intrigued of the bow shape of these scow, far more elaborate than the US scow. Must made the construction quite more difficult but the result is really beautiful and distinctive.

    Cheers
    Daniel
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2009
  3. armcc
    Joined: Sep 2009
    Posts: 5
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: St Heliers, NZ

    armcc Junior Member

    Pahiki

    Had a look at the wreck on google earth. V Interesting. Not 100% sure if it is the same wreck. Apparently there are 3 scows wrecked on Waiheke: Vixen, Rahiri and Pahiki. It is a couple of miles west of where my mum believes she took a piece of wood from the wreck of her father's boat. But then she may have been wrong.

    Yes I was referring to you Dskira. Since then I have spent the evening scouring the Internet for more information and found some fascinating news articles about her. She first sunk in 1914 when she was hit amidships "clean through her" by the steamer Clansman. She was raised 2 days later and beached. She must have been repaired because in 1928 she ran aground in foul weather near Pahiki Island. I'm almost certain she is the same boat my grandfather owned, so she was therefore repaired again. I suppose she was just wood and brass - no engine or metal bits to corrode.

    According to the NZ Maritime Index she was possibly the smallest of the hold scows at 56.5' long, 17.1' beam and only had a depth of 3 feet. I don't obviously have plans, but I do have a photograph of a scale replica of her. Not sure if it is ok to post the picture here due to copyright (I'm not in contact with the model builder). But I could email a photo to you if you like. She has a long bowsprit carrying two foresails, one with a jib boom and one directly off the bowsprit. On closer inspection she looks to be a yawl rather than a ketch and the little cabin I mentioned is behind the mizzenmast.

    There has been a book published called "The Ships of Omaha: NZ 1858-1921". It describes all the boats built by this particular boat builder in Omaha (the NZ Omaha): David Darroch. I haven't read it, and I think the only way you could get a copy in the US is to write to the author carol.ramage@xtra.co.nz Apparently NZ$49+p&p. It has illlustrations and maps of wrecks. I think he built boats other than scows too.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2009
  4. AnalogKid
    Joined: Sep 2009
    Posts: 26
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Auckland, New Zealand

    AnalogKid Junior Member

    NZ Scows

    Hi armcc,

    I had no idea that the scows were built down to the sizes you mention, I thought they were all 90 foot plus.

    I regularly kayak past a vessel moored in the upper Waitemata. She's named VIXEN, and seems to be of a scow type, straight sides, flat square transom and flat bottom, although her clipper style bow is far more elegant than the likes of the Ted Ashby.

    I estimate her size to be around 40 feet, maybe more, based on the number of kayak lengths I measured off, although this was in a strong tidal current s not the most accurate of measurements.
    vesper.jpg
    Does this look similar to the style of boat your grandfather owned?

    Cheers,
    Andy.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2009
  5. armcc
    Joined: Sep 2009
    Posts: 5
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: St Heliers, NZ

    armcc Junior Member

    Vixen

    Hi AnalogKid,
    How funny. It certainly appears that the Vixen is alive and floating. I don't know enough about scows to tell off that photo whether she is a scow or not, and it is hard to get an idea of scale. However, she does seem to be gaff rigged and flat bottom boats are popular in the upper harbour to sit on the mud when the tide is out.

    I never met my grandfather so finding out about his boat is one way of finding out about his life. The only visual reference I have is the scale model that an uncle made. It is very possible that the scale replica is incorrect, I wouldn't know. But her bow, with the hard chine, looks much more like the Ted Ashby, as a point of reference, than the photo of the Vixen you provided.

    Perhaps the references to the wreck of the Vixen on Waiheke is in fact not a scow but the motor vessel of the same name. Or perhaps the Vixen you found is a different boat. According to the NZ Scows Graveyard Directory, the original scow named the Vixen, at over 69 feet, was renamed the Wendell or Wendele in 1918 or 1922 and caught fire and broke up near Pahiki Island (Pahiki being below Waiheke/Ponui Islands for those that don't know.) So already there are several versions of the "facts" in this one directory alone. Just like my grandfather's scow, the Pahiki, which one newspaper report says met its fate in 1924, yet another report mentions it in 1928 and again in 1942 and later yet in 1975.
     
  6. AnalogKid
    Joined: Sep 2009
    Posts: 26
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Auckland, New Zealand

    AnalogKid Junior Member

    VESPER - not VIXEN

    Sorry,

    It's a while since I went out and photographed this boat, it's actually the 'VESPER', I got confused because the original 'VESPER' was sister ship to the VIXEN. According to the Subritzky book, 'VESPER' was last heard of being used as a mussel barge in the Marlborough Sounds. At 79' I'm sure this is not the same VESPER, even with drift I'm sure she was less than 5.5 kayak lengths. The name does have some pedigree however, so maybe a later, smaller boat was renamed VESPER in honour of the original that won the 1884 Auckland Regatta Scow Race.
     
  7. waikikin
    Joined: Jan 2006
    Posts: 2,200
    Likes: 86, Points: 58, Legacy Rep: 871
    Location: Australia

    waikikin Senior Member

    Great thread Dskira, thanks mate. Regards from Jeff.
     
  8. rayman
    Joined: Sep 2009
    Posts: 129
    Likes: 6, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 59
    Location: brisbane

    rayman Senior Member

    Hi guys,there are a few errors creeping in here. "Pahiki" very little left of her now, alongside the Ostend causeway, the bigger wreck you can find on google at Blackpool is "Rahiri" and that "Vesper" is only one mans interpretation of what a scow might have looked like. There is another replica vesper built of steel by a mate of mine and a plywood version of Pahiki lives at Kawau Island. The smallest sailing scow is "Tramp" just 17' . Von Luckner could never have sailed "Moa" from N.Z. to the Kermadec's (***** Is.) without her crew.He admitted that himself.
    regards rayman
     
  9. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    I have one day to visit New Zealand and Australia, you have a great yachting and vessel history.
    Cheers and thank you all for your posts. very interresting
    Daniel
     
  10. AnalogKid
    Joined: Sep 2009
    Posts: 26
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Auckland, New Zealand

    AnalogKid Junior Member

    Sailing Scow "VESPER"

    The VESPER (see post 19 above) is now for sale on TradeMe.

    It turns out that its a 1983 Schooner Sailing Scow designed by Ralph Sewell:

    Vessel Info:

    Type - Monohull Sail
    Keel - Flat bottomed retractable
    Construction - Timber
    Hull- 2" Carvel / 1.6" Chine
    Deck - 1.6" T&G glass over
    Builder Gorden Hendricksen
    Displacment - 10.5 ton
    LOA - 18.90m
    LOH: 14.33m
    Draft: .80m
    Beam: 4.19m

    Engine: Isuzu 1990
    Horsepower: 72
    Freshwater Cooled
    Est Cruise Speed - 6.5 knots
    Est Max Speed - 9.5 knots
    Fuel - Diesel
    Drive System - Shaft
    Transmission 2:1 Man
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2010
  11. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    I feel something is wrong in the size of the masts.
    Perhaps it is the pictures, but seams way to small in diameter.
    As for the suprsructures, hum, quite slam boom pass the epoxy and we done!
    I hope I don't offend anyone. it is just my two cents
    Daniel
     
  12. AnalogKid
    Joined: Sep 2009
    Posts: 26
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Auckland, New Zealand

    AnalogKid Junior Member

    I don't know enough to comment on the mast diameters, but I'm sure the clunky look of the superstructures is to emulate the style of the old working scows.
     
  13. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    Realy not. The superstructure of old working boats are not plywood, they are solid wood, and generaly very well sone by master carpenters. Working boat do not means bad work, it means solid, practical and extremely durable.
     
  14. tom kane
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 1,758
    Likes: 41, Points: 58, Legacy Rep: 389
    Location: Hamilton.New Zealand.

    tom kane Senior Member

    " A History of New Zealand Scows and Their Trades " is a recent book by
    David Langdon (Captain) Teach Press. An appealing feature is great collection of photographs. The Author has traced and described 140 scows and includes outlines of several restoration projects.An appendices which classify the scows by year of build,owner,size and type included.
     

  15. rayman
    Joined: Sep 2009
    Posts: 129
    Likes: 6, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 59
    Location: brisbane

    rayman Senior Member

    Tom Kane, there are errors in Langdons book too. There has only been one restoration done and that is Jane Gifford, the replice Ted Ashby is just that, a replica, not even built traditionly,the hull of Kiatia is still in the waikato river somewhere, she became the Winstone sand dredge Big Ben at Mere Mere in 1955. Alma is down at Waitapu, Nelson and in a poor state as is Portland at the far end of the South Island.Success is still a dumb barge in the sounds. Another error in Langdons book is the little tug Alice, she was never steam and was probably built about 1914 at Onehunga, I owned her sister ship Shamrock,Alice when built had a 2stroke Gardner semi diesel and Shamrock a 2 stroke Fairbanks-Morse both of 33 hp. Alice was plank on frame while Shamrock was 3 skin. If you go to Hamilton Pub. Lib. and in the Family Hist. section find the" Subritzky Story" in there is a pic of Shamrock when owned by them, from them she went to Smeeds Quarries, Tuakau, I obtained her from them about 1956, later sold her to Papakura where she was used once again on the Manukau. Regards Ray.
     
Loading...
Forum posts represent the experience, opinion, and view of individual users. Boat Design Net does not necessarily endorse nor share the view of each individual post.
When making potentially dangerous or financial decisions, always employ and consult appropriate professionals. Your circumstances or experience may be different.