Wednesday, September 16, 2015
Thursday, February 19, 2015
Monday, January 19, 2009
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Thursday, December 4, 2008
This nice looking double ended yacht in the foreground of the picture was recently launched here at Parua Bay which is about 15 Kilometres as the crow flies from Whangarei city.
The yacht was built by our school bus driver over a number of years. He is an experienced yachtsman who both designed and built the boat himself. Amateur yacht building is a bit of a tradition in New Zealand - its heyday was in the 1970s before the world went completely barmy, a time when people worked only 40 hours a week for a living wage and had time to indulge their passions and interests in building and creating. These days we are a society that seems to live to work rather than to work to live. More is better in all things is the clarion call to all this madness.
When the yacht was launched she was found to be out of trim - she was floating down at the bow. Unperturbed by this our bus driver took the boat out, took off the four or five tons of outside lead ballast and re - positioned it in the correct position after having the lead recast. " I thought the original calculations were correct" he said with a wry smile - "Was it a bit frustrating having to do all that extra work? " I asked him. "Not as much work as building the boat itself" he replied in a rather matter of fact way - bus drivers are like that, practical and down to earth - I have never been asked directions by a bus driver yet. They know what they're doing.
Saturday, October 25, 2008
During the 1930s J-class yachts were built to race in the America's Cup. Only 10 were ever built as they were extremely expensive to build and maintain, especially in the post war years. They succeeded the 1883 Seawanhaka Rules 75-footers of 1920 and were replaced by the 12 - metre class yachts when the Cup was challenged again in 1958.
The J designation refers to the class of yacht defined by its sail area, displacement, length, and mast height, formally defined in the Universal Rule. When designing a J-class yacht builders would have to decide which characteristics to maximize to build the ideal yacht.
All three America's Cup races featuring J-class boats were won by the New York Yacht Club. In 1930 Enterprise defeated Shamrock V of the Royal Ulster Yacht Club. In 1934 Rainbow defeated Endeavour of the Royal Yacht Squadron. In 1937, at the peak of J-class racing, the "Super J," Ranger defeated Britain's Endeavour II.
Only three of the original yachts are still sailing today; Shamrock V, Velsheda and Endeavour. They have all undergone extensive restoration and rebuilding.
A replica of Ranger was launched in 2004. As of April 2008 another three yachts are being built or planned. These are Endeavour II, Lionheart and Svea. According to J-class regulations, any new yacht built must use existing designs from the 1930s.