Last Hundred Posts

(If you want to see everything back to 2013, check out this archive).

  • Sailors of the air
    Pip Stevenson and a mate have flown a motor glider all the way from Northern NSW to Burketown on the Gulf of Carpentaria to ride the ‘Morning Glory‘, ‘a rare meteorological phenomenon consisting of a low-level atmospheric solitary wave and associated cloud’. Pip writes: ‘here I am I’m tying the wing before we depart to…
  • Latest news from the Wooden Boat Festival
    Read all about it here. They are looking for volunteers.
  • President’s Report
    For many of us Peter Laidlaw’s annual report is worth the price of admission to the LBT. One of the joys is that it is entirely unpredictable: this year we got a major diversion to an expedition led by Uffa Fox. Read the 2022 report here.
  • Ros’s Boat
    LBT stalwart Ros Barnett is living with her mum at her house at the mouth of the Mersey, Devonport. You would have to be in the water to be any more maritime. Pic below was taken from the front verandah.
  • Monday night BBQ coming up (Sept 26)
    The days are stretching out and warming up, so there won’t be quite the same need for beanies and blanket coats which have been part of the dress code for the last few months. The usual drill: bring something for the griddle, something to share and $5 for the kitty. See you after 6pm.
  • Meet the Huon Council Candidates
    Those who are resident in the Valley may want to take advantage of the opportunity to meet candidates for the new council, due to be elected in October. The event is at 7pm, Tuesday 27th September. See attached flyer for details.
  • New Committee for the LBT
    At the AGM on Saturday night chairman of the meeting Peter Laidlaw dismissed the outgoing committee, with particular thanks to David Pittaway and Jane Johnson who were not standing again. The following committee for 2022-23 was then elected, with no positions contested. President: Peter LaidlawSecretary: Richard ForsterTreasurer: Rod MacfarlanOrdinary Members: Endra O’May, Michelle Crawford, Mike Hewitt,…
  • 20221-2022 Treasurer’s Report
    The LBT has for the last several years been very fortunate to have the steady hand of the Rod Macfarlan on the financial tiller, and on Saturday night’s AGM he presented his annual report. His introductory paragraph says ‘We can look back at the previous year and reflect that we have not gone backwards. In…
  • New figurehead for ‘Imagine’
    ‘Spring weather brought LBT skiffies out for a row with the magical carved eagle figurehead created by Mary Lou Conway. Walkers along the foreshore stopped to admire Imagine on last week’s (perfect rowing conditions) public holiday. New rowers are welcome.’
  • Shannon on the slip
    ‘Slip’ was the operative word, but Stuart Meares eventually got us organised and hauled up on Monday. The good news was that the exercise revealed that all is well below the waterline. After much scrubbing, polishing, antifouling etc by Andy Ritchie, Endra O’May, Phil Petterson and crew Shannon is now back on our pontoon. We…
  • The great LBT trivia night
    Competition was fierce and controversy frequent, with quizmaster David Pittaway having to take a VERY firm hand on occasion. Pics from Ben Forster.
  • Huon Yacht Club Open Day October 1st
    Join the HYC at Shipwrights point for the opening of the sailing season. See flyer below for details.
  • Come on down to the slip
    Shannon (the ‘Hood’) will be headed for to the Shipwright’s Point slip at Port Huon at 7am on Monday 19th, but that’s all organised. What is needed is a workforce to get her bum scrubbed, prop cleaned, anti-foul applied etc in the following days. Should be good fun. If you want to be part of…
  • AGM next Saturday: final reminder
    Agenda for the Annual General Meeting of the Living Boat Trust Inc, 2022 6:00pm 24th Sept, 3337 Huon Hwy, Franklin TAS 7113 Welcome  Apologies:  Minutes of last meeting  Auditor’s Report Appointment of Auditor Treasurer’s Report President’s report Declaration that all positions on the committee of the L.B.T. are vacant Election of executive, President, Secretary, Treasurer…
  • Aurora Men’s Shed Art Prize
    You may remember that Peter Hill put an entry into this competition for us. He didn’t win, but wasn’t disappointed when he saw the entry that did – pic below. At least it had a nautical theme.
  • Allen key under pressure
    The pic below shows what happens to an Allen key when you try to use it to free a very frozen bolt in an engine block with a rattle gun. We need another solution.
  • Tuesday group at work
    Jen Tubman took pictures of some of it. The Betsy Walton is out of the Shed and taking up in the reeds, at this time of year there is a LOT of pumping out, and the furniture has come out of Shannon so she can be cleaned out.
  • And from the canals of France …
    Mike Dredge writes: ‘A couple of happy snaps from France in June. Seeing Rod wants to do little boats, here are a couple of slightly bigger versions on the Seine. St Mames is the resting place for a million French barges (most of which seem to undergoing conversion to a house boat or hotel boat.…
  • The Great River Race
    Rod Macfarlan is in London. He reports: ‘The Great River Race is 22 miles up the Thames held for the first time after COVID, but reconstituted as a procession out of respect for the passing of QE2, and in fact was almost cancelled. Only about half the entered boats turned up. The dutch were there…
  • FWWA AGM 25th Sept
    The Franklin Working Waterfront Association AGM will be held 3pm, Sunday 25 September at the Wooden Boat Centre, 3333 Huon Hwy, Franklin. For those who don’t know, this association is the governing body for the Wooden Boat Centre. If you aren’t AGM’ed out after the LBT shindig the night before this may be the event…
  • Out with the block and tackles.
    Gretchen is might be small, but she’s tightly packed, so getting her off the trailer requires more than just some handy volunteers.
  • Minutes for LBT September Committee meeting
    They are on the website: read them here.
  • Shannon
    The LBT recently acquired ‘Shannon’, a small, stable cruising boat, easy to sail, motor and maintain. A ‘Shannon’ interest group is being formed. Please be part of it. Level of expertise doesn’t matter: this is all about the ‘learning journey’, as well as the fun of excursions and expeditions. We anticipate that out of this…
  • Reminder: LBT Dues
    Thanks to all those current members who have paid their annual subscription, and a reminder to those who haven’t that the LBT financial year runs July – June, at which point membership should be paid. Membership fees for the Living Boat Trust are: Single – $70.00 pa Family – $120.00 pa Associate – $40.00 pa…
  • LBT AGM September 24
    This is a second reminder that the AGM will be held on this date at 6pm at the LBT Shed. It will be followed by a social: a Trivia Quiz hosted by David Pittaway, starting 7pm. Bring a plate. This is the time when all good people come the aid of the Trust (or something…
  • LBT Committee Meeting 8th September
    This will be the last meeting for this committee before the AGM. An agenda is being written here. Email the secretary ( if there is some business you want attended to.
  • Electric Viking
    A motor, controllers and panels are starting to arrive, and serious consideration is being given to how to fit it all together.
  • Rowan on duty
    Rowan has been puttering up and down the river ferrying Tas Land Conservancy weeding crews across to North Egg Island to persecute the Spanish Heath.
  • End of Winter BBQ Monday night (Aug 29)
    Looks like the current window of warm weather will continue until Monday evening, so it should be a good time to get out the tongs and flip ’em on the hot plate. Come down to the Shed some time after 6pm with something for you, something to share, and $5 to put in the kitty…
  • Faroe Island Skiffs
    Rod Macfarlan has sent these pictures of ‘a collection of traditional wooden Faroes boats in the Flatvik marina (various states of repair)’. Look familiar? The ‘traditional’ outboard fitting is interesting. Perhaps there IS a way to beat Castle Forbes Bay.
  • Skiff news from West Oz
    Denmark Community Rowing Association write: ‘We have been making good progress on building our two St Ayles Skiffs and are arriving at another milestone – turning Boat 2 over. Everybody is welcome to come along and help or just watch as we lift the new hull off the moulds and turn it over so that…
  • Draft Minutes for August LBT Committee Meeting
    Find them here.
  • LBT Committee Nominations
    As advertised in this column a couple of weeks ago, the LBT AGM will be held at 6pm, September 24th at the Shed. At this time the current committee stands down and we will elect a new one. If you wish to nominate for the new committee then download and complete this form. Paper copies…
  • Aurora (Men’s Shed) Art Prize Entry
    A couple of weeks ago we advertised this prize, and Peter Hill responded with the montage of local Men’s Shed in the pic below. Onya Pete!
  • Members at large column
    It’s that time of year when those with a weaker constitution head for the northerly, warmer hemisphere. Rod Macfarlan for one is cruising aboard the Rubicon 3 – see pic below (we like the traditional paint scheme). If he is really after warmth he seems to have got his latitudes wrong – the trip has…
  • Community chat with Council 15th Sept
    Huon Valley council writes:‘We invite you to chat with Council staff and your neighbours about issues in your area, and explore ways of achieving positive outcomes and solutions. Light refreshments will be provided.Thursday 15 September 2022‘ 6pm to 8pm Palais Theatre 3388 Huon Highway, Franklin Register on Eventbrite: or phone (03) 6264 0300
  • Yukon reporting in
    We missed it at the time, so in case you did too you can hear an ABC interview with David Nash on the 11th of August here. According to Vessel Finder she was just north of Cairns on the 17th.
  • Patching Billie
    When Billie came out of the water a cleanup revealed a very spongy section in the garboard strake. Matt has already made a start on preparatory scarfing for a repair.
  • Building a solar canopy
    Peter Shimeld is replacing the flat panels on his ‘Gemma’ with the same sort of flexible panels we intend putting on ‘Viking’. Over at the Wooden Boat Centre the team are constructing the curved roof on which they will be mounted.
  • After the weekend flood
    There is a wall of debris hemming in the Skiffs.
  • Members tips column
    You know that lovely flexible, rubber plumbing pipe wrapped in braided wire (pic below), so handy for tricky spaces in boats and houses? Well it can rust out and blow (pic 2), with more or less disastrous results depending. As a for instance, it would be best if it didn’t happen at the top of…
  • A touch of brass
    Peter Hill has reinstalled Viking’s lettering, having kept track of it over the years she has been out of the water.
  • Scraping and painting
    Maybe we should re-label ourselves to SPT, acknowledging how much of this activity goes into wooden boats. Bob Tubman and friends have the bottom sides of the ‘Huon Rat’ done, now for the topsides.
    The Palais Management Committee is responsible for managing the Franklin RV site, and is looking for a new caretaker/fee collector.   This role could potentially be a shared one. Ideal for someone who lives locally, and who enjoys meeting people from all over Australia, and further afield. Must be reliable, and able to collect site…
  • Donations to the LBT
    We were very fortunate to receive the following. Electric tools from Cameron Green’s grandpa, organised through the Tassie Men’s Shed Association. Fastenings and Wood from Livia Doblanovic. An industrial sewing machine from Be Hers Sewing Centre. Thank you everybody.
  • Watch Catalyst next Tuesday
    The program (ABC: Tuesday 16 August, 8.30pm) is about favourite trees, which for Tasmania means Huon Pine (they tell us). We are expecting footage from the Wooden Boat Centre, and from Nancy’s sister boat Eva Blanche which was restored by Dave and Mary Lou Conway. Pic below shows both boats together.
  • Another Franklin
    David Pittaway has just visited Port Franklin on the lee (east) side of Wilson’s Promontory, and has sent the following pics. We should ask them to add ‘our’ Franklin to their compass of destinations.
  • Gretchen out of the water
    How many old gaffers does it take to get Gretchen out of the water? Judging from the picture below quite a few. She hasn’t been out for 3 years – looks like the worms have been having fun making castings on the leeboards in the meantime. Leeboards are a Dutch thing, and Jack Witte is…
  • LBT Committee Meeting coming up
    As usual, second Thursday of the month (11th August) at 6pm. There is an agenda being prepared here, minutes for the last meeting can be found here. If you have some business you want attended to send it to
  • Huon Yacht Club AGM Sept 6th
    LBT sailors may be interested in contacting the secretary (Gary McDonald) at and attending this meeting as visitors or perhaps joining up as members beforehand. We have had a good relationship with the HYC over the years, participating in events and using their slip. Many of us have crewed on boats in their racing…
  • Courses at the Wooden Boat Centre
    We notice that several of the courses on the 2022 calendar have yet to run: 14′ Whitehall, September 5 – December 2 Fine Woodworking, September 19 – September 30 Whitehall Skin on frame, October 10 – October 20 Oars paddles and spars November 14 – November 18 There are also some courses to be run…
  • Iefke and Matt
    Recently the LBT big trailer went to Cygnet to help one of our members get his boat out of the water. Iefke and Matt scored the job of towing it back in the pouring rain when work was complete, and it reminded us of the nice video the Wooden Festival have produced of their own…
  • On the Water Schools Program
    Back in May we advertised for members happy to help out with this program which runs in October through to early December. Thanks to those who put up their hands – we know who you are! We would like to involve more schools but that is limited by the number of volunteers who are available,…
  • BBQ Monday night
    The lucky crew of the Windward Bound have Kate cooking for them, so we get to show off our skills with the sausage tongs at the hot plate. Bring something for you, something to share and $5 for the kitty.
  • The Argonauts Club
    The recent 90th birthday of the ABC was an opportunity to wallow in nostalgia, and one of the programs that was remembered fondly was the Argonauts Club. The Argonauts could hoist a sail but largely relied on oars, which was reflected in their theme song. Fifty mighty Argonauts, bending to the oars, Today will go…
  • Aurora Art Prize
    We have received the following message from Wendy Kennedy at the Tasmanian Men’s Shed Association. ‘Our annual Aurora Art Prize remains open until the 24th September… something framed (can be a photo or drawing) that depicts Shed life, framed in recycled materials – judged by Aurora $350.00 There will also be the People’s Choice award…
  • Wooden Boat Festival Bulletin
    The Festival reminds us that time is not linear – the elapse time to February’s festivities is decreasing exponentially. Read this month’s newsletter here. Amongst the highlights is a nice piece on Tasmanian timbers.
  • Keeping up with Yukon
    ‘The current position of SV YUKON is at East Australia (coordinates 23.47812 S / 151.39157 E) reported 3 days ago by AIS. The vessel is en route to AIRLIE BCH, sailing at a speed of 5.7 knots and expected to arrive there on Jul 30, 09:00.’ (Report from Vessel Finder). You’d have thought they would…
  • D’Entrecasteaux Channel, Woodbridge – Unmarked Wreck
    From MAST: ‘Mariners are advised that the sunken wreck of a 6 metre vessel exists in Little Peppermint Bay, Woodbridge. The wreck is centred on position Latitude 43° 8.900’S Longitude 147° 14.782’E with a charted depth of 1.4 metres at low tide.’
  • Draft Minutes for July LBT Committee Meeting
    Read them here.
  • Moving Lady Dot on
    Lady Dot (see pic below) is not being used, and needs somebody who can love her. There is outside interest: if you want to put in an offer send it to She comes with sails, but is really a row/motor boat.
  • Monday night BBQ
    Yep, it is end of the month again and time for Kate to take a break and for the rest of us to get out in that kitchen and rattle those pots and pans. Bring along something for the hot plate, something to share, $5 to throw in the kitty, and a beanie. We are…
  • Tom has done it again
    There are all sorts of tasks that need to be done in the background in order to keep the LBT functioning as the well oiled machine that it is. One of them is testing and tagging our electrical equipment, from band saws to rice cookers. For the last few years we have been able to…
  • August 2nd TMAG Talk: the steam crane
    John Wadsley writes: ‘The next Monthly Talk will be held on 2nd August 2022 at the Royal Society Room, TMAG. The Jessop and Appleby Steam Crane has been a landmark at Constitution Dock in Hobart for the last 120 years. Constructed by Jessop and Appleby of Leicester UK, it was purchased by the Hobart Marine…
  • Electric Viking
    The advertised ‘electric motor for Viking‘ interest group meeting went ahead on Tuesday, with Peter Shimeld leading proceedings. The job looks highly doable. Peter showed off the flexible solar panels he has purchased for his own boat, which would fit perfectly on a canopy of the cockpit of Viking, and provide enough power for extensive…
  • Thylacine sighting
    Pic from Jen Tubman says it all.
  • Painting season
    It was on with the puffy jackets and furry hats at the Shed on Tuesday as the next batch of boats was beautified. Pics from Kate Hoorweg and Jen Tubman.
  • What boat is that?
    New member Jayce has brought his lovely little auxiliary sloop Sarah Ann down to the LBT so that he can work on fitting a new motor. We hope to see her participating in Tawe Nunnugah.
  • 2022 LBT AGM: September 24
    Whilst the rest of us were sleeping our indomitable treasurer Rod Macfarlan was organising the report for the auditor, which has passed with flying colours. This was a reminder to the rest of the committee to get on with organising a date for the AGM, which will be held on Saturday evening, September 24.
  • Billie has a figurehead
    Jane Johnson writes: A third St Ayles Skiff figurehead (for Billie) is complete, thanks to skilled woodcarver, Mary Lou Conway. The Huon Pine figureheads will now adorn three boats that feature on the Huon River, to distinguish each unique skiff. Billie joins Freyja’s Bittern and Imagine’s Eagle and will lead the way in many events…
  • Viking interest group meeting Tuesday 19th
    In response to the poll about what to do with Viking the LBT Committee has asked Peter Shimeld to initiate a project to install an electric/solar power system. The first steps are: hold a meeting at the Shed 12 noon Tuesday 19th July to organise an interest group to do the work; draw up a…
  • Heads up: Living Boat Trust Dues
    LBT membership runs from the 1st of July until the 30th June the following year, and we are about to send out renewal notices. After a lot of discussion a Special General Meeting was called earlier this year and a decision was made to abolish separate boat use fees and adjust membership rates. The minutes…
  • Committee Meeting July 14
    There is an agenda being prepared here.
  • Farewell to Yukon: the blockbuster video
    Those who were on the waterfront on the day may have noticed a large video camera and drone being put to use. The results, which are pretty gorgeous, can be viewed here. There are also some nice interviews with Ea and the boys. The boys also featured in this video, made by Martin Kell and…
  • Work boats
    Garry Macdonald pointed us to this nice footage and song from the days when gaff sails and oars were the standard industrial maritime technology. It comes from Dave Wheatleys Shanty Songbook, a handy resource in itself.
  • Farewelling Yukon in our own ways
    Jan got out the squeeze box, and Richard and Jill thought that there should be Morris dancers involved. Thanks to Veronica Hewitt for pics and clip.
  • Committee June meeting draft minutes
    View them here.
  • Nautical Terms
    Grace Coleman at the library in Bar Harbor Maine, got some helpful information from our links page, and in return sent us a link to this useful nautical glossary. A quick snoop using Google Street View suggests Bar Harbor is a nice place – not too far from Brooklin for those making the pilgrimage to…
  • Another project boat
    If you have a spare weekend (or two, or …) the boat pictured below, currently tied up on the Derwent, could be the one for you. Speak to Peter Laidlaw if you are interested.
  • Viking survey
    There have been 21 responses so far to the survey about what we should do with Viking: see below for a summary and this document for details. It is not too late to express your view: use this form to have your say. For those of us interested in the ‘electric’ option, it would seem…
  • Fixing Monty’s rudder mounting
    During a recent sail the shaft on which Monty’s rudder is mounted popped out of the bottom bracket causing all sorts of havoc, including busting the welding done by David Conway last time there was a mishap. Getting it all back together so that the problem does not recur is not straightforward, but Martin Riddle…
  • New portholes for Viking
    Peter ‘the painter’ Hill has been stripped all the old varnish of the brass portholes donated by Dave Conway and polished them up and is installing them. May be a bit too flash for Viking!
  • AWBF June Newsletter
    News from the Australian Wooden Boat Festival this month includes a story about ‘Ubique’, which was built at the Wooden Boat Centre. Read all about this and more here.
  • Skiffie Worlds in the Netherlands
    Follow all the action at It would have been good for the LBT to be there, but back late last year when we were considering it Covid loomed very large.
  • Zainab’s Yukon farewell pics
    There are lots of them here, and they are good! Thanks Zainab.
  • Escape from midwinter blues
    Those who need a summer boating fantasy to help see them through the current chill should try It comes with some (very convincing) philosophising as to why, when the season changes, you should down tools and get out on the water with a light breeze to waft you along: ‘this is where the world…
  • St Ayles Skiff 10 year anniversary film
    Scottish Coastal Rowing have put out this history: see A lot of the footage comes from the 2019 World Skiffies at Stranraer, with some familiar faces from both hemispheres popping up.
  • Mid winter BBQ Monday night
    Kate has been persuaded to vacate the kitchen so we can have a go ourselves. Let’s light the fire and heat up the griddle. Bring something for yourself and something to share after 6pm.
  • Got an injured doll?
    Bring it down to the LBT and we may be able to help. Hopefully the participants in the First Aid course on Saturday will be able to extend what they learnt to sentient beings. Thanks to Esther from St John’s who conducted the course, and Andy Ritchie who organised it.
  • Get your Huon News
    The Wednesday 22nd of June edition has a great interview with Ea and David Lassen/Nash about how they got to Franklin, what they did when they arrived, and their plans for the trip home to the Danish island of Stryno. We liked the typo later in the article which left the ‘o’ off Stryno. It…
  • Maritime Times
    The winter edition of this popular publication is now at the Shed. We hope that those who have borrowed previous editions, particularly the ones collated into a folder, will return them for others to enjoy.
  • Yukon bids farewell
    A final wave from Ea as Yukon prepared to leave the Franklin dock for the last time said it all. It was the end of an era to be cherished, a sad day, but a happy day, a day that had to be, and the beginning of a new adventure for the Nash family and…
  • Viking
    Viking is the old Gordon River work boat donated to us by Parge some years ago, and since worked on extensively – for more details about her see here. Her restoration is approaching completion, and the committee needs assistance in deciding how to proceed. One option is to fit an electric motor – see a…
  • Expanding the Wooden Boat Centre
    If you have been over to the Centre recently you will have noticed that they are bursting at the seams. A solution is at hand in the form of an expansion funded by a grant from the State Government. Find concept drawings here
  • Yukon Farewell Party
    Saturday morning was cold, rainy and misty, just what we didn’t need for an event to celebrate the time Yukon has spent with us and wish her (and the Nashes) bon voyage. But by evening the clouds had parted, a rather shy sun was sending a bit of warmth our way from over the ridge,…
  • Painting class
    Our daubers are a tough lot. The temperature on Thursday must have barely got into double digits, but there they were in their puffer jackets, beanies and gloves being instructed by Rick Crossland. Thanks to Rick for providing this opportunity. Pics from Barbara Frankel
  • Solar LBT
    On Thursday the sparkies were hard at work at the Shed. Our meter box was upgraded and the solar panels and battery are now operational. At the same time there was an upgrade to the LED lights which have replaced the old incandescent ones. Big thanks to Andy Ritchie who has shepherded this project through,…
  • Preliminary Engineering Drawings for pontoon
    ZKA Engineering have supplied to the Council preliminary drawings for the deployment of the LBT pontoon (at Cartela Corner). This is a critical step towards getting approval from Parks for bunging in the couple of poles required, as well as providing guidance for construction. Thank you ZKA.
  • The LBT Online Shop
    We know, we know. The LBT is dedicated to the technology of the 19th century (and before), and should only use wooden calculating machines. But we are slaves to convenience, and Rod Macfarlan has put together this shopping site which should help us all. There are links to it on the LBT home page. More…
  • Dinghy Cruising Association
    This group might be of interest to those who are contemplating the northern hemisphere now that the world is opening up, as well as to we armchair sailors for whom the world is always open to our imaginations. Check them out at . Find lists of rallies, their journal, and some good practical advice.…