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  1. #1
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    Default Restoration of an Axyl Stenross Built Cray Boat

    Well i've done it now. I have just purchased a Cray boat hull built by Axel Stenross of Port Lincoln in 1956. It's a canoe stern 30 footer and was removed from the water in aprox 1980 and sister ribbed for a conversion to a pleasure craft. Since then not much has been done but she has always been stored in a shed out of the weather. Looks like the deck is of oregan and it looks a bit rough so will probably put a new deck on. The wet well has been plugged up and the deck beams cut for a cabin to be built. Looks like the stern post will need replacing towards the top also. The hull has a great shape and to my eye would sail well. My intention is to do the restoration in keeping with the workboat look and as true as practical to the original builders way of doing things so as to preserve her historical heritage. I am hoping to also have a decent sailing rig and have her sail as efficiently as possable for cruising. She comes with a mast and was originally a sloop rig and had a Lister motor. Here are a few pics of how she looks now. I will bring the cabin back one or two deck beams to give a bit more deck space and structural strength.
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  3. #2
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    Welcome to the forum Hallam. That's a fantastic project, and a lovely looking hull. It'll keep you busy for a good while I think.

  4. #3
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    Thanks Rob. It will be a lot of work but this hull as a foundation is pretty good and has a lot of life left in her. I have been doing a bit of research and got some usefull info from Morri Flapans website http://www.boatregister.net

    Also the Axel Stenross museum at Port Lincoln is sending me a photo of her when she was used for fishing around Kangaroo Island. I have an 18 footer built by Kayzer's of Queenscliff that i will sell down the track a bit to finance the motor and sails etc. I am looking for a place to put her here in Melbourne under cover preferably.

  5. #4
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    Sounds like you've got a genuine link to her past and that's always good.

    As for under cover - DO IT!

    Your biggest challenge my well be drying her out and keeping her dry. Having lost one old boat because I couldn't get her under cover, I can't stress this enough, especially with Melbourne being such a dry and sunny place

    Seriously, even if you have to erect a shed over her, get her under cover ... though concrete floors, lining, electricy, bar, moaning chair, top notch bakery next door, all help with the experience.

    Richard

  6. #5
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    Cripes Richard, you are raising the bar a bit! My nearest bakery (from where I'm building the boat) would have to be 30km...but I've got a little wee fridge.

    It really is a very large project Hallam, do you have a time-frame in mind? My addition to Richard's list would have to be someone to gripe to when things get rough...preferrably someone who can understand the size of the task.

  7. #6
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    Well i'm enjoying the reality check mixed with a dose of humor......"Melbourne being such a dry and sunny place"....... well latley Melbourne's weather is getting more like that North of the Divide. I grew up near Narracorte SA. Where abouts in SA are you Richard?
    I have my 18 footer moored in Mordialloc Creek andthe locality meets Richard's criteria very well. Bakery, Bar and Boaties to give me a kick along when i need it. I have a time frame of 3 years max to get her in the water re engined and ready to go, but i am not makeing her into a "pretty boat". She will retain a strong connection to her working roots. Did any one here follow the journey of the Spirit of Mystery. It is worth checking out. I met Andy Goss when he was in Melb and had a good look over their Cornish Lugger and am approaching the job in the manner they built their replica. It was one of the things that pushed me over the edge with this project. I will approach Pompeis to find out the cost of storing it in their fenced yard and see if they would be ok about a temp shed. I would like to be closer to home though, which is Fern Tree Gully area so transport wise, i can work in the evenings closer to home. I have restored a few boats before, the first being a 15 foot clinker, complete re rib with steam bent cellery pine and new keel and that went ok. The 2nd project i undertook i sold on before i finished with some lessons learnt in the process. I also had the privelage of working as a shipwrights assistant on the Alma Dopel when she was in the Crib Point Engineering's slipway in the early 90's. I helped re caulk her and assisted, puting a few rather long spotted gum planks in below the waterline. My avitar is a pic of her at that time. I havent had a boat for ten years and last year took the plung and purchased an 18 foor carvel boat from Portland, had her in a shed in Bayswater over summer, did a fair bit of work on the deck and cabin and rebuilt the Yanmar PMX6 motor. Adria will be the last boat i take on and a way of getting a good motor sailer to scoot down to the Prom and back from time to time.
    Big job it will be no doubt about it.
    giz·mol·o·gy also gis·mol·o·gy n., pl.giz·mol·o·gies. The scientific study of, or the body of knowledge pertaining to, gizmos.

    giz·mo also gis·mo n., pl.giz·mos. A gadget, contraption, contrivance, or other mechanical device or the parts thereof, the name of which is forgotten or unknown.

  8. #7
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    Here are a few pics of Florence;
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    giz·mol·o·gy also gis·mol·o·gy n., pl.giz·mol·o·gies. The scientific study of, or the body of knowledge pertaining to, gizmos.

    giz·mo also gis·mo n., pl.giz·mos. A gadget, contraption, contrivance, or other mechanical device or the parts thereof, the name of which is forgotten or unknown.

  9. #8
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    Sounds terrific Hallam, you've obviously got things sorted and we'll certainly enjoy news of your progress. It's great to see a little bit of our history treated with the respect that she deserves.
    Cheers,
    Rob

  10. #9
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    The Axel Stenross Museum has sent a copy of some pics they have of Adria.
    They were sent to the museum by Gifford Chapman. The B&W pic is of Adria
    at American River on Kangaroo Is in 1957.
    The second photo was taken at Robe when Adria then known as Adrian, was being prepared for the journey to Horsham in 1979/80.
    Will be in Horsham this weekend preparing for the journey to Melbourne.
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    giz·mol·o·gy also gis·mol·o·gy n., pl.giz·mol·o·gies. The scientific study of, or the body of knowledge pertaining to, gizmos.

    giz·mo also gis·mo n., pl.giz·mos. A gadget, contraption, contrivance, or other mechanical device or the parts thereof, the name of which is forgotten or unknown.

  11. #10
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    Drop dead gorgeous. How much does she weigh do you think?

    Funny, the first time I ever laid eyes on a boat was near Horsham when I was three or four. Got home and tried to make one like it with a fruit box and two pieces of fence paling. Didn't float. I saw the the boat on Green Lake, which I think has been a big dry paddock for some years now.

    Thanks for the pics.

  12. #11
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    She certainly looks good and appears to have many of the attributes i've been looking for in a restorer. I very neally purchased a crayboat that is presently moored in the Tamar in Launceston but it had the wide shallower hull shape of a Kayzer built motor vessel rather than the lines of a sailing work boat. (Still for sale... if anyone's interested i will post some pics etc)

    I don't know a lot about full length keel boats and sailing into a head wind but the relatively straight bow should give her a bit of grip when sailing. There is plenty of buoyancy in the bow and with the canoe stern, should be a bit forgiving in a following sea. Regarding the weight, i haven't got to the planks with a scraper yet to find out what timber is used in the planking and ribs etc. The chap at the museum said many of Stenros' boats were Jarra to the water line and oregon above. Looking at the hull i don't see any indication that the topsides are oregon and i'm hoping she is planked with NZ Kauri. Will know this weekend though as i'm in horsham. Will let you know.
    giz·mol·o·gy also gis·mol·o·gy n., pl.giz·mol·o·gies. The scientific study of, or the body of knowledge pertaining to, gizmos.

    giz·mo also gis·mo n., pl.giz·mos. A gadget, contraption, contrivance, or other mechanical device or the parts thereof, the name of which is forgotten or unknown.

  13. #12
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    Had a great trip to Horsham on the weekend and had a good look over the hull. The planking is all Jarra of about 20 mm thick. Very solidly built with large stem and stern posts.
    I'm wondering if any of the experienced boaties on the forum could have an educated guess at what the hull would weigh as she is.
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    giz·mol·o·gy also gis·mol·o·gy n., pl.giz·mol·o·gies. The scientific study of, or the body of knowledge pertaining to, gizmos.

    giz·mo also gis·mo n., pl.giz·mos. A gadget, contraption, contrivance, or other mechanical device or the parts thereof, the name of which is forgotten or unknown.

  14. #13
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    Jarrah will have aged well, it's magic stuff (if you can lift it). This boat is an absolute dream restoration from my perspective. When you get it home I'll be asking for visitation privileges...

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by rob540 View Post
    Jarrah will have aged well, it's magic stuff (if you can lift it). This boat is an absolute dream restoration from my perspective. When you get it home I'll be asking for visitation privileges...
    She's not home yet but visitation rights granted. She is a bit of a gift, sort of all the things i was looking for in a restorer in one neat package. Makes me glad i did not take on some other projects i had the chance to take up as they had some aspects i was not looking for in a boat. I have been polishing the bronze port holes and fittings to get me into the project. The bloke i bought her off was hoping for someone who would take on the job with a passion for finishing the job that his father started 25 years ago but due to illness could not finish. Sort of passing on his dad's dream, so i do feel something special about this. I find it amazing that he was finding it so difficult to find someone and was considering breaking her up for firewood. I have seen a similar jarrah hull, but older and smaller, burnt up when no one would take the project on. She was from Hastings in Victoria and would have made a great boat, but did need more work than this one i have. Arrangements are now being sorted out to get Adriar up to Melbourne.
    giz·mol·o·gy also gis·mol·o·gy n., pl.giz·mol·o·gies. The scientific study of, or the body of knowledge pertaining to, gizmos.

    giz·mo also gis·mo n., pl.giz·mos. A gadget, contraption, contrivance, or other mechanical device or the parts thereof, the name of which is forgotten or unknown.

  16. #15
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    PS Green Lake, just out of Horsham is as dry as a bone and brown, not green!
    giz·mol·o·gy also gis·mol·o·gy n., pl.giz·mol·o·gies. The scientific study of, or the body of knowledge pertaining to, gizmos.

    giz·mo also gis·mo n., pl.giz·mos. A gadget, contraption, contrivance, or other mechanical device or the parts thereof, the name of which is forgotten or unknown.

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