Ogg, the Sailfish, not the giant of Hebrew legend.

Plan number 1800

Built by Lindsay Phillips in September 1968, the plan was sold in August and the finished boat registered in early October of that year.

The hull was originally painted black with a varnished deck.  The name “Ogg” was in Old English writing and painted in black on the foredeck.

Lindsay, from Diamond Creek, had sailed Ogg alongside Jack Carroll and others at Elwood Sailing Club during the heady days of Sailfish(ing).  Competition was fierce and so rigging and performance of the craft was paramount.  Ogg has single strand stainless steel stays and jumper strut, with a full six batten sail.  Lindsay was also a very involved member of the Association, taking on the role of Editor of the newsletter for many years.

After Lindsay acquired/purchased/part built a fibreglass sailfish he named “GLOGG” (Glass Ogg) the original Ogg was purchased by Sue Hill in 1973 and conveyed to Bendigo Yacht Club where she was sailed in Club competition.  Jack Carroll was a regular visitor to Bendigo Yacht Club and mentored many of the 10 or more would-be Sailfish sailors, always encouraging them and suggesting ways to get more from themselves and their boats.

The National sailfish titles were held at Bendigo Yacht Club in 1974/75 where Ogg managed a 3rd place in the open handicap event.

About this time the AYF (Australian Yachting Federation) introduced a ruling that all boats must have a quick release method for the halyard.  Fittings for such were not in great production and so the system employed on Ogg is one that a few of the Bendigo boats adopted to get around the ruling.

Ogg won the Bendigo Yacht Club Sailfish Class Championship title in 1974/75.

Towards the middle of 1974 it became obvious Ogg had a major hull problem and the decision was made to scrap the hull in favour of building a new one.

The original idea was to create a whole new sailfish which was to carry the name “Zephirus” (West wind of Spring) and the new hull was adorned with the name, however finances were a bit tight and a future career beckoned requiring a shift to Melbourne.  Rather than purchase new spars, sail etc., the Ogg equipment was put back into service for the occasional times Ogg touched the water.  A rough attempt was made to remove the Zephirus name and when a revarnish is in order complete removal will be possible.

So “Ogg” was reborn with a new Western Red Cedar hull.  She was sailed rarely, due to work commitments, and has been garaged since a rare sail in 1980.

Mast, boom, cane battens and sail, mainsheet blocks, rudder, rudder box and centreboard are all original equipment.

Ogg, and future skipper (?) at new home in Brisbane. Man, but that is a lot of rake in that mast! [By Warwick Norton, Brisbane, 13 April 2018]
This last week, Warwick Norton made the long trip south from Brisbane to pick up Ogg from Sue. I was able to help Warwick and Sue load Ogg up for the trip north and am able to report that Ogg is in fantastic condition, just needing a check over before being put back on the water for the first time in a while.

Ogg and transport in Melbourne, read for the long drive home. [By Warwick Norton, northern Melbourne, 10 April 2018]
My thanks to Sue Hill for supplying pretty much all of this history, and to Warwick, for making sure another Sailfish has found a good home.


The Bytheway Boats

From the mid 1970’s through to well into the 80’s Toronto Amateur Sailing Club became a strong centre of the Australian Sailfish in New South Wales. While many people contributed to this, I think it is fair to say that the genesis was Tony Bytheway, who built and then loaned many of the boats that got people sailing. When he wasn’t doing that he was helping others build their own boats – almost the Ray Cross of the northern state, when I think about it.

Here, in Tony’s own words, is the story of many of those boats:

1225. My very first set of Sailfish plans I bought as a youngster. It was many years later before I finally got around to building a ‘Fish and by then those plans had been “misplaced”.

I found page one, with the number on, just last year whilst searching through some sailing paraphernalia looking for some Sailfish souvenirs. I’m keeping that number; I’ve asked Jack to make up a numberplate for me and I’m going to nail it to one of these half finished boats in my collection. Was maybe thinking of calling it “Resurgence” in honour of our class making a bit of a come back.

My second choice for a name is one I’ve had in mind for many years and was reminded of it after watching Ian Urban getting the feel of “Bruce” at Toronto 4oak – “Slippery when Wet”. I have a lot of boats in my collection so I’ll probably use both names somewhere.

2143 – “Sherwood Green”.  The first Sailfish I ever built. Sailed it for a year then loaned it to Graeme Remington for the next year after I’d built my second ‘Fish, 1476. “Sherwood Green” was sold to Chris Turton who sailed it for a year or so and then sold it on to parts unknown.

2143 Sherwood Green. [Milton Family album, Lake Macquarie, date unknown]
1476 – “Steam & Fly”. “Steam & Fly” was sold to one of Chris Turton’s friends who sailed it for a year and wrecked it, the remains of the hull is part of my collection, the rest of “Steam & Fly” was lost decades ago.


The next year I was issued a block of five numbers on behalf of the Toronto club as there was a fair bit of building going on.


2161. A young lad by the name Ben Durie started building a ‘Fish after school with some guidance from me and with materials he bought through me. He lost interest about halfway through the build and added school pressure didn’t help either. He gave the lot back to me with the arrangement that when I finished the boat and sold it I would repay him for what he’d spent on the materials. That boat is still part of my collection, unfinished. Unfortunately Ben passed away from cancer in his mid forties. When I finish his boat I’ll name it “Little Ben”

2162. Another incomplete ‘Fish in my collection. (I’ll get to it one day, I just gotta live long enough!).

2163 – “Bluefin”. The boat I built after selling “Steam & Fly”.  I sailed it for a season or so but it was badly injured during a championship series at Toronto.  “Bluefin” was hit by a houseboat during the morning heat which must have softened it up a bit. Then dropping off a big wave whilst gybing during pre start tactics in the afternoon, the hull split from nose block to centreboard case and swallowed half the lake. I sailed it gently back to shore as a submarine.  It now lounges in my shed with all its friends.

2164 – “The Licorice Stick”. Many of us know this one!  Built by a pen pusher (Tony’s good mate Graeme Remington – Greg), it was his first attempt at building a boat. He then painted it his favourite colour (black) and went out and thrashed us all two years in a row. (Graeme won the National Title two years running, first at Toronto in 1980/81 and then at Lake Mokoan in 1981/82 – Greg).  “The Licorice Stick” is still lurking in a shed somewhere in the Castlemaine area.

2165 – “Jim”.  My first prototype fibreglass Sailfish. For the life of me I cannot remember who I sold it to or where it ended up.

2165 Jim with Jack Carroll on 3000 Slipstream in the background. [Milton Family album, Lake Macquarie, 1980/81 National Titles]
2172 – “Silver Stream”.  Ian (Nobby) Naylor. Another after school project. Sailed quite successfully at club level at Toronto. Was stolen from the Toronto Amateur Sailing Club clubhouse one winter in the mid 80’s. Hasn’t been seen or heard of since.

2173 – “Matrix” Sailed by Mike Turton. (Chris’s younger brother).  This boat was originally found in an old farm shed up the Hunter valley, rigged with a cadet rig of some sort because Mike was a scrawny little bugger, then registered through the Toronto club. Whereabouts unknown.


Tony also has the only known surviving mould to build a fibreglass Australian Sailfish from and as you can never have too many Sailfish, he has also recently added the Geelong boat, 3111, that was advertised on the site last year, to his collection.

So there you have it, Tony’s not inconsiderable contribution to the history of the NSW Sailfish Association and sailing in the Toronto area.  A careful read of the above reveals that Tony has many part built or part restored Sailfish in his collection but what he doesn’t have is the space to work on them.  It would be great if someone had some space for Tony to start the restoration work, some of these boats are classics.

The classic shot of 2165 Jim on Lake Macquarie. [By Warren Broadbent, Lake Macquarie, Dec. ’82/Jan. ’83]

Lake Boga boats have new homes

This afternoon I received two emails just three minutes apart to let me know that the two Lake Boga boats that we blogged about in December have gone to new homes.

Craig Conn has picked up 3411 and Mark Teasedale has grabbed 3409, so that is two good boats to two good homes and they will be back on the water on Cairn Curran very soon. I am sure we will be seeing them at the November Classic Dinghy Weekend and I really hope they both make their way down to Inverloch for the Classic Wooden Dinghy Regatta next Australia Day weekend.

Congrats to the new owners – we expect pictures of them rigged up and sailing now of course – I better update the Register!

Plan Supervisor’s Report

Back in the day, when we had an active Association running divisions in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland and Papua New Guinea, it was customary for there to be a plan sales report given at Committee and Annual General Meetings. Well, we don’t have an active Association anymore, and the plans aren’t for sale, but boy has there been a lot of interest shown since the website went live in October 2016 and plans became available to download in November of that year. Over the years I was responsible for making many of these reports but I have never seen one like this one, so here is where the plans have been sent to, so far:

2016 (November and December only)

Victoria, Australia – 3

Queensland, Australia – 1

Australian Capital Territory, Australia – 1

Luxemburg – 1

Netherlands – 1

USA – 1 (Maryland)


Victoria, Australia – 13

New South Wales, Australia – 12

Queensland, Australia – 7

South Australia, Australia – 4

Western Australia – 1

Tasmania – 1

USA – 4 (1 each to California, Connecticut, Indiana & New Jersey)

France – 2

Canada – 2 (1 each to Nova Scotia & British Columbia)

Poland – 2

United Kingdom – 1

Netherlands – 1

Germany – 1

Spain – 1

New Zealand – 1

Brazil – 1

2018 (so far)

New South Wales, Australia – 2

Queensland, Australia – 2

Victoria, Australia – 1

Western Australia, Australia – 1

USA – 1 (Oregon)

Philippines – 1

Jersey, Channel Islands – 1

Switzerland – 1

Canada – 1 (Ottawa)

Germany – 1

Ukraine – 1

He’s at it again!

Some of us with long memories will remember that our poet from the swamp contributed a stirring poetic effort after last years Inverloch Classic Wooden Dinghy Regatta; well, he’s at it again.

To see this year’s contribution go to the blog post “First News from the 2018 ICWDR” and look for the comment, if you dare!

Current Header Photo

Division 2 Race 1 start at the 2018 Toronto 4 of a Kind Regatta.

From left to right you have Brian Carroll on 3461 Jack’s Toy, Greg Barwick on 3250 Stanley Crocodile, a couple of Impulses, Ian Urban on 2028 Bruce!, John Dowzard on 2188 Gooney Bird, Ian Milton on 2192 Apsu, Chris Cleary on 1918 Janus tucked in behind the starter boat and Royce Powe on Q60 Woody just this side of the starter boat.

Photo by Warwick Norton, Lake Macquarie, 17 March 2018.

Guess who’s coming to Toronto

Nope? Too hard?

OK then, here is is what we know so far . . . . . . .


Jack Carroll


Brian Carroll 3461 Jack’s Toy

Chris Cleary 1918 Janus

Greg Barwick 3250 (or is it 3330?) Stanley Crocodile

Ian Urban 2028 Bruce!

Ian Milton 2192 Apsu – probable starter

We may have a spare boat 2188 Gooney Bird – to be confirmed, and with a bit of luck there might be other Sailfish we don’t know about yet.

Pit Crew

Tony “Bicycle” Bytheway

Graeme Remington

Glenn Bowles

John Dowzard

Chris Leyland

Warwick Norton

Ron Jones – possible starter

Dave Watts – possible starter

Don Watts – possible starter

March 2018 Header Photo

Race start at the 1980/81 Toronto National Titles.

Sorry about the quality, this is what sometimes happens when you digitise old photos but you can still pick out a few well known boats in the bunch 2169, 3340 Co-Operate, 2149 Red Pepper, 3399 Pertinacious, and of course 3000 Slipstream among them.

Now less than two weeks away, so get cracking and get packing!

Photo from the Milton Family Album.