Cairn Curran is Coming!

The very first Cairn Curran Classic Dinghy Classes Invitation Weekend hosted by the Cairn Curran Sailing Club is coming!

The big news is that this is not a wooden boats only event. Classic Dinghy Class boats that are built out of wood, fibreglass and/or fibreglass and ply composite are welcome. We hope to have a good turnout of Sailfish, and if you have a ‘glass one we would really like to see you there. There will be Gwen 12’s, VJ’s, Moths and we hope that there will be lots of other classes as well.

If your boat isn’t ready, bring your sailing gear and get ready to hop back on a Sailfish.

So plan for the last weekend of November (25 & 26) and we will post more details as they become available, or check out the Victorian Classic Dinghy Network page via the Links page.

For now, get out that fibreglass Sailfish that you have been waiting to restore and get to it, just six months to go!

Australian Amateur Boat Builder

In the current issue (97) of Australian Amateur Boat Builder there is an article on the resurgence of interest in the Australian Sailfish, written by our own Chris Cleary.

When contacted last week, AABB very generously gave their OK for us to put it up on the site for all to enjoy, so here it is:

AABB Issue 97 Sailfish Zombies

And remember, next time you feel the need for some boat related reading matter, check out our own home grown magazine.

South Coast of NSW . . . .

From Bill on the south coast of NSW . . .

I built 1276 in 1968 in my bedroom, much to my mother’s horror, intending to race it at Narrabeen. Just as I finished it the Dept of Education in their infinite wisdom, posted me to Gunning, an hours drive from Canberra. I sailed it there with the ‘Y’ in 69 and also competed in the States. Sold the boat the next year after building an Arrow cat. That boat began a sailing career which has lasted almost 50 years. Last year I was given 1271 which was on the way to the tip from Callala bay sailing school. The hull is in good condition but all fittings have been removed. I have the sail and a mast to be rigged.


I love it when we find more boats that we didn’t even know had been built and here we have two. Anyone out there remember Bill Jauncey at the 1969 State Titles?

New! Improved! NSW Sailfish Assoc. 50th, an update, update update!

Three days to go! And the weather gods are being kind.

The current forecast is for around 20 degrees and 6 to 8 knots, even I can cope with that.

The Manly Daily has posted an article on our reunion, the link is below, click on the calendar to find the April 26 edition, and the relevant page is page 9:

Manly Daily

Surnames of those we are aware of so far that hope to attend include:

Castle, Chapman, Cleary, Barwick, Milton, Leyland, Urban, Bundock, Kelly, Dowzard, Carroll, Norton, Watts, Guy, a completely different Guy, Lenton, Remington, Bytheway, Bowles, Vaughn, Lloyd, Ansems, Westlake, McManus, Hall

I thought I had mentioned this in an earlier post but in case I missed it, this is a family affair, so bring your wives, bring your husbands, bring your boyfriends, your girlfriends, bring your kids, just think, it will give them a whole new way to be embarrassed about you.

So it is looking like a big day, really hope to see you there.

Get your sailing gear ready and prepare to wallow in nostalgia!

The Penrith Press have published an article promoting the day, click on the Penrith Press link below to check out the article:


Penrith Press
13 Apr 2017






Jamieson Park, south side of Narrabeen Lakes, from around 10 a.m. until stumps on Saturday the 29th of April. Be sure to bring some lunch and something to drink, please bring any photos you can find, so we can copy them for future postings.

And see you all real soon.

Western Districts Sailing

From Andrew Mclure some memories of Camperdown and Derrinallum . . . . .

I sailed Hot Stuff number 3354 for a number of years in the early 1980s having purchased the boat from Dean Clementson who sailed at Camperdown Yacht Club. I sailed the boat at Derrinallum Yacht Club and won the senior club championship with it at age 14. It was fantastic to sail and I have fond memories taking it to all the Western Victoria regattas as my father was president of the Western Victoria Yachting Association. In those days Camperdown had a large fleet of Sailfish.

The boat was in a shed on my parents farm, however when they sold the farm some 5 years ago I believe the boat was left behind and I am sure it no longer exists as the new owners of the property knocked down all the sheds and so it was probally destroyed in the process. No better boat flying down wind than a Sailfish.



And just by the way, the Clementson’s were a big part of the growth and success of Sailfish at Camperdown, giving generously of their time and equipment. The photo in the Victorian Gallery of the trailer with four Sailfish behind the Gemini van, that trailer was loaned by the Clementsons, enabling a few junior sailors the experience of going to a National Titles that they otherwise would not have had. And it was a brilliant trailer to tow, loaded like that and you hardly knew it was there.



What’s New?

For a start, we have the upcoming NSW Sailfish Association 50th Anniversary get together at Jamieson Park, Narrabeen Lakes on  the 29th of April. If you can, drop on by, for a few minutes, a few hours or all day if you want.  This is a chance for all of us affected by the formation of the Association in NSW to get together and celebrate the impact it has had on our lives. Bring a boat, bring some lunch, bring the family and catch up with old friends!

We had a great day at Ballarat, four Sailfish, five if you count Stanley Crocodile who was not yet ready to get his feet wet, plus a VJ, a Gwen 12 and a couple of Heavyweight Sharpies. One of the Sailfish was Ken O’Brien, inspired to get his boat out and on the water again after coming down to Inverloch in January. Another was Ian Milton, who decided to drive down from Narrabeen for an afternoon sail and to replicate his 1979/80 photo with Chris Drury, as you do!

Ken Maynard is making good progress with the restoration of Gonzo, and his father is making good progress with the restoration of Helen, Sailfish number 600, both due to start having paint put back on after some weeks of taking the old paint off. So that is two more Sailfish for the 2018 Inverloch Regatta

David has a new, well, 1962, Sailfish he has tracked down and is doing up for his sailing pleasure and with a bit of luck we can convince him to come along to Inverloch next January for the 2018 ICWDR.

Jeff Cole is assembling a boat from a collection of parts he has tracked down, and that will be available soon for someone to work on over winter in preparation for the new season. Jeff is also planning some repair and restoration work for ‘Off, 1870 after a full and exciting season which has left both boat and owner a little stiff and sore!

Chris Cleary has had an article about the Australian Sailfish and it’s resurgence published in Australian Amateur Boat Builder magazine, with a bit of luck it might even lead to a few new boats being built.

Stanley Crocodile has the deck sanded back to bare wood, and in a few badly weathered patches, beyond that (!) and is now ready for the first coat of varnish.

From thisto this
and the varnishing starts this week.

The 2017 Inverloch Classic Wooden Dinghy regatta has been given it’s own page in the gallery, we have so many photos to post it was going to drown out everything else Victorian, and we couldn’t have that!

Plus a good selection of new photos are being regularly added to the various galleries.

In the next couple of months I will keep the photos and updates coming as we all hunker down and spend the cold months getting our boats ready for the coming season.


The Trials of older boats

This in this week from Jeff, one of our Inverloch Irregulars . . . .

Gave 1870 a big workout on the weekend. Fast but she showed her age and so did I.
Could not get comfortable unless hiking out, my hips are not as flexible as they once were!
Pulled the rudder screws out of the transom (rot)
Glue joint in the mast failed, repairable.
Who knows what we used way back then.
Good to see Ken back on the water too.

So, some wintertime repair and restoration in store to be ready for the 2018 Inverloch Classic Wooden Dinghy Regatta then.

Back to the ‘Rat – Ballarat Report

It was a great day on a lake many of us know all to well. We arrived to a strong Northerly which had eased to a good sailing breeze by midday and then proceeded to fade out as the afternoon wore on, just like the locals said it would. By the end of the day it was glassy patches and searching for catspaws to get about, and to get home!

I was there with Bruce! and with the as yet unrestored Stanley Crocodile, Jack Carroll was there bright and early, Chris Drury was there with Blowed if I Know, Ian Milton surprised us all by turning up from Narrabeen (!!!) with Apsu and then Ken O’Brien surprised everyone again, by turning up with his boat Cobra, 1808.

As well as the Sailfish, John Fairfax turned up with a stunningly restored VJ, there was a scow Moth, a Gwen 12, and as the day is a Lightweight Sharpie Regatta day, it seemed only right that two Heavyweight Sharpies turned up as well. So a good showing from the wooden boat brigade.

The interest in Sailfish in general from both young and old club members was most gratifying and the interest in Stanley in particular from the two Peters, Coburn and Flynn was great to see. Some of Peter C’s mates from the Lightweight Sharpie brigade were heard saying “did you sail one of these?” to Peter, only to have him respond, “Yeah, I sailed that one there”, it was great to see their surprise. Peter F was busy texting his brother Dan telling him he should have been there to see it. The young sailors were very interested, wanting to get their heads around how the Sailfish were sailed and wanting to have a go when we next visit. And then Peter Stuchbery bounced over as well, so it was very much like old times.

Ian rolled in, and for the second time in as many months I was lost for words (but not for long), this is becoming a habit! He had driven down for the weekend with Apsu in tow and was then heading back to Narrabeen on the Sunday. Chris and Ian have posed for the after shot from their 1979/80 spirited Title battle on Lake Wendouree, and both the before and after are in the Gallery.

Then there was Ken. Ken came down to Inverloch to have a look at what was going on, and as a result he got Cobra out from his mum’s garage. He has done a fantastic restoration job, check out the photos in the Gallery, and had his first sail on a Sailfish since 1972, and didn’t disgrace himself.

As well as the four of us sailing we had some interested onlookers as well, Mark Teasedale came to have a look, as did Michael (I think I have remembered the name right, my apologies if I haven’t) Thurlbeck, who used to live down the street from Jack in Mordialloc and sailed Sailfish 529 out of Parkdale.

And then we all headed home, a little bit tireder than when we set out, but all happy.

Next event, the 50th Anniversary Reunion of the founding of the NSW Sailfish Association at Narrabeen on 29th April. We seem to be awfully busy for a class that is supposed to be a bit dead!

NSW Sailfish Assoc. 50th, update

Great news!

The Narrabeen Lakes Sailing Club has very kindly made available the clubhouse facilities at Jamieson Park for us to use on the 29th of April. So there will be change rooms, showers, toilets and a kitchen plus we have cover if the weather is not the best.

So, it’s on. April 29 at Jamieson Park, Narrabeen, parking fees are steep so bring cash or card, I am not sure which will be required. Bring your boat, bring your lunch, bring your photos and we will see you there from around 10 onwards for lunch, sailing, catching up.

And a big thank you to Peter Chapman and the committee of NLSC for making the clubhouse facilities available to us.