HOME        -        ROUTE        -        PAST AND PRESENT        -        ABOUT SVDEJAVU III        -        CONTACT

Archive for October, 2004



A visited to the Seawind Catamaran factory in Wollongong … was a highlight for me … as I had the run of the factory.  The brand new 1160 (11.6 metres long) model for Seawind is a great deal bigger than the Seawind 1000 (10 metres long) … and it was a great experience to see the second unit only being worked on.  It still had a looooong way to go before it was to be a sailing unit. 

The best for me was to climb over four Seawind 1000 cats being built on the one assembly line.  It’s great to see the yacht in various stages of assembly, as it gives you a detailed appreciation of how the yacht is built and where the various compartments and controls are hidden.  I enjoyed this day very much and was allowed to photograph anything I liked! 


* This is what all the fuss has been about ... the day I move onto `SV Tsunami' *

* Can't believe it ... I've made it to a permanent living situation onboard SV Tsunami! *

Moved on board SV Tsunami full time.  At last!


* I was quick to add decals promotong the CYC ... Carnarvon Yacht Club! *

posted by admin in AUSTRALIA,DEJA VU'S Boat Bits,NEW SOUTH WALES ...AUSTRALIA,Pittwater ... N.S.W., Australia and have No Comments


Sydney International Motor Show is reported to be one of the ten biggest in the world … so I had to see it!  Motor Shows were a large part of my working life when I was Sales Promotion Manager for General Motors Holden in Western Australia, through the years 1968/1971.    Today was the last day of this Show.

* No, not a Manley Ferry, but, a good indication of how crowded Sydney Harbour can get! *

I drove to Manley and took a jet boat into the centre of Sydney … and a Ferry on the return trip late in the afternoon.

The Motor show was great with all manufacturers representing their biggest and best.  The most incredible was a ‘Mayback’ Limousine made by Mercedes … retailing for a reported $1.3 million.  Bentley, Rolls Royce, Ferrari, Alfa Romeo and all the bread and butter lines were displayed in massive displays. 

Many concept cars … Rolls Royce convertible, Toyota, Volvo, Holden Torana, Honda and others.

* Mercedes Maybach ... easily the most expensive car on display. *

* The colour is great ... until you knock a cup of coffee over? *

Costs for the day: 

  • $12 to park at Manley
  • $13.50 for return Manley Ferry ticket to Sydney
  • $16.50 to get into Motor Show
  • $15.50 for lunch (steak roll and coffee) … $3 for ice cream
  • $2.30 for train back to Circular Quay. 
  • The cost of a simple day out in Sydney, well I thought it was fairly simple!!  About $63! (Plus fuel down from Pittwater!)  

This is a cost I would never accept for a similar days outing in Perth.



posted by admin in AUSTRALIA,NEW SOUTH WALES ...AUSTRALIA,SYDNEY ... Australia and have Comment (1)


Had a very pleasant and comfortable stay with Shirley and Merv at Windellama, NSW (situated 55km south-east of Goulburn, NSW).  They have a great life style with many friends dropping in … and have built a wonderful `Retreat’ at Windellama. 

* Pink and Grey Cockatoos at feeder outside Shirleys kitchen window. *

* Shirley and Merv ... Farmlet at Windellama, NSW (100 km(?) East of Canberra. *

My favourite feature of their Farm `ADROOK’ is the bird feeding platform built outside the kitchen window.  The most beautiful birds imaginable come to the feeding station (including Fairy Blue Wrens) with the most colourful being the Corellas!  My Mother was always captivated by these birds and handfed many.

* Merv and his Bat-mobile' ... used for surveying his Kingdom! *

Contacted the previous owner of Catamaran, SV Tsunami … and agreed to meet, in Pittwater, NSW.  Pittwater is a beautiful sailing area fifteen miles north of Sydney Harbour and adjoins the Hawkesbury River complex of equally lovely National Park.

Left Shirley and Mervs’ at approximately 1030 to travel through to the Royal Motor Yacht Club, Pittwater, where Tsunami was moored.

On the way into Sydney I was required to pay a toll of $3.30 to travel down a freeway into the city … and another $4.00 to travel through the tunnel under Sydney Harbour.  No money … no move! 


Travel on to Pittwater NSW and hopefully to step onto SV Tsunami.  Again I had the anxiety of fitting all I have brought across on SV Tsunami … this means I will sort through everything, take onboard what will fit and then stack the leftovers back into the Mercedes!  The Mercedes will then be stored at Shirley’s farm, Windellama, south of Goulburn. 


* SV Tsunami was a TREAT... all I had to do now was learn how to control it? *

Boarded SV Tsunami!   It was a magnificent day.  A quick inspection of SV Tsunami … then raised the mainsail and jib to sail the waters of Pittwater.

Ended up rafting up with another Seawind 1000, `SV ORCA’, owned by Catherine and Roger Manning, who were to become long-term friends and had a cup of coffee and half a block of (dark) chocolate!  Healthy you see?  



posted by admin in AUSTRALIA,NEW SOUTH WALES ...AUSTRALIA,SYDNEY ... Australia and have No Comments


Had an uneventful trip to Sale (Vic) where I had arranged to have a `Para-Anchor’ produced for `SV Tsunami’.

* Para Anchor during wind test ashore! Prior to delivery to owner! *


Few non-yachties will know what a Para-anchor is, so I will explain!  If you are caught at sea by a gale/storm and conditions appear chaotic/uncontrollable, this device is designed to anchor your boat at sea!  This is done with a para-anchor, which is a large parachute (approx. 5 metres diameter to suit my 10 metre yacht) made of extremely tough material and suspended from the yacht on a tough, springy 160 metre line (rope).  This device will hold the yachts bow (pointy end) into the wind and allow a reasonably safe/comfortable life style onboard (you are even able to sleep.)

* Schematic showing principle of how Para Anchor works! *

In-a-nutshell … this device is to keep you safe and comfortable.


The principle of design is much the same … the main difference between the two is their size:

  • The Para anchor, which hangs from the bow (front) of the yacht, is, in the case of Tsunami, at 10 metres long, five metres in diameter. 
  • The Drogue, which is trailed behind the yachtis much smaller at approximately 0.75 of a metre.

To learn ALL about the Para Anchor …

* The Drouge is towed from the stern and designed solely to slow the yacht/boat down! *

And the Drogue is designed to slow-the-yacht-down!

I will never forget an experience described to me by Royce Black, Delivery Skipper for Seawind Catamarans … who sails Seawind yachts anywhere around the world from the Seawind factory in New South Wales, Australia, to new owners.  Royce was delivering a Seawind 1000 to Perth, Western Australia … and the preferred route for such a delivery is north up the east coast … across the top of Australia, past Darwin and down the west coast to Perth.  It is a lot longer than taking the shorter route across the bottom of Australia … but … there is a greater likelihood of getting there via the northern route.  The reason, the foul weather that blasts up from the Antarctic from the SW and sweeps across the bottom of the continent with great force and freezing discomfort.  Ok … thought you may want to know! 

Somewhere north of Broome, on the West coast of Australia Royce sailed straight into the path of an east bound cyclone (hurricane in the USA).  This would have to be the scariest situation to find yourself in … in fact I can’t even imagine it!  Royce decided to get to the coast as quickly as possible and tie the yacht amongst the mangroves along the shoreline.  BUT, his immediate problem was … HOW TO SLOW THE YACHT DOWN!  I can’t remember the speed he quoted the yacht was going (around 20 knots) … but, it was way-to-fast.  He had all spare lines/ropes knotted and trailing over the stern … both engines in reverse and full throttle … but the yacht was still hooning!  This is a situation where you would SET-A-DROGUE-OVER-THE-STERN … AND IT WOULD SLOW THE YACHT DOWN!  Of course not all yachts carry a Para-anchor, or a drogue.  The yacht survived thanks to Royce’s’ skill and experience … BUT, he found two crew deserting the ship at Broome … they had been scared enough for one trip! 



posted by admin in AUSTRALIA,DEJA VU'S Boat Bits,VICTORIA ... Australia and have No Comments


A long days work, as I travelled 1,100 Km to Adelaide, entailing a few hours night driving.  Called into a town called Snowtown, as I remembered the great publicity given to the murders of several people and the storing of their bodies in drums of solution in a bank vault (parked outside the Bank … which was spooky!)

* They pay a healthy road tax … but, does that allow them to `blow-you-off-the-road? *

Passed a huge road train near Iron Knob, South Australia, a machine which may have been a crusher (?) … under Police escort. It took up both lanes and more and was travelling at 85 KPH.  Passing was done with a prayer and only under command of the Police.

Have only seen one live animal on the roads from Perth … and that was a crazy sheep!  Plenty of Roo corpses!

Carried on to Adelaide and my eyes were hanging onto my cheeks by the time I had reached the Fowlers!


* L/R Gavin (John/’Celia’s son) … John … Son-in-Law … `Celia *


Federal Election Voting day and spent the day with Celia & John Fowler … and Joanne (my Goddaughter) … also helped John move half a tonne of lawn.


Travelled from Adelaide to Geelong, Victoria, uneventfully and made very easy by my `Garmin Street Pilot GPS’ instrument, which I have named `Daphne’ (can’t tell you why as it may offend any Daphne that may read this missive).

Before leaving Adelaide I dialled Cousin Yvonne’s Geelong address into the machine and it plotted a track to follow which took me right to her front door.  Have used the instrument all across Australia and it completely does away with paper street directories … plus, you has a voice of some intelligence talking to you at every intersection or roundabout.  Particularly great when travelling through cities such as Adelaide, Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney!!!  WITHOUT IT, I HAVE BEEN SERIOUSLY LOST, MORE THAN ONCE!


Great day with Cousin Von & Jack Bennett. Visited the Geelong Yacht Club and had a seafood lunch, compliments of my hosts … somehow thought I should have been `shouting’, but Von would not have it!  Stubborn little brat!

* Cousiin Yvonne … Geelong, Victoria. *

* Yvonnes husband, Jack *

Visited Jacqueline (Vons elder daughter) and her daughter and son.  All were keen to see photographs of the Cat (am sure they must think I am mad … although Von spoke to me later saying I had disturbed/worried her with the thought of this sailing adventure


Travelled from Geelong to Cann River, Victoria

Left ‘Von and Jack (‘Vons husband) at 9:00am to travel through Melbourne towards Sister Shirley, near Canberra.  As I was a bit weary from my travels from Perth I decided to take it easy on this section of the trip.

‘Von was interested in how I was going to navigate through Melbourne; she underestimated `Daphne’, my Street Pilot and we breezed over the Western Gate bridge and through a long tunnel which seemed to take me right under Melbourne.  No worries!

* An interesting Catamaran … taking vehicles and passengers from Geelong across Port Phillip Bay, Victoria. *

It was a toll road … only the authorities will have to catch up with me somehow for payment … there are no toll pay-gates?? (Only an electronic process with some sort of imbedded device in the car/truck which is read along the freeway as you travels along … and an account sent)?



posted by admin in AUSTRALIA,SOUTH AUSTRALIA ... AUSTRALIA and have No Comments


Left Norseman early (for me) … 08:00 and did a good days work travelling over 1,000 km to Nullarbor Roadhouse, South Australia.

Just press the Cruise Control and steer!

* Just press the Cruise Control and steer! Beware of `Roos! *

There's plenty of warning?

* There are plenty of warnings? And your attention-span is tested to the Max! *

Did the last 150 Km in the dark and this should be a no-no in this part of the world, without a Roo-guard, due to the kangaroo hazard.  (A Roo-guard is a very sturdy tubular steel/aluminium frame bolted the front end of a vehicle to help reduce/eliminate the substantial damage done to a vehicle when a collision with a kangaroo occurs.  Trucks have `Bull-bars’ for protection against larger animals).   Didn’t see a single `live roo’ and only noticed a few corpses!  

Cliffs (looking West) along the `Great Australian Bight'

* Cliffs along the `Great Australian Bight ... looking West. A stunning site and just a few metres off the Eyre Hwy. *

Cliffs along the Great Australian Bight

* Cliffs along the Great Australian Bight ... looking East! *

The following words and photos are pinched from “FrogandToads, Australia” article.

The Nullarbor Plain

“Crossing the Nullarbor Plain is undoubtedly one of Australia’s great touring experiences. From the point where the Eyre Highway begins its stretch across the Nullarbor at Ceduda, it’s a 1208 kilometre journey before it reaches another real town of any size (see Norseman in Outback, Western Australia). The only signs of civilisation on the long passages of perfectly straight road are a series of roadhouses, providing fuel, essential services, food, and generally both camping and motel styles of accommodation. The largest gap is about 200 kilometres, so motorcyclists may need to carry extra fuel. Travellers should also be aware of wandering kangaroos, wombats and emus (especially at dawn or dusk), enormous road trains, and the many time changes which occur along the way.

Ten kilometres west from where the Flinders Highway merges with the Eyre Highway, the town of Ceduna is the eastern gateway to the Nullarbor Plain. Geared around the steady stream of tourists travelling to or from Western Australia, the town offers a good range of modest accommodation as well as a number a pubs which dish up hearty meals. If you arrive here during the day, you can seek relaxation on the good fishing and swimming beaches around the sandy coves of Murat Bay. “

Nullabor Roadhouse ... Nothing flash, but, an Oasis-in-the-Desert

* Nullabor Roadhouse ... Nothing flash, but, an Oasis-in-the-Desert *

“The Nullarbor Roadhouse is last stop before the 200 kilometre stretch, west, to the Western Australian border. From here the Eyre Highway travels right by the coast and through the Nullarbor National Park. Although the park consists entirely of desert, a series of lookouts (just off the highway) allow breathtaking views over the dark blue waters of the Bight, and the spectacular eighty metre decent of the Bunda Cliffs. Don’t make the mistake of driving straight by, as the scenery here makes the Nullarbor journey worthwhile in itself. (For information on the Western Australian side of the Nullarbor, see Outback, W.A.)”

Nullarbor Roadhouse ... Nothing flash, not cheap, but, an Oasis-in-the-Desert

* Nullarbor Roadhouse ... Nothing flash, but, after a day at the wheel, very welcoming. *





Arrived at roadhouse at approximately 20:00 and was lucky enough to get a room for AU$80.00.  Had previously been offered a `Budget Room’ at Eucla for AU$25.00.  The only problem was, you could not swing a cat in it, had a lousy bed … and was full of moths.  Received my $25 back from a very snooty little lass. 

Spoke to a 56 year old woman at Madura Roadhouse, who had just cycled into the Motel.  She is riding with a group of 6-8 cyclists who are crossing Australia.  Wish I had half their stamina.  They had ridden from Balladonia that day … a very healthy 310 kilometre ride. 

Fuel got up to AU$1.43/litre at Madura and luckily I didn’t need to buy any.  Paid  AU$1.40/litre at Caiguna! 

Mercedes pointing East ... still a long way to go!

* Mercedes pointing East ... still a long way to go! *

Received a call from Cousin Yvonne, as I was passing Eucla and I only had time to tell her where I was … before the mobile ‘phone connection disengaged.

Will try to make Adelaide … and the Fowlers, tomorrow.  John was my Best Man at our Wedding in Perth, WA. in 1964! 



posted by admin in AUSTRALIA,Norseman ... W.A.,WESTERN AUSTRALIA ... (W.A.) and have No Comments

TRAVEL TO CARNARVON … 1st October 2004

Carnarvon is a Coastal Town 904 kilometres north of Perth, WA.  Erica and I bought an all-ready established General Motors Holden Motor Vehicle Dealership there, in 1972.  We operated this business (New Car Sales, Used Car Sales, Service, Spare Parts and Panel/Paint), with twenty two staff, for ten years.

Carnarvon Yacht Club ... as at November 2010

* Carnarvon Yacht Club (Opened 13th August 1983) *

Robinson Street, Carnarvon, WA

* Robinson Street, Carnarvon, WA *

I made a deliberate decision to delay starting for Sydney to attend the 50thAnniversary of the Carnarvon Yacht Club (CYC) on the weekend of 2-3 October ’04.  My main thought was to honour the two Scott’s, Barry and Kay, who were Foundation Members of the CYC, 50 years earlier and who have been great supporters of mine. 

Through the early years of the Motor Vehicle Business, I took on a franchise for a Perth, WA, built 14’ Beach Catamaran Yacht, the Windrush.  And eventually sold twenty five, with most of the new owners then joining the Carnarvon Yacht Club (CYC).  This effectively formed a new and most popular Class within the Club and naturally I joined the Class and learnt how to sail a catamaran.  This experience made it possible for me to move onto SV Tsunami and sail her single handed.  

*   The `Old CYC Clubhouse' ... in use during my period with the Club.  Approx. 1974/1981   *

* The `Old CYC Clubhouse' ... in use during my period with the Club. Approx. 1974/1981 *

The 14' Windrush Catamaran fleet is developing again ... now number ten vessels.

The 14' Windrush Catamaran fleet is developing again ... now number ten vessels.

Barry and Kay offered me accommodation on their 10 metres catamaran while I was in Carnarvon for the 50thAnniversay and this proved a perfect arrangement, as the yacht was moored close to the Club and amenities for visiting yachts.

CYC Foundations!

* The beginning of a Dream for CYC Members. Club Opening 13th August, 1983 *

The Trophy Presentation Night the year I was Commodore!
The Trophy Presentation Night the year I was Commodore! The young lad is Darren Scott!


A week before the Carnarvon trip I started to experience pain with one of my molar teeth.  Being busy as hell and a punter, I took off for Carnarvon without trying to have the problem rectified.  On passing through Geraldton it became obvious I would not be able to live through the pain for nearly a week in Carnarvon … and I knew there was a great likelihood there would not be a Dentist there. 

* New Marina as seen in 2010 *

* New Marina as seen in 2010 *

 Therefore, I saw a Dentist in Geraldton (on the coast, 424 kilometres north of Perth) and it seemed, following an x-ray, an extraction was imminent?  Antibiotics to the rescue.  A further visit to my own Dentist on return to Perth confirmed the first opinion, however, I was leaving for Sydney the next morning … so, more antibiotics!?


Erica had a day off work to help me pack the Mercedes for the trip East to Sydney.  This was done, although towards the end of the procedure I ran out of time, lost patience and threw the last 100 Kg in rather loosely.



posted by admin in AUSTRALIA,Carnarvon ... W.A.,WESTERN AUSTRALIA ... (W.A.) and have Comment (1)