Powerboat-World.com
 
 
News Features Cruising Photos Videos Events Newsletters Submit

 

Sail-World.com : It's the old story - we need something that's truly new

It's the old story - we need something that's truly new

'New Haines Hunter ... or is it a hardtop version of an existing model'    Mark Rothfield

In the winter of ’62 there were three options for blokes whose wives were bearing the last of the baby-booming buns in their proverbial oven. Watch BP Pick a Box with Bob and Dolly Dyer, go to the pub or build a boat.

My old man chose the latter. He bought plans for a newly introduced plywood sail trainer called the Pelican, as did his mate the dentist, and a doctor down the road.

Our boat bore more brass than a marching band, and hardwood seats that could support Margie (Biggest Loser) even before she lost the weight.

It banged its bluff bow into chop, but it taught us the ropes and ferried us to wild, unchartered lands … on Lake Macquarie.

David Foster couldn’t kill the thing with his axe and, 50 years later, it’s still serving as a rowboat and there’s dozens of its fibreglass brethren out there racing.

At the same time, Holden was building the EK, the vast majority of which have rusted to bits or been boiled down to make garden furniture. It bears no resemblance to the latest Holden … though word is the Commodore may also be destined for the scrapheap.

We live in interesting times. No one builds anything anymore, and no one buys anything. Technology is taking over, and they’re even talking of turning the Sydney Morning Herald and Age into tabloids before inevitably going on line.
So what hope does the boating industry have, long term, when development has stagnated and boats from the 60s refuse to die.

How long is it before we get our boating kicks on Wii?

Gone are the iconic designers, the pioneers on whose name empires were built. When they died the goodwill expired with them, which is why companies now prefer to be nameless and faceless.

Words like 'all new model' used to grab attention. Now it means they’ve added a hardtop or a slightly larger cockpit.
It’s hard to predict where the next great trend will take us. Personally, I’d love to see a wave-piercing trimaran trailerboat with hybrid electric-diesel propulsion, roto-moulded from recycled thongs.

We've got more chance of seeing a distant relative of Noah build another ark.

On the eve of a new financial year, when spreadsheets are looking flatter than an EK at the scrapyard, let’s pray for a miracle. Like a new model that is, actually, new.

Otherwise, I suggest we take matters into our own hands – men, get your wife pregnant, grab some plywood and start building.

Old timber boats never die, they just become outboard-powered tenders -  Mark Rothfield   Click Here to view large photo




by Mark Rothfield

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.powerboat-world.com/index.cfm?nid=98895

4:58 AM Mon 25 Jun 2012 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
Powerboat-World.com Editorial

Related News Stories:

22 Jun 2013  Is Australian boat manufacturing car-eening for fall
21 Feb 2013  Toughing it out in a marine-o-sexual world
18 Dec 2012  Where there's good will there's a way to help another boatie
27 Nov 2012  Seeing is not believing - you need all your senses when buying a boat
22 Nov 2012  Nothing beats Aussie ingenuity in the race for speed
26 Oct 2012  Lake home owners disturb ski racing fun
16 Jun 2012  When you do the research we're incredibly lucky
17 May 2012  Avoiding boat show blindness and being shafted by salesmen
01 Mar 2012  Houseboats winning the hearts of women
20 Feb 2012  When too much caring is never enough