SVs Saraoni and Sundari

25 January 2020 | Scarborough marina, Redcliffe Peninsula, Queensland
16 January 2020 | Christchurch
22 December 2019 | Christchurch, New Zealand
16 December 2019 | Christchurch, Canterbury, NZ
28 November 2019 | Christchurch, SI, New Zealand
19 November 2019 | Picton, Marlborough, NZ
04 November 2019 | Collingwood, Tasman, South Island, NZ
04 November 2019 | Collingwood, Tasman, South Island, NZ
29 October 2019 | Nelson, South Island, NZ
22 October 2019 | Christchurch, Te Waka o Māui, New Zealand
15 October 2019 | Scarborough, Queensland
05 October 2019 | Scarborough marina, near Brisbane, Australia
16 August 2019 | Southport Spit, Gold Coast, Australia
06 August 2019 | South Stradbroke Island, Gold Coast, Queensland
15 July 2019 | Boatworks, Coomera River, Gold Coast
25 May 2019 | Biggera Waters, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
12 April 2019 | Coomera River, Gold Coast, Australia
02 April 2019 | Southport, The Gold Coast, Australia
16 March 2019 | Southport, Gold Coast, Australia
09 March 2019 | Currigee, South Stradbroke Island, Gold Coast

A Tale of Three Boats

22 June 2006
Corsair on sale in Port Moresby in 1998 - the end of an era

Corsair was our first boat, purchased in June 1986 in Auckland. It was a 30 foot (9 metre) timber sloop with the hull built in kauri in 1933 by Fred Lidgard. The Lidgard family were well known boat builders and the family tradition has been continued to the present day by John Lidgard.

Corsair was originally built as a gentleman's racing yacht for the Hauraki Gulf area for Roy Lidgard, who apparently disappeared on his way to Fiji in a fishing boat he was delivering. There is a legend which says that his wife kept a light burning in the window of their Kawau Island house hoping for his return.

The mast was solid oregon and originally the boat was not designed with an engine in mind. When we first removed the mast from the boat in Cairns in 1987 we discovered a few coins in the mast step - including a 1947 NZ halfpenny!

Various people had owned Corsair before we bought it and it had been kitted out pretty basically for cruising. It also came with several broken ribs and more problems known and unknown than we were probably able to deal with!

But it was cheap for its size and we had, probably rather naively, a vision of preparing the boat for the ocean, and sailing it back to England!

We spent the first six months working hard on just about everything with Corsair up at Lane's boatyard in Panmure, Auckland. The professional boat builders worked on doubling up the ribs, improving the cockpit and companionway and marinising a new Kubota diesel engine we had bought with the boat. We knew very little to begin with, but soon learnt that the more we knew, the more we were able to do ourselves and the cheaper it would be! This message has been a recurring theme throughout our boating life: self sufficiency and skills are a real asset. However, we still remain basically motivated by exploration and nature -



Corsair on a mooring in the Tamaki River at Panmure, Auckland, just after purchase in 1986

We owned and lived on Corsair for 12 years. We sailed in it across five stretches of ocean and never regretted any of the time spent on her. The boat was eventually sold in our absence in Port Moresby to an Englishman, who again had grand dreams. We have no idea of its movements or whereabouts since 2000.



Saraoni in Grenada 2014

Saraoni was our second and present boat. It is a fibreglass South Coast 36 ketch, which means that it is 36 feet or 11 metres long the deck, although the presence of a bowsprit, davits and windvane make it longer overall. The boat hull and deck were manufactured in Port Kembla, NSW, and purchased by Keith and Vivienne Kingsland from Nowra who completed the fitting out, some of which was professional and some was done by themselves.

The original boat name was "Tekin JB" which meant "escape from Jervis Bay", where Keith and Vivienne lived. We renamed it "Saraoni" from the PNG island that protects the mouth of Kana Kopi bay at the entrance to Milne Bay in the Eastern end of the island of New Guinea: probably one of the nicest anchorages we have spent time in.

Saraoni is now 28 years old, but basically in good shape. The engine is a four cylinder 38 hp Nanni diesel, installed in Lanzarote, Canary Islands in 2013 so quite new. Reluctantly we had to buy and fit a new propeller in Mindelo, in the Cape Verde Islands later the same year.

Saraoni has a centre cockpit which is very comfortable, a large hard dodger which makes beating relatively dry, a main saloon, a fore cabin where we sleep, and an aft cabin which could be used by guests and is otherwise used as everything from an office to a storage space for surplus boat stuff. There is place to sleep in the main cabin, the cockpit or the saloon deck depending on numbers and weather.

There is a small galley along the port side, a separate shower and toilet and an engine room.

Compared to Corsair, space for stores and personal junk is great.

Steering is by hydraulic wheel operation, while self steering is by electric autopilot if motoring, or by Fleming wind vane linked to an emergency tiller for ocean passages.

Sails include a furling genoa and main, a stay sail and mizzen. The height of the main mast and the ketch rig means that downwind sailing can be slow in light winds, but it is well balanced in other wind directions, when the full spread of sails can be used.

We have a small desalinator to make freshwater, an AIS radar detector useful in detecting large ships, and a wind speed indicator to tell us what our eyes can already guess at! There is a SSB for long distance radio communication and a VHF for shorter distances. The rest of the electronic clutter includes a pactor modem for HF generated emails and weather GRIBS, GPS's by the bucket, chartplotters, computers and 2 echosounders.

Electrical power by non fossil fuel means appears to be adequate except to power the stove. We have one wind generator and five solar panels installed, which provide electricity for our navigation instruments, fridge lights, computers, vacuum cleaner, TV and anything else!

We have altered many of the features on the boat and have got used to its sailing strengths and weaknesses. At present there seems to be no strong motive for buying another boat - even if we had the cash!

As with many other yachties living aboard, our ecological footprint is relatively small compared to the average for a western "household" due to very conservative water usage, small space for consumer products, so few of them are bought and used, transportation by wind as much as possible and the use of non fossil fuels for electricity. Of course, this changes when we are holed up in port and buy a car etc etc!

We note that if the offshore rallies we have been involved in are anything to go by, Saraoni is on the smaller size of average - but size itself is not a complete guide to comfort and convenience. Just like mobile phones - or bicycles - there is an optimum range of size above or below which functionality suffers.

As for boat number three if there is one in the future it will probably be smaller and lighter and more fun to sail - unless we decide to cross any more oceans after returning to NZ.

Update - April 2019. Well, our prediction wasn't that spot on! We eventually bought a much larger yacht rather than a smaller one, and are now actively trying to market Saraoni. 'Sundari,' a 2002 Beneteau 473 is about twice the internal volume of Saraoni and a very different boat altogether. We haven't had it long enough to know how it compares, apart from comfort and space, so look out for an update sometime in the future!
Vessel Name: Saraoni
Vessel Make/Model: South Coast 36
Hailing Port: Tutukaka, New Zealand
Crew: Alison and Geoff Williams
About:
Saraoni is named after an island in Milne Bay which guards and protects one of our favourite anchorages - Kana Kopi Bay - frequently occupied by us while we were teaching in Alotau, PNG. We have lived, cruised and worked for the last 30 years on three very different boats. [...]
Extra: CONTACT DETAILS Telephone / SMS number +61 477 285 361 (Australian mobile no.) Email saraoni@gmail.com (main email address)
Saraoni's Photos - Main
A collection of photos taken during the Tiki Tour of the Southern half of the South Island, November / December 2019
40 Photos
Created 15 December 2019
9 Photos
Created 2 April 2019
Photos taken of Saraoni. All interior photos were taken in the last week.
10 Photos
Created 2 April 2019
The ABCs - Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao are mostly low lying dry, scrubby islands in the Western Caribbean near the Venezuelan coastline
15 Photos
Created 21 May 2014
12 Photos
Created 20 March 2014
4 Photos
Created 9 March 2014
Images taken in and around Suriname's capital
40 Photos
Created 9 February 2014
River Images
8 Photos
Created 28 January 2014
Images of the 2 islands in the Cape Verde island group we visited on our way across the Atlantic in 2013 - Sao Vicente and Santo Antaao.
37 Photos
Created 26 December 2013
3 Photos
Created 16 December 2013
1 Photo
Created 16 December 2013
21 Photos
Created 23 August 2013
What we saw in the USA
14 Photos
Created 21 August 2013
9 Photos
Created 19 August 2013
Unexpected meeting with old friends "in the woods".
6 Photos
Created 24 June 2013
A brother found amongst the gorges of the Cevennes
5 Photos
Created 10 June 2013
Photographic images of our long walk along the Appalachian mountains in the USA
26 Photos
Created 10 June 2013
17 Photos
Created 19 December 2012
15 Photos
Created 25 November 2012
9 Photos
Created 16 November 2012
25 Photos
Created 15 November 2012
16 Photos
Created 20 October 2012
2 Photos
Created 4 June 2012
Greece is in the throes of a recession, but they still have the last laugh - never far from the sun, the sea, colour, culture and bags of history. The photos document our Aegean odyssey from May to September 2011
31 Photos
Created 17 December 2011
O.K. We're mad, but we somehow prefer a home on the sea to one on dry land.
12 Photos
Created 17 December 2011
Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur - the three ancient city states of the Kathmandu valley have mediaeval architectural wonders in their Durbars and old town areas - a meshing and merging of Hinduism, Buddhism and materialism
9 Photos
Created 17 December 2011
Some of the shots taken of us while on one of our 30 odd days on the three main mountain trails we walked in the Anapurnas and Helambu region of Nepal's side of the Himalayas
10 Photos
Created 15 December 2011
People make the Himalayas a unique place to walk through. From Hindu rice and buffalo farmers in the foothills to the Buddhist villages in the highlands so influenced by Tibetan ancestry and trade over the passes
16 Photos
Created 15 December 2011
Nepal has ten of the world's highest mountains within its boundaries or shared with India and Tibet - these are truly giant peaks!
22 Photos
Created 15 December 2011
These were all photographed in the wilds of Chitwan and Bardia National Parks - which are two of the last havens of biodiversity in Nepal's low lying Terai district.
18 Photos
Created 14 December 2011
Saraoni hauled out on Finike's hardstand for biennial maintenance and painting
3 Photos
Created 26 April 2011
8 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 6 March 2011
4 Photos
Created 6 March 2011
Ruined city
4 Photos
Created 10 January 2011
3 Photos
Created 10 January 2011
12 Photos
Created 10 January 2011
7 Photos
Created 30 December 2010
5 Photos
Created 28 December 2010
6 Photos
Created 11 December 2010
The small rocky island of Kastellorizou is Greece's most remote island
7 Photos
Created 11 December 2010
Cruising and walking Turkey's Lycian coast September and October 2010
19 Photos
Created 11 December 2010
8 Photos
Created 6 December 2010
Images taken while walking sections of the 500 km Lycian Way or Lykia Yolu on the South West Mediterranean Coast of Turkey
11 Photos
Created 9 November 2010

Post Circumnavigation

Who: Alison and Geoff Williams
Port: Tutukaka, New Zealand