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Old 08-21-2008, 11:18 AM   #1
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2

I am fortunate enough to own a 46' Norman Wright 1949 ex pilot vessel that was built to service Thursday Island in the Toress Straits.

Built in Brisbane launched in Cairns and serviced the Toress Straits for 25 years. When it first serviced Thursday island its first job was to replace the navigational beacons that were removed in WWII so that the Japenese could not navigate there way through the Toress Straits.

Being a remote area the pilot vessel "Waiben" (indigenous name for Thursday Island) was the local government boat, doing school excursions. jail ship and the local vessel to carry around the State and Federal fat cats.

She has been beautifully restored with new state of the art modern navigational and safety equipment and repainted.

She turns 60 next year and I am in the early stages of planning a trip up to TI for her birthday.

So far the plan is:

Scarborough to Lady Musgarve (overnight stay)

Lady Musgrave to Mackay (overnight stay)

Mackay to Cairns (overnight stay)

Cairns to Thursday Island (destination)

TI for two or three days.....then

Cairns to Mackay, get rid of crew

Wifey flies in we crise Whitsundays for a week

fly wifey back to Brisbane

Get a crew from Mackay or Brisbane

Cruise to Great Keppel (overnighter)

Great Keppel to Scarborough

any experienced advice would be greatly appreciated


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Old 08-21-2008, 12:10 PM   #2
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 3,067

Hi Boat Guru,

Welcome - question is black and white picture before was restored ? - notice quite a few mods.

Good looking boat - what engine/s ?


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Old 08-21-2008, 12:45 PM   #3
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Home Port: Durban
Posts: 2,984

What a great trip - PLEASE keep us up to date.

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Old 01-04-2009, 04:03 AM   #4
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2

Originally Posted by MMNETSEA View Post
Hi Boat Guru,

Welcome - question is black and white picture before was restored ? - notice quite a few mods.

Good looking boat - what engine/s ?

Gees it has been a while since I have been here.

The boat since last post has had new refrigeration, new instrumentation, new electronics and lazarette modifications.

The earlier photo in Black and White photo was taken about 1974 and was the original configuration.

The colour phot was taken some 20 years later, the shipwright had trouble finding original portholes etc so he used what he had around the shipyard, hence the change from round to square and square to oval.

The vessel had been re engined 5 times and its current motor is a 120hp Ford Lees which was rebuilt in 2004
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