|Configuration||Original short rig with centre engine and the original keel and skeg mounted rudder|
|Colour||Red hull with white and beige decks|
|Berthed||East Coast marina, Manly QLD|
|Sail Number||RQ 40|
|Builder||Swarbrick Brothers for Peter Kailis|
|Previous Owners||Peter Kailis, then Jim Shannon, Robert Gun and Fergus Keegan (to Dec 2013, at Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron)|
The Yacht’s Story
From Jim Shannon: MELTEMI was built by Swarbrick Bros. for Peter Kailis and launched in 1973. She is the original low rig design with centre engine and the original keel and skeg mounted rudder. At some time she was fitted with a wheel. My theory is that this was done to keep the skipper out of the way of the cockpit crew.
She currently is sail No RQ 40 and occupies a pen at the RQYS marina at Manly QLD. Our principal sailing is the WAGS. This stands for Wednesday afternoon gentleman sailors and is similar in format to the functions at RPYC and RFYC. The expanse of Morton bay allows for big fleets and normally 30-40 vessels go out. On occasion (Ecca day) there have been close to 100. Even though the bay is big there is ample opportunity to run aground if you like to take the risks. The worst outcome of this is waiting on your side for the next high tide while the overly cautious drink at the bar. Ecca is an illegitimate abbreviation for Exhibition which Queenslanders cannot spell and means Royal Show to any one from Perth.
RQ does its bit for the local economy by encouraging back packers and other assorted tourists to come down and be placed on a competing vessel. The local sailors have a preference for coke bottle virgins as crew. I suspect most understand that this is an unrealistic expectation.
The story of our passage from Fremantle to Brisbane in on our webpage (see link below). Webpage
About the Owners (From Jim, February 2005):
Some cruising is on the agenda and our next sail will probably be at Easter with son and grand daughters on board. We sailed in one Brisbane/Gladstone race but got a bit disappointed because of all the paper work designed to show that nothing that happens is the fault of the race committee. The race itself is one long spinnaker run where one tends to carry enough cloth to ensure that something breaks and it is always won by a Yachting World Diamond that has somehow been camouflaged to fool the safety committee.
Gladstone is almost obsessively hospitable and so after much dedicated party attendance most of the racing crew desert to catch a bus or plane and the owner and remnant crew in sadly sleep deprived and hung over condition head for home through a 300plus nm brisk head wind, bash.
We are planning to go north for the Hogsbreath and Hamilton Island series this year. This means departing Brisbane about the last day in July and sailing to start the first race off Airlie about Aug 12. After two weeks competition followed by some local sight seeing the ship will be located in some local marina until the end of September when it is expected that the more Northerly breezes will be established.
If you know of experienced, rich, young racing crew with time on their hands and good disposition, please put them in touch.
From Vaughan Mayberry Aug 2015:
Hi Simon. Thanks for your email. Meltemi is now berthed at East Coast Marina, which is one of four contained within Manly Harbour, Brisbane, so she is only 200 metres or so from where she was when I bought her from Jim and partners. I live aboard.
Meltemi is now 40+ years old so I am keeping a close eye on everything. Having said that, Jim had her in superb tune and she sails beautifully. Overall she’s in very good condition for her age and has all the equipment one could possibly want without the rig being overly complicated. There are a few cosmetic issues which I have started to address and the topsides will be repainted soon.The colour scheme will stay the same.
All of my previous (somewhat limited) sailing experience has been with dinghies so living aboard and sailing Meltemi is a bit of a revelation. That “Ok then, let’s go!” feeling that she transmits at 20+ knots is delightful. While I have been monitoring the SS34 Ass. site only I will join up before long. I see that it is inexpensive. Finally, something else that has made purchasing Meltemi a real pleasure has been meeting Jim and Elaine. They are lovely people.
Down hill run in race 6 in the Hamilton series (2005). 29/8/08 at Hamilton Meltemi in company at hull speed with the #2 kite and a reefed main.
Photo: Jim Shannon
The photo of Meltemi below was taken from a competitor’s yacht at the Airlie regatta. Meltemi is in tide versus wind that we have called the washing machine. Speed through the water 6.2 kts, speed over the ground 10 kts. The leeward bow wave often lifted high above the deck level and followed the line of the topsides all the way aft, finally spilling inboard over the helmsman. Me.