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I recently purchased the Wharram Hinemoa 'Te Kapoo'. I'm told that it has done some long-distance journeys in the past and am interested to know more, or even better to make contact with the original owner/builder who I understand came from Perth WA.


Steve Cameron

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Gday Steve.

I really like the Hinemoa design & am on the lookout for one (maybe even have one started for me). How do you find it? I know its probably a bit slower than the Tiki 21 (so much heavier), but still is faster than monos and obviously much stronger than T21. What sort of top speed have you achieved in her? Anything to watch out for in an old specimen? 


Hi Scott,

Unfortunately I haven't had a chance to do much sailing, Te Kahoo is still in Victoria until the end of the year. I am in Tasmania. But in the little bit of sailing I have done so far I am happy with her. I think its still a tradeoff between lightness (for speed) and weight(for stability). Id say 10 knots would be a max on a reach, more if surfing down waves.

My boat is relatively heavy which I am happy with as I intend to go exploring the coastline. Re things to look out for, I think just the quality of the original work, if she leaks at all then I'd be very cautious that the timber integrity is compromised. Mine has a little bit of seepage along the keel but only in the central compartments, I'll strip the paint back to the timber to get a look at what is going on there. Probably some more epoxy will fix the problem and redoing the antifouling.

The one thing that is a bit of an issue for me is the tightness of the sleeping space in the hulls, plenty long enough for me at 175cm but I cannot roll over easily if I add a decent slab of foam to sleep on. I intend to make a good tent design so I can sleep on the deck when weather is good.

There are probably other more knowledgeable people to talk with.


Sorry, the name is actually Ta Kahoo. not Te Kapoo.


Hi Steve, thanks for the reply.

You lucky bugger. I love Tassie. What a cruising ground, especially with a Hinemoa. I did my maritime tickets down there at the Maritme College (Beauty Point Seamanship Centre) and never wanted to leave. If I could convince the family to move there, I'd be there tomorrow. 

I agree with your point about speed vs safety. I'm no daredevil, and 10 knots(ish) sounds pretty bloody good to me. 

Thanks for the warning points. Interesting about the bunk width. I have gigantic, tightly muscled, beautifully sculptured shoulders and arms (which I choose to keep covered with a thick protective layer of blubber;-), and I'd hate to wake up and find myself wedged tightly into the hull. Would raising the bunk height cause too much restriction do you think? 

Deck tent would definitely be welcome I'd say. Be good to be able to streamline it a bit, for those windy nights on the pick. 

Hi Scott

There are effectively two spaces, the low space forwards that you can only slide your legs into and the cabin itself where you can sit or crouch, but which for a tall person is still a bit tight, say to turn around getting dressed.

Appart from sleeping in a tent which was the original design, I think being able to move further towards the stern in the cabin will avoid the tightness issue for me. Then its just your legs under the low part forward and not your hips which is what causes the problem when you try to roll over. This could be a achieved by adding an extra section to the sleeping platform that you only use when you need to lie down. Then'd you'd be sleeping as close to the stern as possible, where the cabin is at its widest as well. Then I think it will be fine.

For the tent I'll build an igloo design with fibreglass poles to keep it tight in the wind. I'm thinking of a bigger version of a 2 man Macpac Olympus hiking tent that I own that has 3 high-tech aluminium poles.

Hi Steve, I originally built Te Kahoo in Perth - launched her when I was 21 and am about to turn 50, so Te Kahoo is getting to be something of an old timer at nearly 30 years old. Can't begin to tell you how much fun I had in that little boat! Left Perth with $10 bucks in my pocket and a bag of rice, then spent the next three years or so sailing up the west coast, across the top, then down the east coast - eventually becoming a landlubber when I reached the Byron Bay area. Lived off fish and coconuts and got a job on a fishing boat or diving on the pearl farms whenever I ran out of money. Had a Seagull outboard when I left Perth but sold it in Broome and made a set of bamboo oars - had some interesting times in the Kimberley area with 12 metre tides and 8 knot currents, whirlpools, croc's ...

Are you still based in Tassie and have you had a chance to get Te Kahoo back in sailing condition and over to Tassie? Best of luck with everything. Happy to answer any questions you may have. Would love to catch up with you some day and see Te Kahoo - it's like kids when you build a boat.. you are always hoping they are out there somewhere in the world having adventures...



What a cool story! What a great website!

Hello Andrew,

It is so wonderful to hear from you and to know that the story I was told about Te Kahoo is actually true!

After talking with some people knowledgeable about Northern Australian waters I'd started to doubt its veracity, I was told that people mainly sail east to west to get tail winds and your trip was west to east. Perhaps that is partly why you took 3 years to do it. This is such a wonderful story of adventure, have you ever thought if writing down your recollections of it for posterity?

Indeed, Te Kahoo is now in Hobart. I came across in Bass Strait in February-March this year. I had my own adventure on her I have to say! I had some time getting ready at Port Welshpool area mainly buying equipment and waiting for the right weather conditions for the trip. My plan was to wait for a big high to move through and then motor & sail to Deal Island then wait in the sheltered harbour there for another high to cross to Flinders Island and on to Tassie.

As it turned out the weather was perfect, I sailed to Refuge Cove on Wilson's Prom with a tail wind the first day.Then motored in calm conditions to Hogan Island the next day. Also motored to Deal on the following day. I could have gone to Deal straight off as it's a dog-leg to go via Hogan, but I was following the route the Kayakers take, there was a solo kayaker making the trip at the same time as me.

I stayed 3 nights at Deal, which is the largest of 3 islands in the Kent Group, there is a sheltered passage between Deal and Erith and Dover Islands, the later two are connected by an isthmus that is covered at high tide, the 'Swashway'. As it happened two highs joined up so I had perfect weather at Deal for those days and then, was able to sail most of the way to Flinders Island after that, the longest jump of the trip, about 80ks as I recall. The Kents are quite high so can be seen from Flinders, but not the other way around.

I had a break at Whitemark on Flinders for a few days, mainly waiting to buy some more petrol. Then I had a good sail to the southern-west corner of Cape Barren Island in an afternoon and the next day another perfect tail wind day to get across Banks Straight to Tassie and on to St Helens.

I went back to Hobart for a few days and then returned to continue the journey, hoping to get to Freycinet Peninsula in one day as there aren't many good anchorages in between. Again I picked a perfect day and had a run from St Helens down to Schouten Passage, the wind getting stronger and the waves higher as the day progressed. I was starting to get a bit concerned by the white caps around me but she seemed to handle it all very nicely, surfing on some waves! I was just using a jib most of the day.

The next two days were the only bad days I had, occassional rain and I motored alot of the way to Dunalley into the wind but again she handled it well. I'd upgraded from a 4hp to an 8hp outboard for the trip and was thankful to have done that, she goes along at a nice speed of about 5 knots at half throttle with the 8hp.

Now she is on a mooring at a place called Howden south of Hobart. I've not gotten alot of use of her since the trip and have been feeling guilty of that. In part as I am presently unemployed and trying to start a business. But I hope to get her out of the water in the next month and do a complete paint job and set up the tent. With warmer weather starting now I hope to start doing some weekends away, which was the idea of buying her, down around Bruny Island.

In general she is in good condition, very well built I think! I need to do some repairs on the foredeck mainly where there is a little rot. But a good paint job should have her looking a picture again. I think the rig on her now is not original, it's off a Gwen Catamaran I'm told, and was added for club racing at Bairnsdale in Gippsland where I bought her. This seems a good size for her though and not a high aspect ratio, so she's great to sail in a strong breeze.

It would be great to meet with you at some point Andrew, I am just a few years older than you in fact. I'm starting my life of adventure later than you!

We have a big Wooden Boat Festival here in Hobart every 2 years, the next is in February 2015 but I'll definitely have Te Kahoo entered and now that I have have access to her history even more so! What a tale she has to tell! Maybe you can make it, are you back in Perth?

Here is a promo video to watch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LA2M17eZd_Y

You can see some photos of the boat and the trip on Facebook


My photography was sadly meagre for the trip, but that just means I have to go back again and take some more. I have some prints that I can scan too that would give you a better picture of her.

Again, it is great to hear from you!

I can be contacted directly at steve.cameron.62@gmail.com or call me on 03 62479126.




Hi Steve, great to hear from you! And I'm so pleased to hear you made it across to Tassie. I'll drop you an email as soon as I get a chance. Thanks for the photo too - its a real thrill to see Te Kahoo there anchored in a beautiful bay and having adventures..



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