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I'm very interested to hear where the Tangaroa "Flor de Luna" is. I owned her between 1998 and 2000 and sold her in Langkawi, Malaysia. The new owner planned to charter her, but not sure whether that ever developed, although I'd heard that she was sailed to Pattaya later. If anyone knows of her whereabouts, will be great to hear.

Thanks ~ Carl

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Hi Carl,

If you sold the boat to a guy called Peter, then i know exactly where your old boat is, and what has happened to her in the last years.

I actually was interested to buy her but was too late....

If this is the same tangaroa, and there cant be too many with that name can there??? ( this Flor de Luna had very square boxy masts if i remember correctly ), She was sailed to koh samui and by the time she got here she was in a shocking state. I met Peter after i had a tiki 30 built by Gunther and had sailed Beautiful Nok Talay to samui. Nok Talay is the tiki 30 next to the tiki 46 on the wharram home page...

When i first saw Flor de Luna she was anchored and all but abandoned just south of lamai, in the bay just south of Hin ta Hin yai. I was actually SO relieved i hadn't bought her at this point!... The mizzen mast had fallen down, hatches were missing, one hull half full of water, lots and lots of rot all over the upper hulls, parts of the slatted deck missing, lots of deck hardware missing....... basically Peter had left her to die...

It then gets a little mushy as to what happened next..... Full of intrigue...

ALLEGEDLY... (i don't want to fall foul of thailand's libel laws! ) I then heard ( but can in no way verify ), that someone ( and i never found out who supposedly did this - may have just been a rumour...), then checked her out of thailand and then abandoned her at sea........( You don't want to get on the wrong side of thai tax / immigration / customs laws by leaving a foreign flagged vessel inside thailand above the allowed time now do we !? )

A few years then passed........

Then sometime 2003, 2004 possible even 2005, i was taking a friend on a bike tour of samui, and came across a small boat yard unknown to me in the jungle of south samui... i think sort of close to the butterfly farm, anyway there to my amazement i saw twin bows sticking out from a shed and thought that they looked suspiciously like wharram hulls. Quickly stopping the bike i ventured inside and low and behold there was Flor de Luna with large pieces of the hull sides missing, new slatted decks and she was well into the process of being rebuilt.

After a few enquiries, the new "owners" confirmed that it was Peter's old boat and that basically it was given to them as Peter had written it off, and said if they can get it out of the water they were welcome to it.

The new owners, (and for the life of me i can't remember their names or nationalities, but i think they were either french or scandinavian ), rebuilt her using some local glue, string and duct tape ( ok i might be exaggerating here but as far as i can remember they weren't using epoxy due to the cost)

We had a good chat, with myself explaining that when they get her relaunched then head up to Big Buddha bay and we could have a mini wharram meet......

Anyway, they never got in touch and i think another year or so passed before they re-launched her.

Then one day, a few years ago, as i was taking the Raja ferry to the mainland she was anchored in the bay from where the Raja ferry departs samui for Don Sak, i call this area lipa noi, but i think that may be incorrect.

Anyway, I never did get hold of the owners, but i can confirm that she is currently, ( well on 8th March 2010 to be exact! ), still anchored there, right outside Nino's Fasting Health resort called New Body And Mind. She actually looked in good order with wind genny spinning away, full sun covers etc

So hopefully this is your old boat.... if not then i've just been typing away for nothing..... ;)

Next time i'm over that way i'll try to remember an take a pic or two and post them...


Hi Marty,
Yes, that's her!! Man, she's been around the block then! Sad to hear that she got to that state, but really good to know that someone has seen the light and done something with her. She has quite a history and appears to have fallen into a bad state but brought back to "life" by various individuals. She was a good boat but was constant maintenance, and not keeping this up was bound to end up rotten!

Thanks a million for the news which I really appreciate. If you do manage to take a few pics of her, I'd love to see those. I'll be in Bangkok in July and if I have any spare time will see if I can get to see her again.

Hi Carl,

Glad to of assistance!.... yes she has certainly been round the block and was in a sorry state... guess that happens when you've been in asia too long and not looked after oneself.. LoL...

Anyway i'll be back in samui in a week or so and i'll try to get some pics and see if i can locate the current owners...

If you make it down to samui in the summer, it would be good to meet you and i could arrange a spin on my tiki30 Nok Talay... maybe even bump into Flor de Luna ( gently of course) if she's about!


Hello Carl, Marty & all,

Sad to hear what happened to this wonderful Tangaroa MkIV. I saw this boat when it was quite new (must have been not long after it was launched) in Coffs Harbour, NSW. Can't remember when, but it was many years ago. Perhaps in the late eighties or early nineties. It was tied up at the marina and a woman and a man were painting and touching up the finish. I spoke to the lady and she was quite chuffed that someone said complimentary things about the boat and looked to the guy up the mast; the guy winched himself down and I said again to him that it was the best Tangaroa MkIV that I'd seen. " This isn't a Wharram". he said, Could have fooled me! Some time later, after I'd sent photos of the boat to Ruth Wharram I was speaking to James Wharram on the phone and mentioned this conversation. He wasn't at all surprised.

I heard later that they had sailed the boat to New Caledonia and were so spooked by the whole experience that they sold the boat there. After that it went to South East Asia and was for sale in Maylasia at one stage, on Scott Brown's Wharram Brokerage site.

I'll try and find the disc that I have the pictures I took in Coffs Harbour on, and post a couple on this site. It was a very nice looking boat.

Hi Greg,

Your story is almost correct. Flor de Luna was launched in 1986 by the builder Greg Ball, north of Sydney -Pitcairn island rings a bell. Greg and his wife, Susan, sailed to Thailand up the coast of Australia via Vanuatu (etc) . They berthed the boat in the Boat Lagoon in Phuket. Tragedy struck when Greg, a sailmaker, was hit by a truck on the notorius Thai roads, and was killed. Susan sold the boat to a German gentleman who sadly did not maintain the boat, and he decided to sell her. After 6 months of negotiations, I made him a happy man and bought the boat, where I spent 4 months doing repairs and then sailed her to Langkawi in Malaysia, which was my base for almost 2 years, living aboard. A depleted bank account was a wake up call for me and I decided to sell her (was listed on Scott's website) and it was sold to Peter who Marty refers to in 2000. Not long afterwards, she was back on the market again through Scott. I visited Malaysia in 2001 and found her on the hard in Rebak Marina with the centre platforms removed, engines out and covers and sails lying around outside the boat. A box beam was being built to replace the original mast beam.
I lost all contact after 2001, but friends in the area mentioned she'd sailed up the east coast towards Pattaya. That was the last I heard until Marty kindly replied to my post.
It will be brilliant to see the pics you had of her then. When I did the repairs, I tried to maintain the original colours etc as much as possible.
I met Susan a number of years later when I was in Rebak. She saw the boat and although very emotional, was overjoyed that Flor de Luna was sailing again.
Thanks for your info.
Hello again Carl

Thanks for that information about the builder of your former boat. Actually that is very sad and it makes the pictures that I took quite poignant, I guess. Susan may be interested in them, then, if you know where she is??

I don't know why the builder (Greg Ball, I assume it was him, then?) said that the boat wasn't a Wharram, but he was quite emphatic, as I remember, there were lots of changes from the plans, but not in any way that substantially changed the design, I'd say. Oh well, water under the bridge now. It's a long while ago and I only remember snippets but I know I heard that they got to Noumea and that they had a very rough crossing which freaked them out. This came from someone who met them in Noumea, as I now remember. I thought they had sold the boat there but of course you say they kept going and Vanuatu is not far past Noumea to the north east, so that makes sense as most people going to Vila call in to Noumea on the way, from eastern Australia.

I have twelve transparencies (slides) which I took of the boat in Coffs Harbour and thinking now about it I'd say it was around 1988-89, may have been a little earlier?? I do have them on a disk somewhere but can't find it just now. But I did find the slides, so I'll copy them to digital again and post a couple (tomorrow night). You are welcome to all twelve pics if you'd like me to send them on a disc. Just let me know.

Very sad story about the builder/owner and I really feel for Susan. The boat seemed so well built, and the finish was superb. The colours were very tasteful. White hull with cream bulwarks and lots of bright finish, which seemed to be an oil finish as the lady (Susan, apparently) was touching up the dead-eyes, as I remember.

I don't remember seeing an engine box, and they had a rib with a largish outboard tied to the boat, I think.

Anyway, I'll get the pictures up as soon as I get get them copied to disc tomorrow some time. Thanks again for the information, Carl.

You know, the strange thing is that you see these very well built and looked after boats and think that they would be around for ever, virtually. It makes you realise just how vulnerable boats (and people) really are.

Hi Greg,
I unfortunately don't know where Susan is. When I met her, she was sailing on another boat in SE Asia at the time, but that was 11 years ago!
Flor de Luna was definitely all Wharram. There were a few minor mods to the cabin tops, but I regard these as being "improvements". The steering helm was also moved to the port hull, a bit like a Narai, which gave a lot of protection, particularly with the fully enclosed dodger. The starboard cabin top was extended aft, which housed a dedicated Nav station and chart table. The internal layout worked well for a boat of this size. The yacht was surveyed by Steve Turner when I sold her, who was very complimentary of the boat. I recall Steve being very impressed when he found a "hidden" hatch, which when opened, clearly displayed a fixing detail done to perfection. Steve mentioned that many builders got this detail wrong. A few other clever inventions were built into the design eg. a fresh water tank, painted black on the inside with clear plastic lids- it heated water for the shower.

I'm aware that they sustained quite a bashing from Hurricane force winds at some point. To be honest I would be pretty freaked out myself, but that was not the reason why the boat was sold. I suppose like anything, if it is looked after, it could well be around forever. The good thing is that someone has had a dream, and turned it into reality which has brought this boat back to life again.
Look forward to seeing the pics!
Cheers Greg

Hello Carl and all

I have the pictures of Flor de Luna which I took in Coffs Harbour marina in about 1988 or so. I'll try and upload a couple here (if they're not too large!)

one more, maybe:

Sorry to be a pain and keep on posting but i'm just getting used to this! I'll try top post an original size picture now and see if that works: Oops! Didn't work, sorry

Greg, that's her! Isn't she just a beautiful boat! You've made my day. Thanks!!

Great! ...a few more, then


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