Search the Register
Advanced Search


Vessel Number: HV000096
Date: 1928
Vessel Dimensions: 4.88 m x 1.73 m (16 ft x 5.66 ft)
Classification:Vessels and fittings
RIVAL is wooden sailing skiff built in 1928 in Sydney NSW. It is an example of a mid-1920s period gaff-rigged 16-foot skiff class open sailing boat. it has had four decades of close association with Middle Harbour 16-Foot Skiff Club in Sydney ,NSW. RIVAL remains in excellent original condition and shows in gfreat detail the construction and configuartion of this period and class.
DescriptionRIVAL was built in 1928 for brothers Sydney and Walter Atkins. It was built by Harold "Darkie" Griffin and cost 18 pounds. They sailed with the Middle Harbour 16-Foot Skiff Club and the boat remained with that club for over 40 years, except for a brief period when it was sold to a member of the Port Jackson Sailing Club. The Atkins bought the vessel back and RIVAL then stayed in the family. Sydney's sons Keith and Thomas also raced RIVAL, and the boat was eventually donated to the Sydney Heritage Fleet by the Atkins family in 1980.

The design and construction of RIVAL is a good example of the heavier seam-batten planked hulls with gaff rigs, which were typical of the original 16-skiffs. RIVAL was built towards the end of this era, and soon after skiffs began to appear with Marconi or Bermudan rigs, and their hull shapes developed further toward a true planing hull form. The original centreboard was made of 1/4 in (6 mm) mild steel, but this was replaced in the 1950s with a similar thickness Duralumin plate.

During its time with the Middle Harbour club, RIVAL earned the title of the 'ghost ship' from its ability to overtake the fleet in drifting conditions. The rounded hull shape and generous rocker or curvature in the keel would have been an advantage in light airs. In fact it was also known as the 'Banana Boat' because of the amount of spring in the keel. In the 1930s it held the record for the most number of wins off scratch in one season.

RIVAL went into storage in Syd's garage in 1965 until 1980 when his widow donated the craft to the Sydney Heritage Fleet. RIVAL is now on display at WHARF 7 in Darling Harbour along with other vessels from the Sydney Heritage Fleet collection.

Vessel Details
Current status:inside building
Current status:non-floating
Current status:on public display
Deck layout:open
Hull material and construction:batten seam
Hull material and construction:timber
Hull shape:monohull
Hull shape:plumb stemvertical stem
Hull shape:plumb transomvertical transom
Hull shape:round bottom
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:dagger boarddrop board
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:transom rudder
Related materials:news clippings
Related materials:photos
Rig type:gaff
Rig type:sloop
Sail cloth:cotton
Spar material:timber

Discuss this Object


Please log in to add a comment.