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Vessel Number: HV000233
Date: 1958
Designer: Alan Payne
Builder: Jock Muir
Vessel Dimensions: 11.12 m x 7.53 m x 2.9 m x 1.43 m (36.5 ft x 24.7 ft x 9.5 ft x 4.7 ft)
Classification:Vessels and fittings
MARIS was the first of the well-regarded Tasman Seabird Class yachts, a classic design by accomplished naval architect Alan Payne. MARIS was commissioned in 1958 for artist and sailor Jack Earl, and also achieved recognition with its subsequent owner Ian Kiernan, well known environmental campaigner and successful solo sailor.
DescriptionMARIS was laid down in Jock Muir's Battery Point yard in Hobart in 1958, and was the first of the Tasman Seabird class yachts to begin construction. It became the second to be launched after sister ship CHERANA, but was the first to go sailing.

MARIS has a splined Huon pine hull, Tasmanian oak keelson, spotted gum frames, oregon spars. Many of the fittings Payne drew for this design were custom made items. It was the first splined hull built by Muirs. The Tasman Seabird designs are classics of the 1950s and 60s in styling and functional layout. Around a dozen are thought to have been built. They were designed by Payne to be sea-kindly, robust ocean racing craft with a number of features in the design giving them a favourable RORC (Royal Ocean Racing Club) rating.

First owner, Jack Earl, equally well known as a marine artist and yachtsman had sailed his previous yacht the double-ended ketch KATHLEEN GILLETT in the first Sydney to Hobart race, and then undertaken a circumnavigation of the world.

Jack initially approached Payne with sketches of a double-ender similar to KATHLEEN for ocean racing and cruising. Payne showed him the plans he was preparing for the sloop-rigged Tasman Seabird and was able to convince Earl that this would be suitable. Earl had one condition; he wanted a two masted rig, and after MARIS was launched it was fitted with a mizzen mast and rigged as a yawl. Earl also instructed the builder to include a rack and pin arrangement to secure the tiller at different angles, while balancing the boat with the set and trim of the sails, a feature he had used with success on KATHLEEN.

Earl competed in two Sydney to Hobart races in MARIS, and sailed it extensively around the Pacific to Canada and the USA, often with his family. In 1971 Jack decided it was time for a smaller boat and sold the yacht to Ian Kiernan.

Kiernan continued to cruise MARIS around the Pacific Ocean, competed in four Sydney to Hobart races, including the devastating 1998 event, several Lord Howe Island races and the single-handed Trans-Tasman race in 1978. In that event he won Division 1, sailing through cyclone 'Hal' which sank three other craft. Kiernan was unlucky to experience an accident in MARIS when it went ashore on the mid-north coast of NSW. It was repaired by Cec Quilkey and remains a fine example of the Tasman Seabird class.

MARIS still leads an active life, owned by a syndicate on Sydney Harbour. In late 2007 it was again at Lord Howe Island, joining in the traditional November yachtsman's barbeque, while in 2008 it was taking part in some of the classic ocean races on the eastern seaboard, winning the Lord Howe island race on IRC, a formidable achievement against modern yachts.
Vessel Details
Cabin or superstructure material and construction:timber plywood
Current status:operational
Deck layout:decked with cockpit
Deck material and construction:timber plywood
Hand propulsion/steering mechanism:tiller
Hull material and construction:carvelcarvel-planked
Hull material and construction:timber
Hull shape:displacement
Hull shape:monohull
Hull shape:overhanging stem
Hull shape:overhanging transom
Hull shape:round bottom
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:full keel
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:keel hung rudder
Motor propulsion:auxiliary motor
Motor propulsion:diesel
Rig type:yawl
Sail cloth:synthetic
Spar material:timber
Alternate Numbers

Sail Number: CYC 6

Sail Number: 780

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