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Vessel Number: HV000552
Date: 1927
Previous Owner: Percy Arnott ,
Vessel Dimensions: 16.76 m x 3.96 m x 2.13 m (55 ft x 13 ft x 7 ft)
Classification:Vessels and fittings
OOMOOBAH is a large and luxurious motor cruiser designed and built by the well-known Sydney firm Morrison and Sinclair in 1927 for Percy Arnott, a prominent business man and member of the Arnott family who were strong supporters of boating through the 1920s. Not many Morrison and Sinclair craft appear to remain extant, and although restored with changes to the superstructure styling, it still shows their fine hull construction and represents the layout and high class appointments this vessel was known for in its early years on Sydney Harbour.
DescriptionOOMOOBAH was built as a motor cruiser in 1927 by Morrison and Sinclair in Balmain NSW. It was built for the well-known Sydney business man and boating enthusiast Percy Arnott. It was designed by the builders to the owner’s requirements, which included a lot of specific detail to the fit out that brought it to a very high standard. The 16.76 m (55 foot) long hull has a canoe stern, and is carvel planked in spotted gum below the water and Oregon topsides. The deck was beech and cabin sides were teak. It was powered by two Invincible petrol marine engines.

OOMOOBAH was launched in late February 1927, and the name is the Indigenous word for Arnott’s birthplace, Newcastle in NSW. The Arnott family were all well known in either yachting or motor boats, and Sam Arnott, father of Percy Arnott had been an early commodore of the Royal Motor Yacht Club. OOMOOBAH quickly established itself as one of the most prestigious launches in Sydney and Pittwater, and in February 1928 Percy Arnott generously put OOMOOBAH at the disposal of the visiting Tasmanian team sailing in the Forster Cup for the 21 Foot Restricted class on Sydney Harbour.

The outings by the Arnott family were occasionally reported in the social pages of the local papers. Shirley Arnott’s 19th birthday was featured in the Sydney Morning Herald in November 1938, while her sister Thea’s two month holiday aboard the vessel at Pittwater had been noted much earlier in January 1938. The Women’s Weekly takes over in 1941 reporting further parties aboard OOMOOBAH on the harbour.

Its history is not well recorded from this point, however it is known that it served during the Second World War, operating out of Milne Bay and servicing radio stations in Normanby and Goodenough Islands. After the war it sold to Queensland owners.

The vessel has recently been extensively rebuilt over a few years with the work completed in 2012. The existing superstructure is clearly different from the original in its styling, but the proportions and layout remain consistent with the original as launched arrangement. It is now powered by two Gardner 5LW engines and remains in excellent condition.

Vessel Details
Cabin or superstructure material and construction:timber planked
Current status:floating
Current status:operational
Deck layout:cabin
Deck layout:decked with cockpit
Deck material and construction:timber planked
Deck material and construction:timber plywood
Hull material and construction:carvelcarvel-planked
Hull material and construction:timber
Hull shape:canoe stern/double endedDE
Hull shape:monohull
Hull shape:round bottom
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:launch deadwood
Motor propulsion:diesel
Motor propulsion:inboard
Motor propulsion:motor vesselMV
Hand propulsion/steering mechanism:wheel
Byzantine ships:ships:ship:ships:wheelhouse
Alternate Numbers

Vessel Registration Number: JF309

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