Large Antique Cased Builder’s Model of New Zealand 1909 Steamship “Ruahine”

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Starboard galley view of the 1909 Steamship RUAHINI model image

 Handcrafted Model of the New Zealand Steamship Liner!


is a
Cased Builder’s Model of SS Ruahine, the second ship
of this name built for the New Zealand Shipping Company Limited in 1909. The ship was 480 ft. between perpendiculars with
a beam of  60 ft. and a draft of 35 ft. She displaced 10,580 tonns. The model’s scale is 1/4 inch = 1 ft. and its size
is 10 ½ ft.  It was sold in England to the current owner in late 1985.

COMPARABLE SALES: A recent 2015 sale in England of the similar cased model, 12 ft. 9.5 in. long, of the Mauretania sold for
the astounding price of $253,135 to a London gallery. In September, 2015 in Boston, a near like size cased model of the ocean
liner Imperator sold for about $43,000.00 including buyer’s premium.

This model
dates from 1909, and is approximately 10 ½’ (126”) and is housed in the original glazed Mahogany case which
is 11 ½’ (138”) in length. Height of the model ship with mast is about 3 ft. The total height of the case
is 4.5 ft.  It has been in the same collection since 1986 when it was purchased from the upscale antiques dealer, Langfords
on Chancery Lane in London. 
ship carried cargo and passengers between England and New Zealand until 1949 when she was sold.


Three quarter view from the bow of the cased steamship Ruahine model image


(NZSC) was
a shipping line whose ships ran passenger and cargo services between Great Britain and New Zealand from 1873 through
A group of Christchurch
businessmen, including Hugh Murray-Aynsley and John Coster, founded the company in 1873. The company gradually established
a fleet of vessels, using Maori names for each. From 1875 the livery consisted of black hulls, white superstructure and yellow

In 1882,
the company’s ships were equipped with refrigeration. and a frozen meat service began from New Zealand to England.
Company policy dictated a stop at Pitcairn Islands,
in the Pacific, to break the monotony of the ocean crossing.

The builder's plaque of the SS Ruahine model image

The builder's name plate image

The William Denny & Brothers builder’s plaque for the Steamship RUAHINE is at
the bow and stern

Two lifeboats have fallen from their davits, and one lifeboat is askew and the rudder is down under the stern, laying at the
bottom of the case
as shown in the pictures.  All the parts are
present.  Everything else is reported to be in very good to excellent condition as may be seen elsewhere.

The Ruahine's boat Decks deck showing eight lifeboats image

The lifeboat off its davits image

Top: showing seven lifeboats properly in their davits. Lower: showing two lifeboat

The owner is the patriarch of a distinguished American family listed in Forbes 400.  The model was sent to the U.S.
where it was on display as the centerpiece of a nautical theme in a private dinner club for many years. Now new to the market
for the first time in 30 years.

Picture of the actual ship image

Postcard of the ship image

Top: A picture of the Ruahine at a London dock. Below:  A postcard

SCHEME: The case of the ship is varnished Mahogany. As we interpret the finishes from the pictures taken through
the hull is painted black from the white boot top or water line to the main deck. From the white water line down there
is a broad band of pink which in some pictures looks like orange paint and beneath that a dark red bottom paint. All decks
are finished to look like teak planking.  The sides of all the deck level cabins or houses, but one, are painted
white. There is a deck cabin under each of the two masts which are also painted white. The mast and booms are varnished wood.
The cabins above the main deck which is the Boat Deck looks to be varnished Mahogany or brown and the second deck cabin
sides are white.  Deck machinery such as donkey engines and housed anchors are black. Railings, ventilators, blocks are
polished metal.


Ruahine's aft section image

Ruahin's foredeck image.jpg

Ruahini's bridge from the bow image

Except as noted, all sections of the ship model are in
very good condition

ship’s name is painted on both bows and the stern carries the name and home port. Being a full ocean going passenger and
cargo ship there are two main cargo thatches forward and two smaller cargo hatches near the stern. Adjacent to each set of
hatches, are masts and booms that are rigged to donkey engines for hoisting and lowering cargo. From the large size windlass
on the foredeck to the steering station aft, the model maker paid attention to detail such as the hand rails, port
holes, ventilators and machinery. The hull rests on four turned brass pedestals making this a beautiful display.


full details see

Purchased in England in late 1985 from a tony London antiques dealer, Langfords on Chancery Lane in London, by
the patriarch of a distinguished American family listed in Forbes 400. Sent to the U.S. where it was on display in a private
dinner club for many years. Now new to the market for the first time in 30 years.

LOA 10.5′ L x 3′ W x  4.5′ H        Not

This is a carefully made builder’s model of a British Merchant
Ship from the Turn of the 20th Century. It makes a worthwhile centerpiece of a marine collection or display.

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Shipping & Packaging

The cost of shipping, packing, handling, and insurance to your destination, will be calculated point to point and is an additional charge. You may email us to get these costs. We price our shipping honestly, but we expect to be reimbursed for the nominal cost of packaging materials and handling.

Our Unconditional 'No Nonsense' Guarantee

If not completely satisfied with your purchase it may be returned, if without damage, within three days of receipt in its original packaging. Return items must be insured for their full value. Only a prior email authorization by us for the return is required. Shipping charges are refundable if due to our error within the continental United States.

International buyers welcome, but inquire first. We have satisfied customers worldwide.

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Bank wire transfer, cashier’s check, money order, or personal check in which case the item will be held until cleared. Our prices are quoted net to us so that the use of credit cards or PayPal incur extra charges. Terms on overseas sales are different.

Established in 2003

Celebrating 18 Years of Exellence in Nautical Antiques

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