Thursday, February 16, 2012

Mates share their lifelong interests in boats and our Bay

Image: Boating on Moreton Bay, courtesy BayJournal.

BAYSIDE business has long served the throng of captivated individuals who go down to the sea in boats.
Terms like "stunning beauty" and "aquatic playground" flow from the contemporary copywriters' keyboards when Moreton Bay demands a reference.
But the Bay has existed a lot longer than pen and ink, computers and internet, and has caused the evolution of a special community that is devoted to its charms.
Such a community requires highly skilled support from a marine industry that stays up to date on technology. Brian Routledge has given decades of service to that community, building the boats and maintaining all the components.
He grew up in Moorooka, destined to have a future with boats. Brian says his dad Ron had deep involvement with the marine industries and in the 1960s and '70s worked on V8-powered jetboats.

THE son did an apprenticeship as an outboard motor technician at Milton Marine.
In the early 1980s, Brian carved a place in nation's powerboat racing history, driving his lightweight composite, tunnel-hull boats to three national championships.
He has a special memory of setting up Capalaba Boat Centre about 30 years ago: "My first client was an official of the Redlands RSL Fishing Club and since then I have had the pleasure of working on the boats of many club members."
While maintaining the Capalaba presence, which includes Bayside Jetskis, Brian started an eastward shift about six years ago, and opened Mojo Boats at Redland City Marina, Thornlands.
Mojo is promoted as an "outboard, jet ski and stern-drive specialist". Brian says he is delighted to work with a longtime mate, Dallas Schofield, who also has more than 30 years' experience in the marine trades.
"Dallas has kept up to date on the cutting-edge technology and has a special interest in E-Tec, Yamaha and Honda products," Brian says.

THE pair has long shared their knowledge and expertise, with Dallas also having a Capalaba base at Leisure Marine.
Brian says he has been building "one or two" plate aluminium boats a year, a tradition that Mojo Boats continues.
"Solid, soft riding and stable" are the criteria for Mojo Boats, which meets clients' needs for designs up to eight metres but has a special focus on those under five metres.
The firm's Boats & Marine classified notice lists brand interests including Suzuki, Mercury, Mercruiser, Tohatsu, Evinrude, Johnson, Seadoo and Kawasaki and states "Pick up and delivery service available".

Thanks for joining me to meet the people in the marvellous community of classified advertising. This column has appeared in The Redland Times.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Good reasons to dust off and 'declutter'

This column has appeared in The Redland Times.

Small business can 'press right buttons'

Image: Hand-painted metal button, courtesy

ADULTS delight in torturing little kids with the question, "What do you want to be when you grow up?"
Firefighter, police officer, doctor, nurse, computer scientist, astronaut ... just about every occupation has roots in formative and unpolluted minds.
Maybe someone should do a study asking five-year-olds that age-old question, then follow up a few decades later to find out whether they have achieved their ambition.
That might tell us whether society meets the hopes and dreams of those who have unquestioning trust in its future.

THE memories of how each of us answered that profound question fade over the years, so a fair-dinkum study would document a hazy corridor of everyday life.
Long ago and far away (well, not too long ago and in the English rural district of West Sussex), Mandy Killick had a consuming childhood interest.
The daughter of farm workers always knew she would not follow mum and dad into the fields to tend the cattle and pigs.
When Mandy visited her grandmother, the family lost her for the day as she emptied "nan's button tin" on the loungeroom floor and sorted them.

MANDY always wanted to grow up to be an antique-button collector, and she now has the supreme satisfaction of going one step further.
For the past seven years, she has been building a business, supplying antique buttons to an adoring market of collectors and crafty types such as quilters, sewers and jewellery makers.
She is known to the world through the internet after setting up
Mandy and her husband David, with their three children, migrated to Australia in 2000, seeking a warmer climate. In the UK, Mandy had a 'day job' in airline reservations and checking to finance her button-collecting obsession.
The family first settled in Perth but in 2003 moved to Cleveland because of David's work as a tiler.

ALTHOUGH her core business is still in buttons, Mandy has diversified into high-end recycling, that is, buying and selling small collectables, such as glass and china, along with clothes, shoes and vintage jewellery. She also makes jewellery, including designs with buttons, of course.
The package makes a formidable presence at some of the Brisbane district markets as well as a business that can supply craft needs, 'at the press of a button'.
Mandy uses 'wanted' notices in our local Classifieds to replenish her stock.
Now, we can rest easy knowing that the "costume jewellery, vintage clothing, shoes, bags, old linen, postcards, small glasses and china" are helping to make a little girl's dream come true.

This column has appeared in The Redland Times.