build your own Cat
build your own Cat

From the Gladstone observer

Some retirees take up golf and play bowls, but not 76-year-old Johann Wagner.

The Turkey Beach resident has built his own catamaran from scratch, in his shed.

Five years after starting the project, yesterday he was ready to launch. It was the end of a long journey Mr Wagner was thrilled to successfully reach.

“I had prostate cancer in 2008 and after I had recovered, I needed a hobby,” he said.

“I took a year’s break and in January 2010 I started building it. I am happy with what I have done. I have three kids and a wife and they all helped me.”

Mr Wagner’s wife Shah has been there next to her husband on the journey from day one.

“I have been awake since 4 this morning. Johann was so excited and nervous so I have been calming him down,” she laughed.

“He has worked so hard the whole time. I am very proud of him.

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build your own Cat
build your own Cat

SETTING SAIL: Turkey Beach resident Johann Wagner has sailed the Indian Ocean before and can’t wait to visit South Africa on his new creation, Silver Lining.Laura Mckee

“He had bowel cancer in 2013. He was in hospital on Christmas Day in intensive care. He kept building the boat through that.

“He is a strong man.”

The catamaran is called Silver Lining. It has two bathrooms, a kitchen, two queen beds and two double beds. It is 44.5ft long and made of more than four tonnes of aluminium. The whole boat weighs eight tonnes.

build your own Cat
build your own Cat

Mr Wagner is a marine engineer and diesel fitter by trade. The catamaran is his second project. He building a 57-foot yacht, which he sold.

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