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Dame Pattie wet weather trousers before treatment.

Dame Pattie crew wet weather trousers

A recent conservation treatment on some wet weather gear uncovers the history of another America’s Cup challenger, Dame Pattie a purpose-built 12m class racing yacht, named after the wife of Sir Robert Gordon Menzies who served two terms as Australian Prime Minister from 1939-1941 and then 1949-1966. In 1967, although winning the trials easily, Dame Pattie skippered by Jock Sturruck, lost the series (4-0) to the American yacht Intrepid skippered by Bus Mosbacher in a a series raced in unseasonally stronger winds when Dame Pattie was better suited to lighter breezes.

Dame Pattie , christened in 1966 was designed by Warwick Hood and built by WH Barnett using a combination of Australian, Danish and Canadian timber. The main-frame was constructed using laminated Queensland maple. Edge-grain Douglas fir planking was fastened to the intermediate frame constructed using Danish ash, using silicon bronze screws.

During that particular America’s Cup race in 1967, hurricane Doria was generating off-shore northeasterly winds making wet weather gear an essential article of clothing for the contest. The Dame Pattie crew wore wet weather gear made by Plastalon. The jacket features a hood with a small peak brim, white nylon drawstring and plastic toggles and large pockets either side of the centre front opening. The jacket is fastened using black, press studs. The yacht Dame Pattie logo is printed on the left chest. The trousers feature two side pockets, an elasticised waist adjusted to fit the wearer using press studs.


The textile conservator removes black soiling using a 50% mixture of ethanol and deionised water.