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Former fisherman Rex Saunders is at it again – this time he’s fashioned small trapskiff that operates by remote control

By Aaron Beswick

FOR THE SOU’WESTER

Newfoundland Brothers Wade and Rex Saunders drove to their wharf on July 7 on quads, hauling Rex’s toys behind them. “Is that a parade?” asked a child to his mother as the miniature motorcade passed. “No dear, that’s just Rex,” came the reply.

Behind Wade was the remote-controlled, six-foot replica of a 65-foot dragger, the Four Boys. Meanwhile, Rex hauled his newest creation, a jet skiff. The five-foot fiberglass trapskiff is powered by a 6.5 HP Honda jet pump.

Down at the brothers’ wharf the two toys were dwarfed by the accumulations of a life on the water. There were three longliners resting high and dry, a 30-foot trapskiff converted for sealing and countless speedboats.

But Rex Saunders doesn’t fish anymore – his attention has switched from the wharf to the shed he fiddles around in. The skills he needed as a boat owner and skipper, ranging from electrical to mechanical to boat building, he now practices in miniature. “More fun than a barrel of monkeys,” he said as he started the jet skiff and watched it take off across the harbour in St. Lunaire Bay at five knots. “Umm, Rex, you’re going to lose your boat,” said his wife Irene Saunders, whose lawnmower motor had been commandeered for the miniature dragger, Four Boys. “That’s alright, I don’t want it anymore,” he said as he began fiddling with his other boat. “Rex,” she repeated.

But his brother Wade soon appeared around the point to catch the jetskiff and return it to the wharf. “I’m thinking on building a hovercraft next,” said Rex.

Geographic location: Lunaire Bay

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