Thursday, July 7, 2011

New, Wider Large 700-ton Railway

The shipwrights at BBHS are busily working on widening and repairing the large 700-ton railway.  BBHS received a MARAD federal Small Shipyard grant in 2010 to improve the railway.  After the Liberator was launched in late June, the railway was open for major repairs.

The rebuilt/wider railway is expected to be finished by the end of August. Here is a preview of the upcoming improved railway. 

Monday, June 27, 2011

LIBERATOR Launching and Sea Trials

After a new stem, bow planking, deck structure,  re-coppering of bow, sheathing the bow in 1/4" stainless steel, renewing port and starboard hips and new engine heads, Boothbay Harbor Shipyard completed the repairs on LIBERATOR.  

She headed to Mystic Seaport for the Wooden Boat Show on June 25 and 26th.  LIBERATOR was launched and the sea trials took place on the same beautiful Maine day here at the Shipyard.  Here is an overview of the repair process on the LIBERATOR.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Seasonal Maintainence for Harbor Boats

Spring is in full bloom here at Boothbay Harbor.  The harbor boats are arriving for their spring maintenance as summer approaches.  Pink Lady II from Cap'n Fish's Whale Watch was pulled on the small railway this month for maintenance.  Soon Pink Lady II will be off with guests to hunt for the many species of whales with a computer guidance system.

Balmy Days, a harbor boat, which specializes in taking visitors to the amazing island of Monhegan, was on the rails for spring  maintenance  to prepare it for the busy tourist season in Boothbay Harbor.  

The latest visitor to the shipyard for maintenance is Sherman Zwicker.  Sherman Zwicker is the last remaining auxiliary fishing schooner and has all of its main original features still intact and operational.  Originally a Grand Banks fishing boat, the Sherman Zwicker can often be seen at the Tall Ship Parades. 

Monday, May 23, 2011

Visit from the Governor

Governor LePage visited Boothbay Harbor Shipyard on Friday afternoon.  The shipyard employees discussed topics that are important  and challenging to Maine shipyards and small businesses in Maine.  They toured the LIBERATOR to see the recent reconstruction on her bow and took a quick tour of the remaining buildings at the shipyard.  It is always a good thing when the representatives of our government, whom are employed by the people of Maine, visit the businesses and people they are governing.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Shutter Plank and New Stem on LIBERATOR

The Shutter Plank (final plank) was secured to the Liberator hull, on a beautiful, cool, crystal clear afternoon here at BBHS. The new stem and the hull planking are a magnificent sight. The new bow hull has two layers of planking, the inside and outside. After filling the fastening holes with bungs, the ship will be primed and then painted. It always seems sad to see that gorgeous wood covered up with paint in order to protect it from the environment.

Sometime pictures are worth more than words. Therefore, enjoy a bit of the process of reconstructing the stem and planking of the Liberator bow.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Visit from EASTWIND

The beautiful schooner Eastwind is on the small rail for her seasonal maintenance. The Smith family has been busy scraping and sanding the bottom to prepare for the upcoming summer season in Boothbay Harbor.   A two-hour voyage aboard, Schooner Eastwind,  gives you time to relax and see the Maine coastline.

The owners are Tom and Jennifer Smith.  Tom is the eldest son of Herb and Doris Smith.  Tom and Jennifer wanted to keep their last schooner in the family so they bought the business.  Herb and Doris captain and crew five days a week in the summer and Doris helps with maintenance in the Spring but otherwise they are enjoying having some time off. 

Herb and Doris Smith have sailed around the world twice with their three children on the schooners they built by hand. After the Smith's built five Appledore schooners, they built Eastwind, a sister ship of the Appledores.   Appledore IV and  Appledore V are currently both ASTA ships.

 Along with these voyages they wrote two books that are available on Amazon, Sailing Three Oceans and Dreams of Natural Places.  A current version of Sailing Three Oceans that includes a section on the building and sailing of Eastwind can be purchased through the Smith's. When you come to Boothbay Harbor this summer make sure you save a couple of hours to explore the harbor on Eastwind and see lighthouses, fabulous Maine islands, and local lobster fishermen.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Sprint 3 in Velux Race

 Brad Van Liew, the American in the Velux 5 Oceans solo yacht race around the world is still in the lead.  His 60' yacht, Le Pingouin has finished 2nd, 3rd and 5th in other challenging races and is looking toward finishing 1st in 2011.  The yachts left Wellington, NZ eleven days ago and are headed toward Punta Del Este, which is an upscale resort town on the southern tip of Uruguay.  The skippers represent the countries of Poland, Canada, Belgium, the UK and the US.  Follow the third sprint here.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Amazing Use of Space

As one works around a shipyard with yachts, the fascinating use of space is always engaging to see.  The beautifully polished wood, on the built-in and cleverly designed storage is one of my favorite parts of the yacht.  I wonder what it would be like if a shipbuilder built a ship with the essence of this amazing 330 sq foot apartment in Hong Kong that can be 24 different rooms.  This ingenious use of space designed by Gary Chang is definitely food for thought.

Friday, January 21, 2011


I am having a bit of wanderlust for the warm breezes on my face and thinking about the islands and turquoise waters, which leads me to wonder where the 136' super yacht Islandia that came this fall for maintenance to Boothbay Harbor Shipyard is sailing.
Islandia built in Holland and designed by Tony Castro and Peter Sijm, was made using steel for the quickwork - her design prescribes the presence of a bulbous keel with a composite sailing boat that has made it possible to reduce the draft to only 11.5'- and aluminum for the upper works. All the interiors are in mahogany wood, matched
with beige color upholstery and furnishings. The large living room, at the center of the boat, extremely bright thanks to the numerous glass surfaces, includes a spacious area with TV and dining table able to accommodate 10 persons.
Astern of this room are the three guest staterooms, each with its own bathroom, and the boat owner's stateroom. This latter stateroom is a true suite, with two large twin beds and a smaller bed, a lounge with an L-shaped sofa, a desk and a wardrobe, and is provided with a bathroom and a separate shower compartment.

At the bow of the living room there is a large on-board galley, almost professionally equipped, the crew dining area and their cabins, each with separate shower and bathroom. From this area the crew gains direct access to the deck, to the engine room and to the technical area where all the systems for the correct operation and maintenance of the boat are situated. This allows for a maximum level of privacy.
A beautiful yacht it is and we are looking forward to Islandia and other super yachts visiting us again here at Boothbay Harbor this spring for maintenance before they adventure coastal Maine, which is one of the most beautiful coasts in the world in the summer and early fall.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Repairing the Stem

When working on large wooden ships, shipwrights appreciate the weight and strength of the amazing medium of wood. Recently when the BBHS shipwrights cut the stem from Liberator, which was damaged, this massive piece of stem weighed over 1200 lbs.

Removing the Stem
Removing the Stem
Laminated Layers in Stem
Stem of Liberator Before Removal
For those of you that are not shipbuilders or avid sailors, a stem is the most forward part of a boat or ship's bow and is an extension of the keel itself.