Our Newest Design 15′ plank on frame whitehall

Our recently completed plank on frame whitehall is a beauty (if we do say so ourselves). We also do not believe in false modesty. Heck if we could, we would buy one.

Designed for one happy Long Island customer,this Whitehall is his dream come true. Actually, it was on his bucket list.

There is something so real and honest about a  plank on frame boat. It is almost as if it is alive. The colors of the wood, the sweep of the hull, the symmetry of the frames, all come together to create a work of art that is truly a joy to use. In this day and age it is so rare to own something that brings such pleasure in so many ways. From the first stroke of the oar to that fabulous feeling you get after some time on the water, there is a satisfaction that is hard to duplicate with anything plastic or rubber. There is a connection there, whether it is real or imagined does not matter, it’s how it makes you feel that matters.

To us it is an honor to be able to bring a dream to life. We start out at the cedar yard, choosing just the right pieces for the hull, then in the shop we plane, we shape, we steam, bend and coerce the wood to take on a shape it seems reluctant to do at first but then settles right in to place. There is nothing easy about building boats and it can certainly take a toll on the builder’s body after many years, but it is an immensely satisfying way to (almost) make a living. Working with wood has a sort of magic all of it’s own. When you can start out with  a pile of lumber, a pound of rivets, some paint and glue and craft it into a gorgeous rowboat that will outlive many of us and provide one with joy and happiness, what’s not to love?

15' Plank on frame Whitehall

15′ Plank on frame Whitehall


New Fiddlehead Tender as a table base

We were approached by a furniture builder whose client wanted a gorgeous table with a gorgeous boat as it’s base. They decided on our Fiddlehead Tender. A 10’2″ traditionally built plank on frame

Dale was not sure he wanted to build a boat that might not ever see the water but we were assured that it would be used at the lake  for both rowing and sailing. Yes, it was a sailing tender. We were a bit skeptical if that would actually happen,but it was their boat. It seemed like a lot to go through to actually get it out from under the table and into the lake.But,again we just build them. It is not up to us to determine their use once they leave our shop.

The logistics of assembling such a project was a lot work. Thankfully all we had to do was build the boat(something we are good at).The table builder was the one who had to figure out all the details,apparently getting a 1000 pound piece of glass from NY to NH is not an easy feat. But as you can see from the pictures, it was done.

In the end Dale and Seth were happy to build it. Our glued lap plywood boats may be the bread and butter of our business, but the traditional plank on frame boats are where their true passion lies.

10'2" Fiddlehead Tender cedar on Oak with Mahogany trim

10’2″ Fiddlehead Tender cedar on Oak with Mahogany trim

Plank on Frame dinghy or Tender 10'2" cedar on oak frames

Plank on Frame dinghy or Tender 10’2″ cedar on oak frames

However to this day I believe it breaks Dale’s heart to know that boat is probably going to live out it’s life underneath a 1000 pound piece of glass.Instead of gliding along the lake in the morning when the lake looks just like a sheet of glass.


Sailing Penobscot Bay

Non-Pareil-Sloop-MaineSweet summer sailing on Penobscot Bay!  This is the beautiful gaff rigged modified sharpie designed by Phil Kendrick. Already an accomplished architect in southern Maine, Phil was easily able to define and design what he wanted in a small sailboat. We built this boat for Phil back in 2001.It has graced the poster for the Maine Boats Homes and Harbors Show several times.  Phil and his lovely wife Simone love to sail around the bay checking out the show from the water.

Being a  trailerable shallow draft daysailer with a kick up rudder and 8″ draft with the board up,  it is the  perfect boat for camp cruising, exploring, or just a sweet simple way to spend an afternoon on the Maine coast. With a small boat like the Nonpareil you can easily be on the water in minutes and because it is trailerable you can go wherever you want to go.

Building boats for people like Phil is so pleasurable, bringing an idea from the drawing board to the water is immensely satisfying.

Phil has this to say about his Nonpareil “My boat wants to sail as much as I do, on all points,though she really flies on a reach. Sails great under the  main alone and is very comfortable in a 15 to 20 knot wind.

There are several organizations that are helpful to small boat sailors The Maine Island Trail  Association   www.mita.org  and the Small Reach Regatta  www.smallreachregatta.org  are just two of them.  Both of these  organizations help promote small boats and the stewardship of our marine resources.



Mary’s new rowboat her Maine Whitehall

One of our recent customers had this to say about her new boat ” I love this boat! She handles like a dream and is as fast as the wind.Well balanced,light smooth with perfectly matched oars.What’s more is she is BEAUTIFUL!.The guys at NYS tease me saying I could put a motor on her. I enjoy telling them that Camillia is a ROWING boat! PS, I grew up rowing and sailing summers on Little Cranberry Island ( also known as Isleford) in Maine. Always had a rowing boat but none like this!”

The reason this testimonial is so appreciated is this lady knows her boats. She is part of the family known to have designed a few. The J boat family.We are honored that they chose one of ours.IMG_6979