Anybody heard of the NW boat building school? [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Anybody heard of the NW boat building school?

03-22-2002, 10:06 PM
And do they build river boats? Man, would I love one of these babies for the Sound!

03-25-2002, 10:02 AM
The school is located in Port Townsend and is very famous through out the world for the new shipwrights they put out. You should go out there and take a look at the work that goes on. I have a classic Phil Rhodes 32 foot sloop that I've been rebuilding for 4 years from top to bottom and anytime I've been stumped on a certain project I go to the school for sugestions. They have always been great to me.
Yes that skiff would be increadible on the sound but if I had one made I'd have a motor box put in so you could run a 10 to 20 hp outboard. By using the motor box your engine would be in the center aft area and totally out of the way for fly casting. It would be like having an inboard. My grand father gave me a skiff like the one you show when I was 6 years old, boy was it fun and the maintance was intense and I was made to learn how and do it all before I could use it every summer.
It would be worth the money to own such a boat.

03-25-2002, 10:09 PM
Old World skills are needed to keep the remaining wooden boat fleet afloat the largest boat in my personal flotila, which includes many, no make that too many, is a 47'xi12'x6' wooden trawler the keel was layed in 1916 in Sitka. The old girl has had more rebuilds than Elizabeth Taylor. Two of the most major were in Port Townsend. There is and are a heritage of good boat building by really qualified shipwrights in that fair town.
An old retired long liner friend of mine had a rowing skiff similar to the one shown and rowed it from his house on Jamestown Bay to the Airport for coffe every morning those things certainly are easier to row than a drift boat. The motor well does sound like a pretty good idea for a lot of applications, however those PT shipwrights are a pretty traditional bunch!!! It might offend some of them (kind of like indicators).
Beautiful craft I really like the look of the 10' tender painted white I'll bet it would glide for 6 fathoms with but a single pull of the oars.

03-26-2002, 11:19 AM
Your trawler sounds increadible, strong and noble. You must get excited every time you take her out. Everytime I see one like yours I marvel at the workmenship that the shipwrights of long ago put into their work. The new shipwrights are doing great learning and understanding the old trade then using new materials when they fit in.
You are right about the motor well not being a pure tradition and if you want the beauty of a skiff that glides 6 fathoms on every stroke of the oar then leave it out. Motor wells in skiffs became big in the early 50's with the popularity of outboards but by the 60's and fiberglass boats became pleasure craft more than work boats. Back in New England where there are many skilled shipwrights still, the motor well skiff is making a come back, sort of a new/old tradition lost 50 years ago. They are being used for small lobster ventures and by sport fishermen up around the Maine area a lot.
But for a pure skiff I wouldn't hesitate to own one for rowing only and even with our NW tides you could row one and feel safe even off Neah Bay.