CORE Concepts of Wooden Boatbuilding*
A new program for new boatbuilders, September – May, annually
This nine-month course provides a solid foundation in the craft of wooden boatbuilding and construction. It is designed for students new to boatbuilding and is a rigorous introduction and direct experience of the craft. Students completing this course should expect to gain the skills necessary for an entry-level position in a wooden boatbuilding shop or yard.
Starting with an expedition on Maine’s world-renowned Penobscot Bay, seamanship is introduced through direct experience in traditionally built open boats. The student quickly learns the dynamics of weather, environment, small craft construction and motion while on the water.
Taking this knowledge and experience into the boatshop, the first months of the course focus on tool use, maintenance, finishing techniques, shop safety and more through the loft-to-launch construction of a flat-bottomed skiff. Students will be exposed to the dynamics of various wood species and how they serve as building materials. They will acquire knowledge of fasteners and adhesives, study elements of design including technical and three-dimensional drawing, and become proficient in common joints encountered in basic yacht joinery.
The second half of the course focuses on wood and composite boat building techniques which are addressed through building a sea kayak or stand-up paddleboard. Skills acquired will include scarfing, spiling, and laminating, construction of simple molds, faring curved surfaces, choosing finishes to enhance hull performance, and outfitting the craft.
Active participants in The Apprenticeshop community, students are responsible for the care and maintenance of the shop and may assist in managing the fleet of traditional boats. During the boating season, students have weekly opportunities to hone their seamanship skills through day sails and local racing.
Course Fee: $11,000*
* register by May 1, 2013 for $1,000 discount
Advanced I New Construction and Restoration
September – May, annually
Pre-requisite: CORE year or special permission of instructor
In the second year, students who have achieved the skills and confidence of basic wooden boat construction become apprentices on commissioned or custom boat builds. Designs incorporated through this course of study are dependent on the client, and past projects have included the 23’Gilmer design Blue Moon, 24’ Carney Lobster boat, 17’ Fitzgerald work skiff, a Barnegut Bay Duck boat, a variety of small skiffs and tenders, and various restorations including a 31’ Haj, a 30’ Olympic 5.5 meter racing sloop, and an Alden Indian. Working in tandem with the master builder, the apprentice learns how to solve unpredictable problems, to be innovative, and develops a deep sense of craftsmanship. Concurrently, apprentices gain the experience of balancing the resources of time and materials, and learn the nuances of client relationships.
Continuing as active participants in The Apprenticeshop community, second-year apprentices will assist in managing all Apprenticeshop boats, have the opportunity to teach public workshops, and assist first-year students. During the boating season, as in year one, weekly opportunities for sailing continue.
Course fee: $9,000
Traditional Boatbuilding Intensive
Rolling enrollment dates
This is an intensive introduction to the world of wooden boatbuilding. Students construct a boat of their choice under the guidance of Ashop instructors and within theenvironment of other full-time boatbuilding courses. Using the most fundamental experiential education model, students are presented with the project and learn on their own as they go, using a manual, the reference library, and by seeking help from instructors and other students. Intensive students can expect to hone their problem-solving skills and self-confidence in taking on new and complicated projects.
The Susan skiff, a traditional flat-bottomed, lapstrake design, a plywood sailing dinghy, or a sea kayak are possible builds from which to choose. This is an immersion in an environment ripe with opportunity to learn tool use, sharpening, and various methods of construction. Upon finishing the boat (fitting out and painting) the community gathers to celebrate the launch. All materials included; students keep the boat.
Course fee: $6,000