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Apprenticeshop teaches boatbuilding in 12-week program

Mar 21, 2020
Photo by: Erin Tokarz Chris Battaglia works on the joint where chines of the boat come into the bottom of the stem. The techniques are not just for boatbuilding.

Rockland — Looking for a way to learn new skills and get on the water? The Apprenticeshop has space in its 12-week boatbuilding apprenticeship. The starting date for the workshop has yet to be determined.

The program is open to anyone regardless of skill or experience, whether they are retired, out of high school or somewhere in between.

One recent apprentice, Susan St. John, participated in the program at the age of 74.

“Having trained and practiced as an architect and having taught Outward Bound on the sea for 30 years, I was looking for a new challenge,” says St. John.

The 12-week small boatbuilding program introduces students to boatbuilding through the construction of a 11’ 3”, flat-bottomed lapstrake rowboat, the Susan Skiff.

This skiff, designed by Rob Steward, provides a foundation for learning basic elements of building a wooden boat. It has a stem and transom and is constructed from three different kinds of wood – pine, cedar and white oak. The skiff also provides a platform for learning how to use hand and power tools.

At the end of the program, the boat can be taken home.

Building this boat can open door to further projects. Students can stay and build their own set of oars, build a sailing rig and/or modify the boat to carry a small outboard motor. If anyone is interested in building bigger boats, skills learned during the program can be expanded through the Apprenticeshop’s nine-month or two-year boatbuilding apprenticeships.

For more information, visit visit the 655 Main St., Rockland, location from Monday through Friday.

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Comments (1)
Posted by: Kendall Merriam | Mar 21, 2020 16:05

This seems overly optimistic...

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