"It was boredom,” says Richard Duffy, that brought him back to boatbuilding. He had been half of the Duffy & Duffy boatbuilding team (the other half was his father, Ralph) in Brooklin, Maine, from 1975 to 1995, when he sold Duffy & Duffy to Atlantic Boat Co. in Brooklin, after building about 578 boats.
Then about three years ago, the boredom took hold. It wasn’t long before he asked Spencer Lincoln, who had designed many of the Duffy & Duffy boats: “Spencer, you got one more boat in mind?” all the while thinking, “He hasn’t drawn a boat in 20 years.” Yet, Spencer replied, “Yeah, I got one more in mind.” Thus was born R&R Duffy Boats.
In the days of Duffy & Duffy, the most well-known — and best selling — Duffy & Duffy model was the Spencer Lincoln-designed Duffy 35 (35' x 12'). It got the attention of local lobstermen when in 1981 Duffy took a 35 to the Stonington Lobster Boat Races and won its class.
“After that race, we couldn’t build them fast enough,” he remembers.
So it’s not surprising the first boat in the R&R Duffy Boats lineup is a Spencer Lincoln, much upgraded, Duffy 35.
“It’s a lot different,” says Duffy of the new R&R Duffy Boats 35. For one, it’s bigger at 35' x 14'. That’s an additional two feet of beam, and it’s wider across the stern at 12 feet 6 inches. The 35 also “runs a lot straighter and doesn’t stand up as much.” Plus, there’s a 22-foot cockpit.
The first R&R Duffy Boats 35, with a 450-hp Cummins QSL9, was launched in March. It’s the Millie (named after Duffy’s mother) and is Richard Duffy’s new lobster boat. The Millie was laid up at Duffy’s shop in Brooklin and finished off by Shawn Snow — who previously worked for Duffy & Duffy — at Snow’s SS Boats in nearby Sedgwick.
“Shawn is going to be laying them up and building them,” says Duffy, who admits that “after getting down on my hands and knees and putting the shaft and engine in (the Millie), I don’t think I can do it anymore.” That doesn’t mean he won’t be helping Snow now and then, but basically Duffy and the Millie will be lobstering.
Duffy isn’t sure when the second R&R Duffy Boats 35 will be ready, though the lay-up process began May 17.
After John’s Bay Boat Co. launched the 45' x 15' 10" wooden lobster boat Lori Jane for Ed Munsey of Cundys Harbor, Maine, on Aug. 17, 2019, Peter Kass and his crew set about building the next boat, the Never Better, a 42-foot pleasure boat. Kass wasn’t optimistic about building another lobster boat in the near future. In fact, he didn’t see anybody wanting a new wooden lobster boat.