The 57' x 17'6" crabber Odin’s Eye arrived at Giddings Boatworks in Charleston, Ore., at the beginning of February. When it left on May 31, the Odin’s Eye’s length hadn’t changed but it had been sponsoned out to 23 feet and been given a bulbous bow.

This was the first visit to Giddings for the Odin’s Eye and its owner Ty Rouse, who fishes out of Kodiak, Alaska. Originally the Odin’s Eye was only going to have its bulwarks replaced. Then the decision was made that as long as the old bulwarks had to be removed, why not go bigger and sponson the hull at the same time, which would allow the Odin’s Eye to carry more crab pots.

That’s what brought the Odin’s Eye to Giddings Boatworks, which has a long history of sponsoning commercial fishing boats.

This was a stick-built sponsoning job, where instead of lofting and precutting steel plating, batten sticks and tape measures are used to form the sponson’s shape and then steel is cut by hand to match the shape of the batten sticks.

The sponsoning added 3 feet to the midship sections on each side and allowed the stern to be squared up with an additional 5 feet on each side. The fish hold wasn’t enlarged but the fuel capacity was increased from 3,000 to 4,000 gallons, allowing the Odin’s Eye to stay out longer.

Additional work included building a new stainless steel mast and boom, putting stainless steel plating under the anchor, and installing a new keel cooler and cowl muffler. When the work was done and the Odin’s Eye was ready to go back in the water, it was obvious that Gidding’s had met Rouse’s expectations.

“The whole crew, staff and even painters built an awesome boat for us,” said Rouse.

Another boat out of Kodiak that’s currently being sponsoned at Giddings is the Alaskan, a pollock, crabber and salmon tender.

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Michael Crowley is the former Boats & Gear editor for National Fisherman.

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