Dana’s Boatshop on Maine’s Westport Island has had a number of older lobster boats in to be overhauled by Dana Faulkingham and his son, Jason. At the end of February it was a Mitchell Cove 35, the Three Belles out of Boothbay, named after the owner’s three daughters. “I’d say it was one of the earlier ones,” says Dana of the Mitchell Cove 35 lobster boat. 

When the Three Belles was repowered with a 375-hp John Deere “a few years ago,” the boat’s owner also wanted a new muffler but that didn’t happen. But this year in anticipation of the muffler being delivered from Florida — to quiet her down — the exhaust was being rerouted  from the hull’s starboard side to the port side. Probably two-thirds of the fiberglass over plywood deck has to be replaced, along with bulkhead panels on the back of the wheelhouse. Faulkingham figures it will take two to three weeks to complete the work and have the muffler installed.

Prior to the arrival of the Three Belles, Dana’s Boat Shop overhauled the lobster boat  Syringa, a Calvin Beal 36 based in Kennybunkport, Maine. Faulkingham thinks the Syringa was one of the first Calvin Beal 36s, built in 2000 or 2001. Faulkingham describes the Syringa’s hull as “in nice shape. She’s solid, still looks really good,” but she still needed  “a whole bunch of upgrades,” which took three weeks. The work included upgrading the hauler and rebuilding the hauling station area. Beyond that, “did a whole bunch of wiring, lots of electrical work and quite a bit of hydraulic work — a lot of hoses were old.” Faulkingham says, “he was still safe but wanted to do the upgrades.”

When the Three Belles leaves Dana’s Boat Shop, a 40-foot RP lobster boat will arrive to be overhauled. Faulkingham admits he enjoys having boats hauled for a relatively short period of time, as opposed to the many months it takes to build a new lobster boat. Speaking of his and Jason’s current work schedule, Faulking says, “it’s kind of fun, quick-moving projects. Get ‘em in, three to four weeks later change over to another one. And we just keep going.”

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

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