Maine shops make deliverie to crabbers in Maryland, California
By Michael Crowley
Maine’s Westport Island, a Long Beach fiberglass hull is being finished off inside Dana’s Boatshop. That’s a hull not usually found in a Maine shop. It’s from Long Beach Boatbuilding in Port Morien, Nova Scotia, a boatbuilder that offers fiberglass hulls from 32 to 45 feet...
The Long Beach hull is a 45-footer with a 15-foot 2-inch beam, and is 14 feet 3 inches across the transom. “It looks everything like a Novie,” says the boatshop’s Dana Faulkingham. “It has a big blunt bow, the house is forward, and big rocker from the bow to the stern.”
The 45-footer, which will carry the name Defiance, is for a blue crab fisherman in Baltimore, who fishes Chesapeake Bay.
“He had seen the hulls before and always liked them real well,” says Faulkingham. “He can get all the traps he wants on deck, plus store crabs down below in fish holds.” The hull arrived at Dana’s Boatshop in mid-January, along with a molded top and wash rails.
The deck will be plywood and fiberglass over pressure-treated framing, but all of the bulkheads and structures below deck will be Coosa composite panels. Two large holds will be built below deck where blue crab will be stored on ice in bushel baskets.
The Defiance will be a day boat but with accommodations for overnight fishing. Up forward will be upper and lower V-berths, an enclosed head on the starboard side and a galley counter on the port side.
For power, there’s to be a 750-hp John Deere on the engine beds. Comparing the Long Beach hull to a Maine-built hull, Faulkingham says, “It’s much more rounded than a Maine lobster boat. She’s deep, swings a 34-inch wheel.”
Once the Defiance leaves Dana’s Boatshop for Baltimore, the next project is extending a Wesmac 42, which Faulkingham built in 2012, by 4 feet. Faulkingham bought the 4-foot extension unit from the hull’s original builder, Wesmac Custom Boats in Surry, Maine, and then will fiberglass it in place.
The rudderpost won’t have to be moved back because, as Faulkingham says, “If you look at the 42, the rudder is back very close to the stern. You can put the extension on and it doesn’t affect the steerage at all.”
Up in Eastport, Maine, Millennium Marine is building boats for both U.S. and Canadian fishermen. At the end of February, a 45-foot Millennium hull with a 500-hp Cummins engine went to a fisherman in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, to be used for lobstering and crabbing.
Another boat that went to a Canadian fisherman is the Millennium 45' x 16' High Voltage. It’s also the third boat with that name that Millennium Marine’s Cory Guimond has sent to Alfred Richard, a fisherman out of Port Hawkesbury, Nova Scotia. The High Voltage has a 750-hp John Deere for power and 600 cubic feet of hold space.
A 45-footer was delivered to a snow crab and lobster fisherman on Prince Edward Island, only with a 1,000-hp Daewoo bolted to its engine beds, this one is packing a lot more horsepower. Much of the structural work will be done in Eastport, though some of the finish work will probably be done in a Canadian boatshop.
At the end of February, a 49' 11" x 16' Millennium hull was sitting on the shop floor, ready to go to an Eastport lobsterman who will finish off the boat himself. That’s the second boat built for a local Maine fisherman since Guimond opened the Eastport boatshop in 2014, while still keeping his Millennium Marine boatshop open in Escuminac, New Brunswick.
At the same time, two midcoast Maine lobstermen were due into the Eastport shop to discuss new boats. Guimond says the Eastport shop “isn’t overly booked” whereas other boatshops are backed up a year or more, “so they are very happy to have found Millennium and they can get [a boat] in 2016.”
This past October, the Eastport boatshop sent its second boat to a West Coast fisherman. That was a 49' 11" Millennium for Nick Hofland, a crab and slime-eel fisherman in California’s Bodega Bay.
Up at Millennium Marine’s boatshop in Canada, a somewhat unusual project has been underway. Besides building its own hulls, Millennium Marine has the Donelle 35 and 43 molds. A 35' x 13' 11" x 3' 4" Donelle hull is being widened to 15 feet and given a 15-foot beam at the transom. At the same time it’s being lengthened to 38 feet and the sheer is being raised.
The fisherman “wanted a bigger boat, something different but with a shallow draft,” says Guimond.
“This one will be able to get in close to shore, has 21 feet of deck space” and with a 525-hp Volvo D11 “we hope to get 25 knots.”
Combi-boat bigger with each haulout; Oregon builder grows by a full yard
By Michael Crowley
In Charleston, Ore., the Stillwater, a 49-foot 10-inch crab and shrimp boat, was hauled at Giddings Boatworks in early March. When she goes back in the water at the end of April, the Stillwater will be a very different boat. Then again, this isn’t the first time this boat has had a makeover.
Back in 2005, the Stillwater was the April Dawn when John Roos bought her, changed the name to Stillwater and took her to Fred Wahl Marine Construction in Reedsport, Ore., to be sponsoned. But the sponsoning made it difficult to see out of the wheelhouse.
That shortcoming was fixed with a trip to Tarheel Aluminum to have the flying bridge closed in and a tophouse added. Then last year, the Stillwater was outfitted at Giddings Boatworks with poles, booms and winches for shrimping. However, when the Stillwater was towing shrimp nets and was headed by a breeze or current, “the boat’s 350-hp John Deere didn’t have enough horsepower to keep the nets floating,” says Yaquina Boatworks’ Mike Lee.
So when the Stillwater showed up at Giddings in March, the John Deere was hauled out and replaced with a 640-hp Cummins KTA19M3. However, the engine room wasn’t big enough for the new Cummins, so the engine room bulkhead was removed and the engine room pushed forward. Since that eliminated the berthing area, a raised fo’c’sle deck was built and the berthing area moved upstairs.
Mounting the larger engine on the Stillwater’s engine beds meant a 5-inch shaft replaced the old 2-1/2-inch shaft. A new 57-1/4-inch four-bladed prop is going inside a new 58-inch nozzle. Since 10 feet is being added to the Stillwater’s stern for 40 percent more hold capacity, the rudderpost, rudder and steering system all have to be moved back.
While work was just beginning on the Stillwater, the dragger Nicole left the yard after being lengthened and sponsoned. She came in at 78' x 24' and went out 90' x 34'. The Nicole also got a net reel and aft gantry.
Several more boats are due to show up, which is why Lee says, “It just keeps staying busy.” For the previous four-and-a-half months the schedule “has been six days a week, nine hours a day.”
Fred Wahl Marine Construction is another busy Oregon boatyard and one with an expansive future. Currently, a steel 58' x 2' 6" crabber and cod-pot boat for Kodiak, Alaska’s Rod Kavanaugh is under construction. She’ll have a 750-hp Caterpillar for power, a pair of 150-kW John Deere generators and a 40-kW Northern Lights genset.
“It will be totally outfitted for going cod fishing,” says the boatyard’s Fred Wahl. That means with equipment built at Fred Wahl Marine Construction. That includes the anchor, anchor winch, pot launcher, bait chopper, picking boom, 29-foot deck crane, davit and sorting table.
Several shrimpers were in to be worked on. Among them was the 72-foot Pacific Future, which got a new 150-kW genset, had the rudder and nozzle rebuilt and all the trawl equipment reconditioned.
It’s not all steel at Fred Wahl’s. The 51-foot wooden salmon troller Eileen was in for shafting alignment, new hydraulics throughout the boat and a new steering system. But the big job is taking place on Bolon Island, across the Umpqua River from the Reedsport boatyard. That’s where Fred Wahl Marine Construction is setting up a second, much larger boatyard.
In the beginning of March, 3 million pounds of steel had been driven into the ground, ready to contain a 2,000-yard concrete pour that will be the basis for a 60' x 175' deepwater dock and a 44' x 125' slot cut out of the riverbank. The slot will allow boats to get out of the river’s current and be lifted from the water with a 660-ton Travelift.
The site is 38 acres, as opposed to seven acres for the existing boatyard. On the 38 acres is 400' x 120' fabrication shop and a 12,000-square-foot paint shop. Currently in the boatshop a 58-footer is being built. It’s a spec boat and will be completed about the time the Travelift is in place in September.
The 38 acres is plenty of space for boat storage. “We can put hundreds of boats out of the water into dry-land moorage,” Wahl says of the possibilities. An example he gives is tuna fishermen who don’t use their boats for four to five months a year. They can put them in dry-land moorage at the new boatyard “then their insurance will go down because they can’t sink,” he says.
Oyster seeding boat built in Virginia; gulf yard sends 170-footer to Alaska
By Larry Chowning
The diversification of Virginia’s oyster industry has led to the development and construction of new styles of fishing boats. For a couple hundred years, oyster spat or seed, and shell — used as cultch to provide a place for oyster larvae to attach and grow into oysters — were planted by broadcasting with a shovel from the deck of wooden boats.
The modern platform for spreading shell is a house-aft barge-style boat. There’s a hopper on the forward deck with a slide that drops the shell onto a hydraulically operated conveyor belt. From there it goes into a spinning spreader on the bow, which slings the shell out over the water, where it drifts down onto the oyster grounds. Traditionally, the barges are made of wood or aluminum.
Ronnie Bevans of Bevans Oyster Co. in Kensale, Va., is one of the largest oyster growers in Virginia. He hired Larry Jennings of Jennings Boatyard in Reedville, Va., to build him a 48.5' x 16' barge made of fiberglass and plywood. The hull is constructed of okoume marine plywood covered with fiberglass mat and woven roving. Polypropylene honeycomb core material is used for structural members.
Jennings has been using two boat shops to build the barge. The hull is under construction in his main shop and the house in a smaller building. “We will have the pieces pulled outside and married together real soon,” Jennings said in February. “We are in the process of wiring the house and are awaiting windows to finish off the house.” Two new 380-hp Cummings diesel engines are going in the boat “to provide speed and power to get the boat to and from the grounds,” says Jennings. “Ronnie has a lot of oyster ground that is right far apart.”
Down in the Gulf of Mexico, Patti Marine Enterprises in Pensacola, Fla., launched the Defender on Feb. 6. The Defender is a 170' x 40' x 18' pollock boat, owned by Global Seas in Seattle, that will be used in Alaska’s Bering Sea fishery.
Celebration speeches were delivered, a bottle of champagne broken across the bulbous bow and a priest sprinkled holy water along the bottom of the hull, as a crowd composed of Patti Marine employees, officials of Global Seas and others enjoyed a day of celebration.
The Defender was once the Western Venture, an East Coast herring and mackerel boat, but now has been completely refurbished for the Alaska pollock fishery. The Defender is the first fish pumping boat in the Global Seas fleet, and has the largest wet fish hold capacity of any U.S. fishing boat, with a capacity of 2 million pounds. Work on the Defender included installation of a new fish pumping system and a forward fish distribution room to protect fishermen and keep them out of the weather while sorting fish.
Major structural work on the hull included extending the stern, adding a bulbous bow, refurbishing the bow thruster, installing a whaleback bow cover, an antiroll tank, and changes to the aft decks and bulwarks. The two main engines and generators were rebuilt. The main engines are 1,800-hp Caterpillar 3512s. The generators are a pair of 590-kW Caterpillar 3412 ship-service generators and a 165-kW Caterpillar C9 emergency generator.
In addition, new propellers were installed, along with nozzles and a Deflector Rudder system. The electrical systems and wiring were substantially upgraded. Sea trials were scheduled for March, just prior to the Defender starting out on its 5,200-mile trek to Seattle through the Panama Canal. Once in Seattle, she will be rigged with fishing gear before heading up to the Bering Sea.
Jensen Maritime Consultants in Seattle did the engineering for the structural and mechanical work to convert the Western Venture to the Defender. Patti Marine has been involved in building fishing boats for decades. The Patti family started as commercial fishermen, and in 1931 the late Joe Patti started Joe Patti Seafood Company. Joe’s son, Frank Sr., started Patti Shipbuilding in 1977, and current owner Frank Jr. took over the business in 2008 as Patti Marine Enterprises.