Federal grant puts diesels in seiner; Maine yard busy with repowers
By Michael Crowley
In March, the Providian was tied up at the wharf of New England Fish Co. in Portland, Maine, where the last bit of work was being done after the seiner-trawler’s two 1,500-hp Detroit Diesel 16V-149 main engines had been pulled out at Fore River Dock and Dredge in South Portland.
They were replaced with a pair of 1,500-hp MTU 12V4000 M54 engines obtained with a $749,713 grant administered through the Maine Department of Environmental Protection’s Maine Clean Marine Engine Program.
The funding comes from the National Clean Diesel Campaign, an EPA program. Since 2009, 100 Maine vessels have received funding “based on the cost effectiveness to reducing emissions,” says Lynne Cayting with the Maine DEP.
Another factor helping the Providian receive the grant is that it fishes out of Portland, which is located in Cumberland County. And the EPA has designated Cumberland County as a high priority area for having highly concentrated diesel pollution, Cayting says.
Figures provided by Cayting indicate the MTU engines will annually be emitting 20.6 fewer tons of mononitrogen oxides and 1.11 fewer tons of particulates than the Detroit Diesels.
This was the first repower for the 112-foot combination purse seiner and midwater trawler since she was launched in 1998 at Boconco Shipbuilding in Bayou La Batre, Ala. Ryan Raber, who manages the Providian, says despite the engine’s age, “We had a rigorous rebuilding program, so they were in good shape.”
Walt Raber, Ryan’s father, had the boat built with the intent of sending the Providian to the Bering Sea to fish for pollock and crab. But after having to switch boatyards two-thirds of the way through the construction process because the original yard declared bankruptcy, the Providian ended up heading north to Maine. (The story is told in the December 1998 National Fisherman, p. 54.)
The Providian’s engines sit in a pair of pods beneath the hull. Seattle’s Jensen Maritime Consultants designed the pods, in part “for easy removal of the main engines,” says Raber. So the crew at Fore River Dock and Dredge, cut a hole in the back deck, hauled out the old Detroits and dropped in the new MTUs.
The Detroits were hard mounted to the engine beds, but the MTUs are mounted on vibration dampeners, which reduces engine-generated noise. “The boat’s quieter for seining,” Raber notes.
This November, Cayting says she will be getting $200,000 from the National Clean Diesel Campaign and will be accepting applications from boat owners wanting to replace their older engines and reduce air emissions in the process.
A bit to the east of Portland, the Finestkind Boatyard lies in Basin Cove, a hurricane hole on Harpswell Neck, a long, narrow stretch of land jutting down into Casco Bay.
The boatyard is usually busy, and the beginning of April was no exception. “We’re busy as hell,” says the boatyard’s Mark Hubbard. The focus of most of the attention was the Susan Maria, a Young Brothers 33 that was in the last stages of an engine swap. A 3208 Cat had come out of the boat, owned by Harpswell’s Bob Johnson, and a 572-hp Cat C9 went in.
The 3208 had about 16,000 hours and was leaking oil at the rate of about a gallon a day into the bilge. “I guess he figured it was due,” says Hubbard of the decision to go with a new engine.
Hubbard says exchanging one Cat for the other “was a pretty good swap. The previous engine had an inline gear. This one’s got a down-angle drop, and it just happened to work out very well.”
At the same time, the 36-foot Finestkind I was in the shop getting a new 210-hp Cummins. The Finestkind I, built in 1976, is one of three wooden boats bearing the name Finestkind and owned by the Hubbard family. All three take tourists on lobstering trips out of Perkins Cove from May to October.
Hubbard says between the three boats they make 15 trips a day “and do quite well.” Finestkind Boatyard started in 1981 as a place to maintain the boats.
Another boat due in for an engine change is a 38-foot Duffy & Duffy. A 12.5-liter John Deere is coming out and the owner “has a low-hour, same engine,” says Hubbard. The Duffy & Duffy will be followed this summer by a Jarvis Newman 46 that will be getting a new Lugger.
“We seem to be getting more and more” engine swaps, says Hubbard. “Get some of the older boats and you start weighing what it costs per month to finance a new one, and putting some money in an old one more often than not makes sense.”
Bay brothers agree on a boatyard;
Wash. builder has a new seiner design
By Michael Crowley
You know you are doing a pretty good job when one year your shop does some major upgrading to a fisherman’s boat and the next year that fisherman’s brother appears with his boat, wanting just about the same work done.
In the winter of 2015, Reed Tennyson brought the Double Eagle, a 32-foot C-model Wegley that fishes Bristol Bay to Edling Enterprises in Bellingham, Wash. This winter his brother, Chad Tennyson, showed up at Edling Enterprises with the Fish ‘N’ Chips, which is also a 32-foot C-model Wegley that gillnets in Bristol Bay.
“We went through the whole boat,” says Edling Enterprises’ John Edling, referring to the Fish ‘N’ Chips, which was built in 1998. The work included pulling out the Cat 3208 and replacing it with a 430-hp Cummins 6B. The 3208 “was just old,” says Edling, “and they don’t build that 3208 anymore.” He thinks it was 300 horsepower.
Bolted onto the Cummins was a new Twin Disc 507A marine gear with a trolling valve. There was also a new Aquamet 22 shaft and 4 inches of pitch was added to the prop. Edling figures the Fish ‘N’ Chips should hit in the mid-20-mph range with the new power package.
Up forward a new bow thruster was installed. Beyond that, Edling Enterprises put in load-sensing hydraulics, replumbed the whole steering system, and a new stainless steel shoe and stainless steel rudder went on the Fish ‘N’ Chips.
The pilothouse received all new electronics, including a Garmin radar and a Garmin plotter and for the comfort of the skipper, a new helm chair. It’s no wonder that Edling says of Chad Tennyson, “He’s going to be spoiled.” Outside of the pilothouse, there’s a new mast, rigging and antennas.
On Reed Tennyson’s boat, the Double Eagle, “the work was almost identical,” says Edling, “but we didn’t put a bow thruster in.”The Fish ‘N’ Chips was due to be launched April 18 and put on a barge to Dillingham, Alaska, on May 14.
Over in Hoquiam, Wash., Howard Moe at the Little Hoquiam Shipyard has a new design on the shop floor. It’s a 58' x 23' 9" fiberglass hull that’s being finished off as a seiner to be fishing out of Cordova, Alaska.
Previously to this model, Moe and his crew had been expanding smaller molds to build a new 58-foot hull. “Expanding them beamwise and heightwise,” says Moe. “We put real high bulwarks on the molds to get the capacity we were looking for.”
That was a lot of extra work and affected a boat’s appearance. So Moe built a new mold that is slightly wider with sides raised 18 inches. At the same time the height of the bulwarks was reduced. “The boat has better proportions to it,” says Moe. “It’s really a nice looking boat.”
The new model will also pack more fish. Moe says boats built from earlier molds carried “in the 130,000-pound range.” The new 58-footer should pack around 160,000 pounds of salmon. It should be finished by mid- to late summer.
In May, Moe is expecting two boats to come in to be lengthened. One is a 46-foot bluefin troller and crabber. The other is a 42-footer that spends most of its time crabbing but also does some trolling.
The 46-footer will be lengthened to 50 feet. The 42-footer will be lengthened to 50 feet but will also get a new bulbous bow and a new cabin.
In the April ATY West column, Petrzelka Brothers was completing the 32-foot Puale Bay, a bowpicker built by Howard Fabrication and destined for Cordova and the Copper River salmon finishing. She has a pair of 350-hp Yanmars hooked up to Hamilton 241 jets.
The boat hadn’t been launched by the time we went to press, so we didn’t know how she performed. But in late March, Keith Klockenbrink, the Puale Bay’s owner, called and was more than happy with the Puale Bay’s sea trials.
“She did 38.9 knots,” he said. “It’s the fastest one I’ve ever had. I didn’t expect it to go that fast.” That, he noted, was “out in the deep water. I can imagine what she’ll do in the shallow water.” It was also ”blowing 30 when doing sea trials, but she cut through the water really nice.”You can’t have it much better than that.
Shipment of logs arrives for rebuild; Maryland
builder works on barcat
By Larry Chowning
The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, Md., received 16 loblolly pine logs in March for rebuilding the Edna E. Lockwood, the last sailing bugeye on Chesapeake Bay constructed out of logs. The 53' 6" Edna E. Lockwood was built in 1889 and dredged oysters for 78 years. The rebuild will take place at the museum’s boatyard.
The Paul M. Jones Lumber Co. in Snow Hill, Md., donated the logs; each log is 15,000 pounds, 55 feet long and 10 feet in circumference. They came from a stand of trees in Machipongo, Va. The museum is keeping the logs in water for six months to keep the ends from checking and insects out of the wood.
The Edna E. Lockwood is a lesson unto itself in Chesapeake Bay’s boatbuilding history. Building boats out of several logs was perfected in the bay region and was so embedded in the boatbuilding and watermen’s culture that several generations of boatbuilding went by before builders switched to plank-on-frame construction, once it became difficult to find good, large logs.
Log construction started on the bay with Native Americans building one-log canoes, while early English construction was a two-log craft. However, the keel-log process where a builder starts with a log for the keel and adds logs on each side of the keel to shape the hull became the standard method.
Most boats were built with 11 or 13 logs, but the Edna E. Lockwood was built with nine. She is one of the largest log boats left on Chesapeake Bay and the only sail-powered bugeye, though some of the largest bygone log boats were also sailing bugeyes.
One of the last planked bugeyes left on the Chesapeake is the O.A. Bloxom, built in 1901, then named the Nora Phillips. Her sails have been removed, and she was converted over to power years ago. The Wm. B. Tennison, built in 1899, is a log-built bugeye that has also been converted to power. It’s owned by the Calvert Marine Museum in Solomons, Md.
Kristen Greenaway, president of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, says of the restoration of the Edna E. Lockwood, “This is history in the making today, the restoration of the 1889-built Edna E. Lockwood, which is the queen of the museum’s fleet. We’re very proud to keep the last sailing bugeye in the world.”
In the October 1990 issue (NF, Around the Yards South, p. 50), Joe Reid of Mast and Mallet Boatworks was featured building a traditional 22-foot deadrise crab scrape boat out of wood, fiberglass and West system epoxy.
That was 25 years ago, and Reid is still building that classic workboat style. Back then he was building boats in the old Benning’s oyster shucking building in Galesville, Md. Then in 1999 he moved to a modern boatbuilding shop at Holiday Point Marina in Edgewater.
Over the years, Reid has built and sold a dozen of these classic skiffs, known on Tangier Island as barcats. A barcat has a shallow draft and a V-bow with a pronounced sheer line that comes in low amidships. This design was originally built for sail and was found throughout the lower bay, particularly in the low-lying communities of Tangier and Smith Islands.
At his yard today, Reid has a nearly completed version of the skiff he is building on speculation. The hull sides are 1" x 6" red cedar, edge glued. The bottom has two planked layers of 3/8-inch cedar, glued with epoxy and covered in fiberglass. The frames and rails are Douglas fir. There are teak coamings and cedar floorboards. The skiff will be powered with an outboard and have a steering console on the starboard side.
Over the years, most of Reid’s boats have gone to recreational boaters, and he has developed an extremely successful business building 30-foot and larger cabin cruisers. He has, however, a passion for traditional craft; one of his tutors was the late Clarence Stanford, the former owner of Stanford’s Marine Railway in Colonial Beach, Va., a traditional builder of classic Chesapeake deadrise workboats.
“I recently had a young man call me about a job,” says Reid. “He was working on rebuilding a wooden buy boat over near Cambridge [Md.], and wanted to make a job change. I thought to myself I’d love to be over there working on that buy boat.”