For the first time in decades, there are schooners 'abuilding on the famed waterfront at Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada. Dawson Moreland & Associates are building not just one, but two 48' wooden schooners in the best of Maritime traditions. These 'twins' will be built simultaneously, frame for frame, plank for plank, alongside the historic Lunenburg Dory Shop at 175 Bluenose Drive. Follow their progress from keel laying to launch!

An artist's interpretation of the Twin Schooner Project

Monday, January 24, 2011

Baby it's cold inside

It's -32 Celcius with the wind chill today (I think that's like -25 Fahrenhuit for our American friends) so there's no work taking place outside. In fact, even sitting alongside the stove inside 'Plant 2' as we call it here at The Dory Shop, you could see Bub's breathe as he worked. Now that's dedication (and a pretty neat photo!).

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Feeding chickens

First off, note to self: never remark on how mild the weather has been lest you cause it to change.

So we got our first major storm of the season here yesterday. I know those of you who rely on newspapers and television to report the weather have been hearing about fierce storms here in Nova Scotia for a few weeks now. But we have really lucked out here in Lunenburg. Even yesterday's storm dumped a lot less snow here than at Halifax or even a few minutes inland.

Still the schooner gang had some snow and ice removal to do this morning before getting down to the real work of the day: paths to shovel, scaffolds and even vessels to salt (pre-salted schooners?). Throwing handful after handful from his salt bucket, Gerald said it was a lot like feeding chickens.

Meanwhile inside The Dory Shop's plant 2, the floors, hanging and lodging knees are being fashioned.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Bunch 'o pics

Here are some additional pictures from The Dory Shop Boatyard and our twin schooner build. You can see mast partners in place in two of the photos, and also, the mock-up of the aft cabin below. The weather in Lunenburg has been pretty fine lately. Here's hoping it doesn't change much.
By the way, you can click on any of these photos to get a more close-up view.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Deck discussions

There's been much discussion, and indeed global correspondence, about the deck arrangements for these twin schooners. You see, Capt. Moreland is currently on the other side of the world aboard the Picton Castle (ship and crew have just arrived at Reunion following a four-week crossing of the Indian Ocean). But as Dawson Moreland's president, this venture's head proponent and an ardent schooner lover, the captain has some rather passionate opinions on these matters. So does Dave, of course. And it's not like these opinions were so terribly divergent either. But these are important decisions that will determine the look and functionality of these vessels.
So a third hand was brought to the table. Or more accurately, he and his table were brought into the discussions.
Capt. Tom Gallant, skipper of the David Stevens' built Avenger, also harbours some pretty strong feelings for schooners. And it was at his table, in the kitchen of his snug little Stonehurst home, having filled their bellies with a smoked ham dinner (smoked ham is very good for creativity I am told!), that Tom and Dave sat down with the half model and a few blocks of wood and worked out the deck plan. This in turn was described and drawn out for the captain.
"Salty, sensible, strong and beautiful," wrote Capt. Tom. No dumb looking boxes and plenty of headroom for big 'uns like actor/adventurer Billy Campbell (future owner of one of these beauties) and Tom himself.
With minimal tweaking, these plans were approved by all. Then yesterday, Dave went to work with planks and C-clamps and made a bit of a visual mock-up of the aft cabin. "That's too high," he muttered at one point, before readjusting. But when he was done, all on hand (including Bluenose II Captain Phil Watson, who was passing by) agreed it looked exactly right.
Dave even pencilled some port holes down the starboard side. Kyle added some additional artwork later (see below).