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

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Plugging away

Meanwhile, more video of Billy Campbell fastening the last plank in his twin schooner, the future Martha Seabury, last Saturday is now available online at Watch his technique with the rum!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Video of the Shutter Plank cerermony

Check out some video of the Shutter Plank ceremony, shot by Robert Hirtle of Lighthouse Publishing Ltd.

These schooners be planked

A terrific crowd gathered at The Dory Shop Boatyard Saturday afternoon to help us put the last plank in our twin schooners.

As per usual, our boatyard celebration was accompanied by sub-zero temperatures but no matter! The crews of the Barque Picton Castle and the Tiare Taporo (also a project of Dawson Moreland & Associates) assisted in the preparation of several large pots of cider to keep our guests hands and insides warm. The gang also spread a carpet of wood shavings over the ground, providing the best no-skid you'd ever want to use and it looked pretty good too.

At the appointed hour, Dawson Moreland general manager Susan Corkum-Greek welcomed those in attendance to a brief formal ceremony that included remarks from Lunenburg Mayor Laurence Mawhinney and Dawson Moreland president, Captain Daniel Moreland, as well as the listing of all the craftsmen who have worked on the twin schooners.

"I greatly admire and respect the skills and talents of the people who put this together," said Mayor Mawhinney. "They are showing us the wisdom of what you can do with wood in a town that cherishes the wooden buildings, the homes, the churches, the offices, the stores....This is part of our history and heritage, but I think for most of us also it's a very vibrant part of our future."

It was actor Billy Campbell, owner of one of the twin schooners, who did the honours, both fastening the final plank and dousing it with rum (see below).

Currently starring in the hit AMC series The Killing, which films in Vancouver, Billy said he is always grateful for an excuse to be in Lunenburg. He also announced that he is naming his schooner,to be launched later this spring, the Martha Seabury, after his late grandmother.

"I loved her very much," he told onlookers. "I wish she could see this."
So now the deed is officially done, the cider (and rum) are gone and Dave and his gang can proceed with finishing the hull. They're all hard at it down there this morning - well, all except for Dave who is apparently deep in the woods looking for spars.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Riveting work

As a child, did you ever make one of those intercoms with two cans and a piece of string? Neither did Bub. Or at least that's not what he's up to in this picture.
He was listening though, for Gabe, who was inside one of the twin schooners as the two of them worked to fasten the hull planking to the frames.
As you'll see below, the planking is fastened in two ways: in the case of the double-sawn Osage Orange frames, it is done with large silicon bronze screws. In the case of the steam-bent frames, made of White Oak, they are fastened with copper rivets.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Shutter Plank celebration - join us!

We've finally set the date for the long-awaited Shutter Plank celebration for our twin schooners, and all things considered we think it's going to be a great way to brighten up the otherwise dull, grey post-holiday month of January.

So please join us here at The Dory Shop at 175 Bluenose Drive, Lunenburg on Saturday, January 21 at 2 p.m. as we mark this construction milestone and enjoy a bit of true Maritime fun.

As an added bonus, there should be a half-built Banks dory, made by participants in the Nova Scotia Boatbuilders Association's Employment Preparation Program, on display in Plant 1 (half built as they will be mid-way through a two-week course with Jay).

Hope to see you on the 21st!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from everyone here at Lunenburg Schooners!

We've all had a great holiday, even had a bit of snow on Christmas Eve that lasted (rather perfectly) though Christmas and Boxing Day, then melted away so as not to cause us any inconvenience. The full gang is not yet back, but will be soon, at which point we have a little shuttle plank business to attend to.

Meanwhile, we must share the following link. It's to a blog that's kept by Tony's wife, the talented milliner (that's hat maker to yous!) Anna Shoub. Seems Tony made their son a very special Christmas gift this year. Have a look and we're sure you'll agree this is one lucky boy to have two parents so talented and thoughtful.