Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding |  +1 (360) 385-4948 | info@nwswb.edu

Hear our instructors on video!

As a team our instructors share a devotion to the highest levels of craftsmanship. They are inspiring professionals with years of wooden boat building experience before becoming teachers. This experience helps them successfully guide students in their personal career goals and aspirations. You can see and hear our boat building instructors on video by clicking on the following Youtube…

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Planking the Batela!

The Batela is a traditional Venetian boat, that is, developed in the Italian city of Venice. It is a flat-bottomed boat with a slight degree of rocker (meaning, the bottom is curved from bow to stern) to make it easier to row and control. Rowed standing up, it is essentially a cargo carrier or ferry. The Traditional Small Craft…

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Stand out from the crowd! Enroll in Boat School today!

Enrollment at the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding is now open for the 2014-2015 school year. The new Enrollment Forms and School Catalog are published and posted online at the following link: http://nwswb.edu/programs/enroll/ The Boat School has capacity for a new cohort of 55 students each year, the 12-month Associates Degree programs starting on or around the date of…

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CHAMBERLIN-36 Keel completed!

Congratulations on completing the keel of the CHAMBERLIN 36! Shown left to right are: Students Korey Ruben, Corey Rodgers, Cyrus Dworsky, Penelope Partridge, Ryan Wilmsmeier, Mussa Ulenga, Alden Rohrer, Instructor Ben Kahn, Reuben Ewan, Adrian Candaux, Jeff Lydston, Mike Lee and Alex Cox. This big 36-foot long motor sailor was designed by designer Carl Chamberlin of Port Townsend, WA…

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Caulking the seams

Student Noah Sturdy demonstrates how to caulk a boat seam. Wikipedia: “Traditional caulking (also spelled calking) on wooden vessels uses fibers of cotton and oakum (hemp fiber soaked in pine tar). These fibers are driven into the wedge-shaped seam between planks, with a caulking mallet and a broad chisel-like tool called a caulking iron.The caulking is then covered over…

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Turning the Drascombe Longboat

Instructor Bruce Blatchley’s class turns their Drascombe Longboat. Students are Rw Barrett, Eric Kay, John Sandoval and Chuck Garrett. Nice work guys! This boat is being built for a youth boating program led by the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) in Baja, Mexico. They currently have a fiberglass fleet of Drascombes. This wooden one should be lighter, stiffer and…

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Cutting the stem rabbet on 36-foot Chamberlin

Construction of the 36-foot motor sailor SEA BEAST under the direction of Instructor Ben Kahn is moving right along. Here, the stem rabbet is being cut by student Jeff Lydston. The wood is purple heart – here are excerpts from Wikipedia about the wood: “Peltogyne, commonly known as purpleheart, amendoim or amaranth, is a genus of 23 species of…

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Ann Davison Memorial Scholarship for Women

Press Release April 15, 2014 Port Hadlock — The Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding announces the Ann Davison Memorial Scholarship, developed specifically to support women pursuing a career in the maritime trades. Ann Davison was the first woman to solo sail across the Atlantic Ocean. Her boat, the Felicity Ann, is owned and being repaired by the Northwest School…

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Planking a Grandy Skiff!

The Grandy Boat Company was formerly located on Lake Union in Seattle, and made many hundreds of boats both large and small during a long tenure there from the early 1920’s to 1967. Here’s a good web page about the company and it’s boats: home.comcast.net/~btse1/grandy/grandymainpage.htm Our students build these boats to lines and documentation taken by former instructor Tim…

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Sea Trials for the Light McKenzie River Boat!

The Light McKenzie River Boat, as it is traditionally known, is described in detail in Roger Fletcher’s book “Drift Boats and River Dories”, published by Stackpole Books in 2007. The book’s ISBN is 0-8117-0234-0 . Roger Flectcher’s website is www.riverstouch.com . The McKenzie river flows west out of the Cascades Mountains in central Oregon and terminates north of Eugene…

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Caulking a Davis boat!

Andrew McGilvra caulks a Davis boat. www.nwswb.edu Davis Boats were developed as inshore fishing boats for use in Southeast Alaska by John Davis, a Tsimshian Indian, in the late 1800’s. He observed the boats used by American and Canadian vessels transiting through the area, and believed he could build better boats more suited to his area. He made his…

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Point of View: Planking

Video by Zachary Simonson-Bond. Lignin From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia This article is about the wood polymer. – Lignin or lignen is a complex polymer of aromatic alcohols known as monolignols. It is most commonly derived from wood, and is an integral part of the secondary cell walls of plants The term was introduced in 1819…

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Working on the BBC Whitehall (Chopping off bungs)

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) asked the Boat School to build three traditionally-built Whitehalls as replicas of the boats used by John Wesley Powell and his group of explorers during their first-ever descent of the Colorado River in 1869. The BBC will film a reenactment of the voyage later in 2013. The School is building one 16-foot Whitehall, the…

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Cliff Defying Conventional Laws of Nature

Incredible bending of white oak ribs at Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding in Port Hadlock, Washington. Video by Luane Hanson. Lignin From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia This article is about the wood polymer. Lignin or lignen is a complex polymer of aromatic alcohols known as monolignols. It is most commonly derived from wood, and is an integral part of…

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Students of NW School of Wooden Boatbuilding – a slideshow

Enjoy this short slideshow featuring students at the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding! It’s always gratifying to feature the students at the Boat School as they are a lively, positive bunch of people who share an exciting passion for wooden boats. In this slideshow you will see things that are the common mark of inspiring schools everywhere – smiling…

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Bringing a plank out of the steambox!

Rogue River Driver – planking in progress – 3 min video Students in the 2014 Traditional Small Craft Program led by Senior Instructor Jeff Hammond bring a plank from the steambox to lay on a Rogue River Driver boat. Students featured are Bobby Bowen, Russell Bates, Jacob Simmering, Mark Paxton, Andrew McGilvra and Bradley Suedekum. Nice work students! Lignin…

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Instructor Peter Bailey – caulking a plank seam

This video shows Instructor Peter Bailey caulking a plank seam. Peter is a master shipwright who is an inspiration to students at the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding! He is working on a Hanson-designed Forest Service scaler boat, a vessel historically used to navigate around log jams and shorelines in the Pacific Northwest. This boat has given the Traditional…

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Sid Skiff on the water!

This 13′ Sid Skiff was built by the 2011-12 and 2012-13 Traditional Small Craft students. A dream to sail and row, this boat is extremely fun and maneuverable – perfect boat for beginners and expert sailors. Built of cedar on oak frames, she is light and strong. (This particular boat has sold.) “I’ll Calm the Ocean” by Morgan O’Kane….

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2013 Wooden Boat Projects

Every year at the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding we build an exciting lineup of boats for either commission or for spec. This year our students have been building the: – Hanson Forest Service Scaler Boat Instructor: Ben Kahn Photo Gallery Commission Posting This boat was designed by the American designer H.C. Hanson in 1957 for the US Forest…

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The Two Loves of Francis Lee

by Kurt Hoehne January 31, 2014 The Francis Lee story is part love of craft and part love of sailing. The combination is simply the best of sailing and a showcase for the Pacific Northwest’s boatbuilding skills. (see complete list at end of article of those who contributed) Love of Craft It’s hard to find someone with greater love…

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Basic Boatbuilding Skills Fall Quarter 2013 comes to an end!

The Fall quarter has come to an end and students at the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding have gained knowledge in Basic Woodworking, Drafting, Lofting and Skiff Construction. We are proud of the discipline that these students have shown in their studies. Many of our students begin their studies with almost no experience in tools and woodworking and now…

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