The Dory Shop

Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada | (902) 640-3005 |

There's no question about it, moving our larger dories requires a skilled rower and perhaps a few friends to move them along by oars alone. In fact, dories measuring more than 15 feet on the bottom were generally built with the expectation of powering by motor, whether inboard engine or an outboard well. Even for smaller dories and those outfitted for sail, it can be nice to have a back-up plan for occasions when the wind flops out, or maybe you do.

Traditional tip-up motor well

The traditional arrangement for adding power by outboard, the tip-up well is a long rectangular box fitted to the bottom of the boat, on which a small horsepower outboard can be hung and into which the prop and shaft can be swung up, safely out of the way when you wish to beach or trailer your boat.

Custom-built upright motor well

Since cutting a hole in the bottom of a boat does reduce a dory's freeboard - that is, the boat above the waterline - and installing the old-fashioned tip- up well also takes up a certain amount of interior space, there are those who prefer to keep the footprint of their well as small as possible. For these folks, we offer what we call an upright well, custom-built to accommodate the specifications of their particular outboard. The one downside is that in this arrangement, the motor must be physically lifted or otherwise raised out of the well for the boat to be beached or trailered; it can't be tipped up. We’re happy to discuss which option suits you best.

Inboard engines

The most authentic way to power our larger dories is via an inboard engine. While the cost and availability of outboards has made this less common in recent years, we remain keen to assist clients with this arrangement in mind. Whether you're thinking of an authentic gas engine like the Make and Breaks manufactured under the brand names Atlantic and Acadia here in Nova Scotia, a nice little diesel unit or one of the new electric motors, we're happy to assist.