The Dory Shop

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

Stories from the The Dory Shop

Visit us at the WoodenBoat Show!

We’re packing up some dories and hitting the road this week to attend the 20th annual WoodenBoat Show at the Mystic Seaport Museum at Mystic, Connecticut. Lashed to the boat trailer we have an 11-foot-bottom Banks dory, what we call our Black Rocks dory, inside of a heavy-duty 19.5′ semi dory. We also have some information about the schooners we are building.

Our day at camp

It’s not too often that The Dory Shop gang take a road trip together but that’s just what we did yesterday, driving inland from Lunenburg, across the middle of Nova Scotia and then North to the Northumberland Strait and specifically, the Tim Horton Children’s Camp at Tatamagouche. We made the trip to assist with the launch of the camp’s new Fortune Bay sailing dory, affectionately known as Timbit (Tim Horton’s being Canada’s number one purveyor of coffee and donuts; and Timbits being the delicious donut holes), and also orient camp staff to their new boat.

A sailing dory for WoodenBoat

With the spring dory building class successfully concluded, Jay’s well into our next boat – a sweet little Black Rocks sailing dory to display at WoodenBoat Magazine’s show at Mystic, CT next month. As you can see, he’s just working on the garboard planks.

Dory class launches boat!

Champagne and Solomon Gundy accompanied the launch of our spring dory class’ boat this morning. As usual, we had a bit of an initiation before taking the boat down to the beach during which the guys had to take the four gastronomic sacraments of Lunenburg – Solomon Gundy (that’s pickled herring to the uninitiated), sauerkraut, Lunenburg pudding, or pig’s pudding as I grew up calling it, and all washed down with a shot of dark rum.

A visit to the sailloft

Participants in The Dory Shop’s spring dory building course took a little field trip yesterday, down to Second Peninsula to visit another historic (but considerably less dusty) workplace – the Michele Stevens Sailloft. Located on the second storey of an unassuming little building at the very end of the road, this sailloft is filled with history – you can almost feel it as you walk across the workworn but always clean wooden floor – and so much skill. Michele is a fourth generation sailmaker whose business occupies the very loft established by her great grandfather Randolph when he moved across the bay from Tancook Island. Literally thousands of sails have been built here – from the largest working mainsail in the world today, for Nova Scotia’s own Bluenose II, to sails for our little dories.

A successful launch!

We kicked off the long Victoria Day weekend this afternoon with ‘graduation’ ceremonies for participants in our spring dory building course. Once again, we were blessed with a great group, all eager to learn about traditional wooden boats, to get right in there with the plane or the hammer or the paint brush, and to enjoy the offerings of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia and our waterfront in particular.

More from our dory course!

The gunwales are in and the guys are making the seats, known as thwarts, for their handsomely crafted Black Rocks dory. This afternoon we’ll get out of the shop a little and visit Michele Stevens Sailloft in First  Peninsula.

These guys are dory prodigies!

We told you the fellows in this spring dory building class were quick learners. Turns out they are also quick builders! Check out these photos of their dory, taken Friday afternoon.

A big welcome to our spring dory class!

We’d like to extend, a little belatedly, a big welcome to participants in our spring 2011 dory building class, which got underway Monday. We’re always wondering how we manage to get such great groups of people – truly! And this gang also includes some pretty fast learners. At this point, they actually have the dory fully planked (more photos to come obviously!) and will be fitting her knees this afternoon. Jay is highly impressed.

Finishing the camp dory

A technical issue on the Underway section of  The Dory Shop website prevented us from posting photos in a timely way as we built this lovely big Fortune Bay sailing dory for the Tim Horton’s Camp at Tatamagouche this spring.

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