Boatshop Classes & Workshops
photo by Mark Saran
We offer boatbuilding classes for all abilities in all kinds of watercraft—sailboats, stitch & glue plywood kayaks, Scamps, surfboards, and more—from a number of different companies.Register Now
Scout: Build Your Next Adventure
Join us for the Founders’ Build of this brand new design. Don’t miss this incredible opportunity to build the boat with instruction for the cost of the kit alone!
Future dates TBD
9:00 AM – 5:00 PM | $3599
Shipping $199 | or in-person pick-up at Duckworks, no charge
It sails like a dream, rows without effort, and, at 65 pounds, you are going to have a hard time coming up with an excuse not to build this dream of a vessel. The Scout is the brain-child of Port Townsend locals Brandon Davis of Turnpoint Design and Josh Colvin of Duckworks. The boat is a new design and is offered as a platform that gives the builder a fast, efficient, and ultra-light vessel that the family can enjoy. Using the stitch and glue build technique, the boat is built using marine-ply and closed cell foam parts that are precision cut on a CNC machine. We have added a foam core deck, gunnel, and transom that trims weight and adds durability. The class is offered as both an in-person or virtual platform for instruction. This is a turn key build; the kit includes all the materials needed to complete the build, the daggerboard and rudder kits, all hardware to rig the boat, as well as mast and sail.
Local pick-up is available at Duckworks, or kits can be shipped to you at a $199 cost. All in-person kits will be delivered to the Northwest Maritime Center. Shipping will commence after registration closes. The last day to register is January 27th. Refunds are not available beyond that point. The in-person offering is dependent on the Jefferson County Safe Start phase at the time of class. We currently have a maximum of 3 people for on-campus attendance. The virtual option is taught via Zoom.Register Now
Portage Pram: Build a Boat in Your Living Room!
Future dates TBD
9:00 AM – 5:00 PM | $1579
Shipping $99 | or in-person pick-up at Duckworks, no charge
Back by popular demand, the Portage Pram—the boat you can build in your living room! The Portage Pram is the swiss army knife of dinghies. It’s very light, portable, rows well, sails well, fits in a minivan, and is easy to build. Taking advantage of a precision cut kit and the use of stitch and glue building technique, the participant can build this boat quickly and easily with just a few tools and little to no prior experience. Joel will walk you through every step of the build, and by the end of the class students will have a boat that is ready for finish. The kit includes all the materials needed to build the boat.
Local pick-up is available at Duckworks, or kits can be shipped to you at a $99 cost. All in-person kits will be delivered to the Northwest Maritime Center. Shipping will commence after registration closes. Refunds are not available beyond that point. The in-person offering is dependent on the Jefferson County Safe Start phase at the time of class. We currently have a maximum of 3 people for on-campus attendance. The virtual option is taught via Zoom.Register Now
Sail Your Pram
Future dates TBD
9:00 AM – 5:00 PM | $499
Shipping $49 | or in-person pick-up at Duckworks, no charge
Prerequisite: Must have been a part of the Portage Pram workshop.
For the pram builders who are looking to sail, we are offering this course as a one-day extension to the Portage Pram Workshop. This offers the student a full tutorial that will walk them through the process of converting the Portage Pram into a fine sailing vessel. The class will be a comprehensive overview of how to install the daggerboard trunk, mast step, assemble foil kits, install rigging, and install hardware. The price of the class includes the foil kit package and will be included with the Portage Pram kit upon registration.
CNC DAGGERBOARD AND FOILS KIT includes: Daggerboard trunk, Daggerboard, Rudder parts, Tiller blank, Mast partner tube, 1 yard 6oz. Fiberglass Cloth, Fasteners, and hardware pack.
Please note: The class does not include the cost of the sail rig and hardware. Those will need to be purchased separately through Duckworks.
Prerequisite: Must have been a part of the Portage Pram workshop.Register Now
Build Your Own Kaholo Stand Up Paddleboard
July 24 – 30 last day to register is June 24
10:00 AM – 5:00 PM | Kit Cost: $1099.00 +tax | Tuition Cost: $725 Member, $775 Non-member
In this 7-day build class, instructor Joel Arrington will guide the builder through all the steps of building Chesapeake Light Craft’s Kaholo Stand-up Paddleboard (SUP). There are no other SUP boards in the world that are easier for a first-time boatbuilder, or better-looking. But you don’t give up one bit of performance if you build your own Kaholo! The Kaholos are okoume marine plywood, stitched-and-glued together and sheathed in fiberglass and epoxy, with a grid of bulkheads and stiffeners inside to make the boards stiff and light. Kits include premium nonskid deck pads, cut to shape, breather tubes, and custom laminated skegs. It’s taken five years and more prototypes than CLC cares to count to refine the two Kaholo SUP boards. Working with surfing and paddleboard guru Larry Froley of Gray Whale Trading in California, they created two beautiful hollow wooden boards with the rare quality of being fast enough to race but stable enough for first-timers. Tracking is great and a fine bow with kayak-derived shaping lifts the Kaholo 12-6 and 14 up and over waves. The tail shape and twin fins facilitate surfing on long swells once your skills build up to that. This class has a 3-student minimum.Register Now
Build Your Own Expedition Wherry
September 4–12 last day to register is August 4
9:00 AM – 5:00 PM | Kit Cost: $1799.00 +tax | Tuition Cost: $925.00 Member, $975.00 Non-member
So, you want to be a contender in SEVENTY48? Then you need this boat! There’s only one caveat—you have to build it first. Through this 9-day class, you will build this fast, shapely wherry that is intended for serious sliding-seat rowers who are looking for open-water ability and enough payload for camp-cruising.
Chesapeake Light Craft’s Expedition Wherry came about as a solution for fitness-oriented rowers who want to go out in cold or rough water, perhaps with camping gear. Designer John C. Harris, who has been designing, building, and enjoying sliding seat boats for 27 years, spent a lot of time tinkering with the hull lines to find the best compromise between speed, payload, and stability. Most of the boat is decked in, with only a small “sump” area beneath the oarsman’s heels to gather bilge water. An optional Elvstrom-type bailer can dispose of any water that gathers there. There are four separate watertight compartments, all accessible through hatches for gear storage. The boat has enough stability, and the compartments provide enough buoyancy, that it’s possible to climb back into the cockpit after a capsize, bailout, and continue on your way.
The official max payload is 423 pounds. Thus, a 200-pound oarsman could carry the equivalent of three infantry-sized backpacks worth of camping gear. (Of course, the lighter you pack, the faster the boat goes.) The standard flush deck hatches are large enough for tents, sleeping bags, and kitchen sinks of modest size.Register Now
Spars, Paddles, Oars, and More
October 8–10 last day to register is October 1
9:00 AM – 5:00 PM (one hour for lunch) | $379
A crash course in how to make a square piece of wood round. This 3-day course will walk participants through the process of laying out and shaping Spars, paddles, and oars. Students will receive demonstrations in both traditional and more contemporary building techniques while utilizing a number of hand and power tools. Students will have the choice of building a set of oars, a pair of paddles, or a small solid spar to take home as well as built their own set of spar gauges to take home to continue mastering the craft. Students in the class will also have the opportunity to learn birdsmouth construction of a small mast that will be utilized as a part of the Maritime Centers Fleet. Students will need to provide their own personal protective equipment to include work gloves, eye, and ear protection.Register Now
Build Your Own Shearwater or Wood Duck Sea Kayak
October 25 – 31 last day to register is September 25
9:00 AM – 5:00 PM | Kit Cost: Shearwater 17 $1279, Shearwater 16 $1279, Shearwater Sport $1279, Shearwater Double $1749, Sectional Shearwater Sport $1479, Wood Duck 10 $1129, Wood Duck 12 $1129, Wood Duck 14 $1279, Wood Duck Double $1399 | Tuition Cost: $725 Member, $775 Non-member
In this 7-day class, you will build your own Shearwater 14, 16, 17, Sport or Sectional Sport kayak from a Chesapeake Light Craft kit. Additional options include the Wood Duck 10, 12, 14, and Wood Duck Double.
-“The Shearwater is an eye-catching, light and fast cruiser that does many things well. It is a strong contender for the budget-minded paddler looking to answer the ‘if I could only have one kayak’ question.” -from Sea Kayaker’s October 2006 review of the Shearwater 17.
Stitch-and-glue sea kayak design has grown up a lot in the last fifteen years, driven by enthusiastic paddlers who prefer ultralight, beautiful boats that handle like extensions of themselves. The Shearwater design abounds in interesting and innovative features. To emphasize the clean lines, the decks are computer cut from sapele plywood, a beautiful mahogany with a reddish-brown swirling grain, to contrast with the honey-colored okoume sides and bottoms. Flush hatches are standard. Veteran stitch-and-glue builders will find notable tweaks in the Shearwater kits, including CNC-cut “finger joints” instead of the more typical scarf joints. The finger joints eliminate the alignment step required of scarf joints, so parts are quicker to assemble and impossible to misalign. Another luxury in the Shearwater kits is that 99% of the holes for the wire stitches have been drilled for you by their CNC machine. This means faster assembly and no measuring for bulkhead locations, as those holes are drilled, too.
The Wood Ducks are among their easiest-to-build kits. Panels are precision-cut on their computerized equipment, with puzzle-joints and pre-drilled stitching holes for fast and accurate assembly. Sheathed in fiberglass inside and out, the Wood Duck will withstand real-world abuse on gravel or shell beaches, and will bounce over submerged stumps without harm. Capacity is ample and meant to accommodate a broad range of paddlers. Cockpits are 38 inches long, for easy in and out, and your legs and knees will not be confined. The Wood Duck 10 will carry paddlers up to 200 pounds, and the Wood Duck 12 will easily handle a 275-pounder, plus gear.Register Now
Light the spark for a new hobby and help fill your galley with your own craft! Join Jesse Weigel on the Boatshop commons to learn the basics of spoon carving with traditional tools and techniques. This 7-hour course will include a Morakniv carving set that you’ll get to keep, as well as all materials needed for the class and to take home. During the course, Jesse will demonstrate a plethora of different tools used in carving including the use of a shave horse and various hand tools that the beginning carver can aspire to.
Jesse is an Olympic Peninsula native, sailor, educator, and lover of wooden things. From instructing Outward Bound courses in foggy coastal Maine to setting square sails in the Baltic, one thing was ever-present: a trusty spoon.
The Ultimate Galley Kitchen Box
A nice lightweight and compact galley box is a great addition to any adventure. Combining contemporary boatbuilding techniques with traditional hand tools and joinery, this camp kitchen box is both lightweight and beautiful. The three-day course will allow you to build your galley kitchen box under the instruction of Boatshop Manager Joel Arrington. You will also have the opportunity to outfit your kitchen box with our great selection of Stanley cook and camp ware offered in the Chandlery. All tools and build materials will be provided for the class. Students are asked to provide their own Personal Protective Equipment to include eye protection, ear protection, and an N95 rated dust mask.
Camp Cruising Cuisine
Join Chef Arran Stark for an afternoon of cooking demonstration and instruction as he shows off a new way of thinking about camp cuisine. Participants will start off with a trip to the farmers market in which to show off the amazing resources that our local farmers present each week and how to incorporate those ingredients into your next adventure. The afternoon will be filled with interactive cooking demonstrations and give students knowledge on how to set yourself up for success in your camp kitchen. This interactive course will walk you through breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert, and will demonstrate new ways of thinking about your cooking setup as well as food preparation and storage. You will leave the course very well fed and inspired for your next adventure.
If you’d like to register as a pair, please contact us at 360-385-3628 x100 for the couples discount code.
Eat Well for the Long Haul
Whether you are preparing for a cruise to Hawaii or the apocalypse, it’s nice to eat well. Arran Stark will walk you through the process of utilizing non-perishable, easy-to-store foods that will help make that extended trip more enjoyable. It doesn’t have to be ramen noodles, rice, and potatoes every day. Learn the ins and outs of choosing foods that last and extending the life of your ingredients to eat well on your next adventure. Join us for an afternoon of interactive cooking demonstrations with chef Arran Stark as he helps inspire new culinary ideas. Students in the class will have the opportunity to watch, learn, taste, and participate through the interactive course gaining a new and better understanding of how to stay inspired in the kitchen through the long haul. Students will leave the course very well fed and inspired for their next adventure.
If you’d like to register as a pair, please contact us at 360-385-3628 x100 for the couples discount code.
Boatshop with Benefits
You create your schedule!
8:00 AM – 8:00 PM | $350 | $315 Members
This is an opportunity for you to design your own workshop! We offer the space with a work bench that the maker can use and have access to from 8 AM – 8 PM for seven days. As a participant, you are not limited to just one week, but are welcome to rent the space for as many weeks as you need as long as space is available. With the rental of the space you will get 8 hours of one-on-one instruction from the boat shop manager. We team up with outside businesses such as Chesapeake Lightcraft and Duckworks to help you with project direction and supplies, such as boat kits and rigging.
We will ensure COVID precautions and social distancing guidelines are met. As such, each participant will be allotted their own personal work space and bench to facilitate distancing from other individuals. The # of participants will also be dictated by what is allowed in each of the phases moving forward. 4 participants through phase 2 and 6+ participants in phase 3. A covid-19 safety protocol will be set up and structured very similar to what is already in place now with the crews that are working on the main shop floor. Your safety is our top priority.
Boat Shop Space RentalsRent space in the shop for your next boat building project. Click here.
About Instructor Joel Arrington
Joel Arrington is just a southerner wandering through the west looking for water. Joel, originally from southwest Georgia, started his westward migration with a ten-year career as a fly-fishing guide and carpenter in Colorado. There, he developed his passion for being on the water and crafting with his hands, but after a few too many subzero winter days he was ready for a new adventure and landed in Port Hadlock, WA where he attended the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding. This allowed him to channelize his passion for water and love of woodworking into a career building boats. As Boat Shop Manager, Joel is ready and eager to help others delve into the wonderful world of boats and boatbuilding.