Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving in the barn

We did things a little differently this Thanksgiving and had the dinner (for 35) in the barn. In the pictures you see Alden, Perry and Harold chopping potatoes which Harold boiled outside on our steam cooker. The stove belonged to Grandma. After 49 years, it was finally replaced this week but with the help of a friend we hooked it up to a propane tank and cooked its last meal outside under the bandsaw for the whole family.
Also, the barn looked great and when all the food arrived it certainly was full of beautiful, delicious dishes and a fantastic turkey. The preparation was fun and everyone in our families pitched in and helped make it all happen. It was a great day and we hope to do it again sometime. Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

No Man's Land boat gets a new set of sails

Geoff Gordon was here this a.m. putting the masts away on his No Man's Land boat. This boat was finished by Dave Brown and volunteers at the Essex Shipbuilding Museum ( in 2004 and Geoff and his wife, Therese Sellers won it in a raffle  The two have been sailing around Cape Ann ever since.  They brought their boat here for a new, larger, set of sails. We built the first set in 2004. We are having a good time working with them planning their new rig.

Monday, November 16, 2009

November morning at Burnham Boatbuilding

November morning at Burnham Boatbuilding (above) and Daisy the dog trying to keep up with Harold

The weather couldn't be better for a boatbuilder - especially as Harold is caulking the yawl "Sawdust" inside the barn..but the barn door is open and it is still warm enough to keep it that way. The sound of a caulking mallet in an Essex shipyard is probably a familiar one to generations before us but less so now. It is one that a trained ear can distinguish very clearly from the sound of hammers and nails. It is a sound all of its own.

Friday, November 13, 2009

White Pine logs an early Christmas present

It was a busy day at Burnham Boatbuilding yesterday but it is always great to see beautiful white pine arriving at the sawmill. Harold will be using the wood from these logs for the deck of the new Pinky Maine..commonly called the "Re-Maine" as parts of the old Maine will be used on the new boat. It is probably not as commonly known outside of the boatbuilding world but finding good wood for schooner building is a huge undertaking. Part of the reason Harold can get the wood he needs, in advance of a big project, is that he cuts it all himself on the sawmill at the base of the picture. These trees were given in trade by John Abizaid of Mayer Tree Service for work Harold has done cutting cherry for John's custom-built, post and beam dream house in New Hampshire. For those of you who hate to see trees cut ...think how the tree in the foreground of this picture feels...just look at its expression of dismay!

Friday, November 6, 2009

New arrival at the yard and last sail of the season

The yard looks great these days with a lot of interesting projects lined up. Today, the Muscongus Bay sloop "Dream" owned by Tom Benton arrived from a yard in Mattapoisett. She will be worked on this winter to give the owner some great sailing days next summer out of Winthrop, MA. Now, the "Dream" sits next to two other Friendship Sloops in the yard this winter - the "Maria" owned by Harold and the "Flying Jib" owned by Sarah Beck.. In the background is a No Man's Land boat called Ariel which just came out of the water this week. In the barn,  Harold has been busy caulking the yawl "Sawdust," and is tying up a lot of other additional loose ends. Although there are still a few sailing afternoons left, he did bring the Pinky up river for her last sail about a week or so ago so we have included a picture here of her under full sail heading into the creek where she will stay for the winter.