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3805 Harborview Drive
Gig Harbor, WA 98332

(253) 857-9344

Working to Preserve Gig Harbors Historic Working Waterfront this non-profit boatyard located in historic Gig Harbor, Washington is the birthplace of the Thunderbird sailboat.

12-Week Intensive Boat Building

12-Week Intensive
Boat Building Program
BUILD A Traditional BOAT IN 12 WEEKS

Build a 16ft 6in Paul Gartside inboard Workboat



Gig Harbor BoatShop is offering a unique boatbuilding experience over the course of 12 weeks. More than a weekend workshop and less than a full-year boat school program, this three-day per week opportunity will sharpen your wood working skills and immerse you in the boatbuilding traditions of Gig Harbor’s historic Eddon Boatyard.

Taught by master boatbuilding instructor Patrick Mahon, the Monday through Wednesday, 12-week class might best be characterized as a ‘mini boat school.’ The hands-on traditional boatbuilding experience begins with lofting, then boat construction - including mold-making, planking, engine placement, finish work and all steps in between. Upon completion of the program, students will have the skillset to build their own traditional wooden boat. If you live locally the three-day per week class will provide time for other commitments. If you are from out of the area you'll have time to explore the great Pacific Northwest.


Making moulds
- Building the backbone (stem, stern timbers, keel, shaft log, cutting the rabbet)
- Making the transom
- Setting up the backbone, floors, molds and ribbands
- Shelf, clamp and stringers
- Steam bending the frames
- Planking, carvel
- Fairing and caulking the hull
- Engine beds
- Fitting out the interior
- Engine placement and alignment
- Rudder, tiller and hardware
- Finish work; paint and varnish will progress with each stage as required
- Commissioning

Patrick’s initial boatbuilding experience was with Tough Bros Boatyard in Teddington, England, then for ten years he worked at various boatyards on the Maine coast. He has called Port Townsend, Washington home since 1987 where he works as a marine surveyor. 

During his forty plus years of wooden boat building he’s been involved in numerous boatbuilding projects from traditional boats to modern boats, large and small. 

Patrick has taught at the Northwest School of Wooden BoatBuilding in Port Townsend, Washington the Great Lakes Boat Building School in Cedarville, Michigan and the WoodenBoat School in Brooklin, Maine. As an educator Patrick enjoys passing on the skills and knowledge he’s accumulated to others. “I am very proud of the number of my students that have created their own wooden boat building careers.”

Dates and Times:

February 10, 2020 - April 22, 2020
Monday through Wednesday each week

9:00 A.M. - 4:00 P.M.

Cost: $3,950

Class size is limited to 6 students

To register, call Gig Harbor BoatShop at (253) 857-9344 or email

Gig Harbor BoatShop 3805 Harborview Drive, Gig Harbor, WA 98332