Learn how to build a wooden boat at Manayunk Timber! 

A unique chance to help make a classic, East coast work boat using traditional techniques.

This will be a lapstrake Banks Dory—a beautiful boat with a sweeping sheer that’s a pleasure to row and look at.

In the class, we will look at important skills like lofting, spiling, making patterns, planking, setting up a strongback, and cutting joinery. It’s a rare opportunity to participate in the process of making a classic boat from start to finish. 

The boat will be constructed in the clinker style. Basic skills like sharpening and milling lumber will be covered. While no woodworking experience is strictly required, it is highly recommended.

All class attendees will enter into a lottery and at the end of class; one lucky winner will take the boat home for just the cost of materials.

More about the vessel

The history of the New England Banks Dory dates back 150 years or more. The Banks Dory was traditionally used as a fishing boat. It is a small (one or two person) vessel, which has simple and efficient construction. Lapstrake refers to the style of overlapped planking, which will be used to construct this boat. 

In the 1880s, places like Massachusetts, Maine, and New Hampshire were producing fleets of Banks Dories for the fishermen of New England.

Banks Dories are built to carry heavy loads and are excellent for rowing in fresh or salt water.

This particular version is a 12’ Banks Dory from the lines drawn by John Gardner.  Dories are traditionally designed by the bottom length, so this dory will actually be 15’ 6” length overall with maximum beam of 56” and 20” of freeboard amidships.

It will be constructed with bronze fastenings and locally harvested and reclaimed lumber milled by Manayunk Timber.


First full time week will be April 6th 2020 to April 11th 2020. There will also be an additional 3-5 full time weekends to complete the project. 


Manayunk Timber will provide all materials necessary to build the boat at our woodyard. There will be a materials fee in addition to the total tuition.


Week 1:

Introduction to tools, craft, and materials. 

Will complete initial set up, stem and transom, and finish planking.

Week 2:

Flip boat, outfit the interior, which includes inwhales, gunwhale, breast hook and knees, frames, thwarts and more. 


Jared Moore worked as a shipwright at Port Townsend Shipwright’s Co-op in Port Townsend, Washington after attaining a degree in traditional small craft construction from The Northwest School of Wooden Boat Building. Jared is experienced in high end woodworking and as a shipwright.  He is also an expert teacher who has taught fine woodworking to people of all ages, and instructed in subjects that range from high school English to flyfishing.

Jared has worked at Manayunk Timber for one year as our shop-manager. He completes custom orders and is an integral part to Manayunk Timber’s daily functions. He has a wealth of knowledge about hand-tools, wood species, and furniture construction.



A deposit of half is required to hold your place in the class. If you want to pay in full, call us and we can accommodate. Please read our refund policy below. There will be 8 people in the class and two instructors. The point of this class is to learn how to build a wooden boat in a small setting with personal instruction.

Recommended Tools*

  • 6” combination square
  •  ½” and 1” bevel edge chisels (Narex is an okay starter brand.  There are some Bucks brothers chisels made in the USA that usually acceptable and cheap if you aren’t sure about investing in good tools yet).
  • Japanese Duzuki saw
  • Any handplanes you’ve got
  • Sharpening gear (whatever method you use)

*We can provide some basic tools. Please call us to inquire.

Refund Policy

If you need to cancel, we require an advanced notice of one month. $150 of the deposit is non-refundable to cover administrative costs. The deposit will not be refunded if you cancel less than one month prior to the start date of the class.