Bowdoin Back in Action

Refit and annual cruises completed

AFTER 31 YEARS of service as MMA’s sail training vessel, Schooner Bowdoin was back in blue water this summer for her 98th year of sailing.

Built in 1921 for Arctic exploration, Bowdoin recently completed her annual training cruises to the Canadian Maritimes.

During last winter, Bowdoin was in Boothbay Harbor for the completion of a major refit to ensure the vessel will continue to be capable of international offshore sailing operations with students aboard for training. The work included hull planking and frame repair below the waterline that is the final stage of a two-phase project that began with an above-the-waterline and deck rebuild over the winter of 2015-16. Approximately 42 futtock sections (frame pieces) and some 70 planks were replaced.

The last time work of this magnitude was done on Bowdoin was in the early 1980s when a majority of the frames were replaced along with the deck.

The recent restoration could not have been done without the hard work of the shipwrights and staff at Bristol Marine, The Shipyard in Boothbay Harbor, the support of the MMA administration, faculty and staff, and the amazing outpouring of support from previous Bowdoin captains, crew, friends and MMA alumni.

—By CAPT. WILLIAM MCCLEAN, SCHOONER BOWDOIN

Photo: Lance Bishop

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