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SW Boatworks: A full stable of Beals Island designs

By Brian Robbins

LAMOINE, ME – The year was 2008.

The economy was soft.

Lobster prices were down.

It seemed that the last thing anybody was thinking about was having a new boat built.

So what did Stewart Workman, owner of SW Boatworks (who up to that point had been a custom finisher of other shops’ hulls) decide was the best thing to do?

He bought a set of hull molds from well-known designer/builder Calvin Beal Jr.

And within a year or so, he also purchased the Ernest Libby Jr.-designed Young Brothers molds, as well.

“So, the obvious question is: ‘Why?’” I say to Stewart as we sit in his office at SW Boatworks in Lamoine, Maine.  “How did you dare to do that?”

“Well, my wife Alice and I talked about it,” says Stewart.  “The economy had gone to hell in a handbasket and boat building had gone with it.  But it was going to come back … and we figured if I didn’t have my own line of boats to sell, I was going to be out of business.”

“Yeah, but …” I hesitate.  “Weren’t you scared?”…

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