The Dory Shop

Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada | (902) 640-3005 |

Stories from the The Dory Shop

I want my boat now -- no time to wait!

Every spring there is a rush of people wanting dories. It's sunny and warm - summer is coming and everyone wants to be out on the water. Here in Lunenburg and Mahone Bay it's the perfect weather to go fishing, or to row out to one of our islands for a picnic. But by the time September rolls around people heave a sigh of despair and put their yearning on the back burner, fully intending to do things differently next year. I'm just going to come right out and say it: it's not too late! We have a few models on hand that are sitting here waiting just for you. Calling your name. There might not be the time for a custom built dory before the snow flies, but one of our pre-built models is the perfect option for you and they are crying out to be put in the water.


Dory Shop Nutshell Pram TenderPerhaps you're planning to climb aboard something bigger to sail after the sun so you will miss winter entirely. What you need is a sweet little tender to get you from ship to shore, right? Have you seen our Nutshell Pram? She's 7'7" and incredibly lightweight. Our Nutshells are a bit beefed up from the original plans – made with real wood instead of plywood and with gunnels and extra frames added for strength. This is a much stronger version of the pram, and yet still light as a feather. Easy to maneuver she makes the perfect tender, and at only $2,900 she is a complete bargain. She's not too big but can handle a big load, and she's just beautiful. If you'd like to see some more photos let me know and I'll send them along - or better yet, drop into the office and I'll take you down and you can see her first hand. What a little beauty.


Dory Shop Black Rocks dory with a sailBut maybe the Nutshell is a bit small and you'd like something a more traditional and just a tad bigger. Well, we have a lovely 11’ bottom Black Rocks Dory in our shop as well. If you are a strong rower used to larger dories this might not be boat enough for you, but the Black Rocks is a perfect fit for youth and is extremely popular with single female rowers. What's that? You don't want to always row alone? That's okay - despite its smaller size, the Black Rocks is still roomy enough for two rowers and, like all our dories, she can take a good load. You can even fit her with a sail: this is the smallest sized dory we can equip with a sail if you want a little more than just the opportunity to row.  She costs $4050 - I can totally picture this at my uncle's house near Peggy's Cove: there for all the visiting nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, grand-nephews and neighbours to use all summer long.


Dory Shop Handline Dory
Still haven't found what you're looking for? Well, the 13' Handline Dory in our shop might be the bomb. Plenty big enough to be rowed with a friend and able to be fit with a sail if that is more your style - but then again, if you like the put-put-put of a motor she's big enough to be fitted with a motor well. I don't use the term "put-put-put" lightly - while she can handle a motor she's still a dory at heart and so the motor size should be no more than 2-3 horsepower. Don't go thinking you can pick up this boat and go zooming around the harbour, because it just isn't going to happen. The Handline we currently have in our showroom is $4580 - this is just for the dory, and does not include any sails or alterations for a motor well.


Dory Shop Cross Island Skiff

Now, if what you want to do is grab your outboard motor and throw it on the back of a beautifully crafted wooden boat then our Cross Island Skiff might be the one. She's 13' across the bottom and costs $4900. She looks quite like a dory, but the stern has been modified to accommodate the outboard. This is the classic evolution from the fishing dory to take an outboard on her transom and she gets up on plane quite easily. Solid, hard-working, resilient and still quite the lovely utility boat to see cutting her way across the water.


Finally, if all you want is a bargain - well, we can help you out as well (and this isn't something we are often able to do).  We have a Handline Dory which was built a few years ago for the yard. She’s a good boat, but she wants a little love. She is being sold as is where is for $1500. What a steal!


If you find yourself in Lunenburg and would like to take a look at any of the boats we have in stock, please just drop by the office. I'm happy to have a chat with you and take you around for a look at what we have.  And if, in the end, what you decide you really want is a dory that is built just for you and only you --- well, I'm happy to talk with you about that too. We'll figure out what you need and our craftsmen will bring your dream to life - and you can take her out for her first row in the spring thaw.

Photograph of Lunenburg's waterfront, home of The Dory Shop