Location: The WoodenBoat School, Brooklin, ME
Dates: Sunday, August 6, 2023 - Saturday, August 12, 2023


This Class in Brooklin, Maine, is offered by the WoodenBoat School; please register online starting January 2, 2023. Inquiries only to 207-359-4651 or

Register through the WoodenBoat School

Call 207-359-4651 for inquiries.

Instructor:  John C. Harris

Tuition & Materials: 

    • Tuition: $875

Other Considerations:


Wooden spars are a sight to behold and complement almost any harbor in which they are found. Rick will guide you through the process of building solid and hollow spars. Building your own mast and boom, combined with fabricating some simple hardware, is a wonderful project that can save you money, and bring you the satisfaction of doing it yourself.

One of the projects undertaken by students in this course will be a mast built using the eight-stave, bird’s-mouth method used by many boatbuilders for its simplicity and strength. You’ll also turn out, for other boats, some solid-wood spars that will require little or no gluing and can be easily shaped with hand tools.

You will start the week talking about wood selection, cutting scarf joints, building a spar bench, gluing up with epoxy, and sharpening hand planes. Time will be dedicated to looking over plans and having a real understanding of how masts function and are supported.Throughout the week, John will touch on other spar construction techniques. Different spars as well as hardware details will be discussed. Time will be spent on the water looking at how different rigs work in their environment. This should lay the foundation for whatever rig style you choose.

The course will close with a few coats of varnish and a discussion of maintaining your new rig for years to come. This week promises to be a full one, so come ready to make plenty of shavings and turn out beautiful wooden spars.