Uncategorized Archives | Down East Yachting

Downeast Origin: 800 Back Cove Yachts

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Back Cove Production Team and Associates gather with the 800th Back Cove yacht.

In the autumn of 2017 Back Cove launched our 800th yacht. It’s an impressive milestone that becomes even more significant when you consider all that it implies: 800 Downeast-style yachts, crafted by more than 200 of Maine’s best boatbuilders, championed by a network of more than 20 dealerships, in locations around the globe. Suddenly, our founding question of whether a simple and nautically sensible design could capture the heart of the boating public had a clear answer.

It was 2003, and the popularity of Downeast style was growing rapidly. Designs that had once only been popular in New England quickly were becoming the boats of choice all over the USA and in many export markets. Sabre dealers were selling all of the production that we could build and they wanted more. They asked Sabre to come up with a smaller less complicated Downeast style boat that could be made in larger volumes to satisfy the growing demand.

That spring, the Sabre Design Team met with six dealerships in Manchester, NH ( a common airport location for Southwest Airlines) to unveil the first ever Back Cove yacht. Differentiating Sabre and Back Cove would be reasonably simple; Back Cove was to be smaller, with a single diesel engine and a bow thruster, and interior fiberglass liners to simplify assembly. Sabre would remain larger, with twin-engine propulsion, stick built interiors, and their sizes would range from 38 to (eventually) 66 feet in length.The dealers fell in love with the concept, and the Back Cove 29 was born.

Then the issue of location. The company had previously purchased the assets and facilities of North End Composites, in Rockland, Maine, but the custom fiberglass and tooling business was on a bumpy road. The shop needed something to build on a consistent production-oriented basis that would smooth bumps in the road and support a strong workforce. The Back Cove range suited the facilities perfectly, and the plan was off and running.

Building upon the success of the Back Cove 29, seven additional models were introduced over the next 14 years. The Back Cove 26 debuted in 2004, and the 33 followed two years later. In 2009 the Back Cove 37 expanded the lineup over the 35′ range, and we knew things were really cooking. By the time Back Cove celebrated our 10th birthday the 33 had evolved to become the 34, and our design team had introduced two more models coming in at 30 and 41 feet in length. Since then Back Cove has introduced the Downeast 37, a second version of the original Back Cove 37, and most recently we introduced the new Back Cove 32. Back Cove yachts can be found in Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Central America, Bermuda, the Bahamas, the UK, France, Italy, Greece, and Norway.

Today, as hull 800 left our facilities, we resolved the question of whether a Downeast boat with a simple but consistent trade dress, built in the Maine tradition, could succeed in a market full of white plastic cruisers.

The answer is a resounding “yes.”

Back Cove’s New Lead Project Engineer

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We are excited to announce that Joshua St. Germain has been promoted to Lead Project Engineer.

Josh will take a leading role in the planning, scheduling, and execution of complex technical projects within the Back Cove Engineering Department. Josh’s judgment will be critical to the successful implementation of the challenging assignments required to maintain Back Cove’s outstanding reputation in the industry.

In the nearly five years that Josh has been on the Engineering Team, he has been instrumental in engineering new models and introducing them to production. He will continue to validate new product design during prototyping, support production, and make improvements to our products; all things at which Josh has proven to excel during his time on our team. Josh’s knowledge and enthusiasm for all marine products make him a perfect candidate to grow with our company and to assume more leadership within our technical team.

Our sincerest congratulations to Josh!

Meet our new National Sales Manager!

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Jamie Bloomquist – National Sales Manager, Back Cove Yachts

Jamie has over 25 years of experience working in sales, marketing, and business development. He has worked as a professional photographer, founded two technology companies, and was the co-creator and President of USHarbors, delivering tide charts and marine weather for over 1,200 harbors nationwide.

Jamie grew up boating on Chautauqua Lake, in New York State but has spent the last 15 years living in Camden, Maine boating on Lake Megunticook and Penobscot Bay with his wife and two children.

Joey: 5 years with Sabre Yachts

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Hi All,

In this Sabre Work-iversary post, we’re featuring an interview with Joey, who recently celebrated five years with Sabre Yachts. Joey is part of another ‘Sabre Family’ – he and his brother Peter both work in Sabre’s woodshop. His friends here at Sabre have described Joey as hard working, positive, and kind, and we couldn’t agree more. We’d like to extend our sincerest thanks and congratulations to Joey on five awesome years!

Tell me something that was difficult but made you a better person:

Schooling.

What’s your favorite book?

Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea, by Jules Verne

Captain Nemo: The Fantastic History of a Dark Genius, by Kevin J. Anderson

The Story of Captain Nemo, by Dave Eggers

How would your best friend describe you?

Funny, kind, and gentle.

What super power would you like to have?

Deflect bullets.

Tell me about your earliest childhood memory:

Getting a bicycle when I was five.

If you could send a message back through time to your younger self what would you say?

Take care of yourself.

What’s your least favorite thing about the world today?

Littering and Pollution.

Tell me about someone who is your hero:

Babe Ruth and everything he stands for.

Do you have any regrets?

No.

If you had to sell everything you owned, and could only keep one thing, what would you keep and why?

My dignity, because nobody can take that away from me.

What makes you proud?

Caring about people.

If you could talk to someone who has passed away who would you talk to and what would you say?

My father, and I would ask him how heaven is.

Tell me about the person who has impacted your life the most:

My mother.

When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?

A hockey player and a fireman.

What’s the best advice you can give?

Learn how to get along with everybody else.

Wendy: 20 years with Sabre Yachts

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Hi All,

2017’s anniversary series is something special, representing a combined total of five hundred and twenty-five years of boatbuilding experience at Sabre Yachts. Marking off twenty of those years is Wendy. Anyone who knows her will tell you that Wendy is a cornerstone of our Production Team, her pride in her work is matched only by our own pride in calling her a member of the Sabre Family. Our thanks to Wendy for an incredible twenty years of dedication and talent.

What’s something your mother taught you that you’ve never forgotten?

No matter what, do your best!

How honest are you?

Way too much.

What superpower would you like to have?

The ability to fly.

What’s your favorite book of all time?

Violets are Blue, by James Patterson

Tell me about something that was difficult but made you a better person:

Going through cancer, twice.

If you could go anywhere, where would you go?

London, England.

What’s your favorite song of all time?

My Best Friend, by Tim McGraw

If you could talk to someone who has passed away, who would you talk to and what would you say?

My mom and my sister. I would tell them how much I miss them.

What makes you proud?

The outcome of my work.

If you could send a message back through time to your younger self what would you say?

Listen to your mom!

Tell me about the most beautiful thing you’ve seen:

Sunset in the Florida Keys.

What is your least favorite thing about the world today?

Poverty.

Name one thing that always makes you smile:

My friends and family.

If you won a million dollars what would you spend it on?

School loans.

Nancy: 40 years with Sabre Yachts

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Hi All,

Our next anniversary interview features Sabre’s Chief Financial Officer, Nancy, who recently celebrated an impressive forty years at Sabre Yachts. Nancy joined Sabre in 1977, just seven years after the company was founded. Since that time, Nancy has been a cornerstone of our organization, and an essential factor in our overall success. There aren’t words to express the depth of Nancy’s contribution to Sabre Yachts, nor are there adequate words to communicate our gratitude. Our sincerest congratulations to Nancy, along with our deepest appreciation, respect, and gratitude.

If you could go anywhere, where would you go?

I would go on a safari in Africa.

Would you rather be deaf or blind?

Blind – I need to listen to music.

If you could talk to someone who has passed away, who would you talk to and what would you say?

My dad, I’d tell him how much I miss him.

Tell me about the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen:

The aurora borealis.

What makes you proud?

Seeing how my daughter turned out.

Tell me about your earliest childhood memory:

I was walking down the street to go to kindergarten.

How honest are you?

Pretty honest.

What super power would you like to have?

Invisibility.

If you could send a message back through time to your younger self what would you say?

Don’t worry so much and have more fun.

What, in your opinion, is the best thing about humanity?

Its diversity.

Tell me about the person who has impacted your life the most:

My husband who was funny, patient, and loving.

What’s your favorite song of all time?

Life is a Highway, by Tom Cochrane. It always makes me want to dance.

Is it ever okay to break the rules?

Not really.

If you won a million dollars what would you spend it on?

I’d give most of it to charities.

Sabre 45 Shakedown Cruise

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We just wanted to take a moment to tell you about our first real cruise aboard Q.E.D.

We were out 9 days going from Stuart Corinthian Yacht Club to Fort Lauderdale, Ocean Reef, and Miami Beach. While we were concerned about taking a brand new boat, we were confident that help was close by should any problem arise. Nothing of significance did.

She exceeded all our expectations in every way. We had several passages with very confused seas such that some of the bigger boats decided to duck into the ICW. Not us. We led a group of the boats on one of the tough days and she performed better than we could have hoped. But it was not just underway that she was terrific. From cocktails aboard one night when we had 18 people who all decided the cockpit was the place to hang out to quiet dinners for the two of us, everything worked in an outstanding manner.

So many simple design items made the trip really fun and rewarding. We keep finding more and more space for storage and had aboard enough food for a month or more. And that did not include the storage for certain adult beverages that were consumed.

Everyone who came aboard raved about the fit and finish. The little touches such as the woodwork in the entire boat and particularly the curved headers on doors and around the helm area make the boat a piece of high grade furniture that is better than we have ever seen other than on other Sabre’s.

At the end of the trip, we have to search to find anything that did not work as designed. We only added a few items like two drawer latches that need adjustment!

We cannot thank all of you enough for the outstanding job everyone at Sabre has done to bring this project to completion in such an outstanding manner.

We hope you sell more than a hundred of these!

Shelly and Naomi

Lessons in Infusion – the Maine Wind Blade Challenge

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Each year, teams of Maine high school students compete to design and create energy producing wind blades in the Maine Wind Blade Challenge. The challenge is hosted by UMaine each year as a part of the STEM program (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). Back Cove Yachts is proud to join educators and our fellow manufacturers in making this possible for Maine students.

Through a hands-on process that includes design, engineering, and manufacturing components, students create a set of wind blades that will go on to be tested in a day long challenge against other teams across the state. Back Cove Yachts aids local high school students in the manufacturing phase. Specifically, facilitating the resin infusion process. Beyond making it possible for local students to participate in the challenge, the opportunity to share our knowledge and expertise is especially valuable.

When the manufacturing process is completed, the student teams will test their designs to determine which blades produce the most energy in 3 minutes or less. In addition, each team is required to present and explain their design, outlining their decision-making process and research.

Tyler: 5 years with Sabre Yachts

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Hi All,

Next in our anniversary series is Tyler, who recently reached his first seniority milestone – 5 years with Sabre Yachts. While Tyler may be a ‘young gun’ in this year’s roundup of anniversaries, he is nevertheless an excellent craftsman in our lamination department and a sterling example of team spirit and dedication. Our thanks to Tyler for this first five years, and best wishes for many more as a member of the Sabre Family!

Tell me about the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen:

A monsoon storm in the desert.

Is it ever okay to break the rules?

All the time!

What’s your least favorite thing about the world today?

Politics.

Tell me about the person who has impacted your life the most:

My grandfather. He is my everything; he’s my outdoors buddy.

What are you best at?

Problem-solving.

What’s your favorite book of all time?

The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton.

What super power would you like to have?

Money.

Tell me about your best childhood friend:

Jason – He’s very outgoing, always there for me, and full of positivity. He’ll never let you down.

If you could learn any instrument what would you play?

The harmonica.

When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?

A cop.

When you’re 80 what story will you tell your grandchildren?

All of them.

What’s something your mother taught you that you’ve never forgotten?

I don’t kiss and tell…

If you won a million dollars what would you spend it on?

A camp in the woods.

If you could talk to someone, who has passed away who would you speak to and why?

My Uncle Bob. I’d ask about the future of our camp.

Tyler (L) with fellow members of the Sabre Production Team celebrating the 100th Sabre 48.

Tyler: 5 years with Sabre Yachts

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Hi All,

Next in our anniversary series is Tyler, who recently reached his first seniority milestone – 5 years with Sabre Yachts. While Tyler may be a ‘young gun’ in this year’s roundup of anniversaries, he is nevertheless an excellent craftsman in our lamination department and a sterling example of team spirit and dedication. Our thanks to Tyler for this first five years, and best wishes for many more as a member of the Sabre Family!

Tell me about the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen:

A monsoon storm in the desert.

Is it ever okay to break the rules?

All the time!

What’s your least favorite thing about the world today?

Politics.

Tell me about the person who has impacted your life the most:

My grandfather. He is my everything; he’s my outdoors buddy.

What are you best at?

Problem-solving.

What’s your favorite book of all time?

The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton.

What super power would you like to have?

Money.

Tell me about your best childhood friend:

Jason – He’s very outgoing, always there for me, and full of positivity. He’ll never let you down.

If you could learn any instrument what would you play?

The harmonica.

When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?

A cop.

When you’re 80 what story will you tell your grandchildren?

All of them.

What’s something your mother taught you that you’ve never forgotten?

I don’t kiss and tell…

If you won a million dollars what would you spend it on?

A camp in the woods.

If you could talk to someone, who has passed away who would you speak to and why?

My Uncle Bob. I’d ask about the future of our camp.

Tyler (L) with fellow members of the Sabre Production Team celebrating the 100th Sabre 48.