Tugboats have been a long standing theme in my life and I started my tug-affliction at an early age. When I was in kindergarten at the age of 5, I won an art competition with a tugboat composition and even though the medium was smeary crayon, it showed some promise of tug-work in my design quiver even at that young phase of my life. During my college years, I worked on several different tugs in Alaska, saving my money and helping to grubstake me thru school at the University of Oregon. The very first tug that I worked on was named the ‘Amak’ and a fine example of the type she was, home ported in Ketchikan, Alaska and as I recall, built in the late 1890s. She was wood, of course, nicely detailed (though she was a working tug), had a Cat diesel engine and after just a few days on board, I was hooked. The ‘Amak’ was to change my life. I read issue #1 of WoodenBoat magazine onboard her and made up my mind that boats, indeed wooden boats, were to be my life choice of hobby, avocation, passion, and career.
To celebrate the spirit of that first tug, I have named these models, in all their sizes, the ‘Amak’ series and I tell you this, in all confidence, that if my ship ever comes in and I reach a time in my life when I want to slow down just a bit, I would like to build one of these boats and do a bit more tugging myself. You can look at the designs and dream all the modifications you might want but always keep in mind that a tug needs quite a bit of weight, a big screw (propeller), and some old style horsepower to keep her happy. Enjoy! — Sam Devlin
The entire series is available in study plans. Contact Sam to develop your custom dream tugboat.