What is Chipwright?

Chipwright is a fully insured business owned and operated by shipwright James Reed, a boat builder who specializes in repairing fiberglass, awlgrip and gel coat and light carpentry.  New for the 2018-2019 season in Fort Myers Beach Chipwright has added RV Restoration to the list of services provided.

What is a Shipwright?

A Shipwright is a person who went to school to learn to build boats and ships, apprenticed as a shipwright and made building and working on boats his career.  Essentially, a shipwright is a carpenter skilled in boat construction and repair.


My name is James  Reed.  I am a  4th Generation Shipwright and Artist raised and trained in the Pacific Northwest. “I am Kingsawin” of the Tongass Tribe of the Tlingit People.  We are known as The People of the Tides a canoe culture of the Pacific Northwest Coast of North America.

I am Eagle Bear Clan. I come from Southeast Alaska, where for generations, our indigenous people have existed as mariners and canoe travelers, fishermen, hunters, gatherers, and traders.  It was only natural for me to become a shipbuilder.  Our Tribe has a rich heritage as craftsman and artists.

I studied boat building at Bates Vocational College in Tacoma Washington, where I received a degree in Boat Building.  I also taught boat building at Northwest Indian College at the Lumi Nation for two years after receiving my associates degree.

I have lived on a sailboat for over twenty years.  SpiritHawk is a beautiful wooden Pacific Northwest Schooner that I rescued and rebuilt.  She is currently undergoing a refit as I am getting her ready to sail the Caribbean next year.  You can follow the refitting process on facebook @sailingspirithawk at

Boat Repair Services

Boat Repair Services Offered at Chipwright

    • Fiberglass Boat Repair and Boat Chip Repair
    • Wooden Boat Repair
    • Boat Deck Repair
    • Awlgrip & Gelcoat Repair
    • Light Carpentry
    • Faux Finishes
    • Small Motor Repair



james reed business card - image

James Kingsawin Reed

phone: 561-855-1717

current location:
Fort Myers Beach, Florida
latitude: 26.4520248
longitude: -81.948145