Marine Carpenter

Work wood into watertight boat hulls or seal woodwork inside the galley.
picture of Marine Carpenter

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$25,000 – $72,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Marine Carpenters do?

Water is a treacherous host to manmade constructions, which makes building on water very different from building on dry land. As a Marine Carpenter, you know this, so you craft boats and boat interiors that stand up to their environment.

Being a Marine Carpenter is anything but normal. No two jobs are the same for you, as almost everything you make is custom-built for the client (though skills learned in marine carpentry can be applied to larger manufacturing settings).

Calling yourself a “ Carpenter ” is also a little misleading, as Marine Carpenters typically deal with wood, plastic, fiberglass, and a whole host of modern fabrication materials. After all, saltwater can wreak havoc on normal wood, so substitutions are commonly used to build more sustainable creations.

Your most common projects revolve around creating details that pull together a boat into an aesthetic whole. This might include designing specialty interiors, putting in a wood trim, or overhauling all design accents on the book to create a new look and feel for the vessel. Occasionally, your craftsmanship will be called on to assemble the whole boat—this is a bit rarer, though, because if someone is getting a boat built by hand by a Marine Carpenter, then it’s going to be a big deal.

If you like to work with your hands, love the open water, and revel in a challenge for both your mind and body, then marine carpentry might be for you.

Should I be a Marine Carpenter?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • Also known as: Carpenter, Mine, Case Maker, Cask Maker, Engine Setter, Flume Maker

    How to become a Marine Carpenter

    Marine Carpenters generally graduate from high school and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Associate’s degree to increase your chances of finding a good job. Check out these schools offering Marine Carpenter-related education!
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