Hands-on projects have always interested Ed Oczkewicz (aka “Maritime Ed”), particularly if they include boats. Out of college and tired of his job on the railroad, he managed to talk his way into helping a local fishermen - with practically no budget for hired help - finish a boat and take it to Alaska. This experience was played a prominent role in his decision to establish Maritime Fabrications in 1978, in his parents' backyard in Marysville, WA, complete with a renovated chicken coop for an office. His goal: provide the Puget Sound and Alaska salmon fishing fleets with quality equipment for deck operations.
Projects varied from building deck gear to outfitting boats, including some yacht work. As the company grew, it moved to Conway, WA and opened a seasonal location in Naknek, Alaska, to service the Bristol Bay salmon gillnet fleet (with conex boxes serving as work and living space). The reputation for quality and reliability grew with the continued output of innovative deck equipment and value added-services for the fishing fleet. Product innovation was, and continues to be, driven by Ed and Maritime employees' experience as crewman and skippers of their own boats.
While installing deck gear on a 32’ Westbrook boat in Naknek, Ed became intrigued with the lines of the hull and design. He went on to acquire the tooling for this boat, and with previous fishing, boat building, and outfitting experience, successfully built a boat model known for its maneuverability, fish packing capacity, and speed. A dozen or so of these first generation Maritime boats were built between 1989 and 1993, and went into fishing service in Alaska for salmon and on the Oregon/California coast for Dungeness crab. Many of the vessels are still operated by the original owners, and demand a premium when sold on the used market. The second generation Maritime fishing vessels build on the reputation of the first generation, and bring added safety, operational and comfort features and benefits, and serve an expanded market.
In 1993 Maritime Fabrications acquired the assets of La Conner Machine and Drydock, moved out of the Conway location, and began operations under the La Conner Maritime Service brand, broadening its boat service and repair capabilities. The business saw growth in both pleasure and commercial fishing markets, and its reputation and focus on long-lasting customer relationships allowed it to flourish despite periodic, industry-wide economic challenges. Capabilities grew to what they are currently, including a 110 ton haul out and environmentally compliant facility, and have laid the foundation for continued growth in providing innovative, quality products and services to meet the needs of pleasure and commercial fleets.
Talented, hard-working individuals make up Maritime's workforce of approximately forty people, and are an essential and integral part of its mission to provide quality services and products to the commercial and pleasure boating fleets. The goal of Maritime Fabrications, Inc. is to build long-term customer relationships, while offering solution-based approaches to customers’ needs; we look forward to serving you!