Homer, Alaska is home to a powerhouse boat builder specializing in custom-made aluminum vessels that are both functional and sleek. Bay Weld Boats / Bay Welding Services was founded in the 1970s by commercial fisherman turned boat builder Allen Engebretsen in the back of his pick-up, initially as a boat repair service until 1996, when Allen created the first Bay Weld skiff. Since 1996, the family company has branched out to provide their craftsmanship to clients all over their home state, as well as the North Pacific.
Allen Engebretsen, who personally oversaw the planning and construction of Bay Weld’s Double Eagle, 120-passenger Seawolf, 38’ v-berth Seeker and others passed on the baton to his son, Eric, as general manager in 2009, who became the owner in 2020 after Bay Weld celebrated their 220th build. In an interview on the Alaskan Entrepreneur show, “Making Alaska”, Eric said that when he looks at the boats, he sees the customers in them because the company loves to “capture” the interests and ideas of the customer and put them in their boat.
Eric especially takes pride in building boats that families can enjoy, but moreso, thinks it is “extremely rewarding” to create boats that customers can go out on and support their families with.
“It’s a fantastic feeling to help them create opportunity for themselves,” Eric Engebretsen said.
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