blue water


bill buchbinder
Bill Buchbinder, founder of the longest running sail loft in Northern Michigan, started Bluewater Sail & Canvas 40 years ago. The current Traverse City Loft still operates as Bluewater, but has grown to also be home to Doyle Sailmakers, Traverse City.

Bill was involved with boating all his life, he grew up on Lake St. Clair in Michigan. His father was a boat carpenter, and Bill began sailing and sailmaking at 16 years old, in 1966 under the tutelage of Skip Boston. His lifetime of practical experience with sailing, sailmaking, rigging, canvas work and boat reconstruction continues with the impressive collection of individuals he inspired.

McCord Henry
McCord Henry, cut his maritime teeth toddling around a 46’ sloop cockpit and in his early 20’s came to apprentice with Bill at Bluewater Sail & Canvas in 1997. Soaking up the work and racing experience of a sailmaker, McCord began club racing and cruising. Experience which continued from the Great Lakes, down the Mississippi, into the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean.

In 2006 he formed and began operating his own restoration company. Upon crossing paths with Bill in the fall of 2019, the spark of taking over the Loft began to glow. The events starting 2020 left no doubts, and the Loft stayed open. This legacy of hands on excellence and a well-rounded skillset is the past, present and future service goal to meet and exceed the Bluewater Standard.

The Bluewater Sail Loft has been serving boaters since 1980 on West Bay in Traverse City, Michigan 10531 E. Carter Rd Traverse City, MI 49684 (231) 941-5224 [email protected]