A Shipwright is a carpenter who works specifically on ships. They are responsible for the building and the repair of the ship, meaning most pirates need them around for general maintenance of their vessels. Other ships often have them as well.
Role and Duties
A shipwright is a person who is responsible for the design, construction, and/or repair of ships, boats, and other marine vessels including:
- Merchant ships: cargo ships, container ships
- Passenger/vehicle ships: ferries, cruise ships
- Warships: frigates, battleships, caravels
- Submarines and underwater vehicles
- Work-boats: fishing boat
- Yachts and other recreational craft, like (wavers)
Any crew that does not possess a skilled enough shipwright runs the risk of sinking during sea travel. While a ship can be maintained in the short term with simple, amateurish repairs, the accumulated damage will eventually add up the further it travels through dangerous seas, thus necessitating the presence or hiring of a professional carpenter to verify and fix any problems.
Similar to how a ship's doctor is responsible for the health of its crew, the shipwright is responsible for the wellbeing and seaworthiness of the ship itself. The best shipwrights tend to be capable of finding out major issues within a ship through basic evaluation of its structure. However, even the most experienced shipwrights cannot fix a ship that is beyond repair, as certain types of damage are simply too insurmountable for a ship to handle in the long term. In this case, the necessity of acquiring a new ship may be considered.
Because a regular sailing vessel contains so many different parts that require a broad set of skills, it is not uncommon for specialized shipwrights to exist. The five foremen of Galley-La Company's Dock 1 each had their own capabilities:
- Paulie: Rigging, knots and masts.
- Peeply Lulu: Pitch, block and tackle and blacksmithing.
- Tilestone: Cabinetry, caulking and flag-making.
- Rob Lucci: Sawing, treenails and bolts.
- Kaku: Mechanics, diagnostics and house calls.
The Straw Hat Pirates's shipwright, Franky, is known for his robotics and weapon engineering skills, which in addition to already impressive carpentry skills puts him on par with not only the best shipwrights in the world, but also leading scientists such as Vegapunk. His dream is to make a ship that can circumnavigate the globe, much like the Oro Jackson did.
Every shipwright requires tools in order to execute their work. Shipwrights may also employ said tools as weapons:
- Hammers: used normally to drive in nails. Tilestone used a giant hammer against Blueno.
- Chisel: a blade with two sharp edges use to scrape wood. Kaku used these against Luffy, and later against Zoro.
- Log: a giant log used by a shipwright to strike Mikazuki in the back.
- Saw: Kaku used a saw to slash Mikazuki's pirate crew.
- Ropes: Paulie uses ropes in combat.
|Nugire Yainu †||Kaneshiro||Fanged Toad Pirates' Shipwright||Gina||Sonieh|
|Mekao ≠||Dojaku ≠|
|Iceburg||Paulie||Peepley Lulu||Tilestone||Rob Lucci ‡|
|Tom †||Den||Mobston ≠|
- †: the character is deceased.
- *: the character's status is unknown, or show additional information. Hovering the symbol may give further details.
- ≠: the character is non-canon.
- ‡: the character is no longer part of this group. Hovering the symbol may give further details.
In One Piece
Prior to Luffy's adventure, Tom was considered to be the greatest shipwright in the world, having built the Oro Jackson and Puffing Tom. By normal standard, a shipwright who built a pirate ship is not guilty, as they have no control of the people who would sail the ship. However, Tom was made a special case, as the Oro Jackson was built for the infamous Pirate King. Tom was ultimately sentenced to death, but he made a proud claim that he did not regret building the ship, and that a shipwright must always be proud of his or her creations, no matter what accomplishments or terrorism they committed.
The very first shipwright to appear in the series was Nugire Yainu, who was a shipwright for the Black Cat Pirates five years ago. He was hypnotized to believe that he was the crew's captain, Kuro and was then executed at Shells Town by the Marines so that Kuro can leave the crew undetected.
The second shipwright to appear (but the first one to appear in the present) was a goldfish Fish-Man named Kaneshiro who appeared as a common background character in the Arlong Park Arc. He served as the shipwright of the Arlong Pirates.
During the Jaya Arc, the Straw Hat Pirates noticed that the Going Merry was falling apart, but it's not until after the Skypiea Arc at the beginning of the Long Ring Long Land Arc that Luffy decided to recruit a shipwright for the crew.
They arrived at Water 7, famous for its shipwright business and all the great shipwrights.
At Water 7, Nami, Usopp, and Luffy journey to Dock 1 to meet the Galley-La shipwrights and their president Iceburg. They tried to get the Going Merry repaired but the ship was irreparably damaged so the Straw Hat Pirates were faced with the tough decision that they either sink with the ship or buy another one.
Meanwhile, Usopp wandered off with 200,000,000 and got mugged by the Franky Family, who's leader is Franky (the future shipwright of the crew). Back at the Franky House, Franky and his family celebrated the theft of the 200,000,000 and prepared to leave, but the wounded Usopp broke in and clashed with Franky and his family. Usopp was beaten up by Franky and his family before being thrown out. Franky then left with the Square Sisters to St. Poplar Island to buy the Adam Wood.
After Sanji, Luffy, Zoro, and Chopper raid the Franky House to avenge Usopp (who is laying on the ground outside the Franky House), Luffy made the sorrowful decision to purchase a new ship. This decision enraged Usopp, so he later quit the crew and dueled Luffy over the ship.
Meanwhile, Franky returned from St. Poplar only to see his house in ruins. Enraged, he swore to fight Luffy, which he does the next day. During the Water 7/Enies Lobby Arc, many things begin to happen, so the search for the shipwright was put on hold while Luffy and his crew set out to rescue Robin. Franky also helped out, providing many hints that show he will be the next crew member. Indeed, he later used the 200,000,000 he took from the crew to buy Treasure Tree Adam, which he used to build the crew a ship of the highest quality, and in return, Luffy recruited him to be their shipwright.
- Merry, Enel and Fisher Tiger have all designed their own ships skillfully, though none were officially classified as shipwrights.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 5 Chapter 37 and Episode 10, Nugire Yainu is introduced.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 34 Chapter 323 (p. 4-6) and Episode 229.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 34 Chapter 326 (p. 6) and Episode 231, Kaku inspects the Going Merry.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 34 Chapter 327 (p. 18-20) and Episode 232.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 35 Chapter 328 (p. 4-9) and Episode 233.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 37 Chapter 353 and Episode 248, Tom was facing death penalty for crafting the Oro Jackson.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 0 Chapter 0 and Episode 0, Merry designing the Going Merry.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 30 Chapter 285 and Episode 186, Enel designed the Maxim himself.
- One Piece Manga — Vol. 90 Chapter 901 (p. 4), Fisher Tiger was mentioned to have built the crew's ship.