Located in Milan, OH, USA


Date: Nov, 25th, 2019

Big Ship Salvage was on full display at the famous Brimfield Antique show in Brimfield, MA.  New owner Jim Unger spent the week showing off the new items BSS has purchased this past year.  Attendance for the July ’19 show was down a bit due to the extreme heat, but thousands still showed to the worlds largest antique show.  The Brimfield show is three times per year, May, July and September where as many as 5000 vendors set up for the week-long event.  Visitors come from around the globe to this gigantic show taking vacations just to experience the event.  The TV show, Flea Market Flip with Laura Spencer occasionally shows up with the film crew because of the huge section of antiques.  Big Ship Salvage will continue to attend the three Brimfield shows each year and showcase it’s unique nautical antiques for those that love everything nautical. The dates for 2020 have not been officially set yet. We’d love for you to come by our spot at the next Brimfield show! For more information, you can check out their website here.

Date: Jan, 8th, 2020

Many people have asked us how they would utilize our brass and copper pendant lights in their homes or businesses. Vintage copper pendant lights are utilized in various different ways. While we’ve seen customers install these lights in their kitchens, bathrooms, porches, and restaurants – we certainly haven’t reached the limit of creative installations of vintage pendant lights. Kitchen Pendant Lights are one of the categories we receive the most inquiries about. Further down the page, we have an example of how you might use our lights as pendant lights. Oftentimes, ceiling lights are hung with chains as pendant lights.

Waterfront home in Maine

For example, take a look at the wonderful decoration that Strangers and Saints has put up at their bar and restaurant. Strangers and Saints is located in the coastal town of Provincetown, MA. All of the vintage brass pendant lights that are hanging above the bar in the picture below are salvaged nautical lights. This bar utilizes several styles of pendant/ceiling lights that are hanging by chain above the customers. The light that you will find the most common in the picture below is P3-22, which can be found here.

Here’s another great example of how our customers are using vintage brass ceiling lights as pendant lights in their residential nautical homes.

Residential Home in Maryland

Traditional brass pendant lights are often used for restaurant designs. One recent restaurant that used our antique lights is The Chimes in Baton Rouge, LA. While this picture is before the establishment was up and running, you can get a good feel for the aesthetic they are trying to foster with the installation of these large antique pendant lights.

Check us out on Pinterest for more nautical decoration ideas!

Date: Feb, 3rd, 2018

Some buyers just start earlier than others! While working one of our many nautical flea market operations, this little guy had to have one of our authentic polished aluminum portholes for his collection. Mom and Dad handed over the money, and they had one happy buyer riding the rest of the day in his red wagon.

Date: Jan, 16th, 2018

Nautical Exterior Lighting



We may make it look and sound easy, but getting the salvaged brass nautical lights off salvaged vessels and back home is no easy job. I just never have the room in my checked bags to fly it all home the next day. The game is much bigger around here – we bring home several tons on each trip, and even when you do it right, things still go wrong, and nothing ever gets here when we expect it!

Date: Jan, 16th, 2018


Outdoor Nautical Lighting

Many of you would give almost anything to be in my back pocket on a day like this!!  After several days of traveling and some less than desirable Bangladeshi food, I am ready to go see the lights that are ready to be removed from this retired car transport vessel. I will point out a few interesting facts out the beached ship behind me. First of all, it has been carefully cut in half. The fresh marks in the beach sand still show the drag marks left by a massive section of steel that is now missing. When I say missing, it was gone! Cut up by hundreds of workers just before we reached the project. Check out the ladder leaning up on the side of the vessel. It was made of bamboo and rope, and must have been 25 feet tall. This was our only access to this beached vessel, and the climb up was no fun. Each layer or deck of the exposed ship was designed to park hundreds of newly built cars. The removed cargo was not special, but we salvaged hundreds of those smaller ceiling lights you see normally listed in the Small Lights category of our website.



Date: Jan, 16th, 2018


Mike Whiteside from the DIY TV Show “Salvage Dawgs” stopped by for a visit some time back. Mike owns Black Dog Salvage in Roanoke, VA. We had a great time giving Mike the grand tour our warehouse operation here in Pauline, South Carolina. Mike has a lot in common with us – he will travel down even the smallest of roads looking for that stone that has yet to be turned over in hopes of finding a new treasure. Mike left with a few treasures, and I hope our paths cross again!



Date: Jan, 16th, 2018

I was able to recover some old website photos. These two photos always generated some of the best comments! I picked this load up at a shipyard in Jacksonville, Florida and hauled it to our old warehouse in northwest Indiana. I never put a yard stick next to it, but the guys loading it claimed this single piece was over 4,000 feet long. Two things I AM sure about:  The dry weight was over 3 pounds per foot, and it was not dry when I hauled it home. I am also sure that someone was looking over me on that 1,000 mile drive back to Indiana. I watched several cars pass me on the interstate and then slow down and start taking pictures of the large rope that could have easily been mistaken for a large tropical snake. Along the way as I fueled the over worked truck, many curious on-lookers had to walk over and touch the rope – it was truly a site to be seen. Our good friend from the Rope Locker in Felton, Delaware even made the trip over to Indiana so he could get a section of this large rope. If you are looking for a piece of this large rope, I am sorry to tell you it is all gone. Apparently a lot of people wanted a short piece of this large rope.



Date: Jan, 3rd, 2018

Come on in, let’s see what they have to offer today! This vessel was recently intentionally beached for a complete salvage. Each shipyard has its own way of getting items off the vessel and up onto the beach for sorting. This was a rather interesting start to this project; they were lucky enough at high tide to get ample speed to drive it this far up on the beach.  Piece by piece everything that can and will be salvaged is pulled out of this massive 5 story opening. Yes, it would not be uncommon over the next few days to see compasses, brass lights, the dinner dishes, and even the kitchen equipment carried off the vessel by hundreds of workers. The hull of the vessel is dark, dirty, and full of hazards caused by the salvage operation. With the right eye, we will carefully select the cargo we will reclaim on a project this size.

Date: Jan, 3rd, 2018


Here is a shout-out for my good friends Jim and Kathleen. They own The Rope Locker over in Felton, Delaware. Jim may be a salesman in the eyes of a normal person walking past, but the truth is, he is a talented craftsman. Jim may sell rope from his traveling workshop, but he can and will splice rope to make custom dock lines. Not to be confused with the spliced rope lines you see sold in plastic bags, he starts with good rope and his pride in ownership of the final product is like a work of art. If you need rope, call Jim at 302-284-4587, and tell him you spotted him on www.bigshipsalvage.com!

Date: Jan, 3rd, 2018

Honey, where did you park the boat today? This photo was taken a few miles up the beach from one of the big international ship breaking yards we visit. No, we do not bring these back to the shop, but it was such an interesting photo I wanted to share with you. Every day a new vessel arrives at one of the international ship breaking yards. Nothing goes to waste. The reclaimed life boat shells end up being used by the coastal fishing crews in mostly third world countries. The make good working vessels, as they are built to withstand some of the worst conditions.