I was just reading the first page of this thread so I have no idea what the rest of it says, if what I'm saying has already been said/addressed then just ignore it. I actually really like the idea of fully destructible ships. I don't play on servers so I have no experience with griefers other than my friends on LAN (so maybe destruction as a config option?) but what I was thinking was, at least for airships, something like what Reika did in meteorcraft where if the meteor (or in our case, air ship) is destroyed it sends a good portion of the blocks that make it up raining down on the landscape. It would be great fun sitting around with a missile from (oh god, I forget the name, sorry) and watching as your enemy's air ship explodes raining debris down on the surroundings. Similarly, though I think it would be harder to implement, for marine vessels, you could have then "sink" by kicking the play out and moving the blocks to the bottom of the water body they're on (also possibly use the rotational axis and have it split in half or something like that... It might work out weird with some blocks like beds or doors, especially ones from mods, but there's probably a work around for that; that would require a check of the composition of the ship though, witch I don't believe exists right now beyond checks for air balloons and engines etc.)
Just my musings. It's great to see someone continuing this mod, I hope you enjoy working on it as much as the community will enjoy playing it.
Thanks, if you need help, I may be able to, I'm not great with Java (I miss QBasic from my high school computers class ;-; ) but, who knows, I may find a way to be helpful.