Lexical bundles are recurring frequent word combinations. Research has shown that lexical bundles vary in genre and register (Biber 2006; Biber, Conrad and Cortes 2004; Hyland 2008a, 2008b; Scott and Tribble 2006). However, the degree to which they vary by discipline remains inconclusive. The main aim of this paper is to establish whether lexical bundles are discipline specific, i.e., whether each discipline draws on a specialized lexical repertoire or whether there is a core vocabulary shared across various disciplines. For that purpose, maritime texts covering the subdomains marine engineering, navigation, maritime law and shipping have been collected so as to investigate the structure and function of lexical bundles and to find out how they shape meaning in specialized discourse. For the purposes of the study, a 7.4 M corpus consisting of two monolingual subcorpora and one bilingual subcorpus was compiled. This corpus can be used as a basis for further studies in the field. Furthermore, the paper discusses problems encountered while extracting N-grams from a corpus, as well as classification criteria for the identification of lexical bundles. The results show that lexical bundles identified in maritime texts are phrasal rather than clausal. The results also indicate that lexical bundles are discipline specific. Teaching these specialized features that shape discourse can improve students’ language production and should thus be the focus of instruction in ESP.