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Grand Banks goes smaller

More than a decade ago, Grand Banks Yachts introduced the 38 Eastbay, a well-bred express cruiser with classic looks and a planing hull designed by C. Raymond Hunt Associates.

More than 130 of the 38s have been built since 1994, and the Eastbay line now runs to 58 feet in hardtop, enclosed saloon and flybridge models. Grand Banks returns to the small end of the line with the introduction of the 39 Eastbay SX, an enclosed saloon model and successor to the original 38, with updated lines and a reconfigured cabin arrangement.

Grand Banks is among the builders that offer a fast Down East-style cruiser larger than 45 feet, and its focus has been on that market for the last several years. “It was time that we revisited that smaller size,” says Grand Banks marketing communications director David Hensel. “The 39 is a great example of what we can bring to that category, the Down East cruiser in a smaller size.”

Hensel says the combination of the Hunt hull design and Grand Banks’ construction methods result in a boat that can be put through its paces at 34-plus mph. The 39SX hull is solid fiberglass below the waterline, with a fiberglass and foam structural grid and PVC foam coring above the waterline and in the deckhouse and bridge. Hand-laid fiberglass construction is employed, and the boat displaces 29,000 pounds.

“It’s a heavier boat than you’ll find with some of our competitors, and that translates to a fantastic ride,” says Hensel.

The 39SX shows a gently sweeping sheer, with a teak toe rail and tall stainless steel bow rail. It has curved glass windows aft and was designed with a longer bridge deck and larger deckhouse than its predecessor. Non-skid Awlgrip covers the side decks, foredeck, cabin top and hardtop.

In the cockpit — which Hensel notes is dry — is a molded-in fiberglass aft bench seat with pneumatic access to storage beneath. In-sole hatches also have gas-assisted teak lids. The boat has a teak swim platform, hinged transom door, and a retractable hot/cold transom shower. Molded steps provide access to the wide port and starboard side decks.

Stepping into the saloon through hinged doors, the standard layout calls for an L-shaped settee and a teak high-low table aft and to port, and helm (starboard) and companion seats forward. The interior is finished primarily in teak, with a teak-and-holly sole throughout, satin-finish varnish, and stainless steel and chrome hardware.

Below, a U-shaped dinette is to port, across from which are the head compartment and galley. The dinette is served by a large teak high-low table, convertible to a double berth. The galley is equipped with an electric stove, microwave/convection oven, Tundra refrigerator/freezer with teak doors, and a stainless steel sink with a covering board and teak cutting board. The redesigned head compartment, abaft the galley, contains a marine head and separate stall shower.

The master stateroom is forward and has an island berth, cedar-lined hanging locker, and bureau with drawers. “Revisiting the smaller end of the size range was a great opportunity for us to apply some of the lessons we’ve learned from the bigger Eastbay boats,” says Hensel, both stylistically and functionally.

Grand Banks specs.

LOA: 42 feet, 2 inches Beam: 13 feet, 2 inches draft: 3 feet, 4 inches (including props) Displacement: 29,000 pounds HULL TYPE: 19.5-degree deep-vee TANKAGE: 352 gallons fuel, 101 gallons water, 36 gallons waste ENGINE OPTION: twin diesel inboards to 1,000 hp SPEED: 36 mph top, 26 mph cruise (with twin 455-hp Cummins C-7s) PRICE: $591,800 CONTACT: Grand Banks Yachts, Seattle. Phone: (206) 352-0116.