Originally Posted by magicbus
I'll drop a note to the designer for his next model!
But you're right, beauty is most definitely in the eyes of the beholder. In about 1996 when my wife and I started our second decade of flying the Inside Passage in floatplanes we began to contemplate the idea of getting some sort of larger boat to explore the same area by water. Grand Banks was not even on our list of potential candidates. I thought they were stodgy, unimaginitive, uninspiring designs (I still do) and up here every time you turn around you trip over one. They're like Hondas--- you see yourself coming and going every time you're out in one. At least Hondas come in different colors......
And we had no interest in what I call the cabin-cruiser boats either--- Uniflite, Tollycraft, Bayliner, Carver, etc.
We did not want to spend a lot of money on a cruising boat---- we have other pastimes that make owning a boat seem cheap by comparison and we weren't going to give any of them up. We would simply be adding the cruising boat to the mix.
The boat that topped our list of desirable possibilities was the Lord Nelson Victory Tug. We wanted a boat that is to the water what the Beaver we fly is to the air--- rugged, somewhat utilitarian and work oriented, able to deal with the situations we felt we were likely to encounter, and so on.
Problem was Victory Tugs at the time were too new for used ones to be in the range of what we were willing to spend, plus I'm not a fan of the engines they were using in the earlier ones.
But in talking about potential boats to good friends who'd made careers in the marine industry the name Grand Banks kept coming up. I'd say, "But they're just a giant yawn with a hull," but our friends would go on about how well built they were and so on.
Then a friend I fly with sometimes and who now owns the same boat that his dad bought some fifty years ago suggested that we charter a cruising boat for a week to see if we even liked this kind of boating. And another friend, the then-head of engineering for Alaska Diesel Electric (today's Northern Lights/Lugger) suggested a charter company owned by a friend of his up in Bellingham that had a large fleet of GBs. So we did.
While our opinon of the GBs aesthetics, or lack of them, didn't change we found that the GB36 was indeed well built, had a layout we liked, had a one-level, wide-ish walk-around main deck--- something we would never be without now in any boat---- was easy to handle, and had wonderful visibility out of those big windows I disliked the look of so much.
And when we found out that the early fiberglass models could be bought for between a song and a song and a half (and still can be), we decided that if we were going to get into this kind of boating, it didn't make any sense to buy anything else. So we got one.
We still much prefer the look of the Victory Tug and there are other boats we prefer to the GB in terms of asthetics. But for what we want to do and what we wanted to spend, it has proved to be a good and reliable choice.
But we do get tired of seeing them everywhere we turn out on the water.