Thread: Mystery boat
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Old 10-20-2010, 07:46 PM   #1
Scraping Paint
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Join Date: Oct 2007
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Mystery boat

This boat generated a bit of a mystery on the Grand Banks owners forum when it was first described.* It's wood, and looks like a GB (actually it looks better than a GB in my opinon).* It is located in Oak Harbor, WA.

Turns out the story behind it is rather interesting.* It is NOT a GB but it was built by one of the Newton sons who with their father Robert*started American Marine in Kowloon in 1956.**In the early 70s*American Marine opened their Singapore yard where some wood boats and all the fiberglass boats were built.* The company went bankrupt in 1974 and closed the Kowloon yard the following year.* American Marine was subsequently sold*to an investment group headed by*Robert Livingston.*

John Newton wanted to continue to build boats.* His brother Whit left the company with no desire to build boats again and went into high-end furniture manufacturing.

John Newton, with Joe Kong, a marine engineers hired by the Newtons not long after*they created American Marine, built a few smaller boats based loosely on the GB design.*They called this 28' boat model*the Polaris.** John then moved to Honduras where he could get more land for a boatyard.* He tried to get Joe Kong to move there, too, but Joe didn't want to leave and soon partnered with Harvey Halvorsen to create the firm of Kong & Halverson*and the boats they built were called Island Gypsies.*

In Honduras, John Newton turned out a 28' boat similar (or identical) to the*Polaris*that was an attempt to get into the sport fishing market.

This is one of those boats.* It may have been built in Kowloon under the Polaris name*or it may have been built in Honduras.

The boat is undergoing a restoration in Oak Harbor.* The current owner is apparently unfamiliar with the boat's history.* It has a single four-cylinder*FL90 in a box aft of the cabin.* The main cabin is lower than the typical GB and there is no lower helm station.* There is no forward cabin as in a GB.* The cockpit is huge (for fishing).* The main cabin has a lower sole than a GB (since the engine's not under it) which gives the boat much more pleasing lines than a GB (in my opinon).* The hull has a smooth sheer line rather than the step or dip down in the GB hull.

So while it looks like*a "baby"*GB it's actually a Newton 28.* Very pretty boat in my opinon.* It's a design that could scale up very nicely to 36 or even 42 or 46*feet, where the GB "classic" design starts looking pretty clunky in my opinion when it gets over about 46 feet long.

The photos were taken by a member of the GB owners forum in Oak Harbor recently.* The history I paraphrased was provided to the GB owners forum by Shing Kong, Joe Kong's son.
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