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Splinters: Update on Progress And Next Steps (PHOTO GALLERY)


A few weeks ago, Eric Paulsen, the owner of Splinters (“Noah’s Work,” May/June 2016), asked me if I knew how to get my hands on saloon dimensions for his project, a seven-year ongoing restoration of a 1968 Grand Banks. The story orbits around Paulsen’s efforts to give Splinters a second chance at a seagoing life, and, at the time of writing, much of the work had been completed to get her seaworthy again. Despite this, several significant steps remained between her and actually hitting open water, such as systems installation and the construction of interior furniture.

When I stepped on board, Splinters’ saloon was a blank slate, with very little left from GB’s production days. Paulsen had already nearly completed his rebuild of the master cabin, and told me that the saloon furniture was next on his to-do list. The factory-designed layout had been scrapped by a previous owner who removed the built-in dinette and slid a futon sofa-bed into its place. There was no return to the galley, making a true straight galley rather than the more typical L-shape, and the original bench seat at the wheel was gone. As expected, the condition of the wood was poor: Many of the small teak strips that make up each square of the cabin sole’s traditional parquet floor were coming unglued.

Paulsen set to rebuilding the saloon, starting with the bench helm seat, cabinetry, and long dinette. Though he plans to make some changes from the original model (keeping the straight galley and making the dinette convertible to a queen berth), he wanted to recreate the starboard-side arrangement as it was drawn at the factory. He emailed me to ask if I had any insight into the seating geometry and measurements of the original layout. Luckily, living in Seattle means that I have easy access to Grand Banks, especially the vintage kind. The regional GB owner’s association boasts over 400 registered members (

I arranged a meeting with Harry Walp, a friend and former colleague now with Stan Miller Yachts, to take measurements on one of his 42 brokerage listings. Though this newer fiberglass model differed slightly in specification from the late 60s version of the 42, the improved seating geometry was perhaps more valuable for Splinters’ rebuild. After taking as many measurements as I could think of, I emailed Paulsen the sketches, and within a few weeks, received a fresh batch of photos from his recent work. To see the finer details, click each image to enlarge it.

 Paulsen's helm drawings, the nearly-finished product can be seen below.

Paulsen's helm drawings, the nearly-finished product can be seen below.

Parquet is beautiful, but tedious.

Parquet is beautiful, but tedious.

Editor's note: The above entry is from Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Cooper's September Letter From The Editor.