Grand Banks realized long ago that if you’re going to keep up, then you can’t stick with tradition forever. While the 36 was an easy boat to spot, the design had its limitations and new looks to the classic GB started coming off the line. Then in 1974, Grand Banks made what was probably their biggest departure from died-in-the-wool tradition. They started making boats out of (gasp) fiberglass. Yes there were a lot of naysayers, and those who thought that GB’s would be built of wood forever. But time and tide waits for no man, and even though their boats are now made of fiberglass, great pains are made to make them look like wood. Something very few are willing to do as it adds to the cost of building. Now, it’s time for Grand Banks to march forward again by giving the shaft to… well, shafts. This new Eastbay 46 SX is powered by CMD diesels with none other than Zeus pod drives. By doing this, Grand Banks has opened up a lot of room in the boat, and a lot of options.
Available in a Flybridge Model
Engine options up to 600 mhp
Optional power sunroof
Cedar-lined hanging lockers and abundant storage
Proven hull design by C.R. Hunt Associates
Grand Banks Eastbay 46 SX (2013-) Specifications
49' 11'' 15.21 m
42,006 lbs 19,054 kg
14' 7'' 4.45 m
3' 4'' 1.00 m
500 gal. 1,893 L
145 gal. 549 L
Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.
Grand Banks Eastbay 46 SX (2013-) Captain's Report
The Grand Banks Eastbay 46 SX has a LOA of 49' 11" (15.21 m), a beam of 14' 7" (4.45 m), and thanks to her Zeus pods, she has a draft of 3' 4" (1.00 m).
What’s the Big Deal with Pods?
It’s important to realize that by utilizing pod drives, you effectively open up a lot of space, and that space can be put to good use. Normally, the inboard engines have to be mounted far forward to make room for transmissions and shafts, unless a V-drive is used. With pods, the entire drive system is mounted just to the rear of the engine. This means that a builder can now slide the engines back, and put them low, freeing up space inside the boat.
Shaft drives have the propellers mounted at a downward angle, so they lose efficiency as part of their thrust is directed downward. With pods, the drives have their propellers driving at a direct horizontal angle, and with the thrust directed horizontally, all of it can then drive the boat forward instead of up and forward. This more efficient thrust translates into lower operating costs, and possibly higher speed.
Choices in Layouts
Now that Grand Banks has freed up space in the living area, they are able to offer options to the layout that were previously impossible. Let’s take a look at some of the choices that the buyer now enjoys.
Standard main deck layout. Galley down, two settees, and a bench seat to port. We like the fact that two companions can be facing forward comfortably helping the skipper and enjoying the view.
In the standard layout, we have an arrangement conducive to entertaining guests in a conversational atmosphere. Dual settees are aft, one with a high/low table. The helm is forward with a double wide seat opposite. This gives the advantage of having a second, or third set of eyes looking forward. We’re always happy to see a built-in chart table.
Optional main deck layout. Galley up, settee to port, entertainment center abaft the helm.
The second main deck layout has a feature that we’ve started seeing on sportfish boats, and we like it even more here. Designers are always agonizing over whether to go galley up or galley down. Now there’s another choice in the mix, galley aft. It makes good sense. When you bring the groceries into your house, you probably go from the door right to the kitchen, and the two are usually close together.
Here the galley is right at the entry to the salon, and with all that deck space in the cockpit, we predict that most owners will opt for putting a table there for alfresco dining. Grand Banks thinks so too, and that’s why the aft bulkhead has a glass partition that retracts into the bulkhead for delivering food to the cockpit with pass-through ease.
To starboard is a refrigerator and galley countertop. An entertainment center lies just ahead and abaft the helm. To port is the settee that thankfully is on a raised platform for better viewing. This makes the settee the most popular gathering area, especially when the boat is underway.
Standard lower deck plan. Galley down, two staterooms, two heads.
Optional lower deck layout #1. A cruising couple’s dreamboat. The guest stateroom is converted to a salon and office.
Optional lower deck layout #2. The galley to port is moved up to the main deck and another stateroom is added.
Optional lower deck layout #3. Crew quarters are added.
The helm layout allows for a single flat screen display. We think that it wouldn’t take much retooling to clear space for a second display. Stidd helm seat is standard. Note the ships electrical panel to port.
Once you’ve had a taste of digital throttle controls, you never want to go back. Just abaft the controls is the Zeus joystick that takes the worry out of docking when a crowd is watching. A sure bet when you arrive in the 46 SX.
With the galley down layout, the companionway keeps the area open and airy. Note the opening portlight over the stove.
The master features a queen size berth with ample storage. We love the steps leading up to the sides of the berth. The stateroom also features an ensuite head with enclosed shower.
Performance and Handling
The Eastbay 46 SX is powered by a pair of 8.3L Cummins QSC 600HO engines putting out 600-hp each. While we haven’t tested this boat to verify the numbers, Grand Banks tells us that these engines push the 46 SX to a max speed of around 33 kts, with a cruise speed of roughly 26 kts. A 500 gallon (1,893 L) fuel capacity gives the 46 SX a range of roughly 240 miles, says the builder.
Grand Banks does a lot of things, perhaps most things, right in the Eastbay 46 SX. Its signature is its lavish use of teak below. Our experience is that most people use Eastbay's in the summertime around home, and usually only venture any distance on the annual yacht club cruise. But the 46 SX can do much more than that.
The Eastbay 46 SX does not come cheap and for many people that is the rub. Each year new boats are introduced to compete with Eastbay, and most are priced lower. Our advice is to start your search with the Eastbay 46, then look at all of the others. With time the value/price relationship with which you feel comfortable will become apparent.
Standard and Optional Equipment
Grand Banks Eastbay 46 SX (2013-) Standard and Optional Equipment
= Standard = Optional
Grand Banks Eastbay 46 SX (2013-) Warranty
Grand Banks Eastbay 46 SX (2013-) Warranty Information
Warranties change from time to time. While BoatTEST.com has tried to ensure the most up-to-date warranty offered by each builder, it does not guarantee the accuracies of the information presented below. Please check with the boat builder or your local dealer before you buy any boat.
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!
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