March 29, 2009
We are very sorry that we have been absent from the ASA community for so long, but we were advised by our lawyers not to speak of the matter until it was resolved. All that I am permitted to say publically is that we had taken SPLENDID to Dutch Wharf Boat Yard in Branford Connecticut for restoration and that the restoration was not successful. We ended up in a Federal lawsuit with the yard, the litigation has been resolved, and the yard retained possession of the vessel.
Alden 309 K Splendid (ex-Beatrice B., ex-Araglin, ex-Lanakai, ex-Esperance, ex-Marilyn). Originally built for Dr. Fritz B. Talbot by Goudy and Steven's in 1929, Splendid has had a fortunate life and good care and remains, faithfully, a well preserved Alden 309 shoal draft schooner. Her fine pedigree comes from the drawing board of Aage Neilson who drew her hull and lines, Clifford Swain who drew the accommodation plan and Carl Alberg, her sail plan, who all worked at the Alden office during those years. Splendid is owned by Jim and Norie Bregman and is currently located in Connecticut.
Her planking is original long leaf yellow pine and her scantlings and timbers oak. Long leaf planking is one of the of the longest lasting planking woods ever used in ship construction, as it is has excellent strength properties, is highly worm resistant, and generally exhibits only minor electrolytic damage from iron fasteners.
Her original painted white pine decks have been covered with a plywood, glass cloth impregnated with Thorpes easy deck which should give her deck structure considerable strength. Her centerboard has been removed and the keel depth increased using her original ballast.
Her interior is very original, though modified from galley forward to galley aft. These are well ventilated boats with four deck hatches, companion way and two engine room hatches. Her saloon is aft with quarter berth, sliding berth and settee berth, owners stateroom to port, head to starboard amidships, a large foc'sle for storage which can also accommodate two pipe berths. Her spars are original, and standing rigging is stainless. She has been converted to a staysail rig and has been re-powered with a Universal 32 Hp diesel.
The 309's were one of Alden's most successful stock boats. Though not as weatherly as their narrower, full keel sisters, the 270 design, the 309s are powerful and thrilling sailors on a close or beam reach under a strong breeze. Measuring at 43'3", x 33'3" x12'6 and a draft of 5'10", this is a comfortable, roomy and capable cruising schooner.