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What's in your Galley? - improvements, hacks and tricks for our San Juan Cruising and Boat Camping

         First some background thinking - most of us simply use the boat we have the way the PO (previous owner) set it up, plus some of our own tinkering.  Once in awhile though we get to make a major decision. For example; about twenty  years back we acquired a boat with a pump up alcohol cook top, and of course it was a useless rusty piece of stainless (s)crap so over the side it went.  (dumpster) My cheap rush rush solution was to nail a piece of plywood over the gap where the alcohol stove used to take up, and set my propane camp stove on top. And then we took off for the San Juans or somewhere.

        Later I replaced the nails with screws and painted plywood for formica on plywood and created a pretty nice looking counter top.  Of course while underway the propane camp  stove is stowed away.  Boring - Ok, what I learned was how well the set up worked. Over the years several of our boats have had factory propane ovens, some with gimbals, and I admit they were nice, but they also took up precious space 100% of the time. Don't forget the propane bottle fills a locker too.

           So let's fast forward to Kraken to see what we do today.  Thanks to the PO, Kraken has a Dickinson diesel stove which gets zero use in the summer because its primary function is to blast us out of the boat in freezing weather, which it does very well. Our cast iron soot belching mini monster  takes forever to heat up and cool off, but for now, I put up with it in spite of the baggage, weight, space,  and occasional tantrums.
Bristol diesel stove
Our  Dickinson Bristol with door open - yes,  the oven on your boat is bigger.

      I could have set kitchen dishes etc. on the cold cook top, but I opted for a cleaner counter and varnished up a scrap of plywood with little spacer legs.
Counter top over diesel stove

But wait there's more.  I made sure my camp stove would sit comfortably on top.
boat camping with portable cook stove
I also whacked up a set of shims for leveling, which we use once in awhile when making pancakes.

Here's more in our galley bag of  tricks.
cook top oven by coleman
This cool Coleman oven fits just fine, and is just a smidge bigger than the Dickinson, (see the same tray)
It also heats and cools as fast as the flame can be turned on or off.  This set up makes fantastic biscuits, pizza and cookies, I highly recommend it

Wait, it gets better.
cook top oven and drip coffee maker
Our camp drip drip coffee maker fits too!
Hot cinnamon rolls and coffee anyone!
(guilt free boating at its best)

Everything gets easily stowed, and we get our counter space back.
folding oven
The oven folds up into that little box and fits under the Dickinson next to the camp stove

And that's the way our galley stove works.

Galley improvements on Nordic Tug
BTW - when the diesel stove is hot we place the camp stove on the counter to the left of the sink and  carry on.
The rest of the story, follow this link and then scroll way down to our last straw with soot and the diesel stove replacement.  new propane stove install


  1. Just to be honest, we have decided the messy soot our diesel stove dumps on us is no longer acceptable. See my propane replacement in the do-it-yourself page

  2. With the materials that are now used in modern tents many people now go for the electric option as the tents are fire retardant. camp cooker


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