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Old 23-12-2015, 09:48   #1
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Galley Design/Layout

I would like to ask the experienced offshore cruisers who have the open galley layouts often found on the newer generation European (and many other) sailboats about how the design/layout of their galleys has worked for them underway. We had a "traditional" U-shaped galley where with the countertops in a U-shape "surrounding" the cook. It was easy to strap in to keep from flying around in rough waters, or, just more places to grab if the boat shifted suddenly, or just heeled over any degree.

We had many passages when we really thought we needed that extra support, even just getting something out of a locker or the reefer. The cook would often put a safety strap to keep inside the U to keep from flying. One time the Admiral did not strap in and was launched across the boat to the nav station and carries the scars and bone pain ten years later.

Many new boats have a galley that is all in-line along one side of the boat against the hull so no U shape. You can lean against the countertop only when the boat is heeled to that side with nothing to wedge in on when the boat pitches or yaws. I have always said I thought that this design is inherently less safe because of the lack of handholds or places to support your body and keep it from flying in the rough stuff.

In addition there are some of the bigger boats with large salons with the galley against one hull, no overhead handholds, and sometimes a low "island" salon seat along the midline that seems like you could go over if pitched from the galley towards that side of the boat.

Many new boats are built that way and many of them are routinely sailed across oceans in rough waters. I'd appreciate some feedback from sailors who have actually done passages on these types of boats. I have my own "intellectual" issues with it but obviously there are many blue water boats being sold and sailed with this design.

How is it working for you? Do you feel secure in rough seaways? Have you had any accidents attributable to the design? This is not an attempt to pit traditionalists against more modernists. I understand and have used and been on many boats with the traditional U-shaped galleys. I don't need an exposition on how much better they are. Just want to find out if the other have worked for real cruisers who have them.
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Old 27-02-2016, 20:16   #2
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

I would like to bump this as it is a question I have too!


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Old 09-04-2016, 08:28   #3
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

I'd like to bump it again. The Benes have that design on their newer models. Is it only practical for dock queens or anchored?
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Old 09-04-2016, 08:49   #4
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

I thought this thread would have gotten a few replies. Interesting that it has not.
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Old 09-04-2016, 09:33   #5
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

I kind of classed this thread in the same category as "Which anchor is best?" and "Cat or mono?" Just seemed like a post to stir the pot. There was another post at the same time by the OP that seemed designed for the same purpose, so I just figured someone was bored and wanted a brouhaha.

If not, my apologies.
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Old 09-04-2016, 09:43   #6
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

I've wondered Exactly the same thing. As in mild seas, they're workable.
For instance, I worked with a longitudinal galley on a Cal 29 in F5. But in any more than that????

The one idea which comes to mind, is for the cook to wear something akin to a Linesman's belt/Climbing Harness Waist Belt. And for there to be a well secured, horizontal, stainless steel bar running the length of the galley. On which, there's a sliding ring, or a couple of them.

Then, on the front of the belt, there would be a short (6" or so) tether, with a Wichard snap hook on it's end. The type to which you can affix a braided handle to it's release pin. And that opens easily under load.
So that in an emergency, it's easy for the cook to bail out. Either by pulling the release pin/handle, or by taking a step sideways.

But the sliding ring & tether affords the chef a type of hands off support, so that they can use both (hands) to cook with. Or, if needed, also use one, or both, to assist in stabilizing themselves, via proper hand rails.
Though it's a far cry from being able to wedge yourself in place via feet & hips.

Also, I'm a big fan of the U-shaped galley, where the stove is at the "top" of the galley, towards the bow (or stern, in a pinch). That way, there's less danger to the chef, & it's just flat out easier to cook. As you're spending Much less time, & Energy, fighting gravity.
I got the idea from Annie Hill's Voyaging On A Small Income, many decades back.

PS: IMO, it's a wise rule to Always make the chef wear either a waterproof apron, which extends from chest to ankle, or their foulie bibs. At least at sea.
Particularly as the 2nd worst burns which I ever saw incurred onboard a boat, were from a chef who spilled soup while wearing over the calf socks. For in his mad rush to tear off his socks... well, let's just say that it weren't pretty.


It's Semi-OT. But on those designs, there also seems to be an almost exclusive lack of proper sea berths. Particularly in the Saloon. Ditton on cabinets (or Pilot Berths) along the hull sides. As well as other simple, & proper things, like a plethora of handholds. Radiused furniture/cabinetry corners, & 101 other things which make a boat fit to go to sea in.
Anyone seen a wet gear locker with an powered foulies dryer of late?

So many of these boats seem to be styled more like a European Apartment, then something made to ply the seas.
As they may look pretty, but Function got lost in favor of Form.

Open expanses, & sharp corners Bite, in a seaway!
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Old 09-04-2016, 09:53   #7
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

Missed totally this thread before. I have offshore experience only with U-shape galley. This was open to centerline and in this regard a bit like modern inline galley, thou not as bad as inline it wasn't easy either to work in some sea states.
In my build I'll have an inline galley but there'll be a longitudinal wall and cabinets most of the way behind you while cooking so you can brace both ways butt to stb wall and forehead to port against cabin wall and have hands free what ever happens total knockdown excluded.

BR Teddy
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Old 09-04-2016, 10:17   #8
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

Another downside to the galley against one side of the hull is draining the sink when you are on one tack. A well designed sea galley tries to get the sink as close as possible to the center line of the boat.
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Old 09-04-2016, 14:41   #9
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

regardless of your choice between galley styles, remember those cupboards that open to the beams require a little more management to access safely than fore and aft facing ones when heeling. A bag of Cheetos between the eyes might not hurt too much, your favourite mug perhaps a little more so.
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Old 09-04-2016, 17:31   #10
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

Quote:
Originally Posted by vjm View Post
I kind of classed this thread in the same category as "Which anchor is best?" and "Cat or mono?" Just seemed like a post to stir the pot. There was another post at the same time by the OP that seemed designed for the same purpose, so I just figured someone was bored and wanted a brouhaha.

If not, my apologies.
Since I'm the "OP" on this thread I guess you are talking about me. I can assure you I am dead serious about this and not intending to "stir the pot". I really want to know.

I'm not sure what other post you suggest I might have done something I should be guilty about. I'm with you in hating trolls and their ilk, to the point I have set a few chronic trolls on ignore. If I did do something of the kind, my sincerest apologies.
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Old 09-04-2016, 17:46   #11
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

I don't want to second guess marine architects but I absolutely believe that all modern boat interiors are designed for dreamers and not cruisers. Most people don't do long passages or own their boat for a long time. Lots of open space and no stowage space sells more boats and a few I've seen look dangerous with no where to hang onto or brace. I prefer the claustrophobic closed in nesty style. Passages are tough enough without having to worry about carrying your pot 10 steps across the salon
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Old 09-04-2016, 17:52   #12
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

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Originally Posted by exMaggieDrum View Post
Do you feel secure in rough seaways? Have you had any accidents attributable to the design?
My boat has a L-shaped galley (or a U with one shorter leg ), but I've been offshore on a boat with the galley along one side of the boat. Sea wasn't too bad, but all we eat were sandwiches. And even that was a challenge (quickly grab ingredients and make sandwiches in the cockpit).

Nothing to hold on to, open space behind you, lots of reaching and 'side-stepping' to do, all corners nice and sharp -- perfect when tucked away in a marina, but no decent meals at sea.

They should make the designers cook in those galleys at sea for a while ...
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Old 09-04-2016, 18:19   #13
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

I have one of those huge open wide way too spacious cabins. But it has a great u shaped galley, offset companionway, with great handholds. Love both the space and the seaworthiness.
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Old 09-04-2016, 18:37   #14
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

The long counter design is not a seaworthy one... PERIOD FULL STOP. Galley should be U shaped with sinks close to CL of boat and gimbaled stove against the hull. Smaller boats do it with an L.

The galley should be close the companionway as well.

Shiva has a galley that is sea worthy and efficient for cooking at anchor or in a sea way
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Old 09-04-2016, 20:03   #15
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Re: Galley Design/Layout

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Originally Posted by barnaclejim View Post
I don't want to second guess marine architects but I absolutely believe that all modern boat interiors are designed for dreamers and not cruisers. Most people don't do long passages or own their boat for a long time. Lots of open space and no stowage space sells more boats and a few I've seen look dangerous with no where to hang onto or brace.
My point exactly.
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