10 Feb Stove Windscreen
Here’s a problem I never knew existed before spending 10 days on Beagle Knot, a Lagoon 380 catamaran: cats with a galley up (on the bridgedeck) can have problems keeping the stove lit!
One great thing about the Lagoon 380 is the ventilation in the saloon/galley area. Denis and LaDonna could open two large ports on the front and a huge sliding “patio door” to connect to the cockpit area. Great for keeping the boat cool, but the 20 to 25-knot tradewinds would come through the galley area and blow the out the burners on the stove.
I assume there are other cats (and maybe some monohulls and motor yachts) with a similar problem. You don’t want to close the ports in order to cook, but you do have to keep the burners lit. UPDATE: This is also a problem on our Gemini (galley down).
LaDonna used her cutting boards to create a windscreen on the front side of the stove, as shown in the photo at the top. This protected the flame without sacrificing the great ventilation of having the galley on the bridgedeck.
And while this worked, we discussed the two basic problems:
- Couldn’t use the cutting boards for their intended purpose while they were in use on the stove; and
- The worry that the cutting boards (a plastic material) could melt or burn.
A metal plate would solve both problems.
I immediately thought of the camp stove windscreens I’d used as a teen, as well as the “spatter guard” that my stepmother always used. Both are hinged metal plates that you can put around pans — the first for exactly the purpose of protecting the flame from the wind and the second for keeping grease splatters in a confined area.
In looking online, I discovered that while splatter screens still exist, they get horrible reviews (all brands!) for having sharp edges and cutting users. I quickly eliminated those! But there are many camp stove windscreens available that had good reviews and no one complaining of cuts.
Many of the camp stove windscreens are short and would work well if set up in a curve around the pan on the stove. While the photo shows one around a camp stove, you can envision how it could be set up around a galley stove burner, or be a straight strip to use at the front edge of the stove.
I also found one brand that makes a “tall” version which could be used as LaDonna used hers at the front of the stove, wedged into the oven handle. A quick look at your stove will probably tell you which would work better for you. UPDATE: I bought the shorter one for Barefoot Gal and it works perfectly!
Both of these come in foldable sections, so can be used in a curve or used as a flat piece. Both are made of aluminum and available on Amazon:
- SHORT windscreen — 5-1/4″ high, 27″ long (9 sections 3″ wide each)
- TALL windscreen — 9-1/2″ high, 26″ long (8 sections 3-1/4″ wide each)
These lengths aren’t going to go totally around any but the smallest pans — but that’s okay. You really only need it on the side that the wind is coming from, not totally around the pan. Or you could use it in a straight line at the front of the stove as few boat stoves are wider than 24 inches (most are 20″ or 21″ wide).
These are not only rustproof but compact to fold up and store. I haven’t used one with a galley stove, but I have used one extensively on camping, hiking and canoeing trips. It made a huge difference, and setting it in a curve kept it from being knocked over by the wind. I’m positive one would work well in the galley. UPDATE: Yes, it does!