Kuchenbude is a very German term for the full enclosure of the cockpit of a sailboat with a removable cover – it means something like “a hut to have a cake in”.
We are spoiled with the warm and relatively dry weather in New England during the and had to come up with a plan to enjoy our anchorages in the colder and more rainy climates of North West Europe.
After we very hot return from Antigua in Arpil 2011, we had already installed a fly for our cockpit. It connected to a zipper on the dodger and went all the back to the backstay; simple and really effective.
While a bimini could have achieved the same result, it is a somewhat permanent structure that changes the overall look of a boat with its arch at the back of the cockpit, the fly is completely removable and only visible when in use.
We therefore asked Neil Thurston to build us sides and an aft section to fully enclose to cockpit. The pictures below show the results after he installed them a few weeks ago.
Our “Kuchenbude” requires a solution to store the pieces when not in use. We keep the roof, “the fly”, handy in the cockpit lazaret for daily use. For the new sides, John and Henry installed straps under the deck in the anchor locker. All sides were wrapped in towels and the complete tube put into a large sail bag. That package is now hanging in the anchor locker out of the way and protected against chafe, bends etc.
A simple, but very stable set up that should keep us warm at just about any anchorage…