Cockpit Chocks?


So- we have these random chocks in the footwell of the cockpit (see attached photos). We don’t have anything on the boat that fits these chocks so we can’t figure out what they’re for.

I’m inclined to remove them (they do bite quite a bit while moving around in the cockpit), but before we do, we wanted to see if anyone would have any ideas.


Mike: Hi!

We have chocks around Zygote’s footwell. Z’s cockpit chocks are not the same as yours, I don’t think I’ve been on board a BCC with your style of cockpit chock, but I suspect that your chocks could perform the same function as those on Z.

Before I elucidate further, I’ll say that I am jealous of your cockpit winch storage. Looks wonderful!

Back to Zygote and her cockpit chocks:

When we commissioned the building of Z, our intention was to cruise her in tropical and sub-tropical waters.

Roger D. Olson had been president of Sam L Morse Co. from I think 1992 to 1998. Roger had cruised his first BCC, Xiphias, from the US to Thailand. And brought back to Sam L. Morse Co a big mob of innovative ideas to improve a BCC for long distance cruising. Roger also collected ideas from other owners. As president, he built BCC Nereus, incorporating many of those innovations, to show to prospective customers.

We chose to adopt several of those innovations.

Among them - and relevant to your post about cockpit chocks - were:

  • a teak grate to sit on the bottom of the cockpit footwell. The teak grate keeps feet dry, provides a better gripping surface than the standard GRP non-slip pattern, and is one of the several items that add pleasant timber/traditional look and feel to what otherwise is a plastic bucket of a boat;

  • a set of timber chocks, in Z’s case plain linear chocks just below the rim of the cockpit foot well, that can support that teak grate. The deal being that I can pick up the teak grate from the bottom of the footwell and then establish it on those chocks. The grate then turns the cockpit (from bridge deck to poop deck) into a flush deck. And, if the tiller is removed from the rudder head or if you have folding tiller, that flush deck is just perfect as: (1) a bunk for two or more either when moored or under way (especially in tropical or sub-tropical conditions - who wants to be in the cabin when the temperature and humidity above deck are just peachy?); (2) entertaining; (3) working (on most anything that needs a large work surface, from canvas work to setting up an LMG - with belt feed - on a tripod). I’ve even used Z’s grate in the flush deck position when sailing with the rudder under Wind vane or autopilot control.

Of course, a BCC is a boat. And that means it’s a compromise. Cockpit chocks, whether in the style that Z has or what you have, have negatives. My shins have met Z’s cockpit chocks a time or three. But they add a function that is quite neat.

As I noted above, I reckon your chocks would do the job of supporting a grate that otherwise could be used at the bottom of your footwell. Your chocks might have other functions: do you have any pieces of tubing that fit neatly into the U of those chocks?

Have you the opportunity to talk to the Previous Owner (or the owner who commissioned your boat)?

The case of your cockpit chocks is a good argument for all BCC owners detailing in an Owner’s Manual the idiosyncrasies of our individual boats. They’re not cookie cutter production boats. And most every BCC I’ve been aboard has an innovation due to its build or its owner(s).


I would be dropping a round bar in those chocks on either side depending on the tack. They are for us short legged people to brace our feet on.

Hello Bil,

Do you have some photos of your setup that you (and others) can share?

This is a great idea to expand the functionality of the cockpit.