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#199875 - 01/19/10 01:46 PM Floating Dock Hardware
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
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Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
I'm finalizing the design, and starting to shop for parts/pieces. Where should I check for hardware? I'll be needing corner braces, rollers, hinges, and brackets to allow the pier to slide on pipe that's driven into the pond bottom.

I'll be using 30 gallon barrels for flotation, 55 gallon barrels will make the dock/pier too wide (plans are for 48" width), with an 8' x 12" "T" on the end.
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#199883 - 01/19/10 02:28 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
rockytopper Offline
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I have used electrical 1 1/2 galvanized conduit and 2 inch conduit straps from the lowes electrical dept. Just lag bolt the straps to the sides and slide the pipe thru and drive into bottom. Works great.
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#199896 - 01/19/10 05:27 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: rockytopper]
david u Offline
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Registered: 11/28/06
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Esshup, I used the hardware supplied by Dock Builders and found it to be very well made. I used the 3" pipe brackets, then bought thin walled 2 1/2" pipe for uprights. You don't need to drive them into the bottom. As a matter of fact, I wouldn't because you may need to move your dock. I had to use a bumper jack and chain to pull my pipes up out of the bottom..du
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#199899 - 01/19/10 06:45 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: david u]
esshup Offline
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Thanks Dave. I've got a bunch of 2" galvanized pipe in 10' sections here that will be more than enough for the pier. Once it's in, it's in because I have to make a fixed portion on the bank that will be 12' long, and the hinged "plank" portion of the pier will be attached to that. With the pond fluctuating 4' in water level from Feb. '09 'till now, I can't just use boards to connect the pier to the shore.
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#199908 - 01/19/10 08:06 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
david u Offline
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http://www.pondboss.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=127745#Post127745
Esshup, check out my earlier thread on a floating dock. I have the same problem with water levels. The plank portion can roll on top of the dock. My water level has varied by as much as 8 feet. Dock Builders supplies both the rollers and the hinged hardware for the rigid portion of your pier. This may not be what you want to do, but it is one way to deal with fluctuating water levels.. du
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#199932 - 01/19/10 11:46 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: david u]
esshup Offline
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David:

That's exactly what I was planning on doing, 'cept I figure that my hinged plank will be 16' long x 48" wide. I was planning on using three 2x10's as stringers running the 16' length. With the likely probability of snow on it, I don't think a slope greater than 3:1 will be easy to walk on. I'm concerned if I use 2x8's as stringers the plank will have too much bounce in it.

How long is your hinged "plank"?
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#199955 - 01/20/10 09:53 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
david u Offline
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Registered: 11/28/06
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Loc: denton & montague counties
The hinged gangway is 12 feet long. Obviously the longer it is then there is less slope, but the weight could be an issue. I thought about a 16' gangway, but would use tubular steel for my stringers. That opened up another set of issues regarding screwing the lumber into the metal. So, I went with a 12 ' gangway. As you said, 2x10's would be needed for 16' length. It will be very heavy. You will certainly want an extra float where the gangway interacts with the floating dock. I'll try to get some pictures this weekend of the slope when the pond is down as it is now...du
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#199962 - 01/20/10 11:08 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: david u]
esshup Offline
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Yup, you're right about the weight. The ramp with the 2 x 10's will weigh around 600#. I called Dock Builders this a.m. for a hardware/flotation quote and they said they'd have a quote back to me by tomorrow morning. I gave them the projected size of the dock, including the ramp. The floating portion of the pier will be in the shape of a "T", with the top of the "T" 12' wide by 8' deep, the bottom of the "T" is a planned 16' long x 4' wide. Total length of the floating portion will be 24'. That puts the deep end of the pier in 8' of water now, and the pond is within a foot of low pool. Hopefully they will tell me where to put the pipe collars as well. I wasn't sure how many pipes to put in the pond to anchor the pier.

I thought about if the top of the pipes were open that they'd fill up with water. Instead of capping them, I'll drill a 1/4" hole in the upper portion of the pipe, right above low pool water level to let any excess water out.
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#200006 - 01/20/10 04:16 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
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Make sure you post photos of your project.
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#200017 - 01/20/10 05:35 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: jeffhasapond]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
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Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
As soon as I start breaking ground.
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#200039 - 01/20/10 08:30 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
RC51 Offline
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Registered: 07/06/09
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Loc: Arkansas
Esshup,

I am glad to hear you are you are going with a 8 x 12 T if I had to do it again I would have done that myself it will make things much more stable for us well rounded folks if you know what I mean! \:\)
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#200048 - 01/20/10 10:36 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: RC51]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
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Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
Dock Builders Supply sent the quote this evening. They are recommending 2764# worth of flotation for the end of the pier (691# x 4) furthest out in the pond, 1114# of flotation at the bottom of the "T" where the gangplank will rest and 1382# worth of flotation (691# x 2) divided up under the rest of the bottom of the "T".

The portion of the pier furthest out in the pond weighs very close to 1,000#, the bottom of the "T" weighs close to 600# as does the gangplank. Interesting in how they divided up the flotation.
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#200338 - 01/22/10 09:27 PM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
david u Offline
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Registered: 11/28/06
Posts: 359
Loc: denton & montague counties
Esshup, here's the pics I promised. The pond is 5 feet below spillway. The ramp is 12 feet long. The dock is 12'x16'.


The hardware they send is to anchor the ramp to a wood pier, much like I think you're doing. I rigged mine to attach to a round metal pipe.



There is no problem walking up & down the ramp with this slope. When the pond was 8 feet low, then the angle of the ramp made walking more difficult.


Hope this helps you in deciding how long to make the hinged ramp part of your dock
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#200374 - 01/23/10 02:04 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: david u]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
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Looks good Dave! I'm planning on the ramp being 16' long, just because of the snow during the winter possibly making it slippery to walk on if the pond is low. Did you make your ramp from three 2x8 joists? Do you notice any deflection on the ramp when you walk on it? (not counting the pier moving in the water) I was thinking of bumping it to 4 pieces of 2x10's due to the extra length. 4' wide.

That is the exact same hardware that I was looking at.
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#200388 - 01/23/10 08:06 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
RAH Offline
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Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 3833
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
I had a ramp without a handrail, but installed one after a couple of falls and one close call (by guests). I then attached a vertical 4x4 to the fixed deck and the floating deck (notched to fit around the decks) and attached 2x4 railings which are attached to the 4x4s with a single lag screw so that they can move as the water level fluctuates. I am not as happy with the overall appearance of the dock after adding the railing, but after a few mishaps, I thought it wise to add the rails.

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#200389 - 01/23/10 08:15 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: RAH]
RAH Offline
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Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 3833
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
P.S. My floating dock has no connection to the ground, rather I have diagonal chains running between opposite corners of the fixed dock and the floating dock which are both 12 feet wide. This allows the gang plank to be fastened to both potions of the dock with tee hardware. The chains rub right under the gang plank, the the chains remain taught as the water level changes. There is some swing on the floating dock, but not too much. I used turnbuckles to tighten up the chains.

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#200402 - 01/23/10 09:29 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: RAH]
david u Offline
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Registered: 11/28/06
Posts: 359
Loc: denton & montague counties
esshup, the ramp is very solid with the (3) 2'x8' joists. I would guess you will want to frame the ramp and secure it to the pier before adding the decking due to the weight..du
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#200405 - 01/23/10 09:40 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: david u]
david u Offline
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Registered: 11/28/06
Posts: 359
Loc: denton & montague counties
esshup, if you figure out a way keep the posts sunk into the pond vertical & plumb let me know. I have considered framing the top, but interferes with the dock when pond is full. Could try driving the posts, but then you can't move the dock to shore for repairs. As you can see the posts get out of plumb when the wind is blowing the dock (25mph yesterday) , plus the pontoon boat makes the pull even worse.. I may try cables from the pier to the corners of the dock...du


Edited by david u (01/23/10 09:41 AM)
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#200409 - 01/23/10 10:23 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: david u]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
Posts: 24014
Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
du:

I don't have the wind (usually) that you do, and the pond is somewhat sheltered by 40'+ trees to the South/SouthWest. I won't have a pontoon sail on the pier as well. Usually, I can walk on the ice during the winter if any repairs are needed. Having to move the dock to shore for repairs brings a whole new set of problems with it, but I think I might have a fix for ya, although it will take some work.

Can you put the posts in the pond bottom vertical? I mean, sink them in a long way. If you don't have rocks or hardpan in the way, you can by sticking a hose down the inside of the pipe and washing away the soil at the bottom of the pipe. have someone else hold the pipe vertical, with a level on it while another person washes the pipe down. Stop a couple of feet from your finished depth, and drive it the rest of the way. The first one we put in that way, we washed it down the whole way, and it settled down a couple of inches with the weight of the boat on it. The next winter we had to add to the top of the pipe to keep the hoist level.

We built a boat hoist that supports a MasterCraft Ski boat that way, using a 20' piece of 2" galvanized pipe at each corner, sinking each one roughly 10' into the lake bottom. Those 4 pieces of pipe have supported a boat every summer for the past 34 years. I'll take pics and post what the home made boat hoist looks like. It was easy to put the pipes in the lake bottom during the winter standing on top of the ice.

O.K. Say you have the pipes in the pond bottom. Now how do you make the pier removable from the pipes? Take the brackets that have the pipe sleeves welded to them, and keyhole the holes for the bolts. You'll have to remove the carriage bolts to remove the brackets the first time to put the keyholes in them, but after that, all that's necessary to do is loosen up the carriage bolts enough so the bracket can slide in the slots to remove the pier from the pipes. If the slots are the same width as the square under the head of the carriage bolt, the bolt will still lock in place as normal. Use a clamp on the pipe under the bracket to keep the bracket from sliding down the pipe to the bottom of the pond, or remove the bracket completely from the pipe once it's loose from the pier.
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#200420 - 01/23/10 11:18 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
david u Offline
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Registered: 11/28/06
Posts: 359
Loc: denton & montague counties
esshup, making the pipe holders removable would have been a good idea. Problem now is that the backside to the brackets isn't accessible because of where the floats are. You would have to take the deck boards off to get there..du
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#200423 - 01/23/10 11:34 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: david u]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
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Awwwwwwww, rats. \:\(

If you ever have to get to that area, it might work if you could turn the bolts around, having the nuts on the outside. The only problem then would be tightening a nut down on a slot. They do make flanged nuts, but that would require the hole in the keyhole to be much larger, maybe too large.
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#200426 - 01/23/10 11:52 AM Re: Floating Dock Hardware [Re: esshup]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
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Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
Update:

After getting the flotation information from Dock Builders, it looks like my thinking was flawed and I will be using 55 gallon barrels for flotation. I was forgetting that the whole barrel would have to be almost completely submerged for it's rated flotation, so I have to almost double the flotation capacity for the barrels to work. Exchanging the 30 gallon barrels for 55's would do the trick.
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