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Advice, Suggestions and General Help New Topic Printer Friendly Version

  How to build a kayak & canoe dock
  Posted by: old_user on Jul-21-07 11:10 AM (EST)
   Category: Canoes 

 

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Messages in this Topic

 

  I've built a dock or two but
  Posted by: duggae on Jul-21-07 12:11 PM (EST)
more information is needed for me to attempt an answer.
 
 
  Very low to the water!
  Posted by: tecleose on Jul-21-07 12:24 PM (EST)
 
 
  Build a canoe or kayak dock
  Posted by: old_user on Jul-21-07 12:51 PM (EST)
I own a small Inn on Sanibel Island (www.BeachRoadVillas.com) that backs up to a boat canal that access the . We have two stationary boat docks that are approximately 3' above the water line (at high tide and around 6' at low tide. Over the years, we have had a number of Guests with canoes and kayaks request that we add a canoe/kayak dock to facilitate their using the boat canal to the Sound and then on to Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge and/or the Gulf of Mexico. The key would be to have safe access from the stationary boat docks to some type of floating platfrom right at or just below the water level (regardless of the tide). This would enable the safe entry into the water from the boat dock above. Also would like to encorporate a "device" to allow the canoe and/or kayak to be lowered safely to the canal.
 
 
  Your best bet in your circumstance
  Posted by: JackL on Jul-23-07 7:19 AM (EST)
would be to copy what the "chickees" in the Everglades National Park have.
It is nothing more than putting 2"x 4" rungs spaced about 14 inches apart and four or five feet long from the top of your dock to below the low water line.
It is up to the canoe or kayak paddler to hug the rungs as they climb in or out and use body english to keep the boat snug up against the rungs.
A couple of them also have a few pileings out about 30 inches or so from the dock and spaced a few feet apart to keep the boat from drifting out.
The kayak or canoe is lowered to the water using a rope a each end or if the water is high enough just slide it off bow or stern first.
If you have some bucks and want to get fancy, you could provide davits with a lowering device.

Those floating things that a paddler paddles up and onto are useless for long sea kayaks but great for shorter recreational ones.
 
 
  reply
  Posted by: old_user on Jul-21-07 12:51 PM (EST)
I own a small Inn on Sanibel Island (www.BeachRoadVillas.com) that backs up to a boat canal that access the . We have two stationary boat docks that are approximately 3' above the water line (at high tide and around 6' at low tide. Over the years, we have had a number of Guests with canoes and kayaks request that we add a canoe/kayak dock to facilitate their using the boat canal to the Sound and then on to Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge and/or the Gulf of Mexico. The key would be to have safe access from the stationary boat docks to some type of floating platfrom right at or just below the water level (regardless of the tide). This would enable the safe entry into the water from the boat dock above. Also would like to encorporate a "device" to allow the canoe and/or kayak to be lowered safely to the canal.
 
 
  yak-a-launcher
  Posted by: swordfish on Jul-21-07 3:33 PM (EST)
http://store.towndock.net/pop-yakalauncher.html
 
 
  A good one
  Posted by: aamapes on Jul-23-07 8:15 PM (EST)
This looks like the dock material used by NY State Parks at Annsville and Schodack Island. It works pretty well for launching. For landing, you hit the slot with some speed, then grab a rope to pull yourself the rest of the way onto the dock. Theory sounds good, but it takes a little practice.

These floating docks are quite good as a launch without the lowered slot - just use the paddle behind the cockpit brace for getting in and out.

Alan
 
 
  Just do the opposite of gov't built
  Posted by: Patuxent on Jul-21-07 5:41 PM (EST)
Take a look at a canoe/kayak launch built by a gov't agency & then do the exact opposite - can't do any worse.

Took a closer look at a 2 year old county kayak & canoe launch where I've never seen a car parked in the large paved lot. No wonder - the fixed pier is 3' above high water - and must be 5' at low tide.
Ridiculous waste of (our) money.
 
 
  Commercial one
  Posted by: SuperTroll on Jul-21-07 6:51 PM (EST)
http://www.kayakdock.com/
 
 
  Canoe/kayak dock
  Posted by: old_user on Jul-21-07 6:55 PM (EST)
Canoes and kayaks donít need a special dock, in fact they donít need a dock at all. Paddlers have been doing wet entries/exits to and from canoes and kayaks since the beginning of time. But if you want a mud/sand free method for entry/exit try this: Get your hands on an old piece of carpeting Ė anything about 3 or 4 feet wide and somewhere around 8 or 10 feet long (or whatever). Carry it down to the stream bank or beach; roll it out Ė instant canoe/kayak ďdockĒ.

That may sound like Iím joking or being sarcastic Ė Iím not. Thatís really all one needs to have a perfectly acceptable way to enter/exit a canoe or kayak without getting muddy or sandy. It REALLY is as simple as that. Some people spend big heaps of money on some pretty sophisticated special floating docks for paddle craft and none of them work one bit better than an old piece of used carpeting rolled out on the shore. - Randall
 
 
  prefer "unimproved" access
  Posted by: Patuxent on Jul-21-07 8:27 PM (EST)
the launch I mentioned above once provided access (I don't mind muddy feet), but thanks to gov't types with "keep busy" buttons, they built a large bulkhead (6' drop to the water), backfilled behind it, fenced both sides & built a pier with large pilings. A large (always empty) asphalt parking lot sits in front of it. All by the same gov't that complains about the increase of "impervious surfaces" around Chesapeake Bay. I'm guessing this cost ~$250K to ruin kayak access - BUT its named a canoe & kayak launch now. Oh yeah, its just past the newly constructed county doggie park...yeah, raise my taxes....

The water might get high enough to launch from the pier in the next hurricane...
 
 
  I agree - perfect
  Posted by: jaybabina on Jul-23-07 6:30 AM (EST)
In CT there was a town that asked about all this advice for building a kayak launching dock. They got all these plans from engineers who know nothing about paddling or entering a kayak.

All we wanted was a sloping area with some tiny crushed stone or the Rolls Royce of launching areas would be some indoor/outdoor carpeting staked into the slope.
 
 
  Get your feet wet
  Posted by: old_user on Jul-22-07 1:30 PM (EST)
-- Last Updated: Jul-22-07 4:20 PM EST --

This post won't be helpful to many, but there may be a few people who find themselves in my situation.

I recently bought a solo canoe weighing 29 lbs and about 29 in max width. My first two attempts to board her with dry feet ended in catastrophe -- the canoe was swamped and I was left flat on my bum in the water. Lesson learned: Get in the water, BACKING UP to the canoe; while standing in the water, lower yourself slowly onto the seat; carefully lift one leg (bow side) into the boat; when you're quite certain that everything's stable, lift the other leg. Forget about dry feet.

 
 
  answers off base
  Posted by: old_user on Jul-24-07 11:26 AM (EST)
A quick visit to your website shows what you're dealing with and most of the replies above are inapplicable to your situation.

The pictures show bulkheads (wood and/or concrete) tall enough to withstand the surge from an average hurricane.

I wouldn't want to launch there either, so your guests are making a reasonable request, especially if they're paying $200 per night.

Your only practical solution is a floating dock with a gangway leading down to it.

I wouldn't worry about davits as they're probably overkill. Just give your gets a stout gangway and a floating dock to launch from.
 
 
  beg to disagree with JackL
  Posted by: medicineman on Jul-25-07 12:24 AM (EST)
'Those floating things that a paddler paddles up and onto are useless for long sea kayaks but great for shorter recreational ones'

maybe for some but not all...i've got the JetDock floating kayak dock and this weekend slip right up on it in a 19 foot Mirage 580, just get up the necessary speed.
 
 
  I wasn't talking about a jet ski
  Posted by: JackL on Jul-25-07 6:20 AM (EST)
-- Last Updated: Jul-25-07 6:21 AM EST --

float.
I was talking about the ones specifically built for kayaks.
We were at a state park where they had just installed one, and with my 18 foot QCC when I had the front as far as I could get it, the cockpit was still out in the water.
If you could get up that amount of speed to get a long boat on that contraption, you should be racing. You would be awesome in a sprint.

Cheers,
JackL

 

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