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Ex Sailor 06-14-2016 10:42 AM

Swim Platform
Our current 10' fiberglass swim platform is only 20" wide and needs to be replaced with something around 36" wide ..... ? We want to carry our dinghy on it .... I was thinking synthetic Teak or something ? but weight would be a consideration too. This will be a project after haul out this fall but I need to gear up for it.
Has anyone replaced theirs ? where ? approx. cost ? any ideas would be appreciated. Tx. in advance, FB

Daddyo 06-14-2016 01:02 PM

3 Attachment(s)
I built a new bigger one for our boat a couple of years ago. I used Ipe, screws and epoxy. The stuff looks like teak, is much stronger and much cheaper. It's hell to bend however.

GFC 06-14-2016 02:41 PM

Mark, great job on the installation. That looks very nice. You mentioned what wood you used but could you be a little more descriptive for those of us who are not familiar with all the different woods?


Marlinmike 06-14-2016 03:38 PM

Daddyo, awesome job!!

Donsan 06-14-2016 03:44 PM

GFC, do a Google search on Ipe decking. This link has lots of info on it:

What Is Ipe Decking?

It seems to be a very dense wood and doesn't float. Very difficult to cut and as Daddyo reported, difficult to bend.

CPseudonym 06-14-2016 03:48 PM

I could be mistaken but believe Mark did a thread detailing his swim board redux. Might be worth a search of his previous started threads.

dwhatty 06-14-2016 05:47 PM

Have posted what we did in a couple of threads over the past three years. Been very happy with it so far. No maintenance. Strong. Non slip. Ours is 30" deep.

Trawler Forum - View Single Post - Alternative Swim Platform Materials

caltexflanc 06-14-2016 06:29 PM

I'd talk to these guys first. Very knowledgeable and could well already have something for your boat. I met them at the Miami show one year, on a fellow cruiser's recommendation and I discussed a larger platform for my Hatteras and they already had the specs for one. I have seen their work on a couple of boats and it is very good.

Butler Marine Products-Manufacture teak and fiberglass transom platforms and anchor pulpits, boat ladders and boat accessories

stubones99 06-14-2016 06:55 PM

One other thing about Ipe wood is that many people are allergic to it while woodworking.

Make sure you're not one of those guys...


dhays 06-14-2016 06:57 PM


Originally Posted by Daddyo (Post 451661)
I built a new bigger one for our boat a couple of years ago. I used Ipe, screws and epoxy. The stuff looks like teak, is much stronger and much cheaper. It's hell to bend however.

I agree with the others. Nice job on that swim step. Looks great. I love the appearance of what to me is the classic teak swim step. I have always liked them since I was a kid. However, I would never want to maintain one because mine would be weathered out to that pale gray instead of the lovely varnished teak look of those classic, boathouse kept, "cabin cruisers" of my youth.

You got the best of both worlds!

Capn Craig 06-16-2016 05:17 PM

Aluminum Swim Platform alternative
4 Attachment(s)
I faced nearly the exact dilemma as original poster; Ex Sailor. I cut the factory original glass platform into three pieces and hauled it to the curb on big trash day. I designed and built the replacement out of 100% aluminum including hardware. The only non aluminum component is the PVC dock edging around the outside.

The structure is cut, bent and welded 6061-T6 aluminum. the decking is extruded aluminum with powder coat paint to simulate wood. This is stuff made for a no-maintenance alternative to composite and vinyl decking.

The result is a much stronger, twice as wide, half as heavy, as the original fiberglass platform.

I had, and loved the teak platform I had on a Mastercraft tournament ski boat I owned years ago. But the maintenance was a lot of work. And it lived most of its life out of water, out of the sun, on a trailer in my garage. I've got all the teak I need on the rest of the boat.

MartySchwartz 06-16-2016 07:10 PM

The original swimstep on out President 41 was only about 22 inches deep and was all but useless. We had a replacement made by PlasTeak and it looks like teak but is completely maintenance free. Now our swim step is 33" wide and we have been able to add boarding stairs. They made it to our measurements and shipped it to us. Just realized I have no pictures of it anywhere, have to get some next chance I get.


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