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Old 10-18-2014, 06:17 PM   #1
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Lucky find on swim platform

After years of getting quotes on new swim platform construction (4000-4500 bucks), I might have lucked-out on a used one. No, as far as I know there are no used Manatee swim platforms, but I kept looking at good take-offs at FL marine salvage places. It took three years, but I stumbled upon this one in Stuart and thought its radius might be very close. After measuring, it looked even closer, but it was way too big overall. I have to trim both ends but the radius was within 3/8" on four of the six inside touch points. The outside two I have to build up 2.5". The platform was 500. With any luck, I should be able to get this completed for 1 to 1.5 K including brackets. The source hasn't been able to learn what kind of boat it came off of, but condition is excellent.

This is a major part of our MOB rescue plan which included hand winches to replace blocks and tackle on davits, a pivoting dinghy crane, and another winch above the rear deck to attach and pull in someone like me, assuming my Admiral would stop to pick me up. The last step will be dividing the rear tailgate and hinging each half to swing inward.
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Old 10-18-2014, 06:58 PM   #2
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Greetings,
Mr. hh. Good find and a question. Rather tan trimming the ends, have you considered taking a piece out of the middle and placing, say, a wider bracket in the middle to reenforce the joint?
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Old 10-18-2014, 07:24 PM   #3
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Nice! What's it made of?
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Old 10-18-2014, 07:57 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RT Firefly View Post
Greetings,
Mr. hh. Good find and a question. Rather tan trimming the ends, have you considered taking a piece out of the middle and placing, say, a wider bracket in the middle to reenforce the joint?
Hmmm. You may have something there, RTF. I hadn't considered cutting the platform in half, but the addition of an extra wide support in the center could work. What I could do is to swing the platform off center and see how far I can go without messing up the current fit. Very interesting idea. Why didn't I think of the center support?! I'll let you know how it works out, but some movement would help with the amount I need to trim off the ends. As is, I'll have to fill in some of the drain slot length after the cut to make the border solid. Thanks for the help.

Parks: As far as I can tell, it's mostly glass but it's only 125 lbs. or so, so it must have some core. It's 13' X 29" X 1.5". Looking through some drilled holes, there's no wood...maybe some foam.. If I do what RT suggests, there is a 1/8" raised perimeter around the bottom which I could use to fill in some more glass.
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Old 10-18-2014, 08:41 PM   #5
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Greetings,
Mr hh. Another thought. IF, rather than cutting the platform directly in half, you cut a pie shape out of the middle and did the join, you might not have to build up that 2 1/2''. Just throwing ideas out there.
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Old 10-18-2014, 09:26 PM   #6
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Greetings,
Mr hh. Another thought. IF, rather than cutting the platform directly in half, you cut a pie shape out of the middle and did the join, you might not have to build up that 2 1/2''. Just throwing ideas out there.
The way this is fitting now, it seems to me if I move the ends in about 6-8", the outside touch points would contact the boat, perhaps needing a bit of angle adjustment (grinding), but I can't be sure what that would do to the four touch points that are pretty good right now. The pie cut may pull away the center-most touch points, but could be a great finishing idea if I grind the center touch point on each side just a bit. Good thinking.
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Old 10-18-2014, 09:34 PM   #7
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Larry, before you cut the fiberglass, what do you think of making a cardboard or cheap plywood pattern to practice the cuts on?
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Old 10-19-2014, 09:32 PM   #8
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Larry, before you cut the fiberglass, what do you think of making a cardboard or cheap plywood pattern to practice the cuts on?
Now that I have the platform hanging in place on the stern, alterations will be a lot easier to see. I'll try using luan strips to pattern the changes, just like doing a window form. You know, what they say about every boat is a little different? As far as I can tell, there's either a 2.5" difference in the platform or the boat cuz the gap is that much different port to starboard.
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Old 10-19-2014, 10:47 PM   #9
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What RTF said.
Cut out that small center section, then fit the 2 remaining sections together.
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Old 10-20-2014, 10:42 AM   #10
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Larry my rule for this type of work is measure twice, cut once, throw it away, repeat, give up, fix it with putty.
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Old 10-20-2014, 06:42 PM   #11
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Greetings,
Mr. hh. Good find and a question. Rather tan trimming the ends, have you considered taking a piece out of the middle and placing, say, a wider bracket in the middle to reenforce the joint?
That sounsd like a great idea.
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Old 10-29-2014, 09:53 PM   #12
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Update! After taking RTF's suggestion of cutting the platform in the middle, I stacked the halves of the platform on each other and kept moving them inward until I reached the optimum fit of the radius it came with. It left me with a 1/2" void on the inside touch points, zero on the next two and about 2.5" on the outside two, all in all, leaving a minimum amount of glass building for a perfect fit. The platform began at over 13 ft. wide and is now just under 9 ft.. Another foot left on either side and there would be a huge amount of reconstruction necessary to fit the curvy transom. Here are some pic's.
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Old 10-29-2014, 10:00 PM   #13
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Good job Larry. It looks almost perfect.
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Old 10-29-2014, 10:17 PM   #14
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Good job Larry. It looks almost perfect.
Don: I was over at Liquidators in Ft Pierce today and noticed their 80", 9 ft, and 13 ft. stock swim platforms with darned good solid inboard areas, enough to cut and shape to many transoms. In addition, they had two other gorgeous Rivera units that were nearly as close in radius as the one I'm working with now. I've been going over there for years......never saw something close enough to work with. Go figure.
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Old 10-29-2014, 10:19 PM   #15
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Larry, I'm very impressed. I don't think I would have wanted to try that. Nice Job!
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Old 10-29-2014, 10:30 PM   #16
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Shamwow!! Looks great Larry.
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Old 10-29-2014, 10:33 PM   #17
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Nice job Larry!
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Old 10-29-2014, 10:39 PM   #18
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Larry, I'm very impressed. I don't think I would have wanted to try that. Nice Job!
It ain't over yet, Parks. Still have to bevel and fill the center, and do the glass buildup on the outside touch points. I measured and protracted for the under support angles, but the transom actually lifts out of the water at the ends (full displacement, you know) and tomorrow I'll fashion some kind of mock support for the ends, which will go from the outside edge of the platform up to some point on the transom.
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Old 10-29-2014, 11:33 PM   #19
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Really a beautiful job Larry! I'm following this closely. We are headed South, just got in to Deltaville this afternoon. Very curious to see how you hinge the transom door.
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Old 10-30-2014, 06:16 AM   #20
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Greetings,
Mr. hh. Atta boy. Glad I could help. Now, about that boat ride and all the free beer I can drink...
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