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Old 09-28-2017, 08:20 AM   #1
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Boarding Stairs on the Hard?

We've looked into a couple dry storage options on the hard in the PNW for winter, but one wrinkle is a yard we talked to wants us to buy their boarding stairway for $250. but come spring, then what? i guess you leave it there and lose your 250? They said you can bring your own or a ladder, but its a little hard to do if you don't live there full time.
I don't know how they block up the hull but i figure the swim platform will be at least 6' off the ground. Seems like there ought to be a way to buy a used stair from someone leaving the yard... just wondering if anyone has run into this issue or has any suggestions?
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Old 09-28-2017, 08:25 AM   #2
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$2.5 boat dollars. Id just buy the steps and be done with it .
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Old 09-28-2017, 08:46 AM   #3
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Isn't that .25 boating units?

If you built your own, it would probably cost you close to that and a ladder is sometimes not as safe as stairs.

I do get the rub here that they are looking for another revenue stream. Kind of like paying for the tarp at haulout that was already on the ground and still there when you leave. Got to wonder how many times that tarp has been sold. Just keep in mind that it's the rare boat yard that is just killing it money wise. More often than not, they earn a living but not much more. I like to think some of these charges are just a means of being more palatable, so long as some imaginary line does not get crossed.

Do you really want to spend a weekend building stairs?
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Old 09-28-2017, 08:52 AM   #4
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Greetings,
Mr. g. I never realized how low the $$AU was in comparison with the $$US unless you mean $.25 boat dollars...

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Old 09-28-2017, 09:11 AM   #5
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How often are you going to be on the boat? You can buy an 8' aluminum step ladder for ~$80 and lock it to one of the stands.

We built our own stairs during a retrofit on Hobo for about $200 but we were living on the boat. When we a were done, we gave it to the yard to use with the condition that they couldn't charge anyone to use them.

Ladders/boarding stairs are always a pain at dry storage yards.
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Old 09-28-2017, 09:13 AM   #6
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That's seems odd to me. Everyone in our yard (and every other yard around here) uses ladders. The owner of one particularly deep-keeled sail boat built a sort of long staircase/ladder. [Edit: similar to the post above.] Many leave the ladders under their boats, but some use a stepladder they can fit in the back of an SUV or truck, or on the roof of a car.

It's a rare day at the yard when you can't just borrow a neighbor's ladder if you haven't brought your own. There are even ladders out back that nobody claimed at the end of the storage season.

Admittedly, I'm on the opposite coast. Maybe things are different in the PNW.
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Old 09-28-2017, 09:39 AM   #7
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Most people in the yards in my area leave their ladder underneath the boat chained to one of the stantions. I use an old aluminum ladder which is kind of on the cheap side. I don't bother chaining it. Many people want to use it, but nobody wants to steal it. I know because sometimes I have to walk around the yard to find it. I've done this for over 10 years with no issues.

That ladder has lived year round in the yard for last three years. I don't summer at that marina. When I launch the boat in the spring, I leave it behind. It is still there when I come back in the fall. (Watch this year, it will be gone when I haul in a few weeks).
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Old 09-28-2017, 11:23 AM   #8
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Everybody here uses cheap aluminum step ladders. Some lock them and some don't.
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Old 09-28-2017, 11:30 AM   #9
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We store our boat for the winter in a storage barn about a mile from our home. I work on the boat all through the winter. So I set up scaffolding by the boat to make it easy to get on and off when i am carrying tools and parts.
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Old 09-28-2017, 12:01 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the inputs. I should be clear in defense of this yard i called; they did say its fine if we want to bring our own ladder, but for people that want easier and more frequent access, they simply offer this 0.25 boat buck option.
It's good to hear that many people just use a ladder, which makes sense and we won't be getting on that often or with heavy equipment.
The other problem not living close it could be a challenge even transporting a ladder. After a little research though, i'm thinking of just getting an inexpensive collapsible or telescoping ladder that's easier to transport and maybe even store on the boat in the future.
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Old 09-28-2017, 02:43 PM   #11
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.... i'm thinking of just getting an inexpensive collapsible or telescoping ladder that's easier to transport and maybe even store on the boat in the future.
That'll work. but do yourself (and your partner a favor), tie it off. Ladders are problably the largest cause of boat yard accidents.
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Old 09-28-2017, 03:11 PM   #12
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I wouldn't trust my body to the cheapo aluminum ladder I have so I use my 8' fiberglass ladder when the boat is on the hard. I tie it to a stern cleat so it doesn't slip and slide when I'm using it, and lock it to a stand when I'm not.
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Old 09-28-2017, 04:51 PM   #13
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That'll work. but do yourself (and your partner a favor), tie it off. Ladders are problably the largest cause of boat yard accidents.
Agreed and absolutely, i've already considered the best way to tie and secure it.

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I wouldn't trust my body to the cheapo aluminum ladder I have so I use my 8' fiberglass ladder when the boat is on the hard. I tie it to a stern cleat so it doesn't slip and slide when I'm using it, and lock it to a stand when I'm not.
Good point, i'll make sure its sturdy, we just don't have the luxury some people do that live close to the boat and/or have access... like the guy with his boat in a barn only a mile away... must be nice!
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Old 09-28-2017, 05:10 PM   #14
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Some of the cheap, folding aluminum ladders are plenty sturdy and have muti-positioning for versitility.

Just buy wisely.
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Old 09-28-2017, 05:26 PM   #15
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Just use a ladder.
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Old 09-28-2017, 05:31 PM   #16
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Yes, it is nice having the boat nearby in the barn over the winter. Last winter I was able to add a hardtop to the flybridge, fabricate a new flybridge enclosure, repair lots of fiberglass, paint the flybridge and cabin with 2 part polyurethane, paint the decks with Kiwigrip, remove 4 leaky windows and fiberglass them closed, install 3 new ventilation hatches, add a stern thruster, do quite a bit of wiring cleanup and some other small jobs.

This winter we will replace the AC/DC electrical panel, install 11 New Found Metals portholes, paint the hull with 2 part polyurethane paint. Should be a good time.
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Old 09-28-2017, 05:59 PM   #17
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Just use a ladder.


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Old 09-28-2017, 06:42 PM   #18
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So where is the yard you are thinking of wintering the boat?
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Old 09-28-2017, 07:47 PM   #19
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I have a 6 ft step ladder that I lock with a simple bike lock to a jack stand when I leave for the day. Now I also have a dirt home near the storage yard where I can store the ladder when the boat is in the water until the following spring.
Strange that they want to take on the liability of building and selling stairs. Ask if they will rent, say $10/month.
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Old 09-28-2017, 09:23 PM   #20
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I'd like to give a plug to Little Giant ladders. Super stable, folds small but extends too. Chain lock it under the boat if you don't want to have it at home. I love mine. At least go check it out.

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Little-Gi...-001/202071180
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