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Old 07-07-2016, 01:05 PM   #1
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dock stairs

I am looking for a pattern or plan to have a removable ladder/step over the gunwale of our 40 OA trawler which would make dismounting onto dock easier.....we recently saw one on a CHB and would like to create one for our boat....is was reminiscent of a bunk bed ladder from my childhood...
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Old 07-07-2016, 01:22 PM   #2
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Old 07-09-2016, 07:03 PM   #3
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dock stairs

This is what I plan to make some day. Click image for larger version

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Old 07-09-2016, 07:15 PM   #4
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This is what I plan to make some day. Attachment 54097
Don't wait too long! I'd much prefer climbing that than the on-dock-mounted stair case you now use. (It looks well within the capability of a 12-year-old in middle-school wood shop, leastwise in the late 1950s.)
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Old 07-09-2016, 07:19 PM   #5
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This is what I plan to make some day. Attachment 54097
I made 2 of these kind of stairs in 2 consecutive years.

Each year a passing wake or two destroyed them.

A friend gave me a light 3 step plastic stair with handrail by Todd, It has lasted and isn't too heavy to get on and off when traveling.
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Old 07-09-2016, 07:24 PM   #6
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I made 2 of these kind of stairs in 2 consecutive years.

Each year a passing wake or two destroyed them.

A friend gave me a light 3 step plastic stair with handrail by Todd, It has lasted and isn't too heavy to get on and off when traveling.
Lousy berth/marina. Regardless, just deploy when needed.
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Old 07-09-2016, 09:25 PM   #7
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Lousy berth/marina. Regardless, just deploy when needed.
Liveaboards tend to use stairs a lot.

I loved the design and look...just impractical for me.

Plus, it just wasn't one marina, lots of East Coast marinas are right on the ICW where wakes are a constant issue in many places.
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Old 07-09-2016, 09:30 PM   #8
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Maybe this is overkill, but I liked looking at them so much, I took these pics. They reside on the stbd side of a 50' Stephens on my dock.









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Old 07-09-2016, 09:34 PM   #9
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Maybe this is overkill, but I liked looking at them so much, I took these pics. They reside on the stbd side of a 50' Stephens on my dock.








I`ve seen stairs like those on some older early 1950s Halvorsens, very classy style.
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Old 07-09-2016, 11:18 PM   #10
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Liveaboards tend to use stairs a lot.

I loved the design and look...just impractical for me.

Plus, it just wasn't one marina, lots of East Coast marinas are right on the ICW where wakes are a constant issue in many places.
You have my sympathy. My deck closely matches the floating docks here, so we merely step over the gunwale. No step/ladder is needed unless one is an invalid.
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Old 07-10-2016, 07:46 AM   #11
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You have my sympathy. My deck closely matches the floating docks here, so we merely step over the gunwale. No step/ladder is needed unless one is an invalid.
Thanks Mark....

Then there are the fixed wooden docks of all shapes and heights.

We dock and dine at a place in Sebastian, Florida where one year the water was so low.....

I had to rig the 6 foot folding dog ramp from my trunk cabin tops angled upward to the fixed dock to get anyone besides me on or off.
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Old 07-10-2016, 08:25 AM   #12
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I don't really have room for the bulk of a set of stairs that adjusts, not to mention room in the budget. I like the idea of steps that hang over the gunnel, but there are so many different dock heights. What barely reaches one dock gets crushed between the boat and the dock at the next stop.

Until I hit upon the right solution, we're carrying around a folding stepladder from the home improvement store, similar to this one:
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Old 07-10-2016, 09:18 AM   #13
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We have noticed that many cruisers do carry a set of steps. We carry the Todd two step with hand rail. Our boat has a walk out transom door which is perfect in floating docks, and our mid-ship doors are the right height for most fixed docks. But sometimes we find that we need a different solution so we carry steps too. We cruise full time and have found we use the steps about one out of every 5-6 marinas.

Todd Boarding Steps - Double Step Handrail
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Old 07-10-2016, 09:33 AM   #14
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Stephens made a nice boat. Looked at a Matthews before getting our Albin. Nice boats - perpetual woodwork. Those old builders took something simple like a boarding ladder to an art form.
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Old 07-10-2016, 09:42 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
I made 2 of these kind of stairs in 2 consecutive years.

Each year a passing wake or two destroyed them.

A friend gave me a light 3 step plastic stair with handrail by Todd, It has lasted and isn't too heavy to get on and off when traveling.
It looks like making the wooden steps so they could flip up and rest out of the way on the caprail when not in use would keep them safe from wakes and pilings. It shouldn't be a big modification. Maybe they do that now?

At our home slip we have wooden steps screwed to the dock. cruising we carry one of these http://www.walmart.com/ip/Rubbermaid...-Gray/20641056
tied to a handrail so if it gets knocked off the dock we can retrieve it.
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Old 07-10-2016, 09:49 AM   #16
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A friend gave me a light 3 step plastic stair with handrail by Todd, It has lasted and isn't too heavy to get on and off when traveling.
These steps are very light and being plastic, do not risk scratching the hull/deck when putting them out or bringing them in.
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Old 07-10-2016, 10:43 AM   #17
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Dawgfish is a 26' MacGregor. The owner built this step. Something similar looks relatively easy to built for those of us without caprails.



The step makes it easy to bring groceries aboard or to have guests arrive from a dinghy.

I've seen fenders that double as a step with a flat surface to step on top. They looked interesting too. Dual purpose sounds good to me.
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Old 07-10-2016, 10:57 AM   #18
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Tom, in general I do not like to see these used. While they are certainly strong enough, I don't feel they are stable enough to be used by the people that need them. If someone isn't fit enough, or have good enough balance to be able to get on and off the boat without the stairs, the step ladder isn't safe enough for them.

Just my opinion after watching some fellow boaters attempt to use these.

For our sailboat we had some permanent dockside steps we used. When away from our home dock we used a Fender Step. Our current boat has Fender Steps but they are still too high for my wife to use on most floating docks. She needs two steps to go from the pilothouse to a low floating dock. We are considering the two step Fender Step but haven't decided yet.

Quote:
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I don't really have room for the bulk of a set of stairs that adjusts, not to mention room in the budget. I like the idea of steps that hang over the gunnel, but there are so many different dock heights. What barely reaches one dock gets crushed between the boat and the dock at the next stop.

Until I hit upon the right solution, we're carrying around a folding stepladder from the home improvement store, similar to this one:
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Old 07-10-2016, 11:05 AM   #19
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I've seen fenders that double as a step with a flat surface to step on top. They looked interesting too. Dual purpose sounds good to me.
I have used the FenderStep on my boats for 20 years. They work exceptionally well. Now however, my boat's freeboard is too high for my wife (old, fat, and out of shape by her own admission) to be able to use. Even for me (old, bad knee, but at least tall) it is a stretch. She needs and I could use an extra step.

If you need just one step, I highly recommend these. Easy to use, won't mar the hull, and incredibly strong.
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Old 07-11-2016, 12:11 AM   #20
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Made by Little Giant ladders.

All aluminium and very sturdy, stable, wide stance and wide steps that are covered with a non skid rubber like material. Folds up completely flat for transport or storage and can be wheeled about by tipping it backwards onto it's wheels. I have two, a four step which stays at my moorage and a three step which is folded up and goes with us.

The three step was $136 including shipping from Amazon.com.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I highly recommend them.
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