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Old 09-14-2019, 10:53 PM   #1
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Swim platform protector

I live on the hook & use a fiberglass skiff as my tender. Any recomendations to cushion the edge of the swim platform?

I know Taylor Made makes a pacman shaped fender for this very task, but I'm not gonna buy 10 of those at $$$ apiece (plus they take up alot of space).

Also, I dont really need fender level cushioning.

Anybody ever tried attaching some of that (vinyl?) dock stripping?

Any other creative solutions?
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Old 09-14-2019, 10:57 PM   #2
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Maybe a couple of standoffs like Mooring Whips? You could easily make something simple to keep the dinghy off the platform then no fendering needed.
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Old 09-14-2019, 11:14 PM   #3
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Canvas /rubber dinghy rubrail is sold by Hamilton Marine and others. Its modern nylon material you can mount on skiff and your swim platform
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Old 09-15-2019, 12:16 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Sailor of Fortune View Post
Canvas /rubber dinghy rubrail is sold by Hamilton Marine and others. Its modern nylon material you can mount on skiff and your swim platform
Better to have the soft rubrail on the platform. Typically, the hard dinghy's cushioning is on the top, well above the level of the platform.
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Old 09-15-2019, 12:22 AM   #5
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Canvas /rubber dinghy rubrail is sold by Hamilton Marine and others. Its modern nylon material you can mount on skiff and your swim platform
The skiff has a rub rail but its well above the platform, the problem is the bow occasionally sliding up the platform until the bow eye nicks it. But yes, adding a canvas rub rail to the platform sounds like an idea.
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Old 09-15-2019, 09:54 AM   #6
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Yes, I had this same issue using a Boston Whaler as our dinghy. I eventually found some soft rub rail that would fit the platform. Helped some.

The mooring whips are a great idea (I'm about to install a pair on my dock behind the house), but don't do anything for you when getting on and off the dink, and may well get in the way when using the platform. There are deluxe ones that spring fully perpendicular when not in use though.

We learned to put the dinghy on a long leash when not in use if there were not other boats around. Otherwise, craning it up to the boat deck was the best solution, though inconvenient. Especially when you are living on a mooring or at anchor for long periods of time.
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Old 09-15-2019, 10:11 AM   #7
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Better to have the soft rubrail on the platform. Typically, the hard dinghy's cushioning is on the top, well above the level of the platform.
Why not have it on dinghy and swim platform? The stuff is cheap
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Old 09-15-2019, 10:22 AM   #8
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Another idea might be to put the dinghy painter attachment point right at the edge of the swim platform (small cleat, etc.?) and then string a rigid pool noodle on the painter line to hold the dinghy off 3-4ft.
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Old 09-15-2019, 11:13 AM   #9
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I keep the skiff on a 15-20ft painter when at anchor, so I don't need to stop it from coming back to the big boat at rest. It's moreso just the daily on & off...especially when ferrying provisions or inexperienced guests. It's minor bumps mostly, but its an everyday thing, so it makes sense to mitigate it.

Now a seperate issue entirely is when on the move, I have to tow it. And as a single hander in the ICW, it's a cumbersome proposition dealing with bridges & a towed tender. Some of these suggestions like mooring whips & pool noodle over painter are thoughts I've had for that issue.

Really wish I had the option to get the skiff onto the big boat for those situations, but I'm somewhat doubtful thats doable. Altho it is on my list of "research" topics.
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Old 09-15-2019, 11:24 AM   #10
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I live on the hook & use a fiberglass skiff as my tender. Any recomendations to cushion the edge of the swim platform?

I know Taylor Made makes a pacman shaped fender for this very task, but I'm not gonna buy 10 of those at $$$ apiece (plus they take up alot of space).

Also, I dont really need fender level cushioning.

Anybody ever tried attaching some of that (vinyl?) dock stripping?

Any other creative solutions?
Keeping the dinghy under control at anchor is simple once you find the solution that works best for you.
I tie my dinghy painter to my midship cleat, so that the back 3 ft of the dinghy rest against the side of the swimgrid. I tie the stern to a stern cleat on the boat, or to a cleat on the swimgrid. It behaves well there and allows access and egress without fuss. I prefer the starboard side as that side is where the steps up and gate from the swimgrid are located. Mine is an inflatable, so no fendering is required. If I had a hard dinghy, a couple of dinghy sized fenders attached to the dinghy would do the job.
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Old 09-15-2019, 11:35 AM   #11
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I tie my dinghy painter to my midship cleat, so that the back 3 ft of the dinghy rest against the side of the swim grid........... Mine is an inflatable, so no fendering is required. .
Although I have an inflatable, I tie it to cleats mounted on the swim platform. I also use Jet Ski fenders to protect the inflatable's tubes & they conform extremely well to the rounded tubes. They're very low profile, tough as nails & I never remove them.
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Old 09-15-2019, 12:44 PM   #12
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I put this on the edge of my swim platform. I think this is what Sailor of Fortune was suggesting. It is canvas covered closed cell foam. It is made by Taylor Made Marine.
Gunnel Guard - Taylor Made Products 2019 Catalog
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Old 09-15-2019, 07:18 PM   #13
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dock edge used on swim platform

I used dock edging to finish my homemade swim platform. I looked at the material that Parks suggested and considered it seriously but the edge of my platform was almost 3 1/2" tall and I wanted to finish of the raw aluminum flat bar stock edge as well as hide the raw edge of the decking. I bought mine from Merco Marine - a supplier of dock building parts and stuff It is fastened with aluminum pop rivets . The dock edging did not willingly lay well in the corners that is where you see the close spaced rivets on the top edge of the corners. It is four seasons old and doing very well.
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Old 09-15-2019, 08:46 PM   #14
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I’ve had this same issue with my Boston Whaler banging against the swimstep. Every time it hits, it wakes you up. The solution was 2 fiberglass mooring whips that bolted to the teak swimstep. Pull up, clip the eye hooks to the bow and stern cleats on the Dinghy, pull the dinghy close to the swimstep, just on the swimstep, let the dinghy go. The mooring whip lines adjusted properly, keep the dink off the swimstep. It’s really a great solution. The other solution is to tie the dinghy to the starboard or port side of the boat with fenders hanging to protect the boat. Adjust lines so you can still jump on the side of the swimstep.
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