DYC Floating Dock
and Maintenance Guide
16 Nov 2015
Table of Contents
- Support Equipment
- Cube connections
- Dock Attachment
- Bumper attachment
- Dock Ramp
- Removal Process
- Winter storage
- Hurricane storage
- Installation Process
The floating docks, ramp and support trailers are designed to allow easy removal and installation that can be accomplished safely by two people and quickly by three or four people. The dock is configured for summer use with all segments installed. During winter most of the dock is removed to reduce damage risk to dock during periods when member activity is minimal. Below are photographs of summer and winter configurations.
The following diagram shows the complete summer configuration with the piling pipe numbers shown in black and the dock section splits shown in orange. The “W” split is the winter split.
Complete removal or installation of the docks should take around an hour. For hurricane conditions all docks should be removed and placed on the ground by the oak tree in the emergency overflow parking and then tied to the tree to prevent them blowing away. For winter conditions without ice expected the outer dock sections can be removed leaving some dock and the ramp available for winter boat users. If solid ice is expected all sections should be removed.
Dock Support Equipment
The dock support equipment shown in the following photo:
- Bolt wrench to remove/install the dock joining bolts. This is a pipe with a Tee on one end with two pins extending out from the Tee that insert into the holes on the dock bolt.
- Tapered 2x2 for tab alignment during dock assembly.
- Socket adaptor to install/remove pipe fittings attaching piling mounts to the dock.
- Short lines to tie onto end of dock for pulling onto trailer.
- Longer lines to control and move dock sections on water when not attached.
The dock transport equipment shown in the following photo:
- two trailers each able to support two dock sections.
- pullout boards for stacking on the trailers. These boards have wood blocks on one end to keep them from sliding as the second dock section is loaded on top of the bottom dock section. Barnacles will damage the top surface of the dock if they are dragged across it, the separation boards prevent this damage.
Support equipment with no photo:
- Channel locks for dock cleat removal
straps to secure dock sections onto the trailers when stacking on trailer
- Stacking boards to keep the docks separated when stacked on land. Barnacles will damage the top surface of the dock if they are dragged across it, the separation boards prevent this damage. Shown in winter storage below.
The following sections describe how the docks are set up and operate.
Dock cube connections
The dock is assembled from individual cubes that are bolted together using a plastic bolt. Each cube has a tab with a hole on each corner. Each tab on a cube is at a different height on the cube to allow all four tabs to overlap and have the cubes be flush on top as shown in the following photos. Observe the gap between the middle tabs in the top photo and the tabs together in the bottom photo. When assembling the dock you will be standing on the dock which will cause the tabs to move vertically depending upon where your weight is. It is important to make sure the tabs are correctly positioned when assembling to insure the surface of the cubes is smooth to avoid tripping hazard. Also note in the top photo that the bottom tab has a slide on nut that the dock bolt will screw into when assembling. All bottom tabs that will be joined have to have the nut.
The assembly nut is screwed down firmly but not tightened down hard. There is suppose to be some flexing allowed. If the bolt is too tight removal will be very difficult due to shells and sand that work into the joint over the year.
The floating dock is attached to the pilings by use of a collar that slides on a pipe mounted to the piling. The collar is mounted on a 2x6 that is mounted to the dock. This allows the dock to move with the tide. The pipe on the piling is mounted into a matching pipe secured into the piling with a 1/4” bolt to keep it from coming out of the mount. Below the water attached to the piling is a “A”. Each pipe is unique and numbered with a roman numeral to the matching piling coupling. When the dock side collar is replaced it is necessary to insure that the installation is tight enough to prevent any rocking of the collar or it will bind on the pipe and keep the dock from moving up or down. This can create a hazardous condition for any member trying to free up the bound motion of the dock.
The base of the “A” is attached to the piling and the vertical pipe goes through the top of the “A”. The legs of the “A” are angles that extend upward and the cross of the “A” the angle extends downward.
To install the pipe:
- Drop pipe down through the dock fitting and next to the piling under water.
- Then move the bottom of the pipe outward until the cross the “A” is hit.
- Lift the pipe until it is on top the the cross of the “A”, it will not be able to slide outside of the “A” as the legs of the “A” are higher than the cross of the “A”.
- Move the pipe outwards until it drops off the cross of the “A”. Move around to make sure it is now captive in the top of the “A”.
- Insert the top of the pipe into the piling fitting and install the bolt to secure.
Dock bumper attachment
The dock bumpers are installed every other dock cube to protect boats from tabs on the cube. The lines are run through multiple bumpers but stop at each dock separation joint to allow dock separation without having to remove the whole bumper assembly. There is typically one cube overlap that will have to be untied to separate the dock sections. When replacing the lines insure that these termination locations are maintained to ease splitting the dock into sections for removal.
The ramp is hinged at the walkway and rolls on the floating dock. There has to be enough dock under the ramp to prevent the ramp from rolling off the dock at very low tide which is met by the current dock position so do not move the dock any further outboard. When removing the dock the ramp is disconnected and placed on the dock to avoid having to lift the ramp separately. This reduces manpower and makes the process quicker and safer.
The ramp is removed by:
- Separating the the section of dock under it from the piling and floating the section all the way under the ramp.
- To disconnect the ramp from the walkway remove the pins from the pivot bolts then two people hold the ramp up with one hand and pull the pivot bolt with the other and lower the ramp to the dock. Additional people make it easier but are not needed. Just insure the bolts come out at the same time.
- Reinstall the bolts and pins on the ramp to prevent them from being lost.
Tie the ramp to the dock and pull the dock section out on the trailer. The pipes for piling attachment can also be placed on top of the ramp and tied to the dock at the same time to speed up removal and securing of the pipes.
Dock Removal Process
Dock removal process can be done somewhat in parallel if more people are present. The dock is disassembled from the outboard end one piece at a time. Move the disassembled piece inboard and pull out, the next piece can be separated and prepared for removal while the prior piece is being pulled out if enough people are present.
- Get disassembly equipment from locker 11
- Dock bolt wrench
- Tie down straps
- long lines for moving dock
- short lines for winch attachment
- dock cart for the dock attachment bolts.
- At each applicable dock separation point, marked by the orange section numbers on the dock and in the dock diagram, untie the bumper at the joint and retie to leave the bumper line not spanning the separation joint.
- Get tow vehicle connected to trailer. Use the small trailer for the two short dock sections, the big trailer for the other sections. So the first trailer to use will be the small trailer.With use of two tow vehicles the docks can be removed very quickly if there are loading and unloading crews available.
- Tie one of the short lines to the center tabs at the end of section to be used to pull the dock onto the trailer and secure with the winch. Can probably just pull on by hand but will need to secure with the lower winch when on the trailer.
- Tie a guide line to the outboard end of the section. For long sections a line at each end is advisable. The dock will be rotated 180 degrees before pulling out so that the bumpers are on the dock side of the ramp and the pipe attachments are outboard at the ramp to prevent catching on the dock causing damage and injury risk.
- Remove the attaching pipe by undoing the bolt, pushing the pipe out and lifting. Install the bolt into the pipe to keep from getting lost.
- Remove the attachment bolts and place in dock cart.
- Push dock apart
- Rotate around and move to ramp with line. Dock is rotated to keep the mounting board and pipe outboard to avoid damage to docks during moving and pullout
- Back trailer down until top of boards are in water so that the dock will be able to float onto the trailer.
- Pull float onto trailer, pull up trailer by hand or with winch. There are two winches on each trailer, use the lower winch for the lower dock section and the upper winch for the stacked dock section if stacking them on the trailer.
- Pull out of water and secure for additional section pullout or take to destination.
- Repeat for other sections with the following notes:
- For the section with the ramp remove the ramp using the instructions above under the Ramp description to get ramp disconnected from dock and secured on the dock before removing it.
- When you untie the diagonal section from the main dock tie the section to the inside piling to keep it in location until ready to remove it.
The outer dock sections are stored for winter in 4 long sections W-C, D-D, D-E and E-end stacked on top of each other in front of the storage trailer. There should be two boards on the ground under the first section E-end and two boards separating each section above it. This is to keep barnacles on the bottom of the float from damaging top of the section below it, or damaging a section on the asphalt. The dock sections can be slid from the trailer to the storage position with little lifting. Correct stacking of the long sections is shown below:
The pipes should be tied to the top of the dock for storage as shown below:
Dock Installation Process
Dock installation process can be done somewhat in parallel if more people are present. The dock is installed from the inboard end one piece at a time.
- Get installation equipment from locker 11
- Dock bolt wrench
- Long lines for moving dock
- Dock cart with the dock attachment bolts.
- Wood alignment pins
- Piling attachment pipes. All pipes are marked with matching numbers on the piling socket to insure bolt alignment.
- Located the innermost dock piece to install using the diagram at the top of this document.
- Load the piece onto a trailer with the piling attachment board on the passenger side of the trailer to insure it is away from the ramp dock.. Tie long lines onto the dock to control it after launching.
- Launch the dock piece.
- Float the piece into position turning it 180 degrees in the process.
- Align the cube tabs in the correct vertical order for smooth dock surface. Insert the wood pins in the outer tabs to hold the dock in place as shown in the photo
- Install the mounting bolts using the wrench. Do not over tighten, just down flush. There is suppose to be some play in the bolt and over tightening will result in sand and shells making it difficult to remove.
- Install the attachment pipe using the attachment to piling instructions in previous heading.
- Repeat for other dock sections.
- If the section has the ramp, move the section and ramp to the dock where the ramp attaches.
- Lift the ramp up and install the attachment bolts.
- Float the dock out under the ramp to the attachment point and attach the section as all other sections. Do not allow the dock section to move outward allowing the ramp to fall off the dock.
- Install the bumper sections over the dock joints to insure a bumper is at ever other cube.
All dock sections shall be removed and placed on the ground in the emergency overflow grass parking area around the oak tree. After placement all dock sections shall be tied together and around the oak tree to prevent them from blowing away. Both pullout trailers shall also be placed in the emergency overflow area. The boards used for dock stacking and the mounting pipes shall be tied to the trailers in a secure manner.
The docks are mostly maintenance free but several things should be done monthly to insure problems do not develop.
- Check the dock mounting boards and pipes to insure they are solid. The boards should not rotate or the tee will bind on the pipe instead of sliding.
- Check the bumpers to make sure they are not damaged or coming untied
- Walk the dock stepping on each cube, especially outboard cubes. Check for the cube collapsing or hearing air vent. If this is detected the cube has a hole that will need to be fixed. One cube has a patch from a propeller cut. After repair it was placed in the center row to protect it better. Loss of buoyancy in a single cube does not cause much problem and it can wait until fall for repair, loss of multiple in a single area will need immediate correction. The manufacturer no longer makes cubes the size we have, the new cubes are slightly smaller and are not interchangeable.
- Check the joint at the angled dock
- If birds are building up a shell collection try to remove it. Shells will work down into the space around the nuts and make it harder to remove them. The dock will be better for member use if it is washed off occasionally.