Build a floating pond dock
Radio interview source: Arlene Smith, owner, Dock Accents
Floating fort for kids
Kids and water are naturally drawn together. If there's a dock floating somewhere, it's usually the first thing they swim to and use as a platform for jumping in. We used to rent a farmhouse on the Honga River on the eastern shore of Maryland when I was a kid. We would play for hours on the dock there, netting blue crabs with turkey necks as bait, tied on the end of a string.
I've known several people who have floating docks, and you can tell when it's not quite big enough. It wobbles around in the water and if anyone's standing on it, they risk falling in whether they want to or not.
Arlene Smith is the owner of a company that sells docks and recommends a dock be 8' to 12' wide for a stable swim platform. It may sound like an expensive project to build something that big, but it doesn't have to be.
"The most economical way to build them is just with pressure treated lumber," Smith says. "We supply the galvanized hardware that you need for bracing and angles, and also the floats that you would need to build the dock."
The floats are foam-filled polyethelene that can hold 400 pounds apiece for buoyancy. Some people find an old pontoon boat that doesn't run anymore, take off the bottom tanks, and put a wooden platform on top.
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