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Three-Year-Plan Dock Is Finally Finished!

author-gravatar markitan8dude Aug 23, 2018

When we bought the house four years ago I knew what I wanted. I also knew how much it was going to cost me to achieve it, so I set out on a three year plan. Unfortunately, when you do things in phases, it often requires backtracking and this project was no different. I had to rip up decking twice to add more structure to support the next phase. I learned a LOT throughout this process. Some simple, like don't use square head stainless screws for anything you will later need to remove, some not so simple. This is the third dock I've built and, by far, the biggest by square footage. 

Since I knew the project was going to be completed in phases and the first phase would set the tone and groundwork for everything else, I decided to build a floating dock just so that we could get out on the water. That served its purpose very well and would later become a floating work platform for the rest of the dock project. 

First up was a 75' walkway to a 12x12 deck. 

Then I added a 5' step down landing area to help get in and out of boats. It's somewhat sacrificial in that I'll have to replace the girders/beams/caps (whatever name you prefer) more frequently than anything else because they spend approximately 2-3 hours a day submerged in salt water. The rest of the structure is dry except in extreme tides. 

Then it was time to get the boat out of the water. I added 6 more pilings (tying the 3 nearest the existing dock to the structure for added stability) and ran power and water in this phase. 

Adding the walk-around required ripping up approximately 10' worth of deck boards. 

Framing complete! 

Done (for now). 

Dang it's hot! I'm going to need some shade if I want to be out here! Up goes the roof and half the supports for the upstairs deck. Here's where I REALLY got to enjoy the fruits of my labor. I put up the ceiling, gutters, outdoor fans, surround sound, TV, projector screen and swings. I also built a sofa and ottoman/coffee table and bought some nice cushions for it. 

Ran gutters. You can also see how the double beam is resting on the 6x6 notch. 

Shelf for the projector

Christmas time before the stairs went in. 

All that was left was to finish the upstairs deck. Easy right? Not so fast, my friend! Time to rip up another section of work I'd already completed, build stairs and THEN do the decking upstairs. 

Stainless steel cabling and arm-rail support view

Couch and ottoman I built. Cushions from Amazon

Left side is coated with WoodRX, right side is natural with no sealant. Deck wood is approximately 2 months old here. 

Finished with two coats! 

Cool thing about the stairs is now I have a place to store my beer fridge, ice machine and my electronics! 

Detail of the hand rail. 

Thanks for looking! 


Looks great! Thanks for sharing. 

Dang this is awesome. May I ask whereabouts this is located? I assume the coast of somewhere since you're dealing with tides and saltwater. Is your setup something special for the area or is it a fairly normal thing to have a big dock tied to the property?

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