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#1 nearlythere

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 08:37 PM

Hi all

We are on the search for a gang plank for our boat. What would your advice be on the best kind? and what sort of length would you advise please?

Many thanks in advance......
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#2 Julynian

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:02 PM

Hi all

We are on the search for a gang plank for our boat. What would your advice be on the best kind? and what sort of length would you advise please?

Many thanks in advance......


Personally I want one 8f/t to 9 f/t long. I plan to use an old wooden ladder cut down so the rails overhang the top and bottom rung each end, then fit a 18mm hardwood ply board along it's length top rung to bottom rung making it easily removable from the ladder in case at some stage you need a ladder. We had a proper plank when last on the water 10 inches wide x 8 f/t, it split and warped even though well treated and ended up useless. A wooden ladder even horizontal is really strong, it'll float too.



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#3 Iain_S

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:10 PM

Copperkins has a scaffolding plank, which cost nothing. Gamebird (26' Sea Otter) uses a section of aluminium ladder with an infill of 6mm ply. (The weight of the user is taken by the ladder rungs, so the ply's strong enough.) Gamebird's gangplank doubles as an access ladder when she's on the trailer.

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#4 AJLintern

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:38 PM

Youngman boards would make a good gangplank :)
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#5 David Schweizer

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:51 PM

Personally I want one 8f/t to 9 f/t long. I plan to use an old wooden ladder cut down so the rails overhang the top and bottom rung each end, then fit a 18mm hardwood ply board along it's length top rung to bottom rung making it easily removable from the ladder in case at some stage you need a ladder. We had a proper plank when last on the water 10 inches wide x 8 f/t, it split and warped even though well treated and ended up useless. A wooden ladder even horizontal is really strong, it'll float too.

I built a similar 8ft Gang plank but using an aluminium ladder and 18mm soft wood. It tkes my weight with no problem, but is so heavy that i cannot lift it onto the roof of the boat withiout a great deal of effort. I have gone back to using my 8ft section of scaffold plank.
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#6 luctor et emergo

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 10:15 PM

Hi all
Snip....

and what sort of length would you advise please?

Many thanks in advance......



Ideally, long enough to reach from gunnel to the bank.







On the K&A this may need a full length scaffolding board. (They are boards, not planks :rolleyes: )
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#7 Julynian

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 10:15 PM

I built a similar 8ft Gang plank but using an aluminium ladder and 18mm soft wood. It tkes my weight with no problem, but is so heavy that i cannot lift it onto the roof of the boat withiout a great deal of effort. I have gone back to using my 8ft section of scaffold plank.


Good point, a wood ladder would be heavier than alloy too, I could manage it but Lynn would probably struggle. I might go for alloy, I do have a couple of unclaimed ones at the warehouse, and as another poster mentioned thinner ply than 18mm wouldn't be a problem, 6mm does seem a bit thin though 9mm possibly, I'm 19 stone Posted Image

BTW if you sealed all the ends of an alloy ladder, would it float on the air content? just a thought!

Edited by Julynian, 29 May 2012 - 10:17 PM.

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#8 luctor et emergo

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 10:21 PM

Good point, a wood ladder would be heavier than alloy too, I could manage it but Lynn would probably struggle. I might go for alloy, I do have a couple of unclaimed ones at the warehouse, and as another poster mentioned thinner ply than 18mm wouldn't be a problem, 6mm does seem a bit thin though 9mm possibly, I'm 19 stone Posted Image

BTW if you sealed all the ends of an alloy ladder, would it float on the air content? just a thought!



I believe it will float, I have read about people using alloy boat poles, with the ends suitably sealed, which are said to float.
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#9 Proper Job

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 10:46 AM

BTW if you sealed all the ends of an alloy ladder, would it float on the air content? just a thought!

What about a quick squirt of expanding foam in to the voids?
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#10 john6767

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 10:51 AM

I was using a piece of scaffolding board, until I decided to go all posh and bought a piece of wood from a timber merchants and painted it up. Scaffolding boards are very springy if you need to use them over any length, I used thicker wood, which does of course make it a bit heavy but it feels safer. None slipped one side with budge cage sand on wet paint, very effective.
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#11 David Schweizer

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 11:10 AM

Ideally, long enough to reach from gunnel to the bank.







On the K&A this may need a full length scaffolding board. (They are boards, not planks :rolleyes: )

Very dangerous to make a definitive statement correcting another member's terminology on here without checking your facts. The terms board and plank are both used in the trade:-

http://www.easupplie...nk-p/mh3c51.htm

http://www.secondhan...dingplanks.com/
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#12 alan_fincher

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 11:16 AM

Very dangerous to make a definitive statement correcting another member's terminology on here without checking your facts. The terms board and plank are both used in the trade:-

http://www.easupplie...nk-p/mh3c51.htm

http://www.secondhan...dingplanks.com/

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 11:23 AM

Where is Paddington Bear when you need him



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#14 nearlythere

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 02:38 PM

Thanks for all of your replies, I think initially we will go with the Scaffold plank/board and go from there.

Thanks again, your input has been invaluable :cheers:
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#15 DHutch

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 05:20 PM

Douglas fir is a nice wood, might be too expensive or even unsuitable for a gangplank, but I would be looking for a suitable piece of wood rather than an aluminium derivative, we have the latter (an actual dedicated gang plank, but very like a youngman board) and although its nice and wide for the infirm its jolly heavy for its length and very ugly.


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#16 ditchcrawler

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 06:21 PM

I went down the old ally ladder route but fixed short lengths of decking to it. I must say I can't remember the last time we used it.
Edit to add.
We are just back from the pub and the rate the level is falling here at Holywell on the Gt. Ouse we may son need to deeply said plank. About 3 - 4 inches since 4pm.

Edited by ditchcrawler, 30 May 2012 - 08:20 PM.

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#17 deletedaccount

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Posted 31 May 2012 - 09:54 AM

The onyl problem I've had with my scafolding plank/board/whatever is that the metal binding at each end has scratched my paint up something rotten when the boat's moved around due to others passing.
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#18 Julynian

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Posted 31 May 2012 - 02:59 PM

The onyl problem I've had with my scafolding plank/board/whatever is that the metal binding at each end has scratched my paint up something rotten when the boat's moved around due to others passing.


Just take the metal off and seal the end grain with some Cuprinol or similar protection. The hoop irons are there to stop the end grain splitting. If you want to make a good job of it. Saw the ends off square and fit some hardwood strip 15/20mm thick on either end glued and screwed, use long screws into end grain 50/60mm x 6 gauge screws, pre drill end grain with a 2mm hole to stop splitting.

Edited by Julynian, 31 May 2012 - 03:01 PM.

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#19 deletedaccount

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Posted 01 June 2012 - 09:06 AM

I considered it, but then realised I was simply too lazy
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#20 jonathanA

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Posted 01 June 2012 - 04:33 PM

I went to our local wood yard and bought some 270MM wide plank/board - apparently its used for stair risers or something. cut it to length, cut corners off to give it a bit of shape, whipped round the edges with the router to give it a nice profile, primed and painted. couple of handfuls of sand to give non slip finish (in nice diamond pattern)on top side. job done for about £10-15

fits nicely in the pole/plank carriers, isn't too heavy and is painted in colour to match boat.
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