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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 09-03-2010
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Need Boat Ladder Suggestions

I have my boat on the hard and need to have a good ladder solution. I will be refitting every system on the boat and up and down extensively over the next 6 months. I want a rolling step ladder with a platform but they are expensive and my other half says there has to be a better solution. Does anyone have any great ideas that would make my other half happy?

Thanks -
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Old 09-03-2010
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I have 10' and 6' step fiberglass step ladders the 6' is cheep the 10' was pretty big bucks BUT much less than falling off a cheep one

I also have some 16' planks i set up on blocks when i want to work on a large section of hull and do not want to keep moving the ladder
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Old 09-03-2010
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We use an articulated stepladder similar to the one below to make an impromptu scaffold. We place a 10' 2 x 6 board across the top so that we can walk from one end to the other. A 2x8 might be more reassuring for you. The result is a very sturdy platform that is stable and strong enough for both myself and my wife. Ours is a cheap-ish Harbor Freight ladder, but any articulate ladder should work. We've used this setup without issue for about 20 years.

Werner M1-8-16 8'/16' mm Type I Aluminum Articulated Ladder
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Old 09-03-2010
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I'd second the Werner ladder Sabreman points out... very useful and far more versatile than a typical stepladder.
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Old 09-03-2010
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maybe come up with some projects around that house that you would love to do.... if only you had a quality ladder! Maybe that way the purchase would have added value...
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I extend the ladder to it's full 16' length for painting the exterior of the house and fold it in half (8') for getting to our cathedral ceilings (at home, not on the boat ).

Super versatile ladder. I wouldn't be without it, regardless of whether I had a boat.
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Keep the great suggestions coming!

I like the Werner ladder idea but what about going up it with 50 pounds of ballast in my arms? I guess I could rig a pully system around a platform and hoist gear and supplies up to the deck via the dingy davit. I'm still not convinced I don't need to shell out for a rolling step ladder. This is the one I'm looking at: Used Warehouse Rolling Ladder 12 Step

Tommays suggestion was very helpful too. I will do that for fiberglassing the hull, sounds perfect!

Thanks guys!
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Old 09-03-2010
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I have refit my Tayana 42, and I can tell you, ladders of ANY TYPE suck. Build yourself a set of stairs 4' wide, with a landing on top at least 8' X 5'. Put a hand rail up both sides, and make the deck of the landing at the same level as the deck of the boat. Nail asphalt shingles to each step, and onto the platform on top. You will be walking those stairs a million times with heavy crap. build a post on a corner to hook up a come along or rope and pulley system to raise and lower all the things you do not wish to fall all the way down with. You will never regret it if you do.
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This only really works if you own the place that you work on the boat at... most people need something that is a bit more portable a solution, rather than something so permanent. It might also work if you have a long-term relationship with the yard you're keeping your boat in.
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Originally Posted by Capnblu View Post
I have refit my Tayana 42, and I can tell you, ladders of ANY TYPE suck. Build yourself a set of stairs 4' wide, with a landing on top at least 8' X 5'. Put a hand rail up both sides, and make the deck of the landing at the same level as the deck of the boat. Nail asphalt shingles to each step, and onto the platform on top. You will be walking those stairs a million times with heavy crap. build a post on a corner to hook up a come along or rope and pulley system to raise and lower all the things you do not wish to fall all the way down with. You will never regret it if you do.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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I would try really hard to negotiate with my yard to allow a good set of stairs. Since KJ already mentioned a rolling set, I didn't see space or perceived permanence as a problem. My stairs can break down in under half an hour with a cordless screw gun. I used 2 X 12's for the stringers, 2 - 2X 6's for each tread, and 2 sections of brick layer scaffold for the tower. I have the entire boat surrounded by scaffold, and can walk up the stairs and either work around the topsides, or step onto the deck carrying both hands full. I just can't imagine trying a refit going up and down a ladder...

So what type of boat did you buy KJ? What will the scope of your refit involve?
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