We Built our own Floating Dock

We had that old crane span pulled out a few months back that was set across the pond to be used as a bridge. The thing was rusted and about to fall in on one end anyway. We needed a new solution. So we decided to build our own floating dock.

I'll try to give you the basic instructions of what we did and what was used to build this dock.

It's made from all pressure treated lumber and the finished size is 10x10'. It's held together with galvanized screws. Mike paid $5 for each of the six barrels that he got from work. Two were missing the small lids on top so we had to improvise. I found an old pickle jar lid and an old frosting can lid. With the use of mass quantities of  silicone we sealed all the lids tight.

The basic frame is made from 2x6 wood with all the smaller cross pieces being 2x4's. The ramp is made solely with 2x4's and all the decking are 1x6's. 

Here's the basic frame. 2x6 boards form the outer square and one down the middle.

We set the barrels in to measure where to set the next cross boards so that we they wouldn't be floating up 
against the deck.

Here it is with all six barrels set.

And now we add more 2x4's for support.

 We wrapped some really good marine rope around the barrels and secured them with some extra brackets Mike had laying around.

 Have to make sure it's good and tight.

 We placed L brackets on each outside corner for more support.

 And now for the launch....

 Okay, good, it floats! We were afraid that the two of us wouldn't be strong enough to slide this into the water. There's about a 3 foot drop right now over the edge, but she slid right in.

Mike drilling in the planks.

Me and Dusty supervising.....

Here's the basic frame for the ramp, made from all 2x4's and then planked.

So we set the walkway on the dock, ran some rope to the other end and we floated it to the other side.

 Here's Mike reeling me in.

 There she is... pretty solid, too.

 Still have some work to do. We'll need to find a way to secure that ramp. We may end up getting another barrel and floating one end.

 Mike fell in. We need a to add a swim ladder. Anybody got one laying around that we could use?

Oh, and another thing....
We plan to name her like a boat. Any ideas?


  1. What size are your plastic drums?

    1. Hey Debbie;

      Stumbled across your blog just surfing the web. Pretty cool dock.

      Wanted to say Hi, and tell you I live just up the road from you in Cape Coral. Hi neighbor!

    2. Saw that TERVIS glass in one of the pictures. A Florida staple.

    3. Also;
      I would put two heavy-duty eye bolts on the land-side of the dock. Attach two ropes to the eye bolts then to the back of your pickup, then you can pull the dock out of the water and onto land if you need to do repairs to the dock. A good pickup should have no problem pulling that onto land. Just a thought.

  2. Hey there. May I ask how stabile this dock ? I mean how much is that lifting ?I am planing to make one soon , I already got the barrels 12 of them . But I can see it's works with 6 as well.

  3. The dock is very stable. I suppose if you were to put 3 or 4 adults all on one corner it might tip but we've had no problems with stability.

  4. I am happy to hear that . Thx 4 your fast answer. Have a nice time on it :-) . Wish all the best .

  5. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55WLriRnzEE&feature=youtu.be

    1. Ooops, your video is not working for me, something about copywright.