Boat & Yacht Market

Buying a New or Used Pontoon Boat Checklist

Choosing the right pontoon boat to invest in needs careful thought and consideration.

Pontoon Boat

A multi-purpose pontoon can be used for a variety of activities and varies significantly in relation to price.

Below are several tips to help decide on the right pontoon to match the intended use:

What is the intended use of the boat?

A versatile pontoon boat is functional in several different areas, including:

  • Skiing
  • Wakeboarding
  • Entertaining
  • Fishing

Whether it is fishing or parties, there are purpose built pontoons that can offer a practical solution to the boating requirements.

1 – Fishing

A pontoon boat modified for fishing activities comes equipped with live wells, fish finders, built-in tackle boxes, fishing chairs, etc. A purpose built model can vary in relation to the specific outfitting and range from the basic to luxury models.

2 – Party Boats

A spacious boat for parties is certain to include the pontoon boats with the wide open spaces, tables, seating, and perhaps even a bar. Most of the party boats come with a choice of floor plans and include the desired amenities and space to entertain 10-15 guests or more.

3 – Pleasure cruise

A more relaxing cruise is experienced in the pleasure cruising models which aren’t outfitted with the extras needed for fishing, water sport, etc. Pleasure models are designed with comfortable seating and great capacity. An 18-foot pontoon is perfect for 6-8 passengers; a 22-foot model can easily accept 10-12 passengers, while a 26-foot pontoon is more practical for 16+ passengers.

4 – Watersport

A watersport inspired pontoon boat is able to combine the performance of a speed boat with the comfort and luxury of a pontoon boat. A high-performance pontoon boat is built with enough drive and power to easily pull wakeboards, tubes, or skiers. A watersport package is a practical choice for those planning to engage in the various different sports on the lakes.

Calm or rough water

A standard pontoon boat is built to cruise on calm lakes and rivers. But, if planning to use a boat on rough or open waters, it might benefit to look at other options. Certain pontoon can be fitted with heavy-duty riser components and extra welding to provide more efficient stability and function.

Boat market for pontoons

Buying a new or a second-hand pontoon boat often relates to the finances. Carefully search the market to see which models are available. A new boat with warranty can be just as cost-effective to buy compared to a slightly used model. Take extra care when shopping for a used boat to avoid issues with minimal ongoing care and attention.

Shop for a pontoon boat at any time of the year as great deals are presented to the market year-round. Plus, look out for dealer specials or promotions which can take place at any moment. Since there is no best time to buy a boat you should just start the shopping process when you are ready to buy and go boating. Also, for the first time boater, it might be a practical decision to go on a boat safety course before taking charge of a boat for the first time.

Building Portal

Boat Dock Blueprints & Plans (Stationary & Floating Docks)

Constructing a dock (floating or stationary) requires a boat enthusiast to locate a high-quality set of dock plans or blueprints to assist in the construction project.

Private Float Boat Dock Plans (with Lift)

DIY dock systems are offered in multiple construction techniques (stationary or floating), a variety of frame structures (wooden, steel, or aluminum), and selection of deck materials (concrete, wood or aluminum). Locating the ideal set of boat dock designs makes it possible to build a dock on a seafront, calm river or lake.

In the process of sourcing the dock blueprints it will greatly benefit if you’re able to establish whether you are likely to be constructing a freestanding or floating dock. Establish early on how large you will require the dock and its shape (straight, T-shaped or L-shaped). Size and length of the dock and landing area often relates to the depth of water. A dock located in shallow water is likely to require a longer length dock strip since you want to have a sufficient depth of water to safely moor up the vessel.

Skill levels to install a dock system often depend on the type of material used in the build process. A wooden built dock for instance is the ideal self-build project for those with a basic to moderate skill levels in woodworking, while the aluminum docks are often delivered in multiple sections that just need attaching together – and perfect for most.

Floating Docks for Lakes, Rivers, or Sea Fronts

Boat docks for sale are located at-

  • Great Northern Docks: Great Northern Docks offer a high-quality selection of dock designs, hardware and accessories to assist the DIY enthusiast in constructing their own wooden or aluminum docks – with either a turn-key or pre-built system.
  • Tiger Boat Docks: Tiger Boat Docks design and manufacture a series of stationary or floating docks, lifts, and accessories. Founded in 1995, Tiger Docks offers a varied selection of steel, wood or roof-based self-build plans and blueprints to complement a particular residential set-up. Easy-to-assemble and install, dock kits are equipped with steel hardware, float drums, detailed construction instructions and lumber list, and technical assistance.

Layout and mooring needs

Solid built dock hardware (bolts, hinges, brackets, ladders, etc.) is vital to the long-term durability and performance of self-build pier structure, and is manufactured to hold up to the toughest of marine environments.

Points to determine the design and method of construction consist of such factors as:

  • Size and layout of the dock structure
  • Exposed or protected site (open water, quiet cove, calm river, etc.)
  • Water depth (normal and high water levels)
  • Size of the water body
  • Water fluctuation and weather conditions throughout a given season

Boat dock blueprints are designed mainly related to the layout and mooring needs. If limited with space, you might wish to look at the straight dock layout which is fully satisfactory for most situations. A T-shaped dock is ideal if you’re likely to be swimming from or fishing off, with sufficient space left for mooring up a river boat. An L-shaped dock is perfect for the more compact sized vessel, or where it is likely to be built into an alcove. A pontoon dock is a further option and gives the chance of creating a walkway on each side of the moored up vessel.

Dock Accessories and Supplies

Brighten up the appearance of the pier, broad-walk, shore dock or T-shaped dock system with a high-quality selection of related accessories – Supplies to enhance the look and appearance consist of a picnic table or bench seat for relaxing at, dock boxes or lockers to place supplies. Dock fenders or bumpers to soften impact, and a decent length dock cleat to tie up a recreational watercraft.

PWC Docks

Dry dock a Sea-Doo, Waverunner or Jet Ski branded personal watercraft (PWC) with one of the easiest solutions for mooring a PWC. Configured for 1, 2 or 3-seater machines, the drive-on / drive-off dock system offers a high-level of protection for these valuable waterborne vehicles, and comes in multiple sizes, shapes, and flotation limitations.

If planning on installing a private pier or similar structure, it might also be worthwhile looking at the existing boat insurance coverage to see whether this might need amending due to a change in mooring location.

Whether it is for constructed a floating or stationary dock system for a 1-seater kayak or a 28-ft deck boat, it is vital to locate a high-quality set of boat dock plans to assist in each step of the build project.

Building Portal

DIY Houseboat Plans – Building Your Own Houseboat

DIY houseboat plans are widely available across the internet. Many authentic and high-quality plans are highly affordable, yet if you’re searching for a cost-effective introduction to self-constructing a houseboat, you might wish to search for the free plans. Self assembly plans are perfect to get started in building your own house boat.

BH20 Houseboat Plans

If accepting the responsibility of constructing a do-it-yourself houseboat, it should be seen as a fun and enjoyable pastime. A well-created set of plans for the houseboats includes in-depth and illustrated step-by-step guidelines to make the entire work process as straightforward and painless as possible.

A variety of DIY houseboat construction plans are published, from the 20-ft Gypsy V bottom to the 18-ft Shanty flat bottom. By establishing early on the type of houseboat to construct, it will make it easier to search for the authentic plans a far-sight easier. The easiest and likely the most effective way to search for the do-it-yourself and authentic plans is the established sites like Bateau, Glen-L, BoatPlans, Berkeley-Engineering and Specmar. For instance, makes it possible to purchase entry-level blueprints for constructing Houseboats at 16, 18, and 20 feet in length.

Authentic plans

A wide-range of choices area available with the self build houseboat construction plans and to establish which might be most appropriate it can be quite difficult to learn what works for a specific situation. An authentic plan in stitch and glue or plywood should offer the quality and design you are hoping to achieve. A set of plans require full details, illustrations, and measurements to help provide a step-by-step guide for a easier building process.

Having in situ the right trade tools is crucial to make sure a build process goes as smooth as possible. In most cases, a high-quality set of DIY houseboat construction plans include a detailed list of tools which will be required in the build stages, from the basic hull to full outfitting stage. A quality set of plans should be 100% stress-free and simple to follow.

Customized design

A significant reason for a boating enthusiast to commence a self-build project is to have the option of being able to customize the design and layout. Being in the position of customizing the houseboat ensures you’re able to personify it to match a specific need or use. DIY houseboat plans give the liberty to adapt the design to create unique design and use.

Modifying a houseboat to give a particular floor plan is for some the best part of the building process. Customizing a set of DIY plans is great for those with the know-how, although for most others, following the plans as detailed will still result in a high-quality vessel at the end. Customizable plans include this extra step to aid in making a vessel a unique, one of a kind floating machine.

Plans in the market

DIY houseboat construction plans are reliable and easy to follow. A plus point is that there are literally hundreds of authentic plans, offering a trailerable or pontoon designed vessels to match every boater’s requirements. If you’re searching the first-time build plans, you might want to invest in the stitch and glue designs, which offer a fool-proof and step-by-step construction option.

Multiple advantages are possible with a high-quality set of DIY houseboat plans. Starting a self-build project will save on construction and contractors fees. Rather than handing over a sizable sum to a professional contractor to manufacture the floating platform, it is possible to save thousands of dollars in the build costs by self-constructing using the detailed step-by-step instructions.

A fully customizable houseboat is only likely to be achieved with DIY construction which relies on a set of blueprints able to provide the ideal layout, modern conveniences, livable space, as well as detailed drawings and illustrations. Self build plans and blueprints include:

16-ft Houseboats
HB16 [Stitch & Glue construction – Trailerable – Plywood Construction]
Aqua Casa 16 [Trailerable – Plywood Construction]

18-ft Houseboats
HB18 [Stitch & Glue construction – Plywood Construction]

HB20 [Stitch & Glue construction – Plywood Construction]
20’ Gypsy [Trailerable – Plywood Construction]
20’ Water Lodge [Plywood Construction]
Aqua Casa 20 [Trailerable – Plywood Construction]
Cape Codder 20 [Plywood Construction]

23-ft Houseboats
23’ Quest [Trailerable – Plywood Construction]

24-ft Houseboats
24’ Water Lodge [Plywood Construction]
Cape Codder 24 [Plywood Construction]

25-ft Houseboats
25’ Delta Q [Trailerable – Plywood Construction]

28-ft Houseboats
28’ Mark Twain Pontoons [Plywood Construction – Pontoon]

29-ft Houseboats
29’ Jubilee [Plywood Construction]

32-ft Houseboats
32’ Mark Twain Pontoons [Plywood Construction – Pontoon]

33-ft Houseboats
33’ Delta King [Plywood Construction]

36-ft Houseboats
36-ft Mark Twain Pontoon [Plywood Construction – Pontoon]

40-ft Houseboats
40’ Mark Twain Pontoon [Plywood Construction – Pontoon]

Building a vessel from ‘scratch’ is a laborious and patience is required. Even though building a houseboat is made to go as smooth as possible, it still requires a good deal of time. Be certain to free-up time to dedicate yourself for the length of a build project. Larger build projects will take months to complete. Although if wishing to start out or ‘practice’ with a complete entry-level construction, take a look at the basic 12 to 14-ft dinghies or similar.

Whether it is designing a houseboat from ‘scratch’, acquiring DIY houseboat plans and having it built, or purchasing one outright, the overall result is a floating home on the water that is able to cruise a variety of places at a relaxing pace.

Boat Maintenance & Organization

What Type of Boat Dock is Right for You?

A floating dock is a great feature for a waterfront home. Whether you are fishing, boating, jet skiing, or swimming, a versatile floating dock is easy to scale to the personal needs.

River Boat Dock

The class of vessel intended for the dock (ski boat, deck, or pontoon) isn’t critical in most cases because these platforms are able to accept a choice of boats or PWC‘s. In the process of having a dock designed it will be critical to have it designed to match the intended use. Covered boat dock designs and plans are highly desired for those seeking a sheltered area from the rain or sun. Plus, a dock can be built with a spacious walkway or a convenient slip for more functionality.

A variety of variables can impact the layout and design. A skilled boat dock builder is there to help determine the most practical layout to match the lifestyle and location. River or lake conditions are often seen to dictate the style of dock built. Many of the designs are short-term or adaptable. A temporary dock might be installed for the summer season, and when the boat is moved to storage for the lay-up period, the floating or modular dock can be removed for the winter period. Popular dock materials include aluminum, concrete, exotic hardwoods, regular woods, and synthetic materials.

What dock is able to match your specific needs?


It requires a time of reflection to establish the most-efficient style of boat dock design. Throughout the planning stage it is crucial to determine the desired utility, feel, and look of the dock structure. In the planning stage factors to weigh up include the wave exposure, tidal range, and depth of water. Weather conditions are a further factor to consider with the dock fully or partially covered.

A dock structure in high demand and required for day-to-day use is likely to be constructed with materials of a sturdy standing, while the docks constructed for the aesthetic appeal needn’t require such solid resources.


A versatile platform is seen with the floating dock structures. A float dock is designed and constructed to float on the river’s surface and remains in place via fasteners and anchors. They are able to be installed at a much quicker rate than many of the alternative dock structures in the marketplace. A further quality aspect is the ability to adapt to changes in the depth of the river. Floating docks are constructed with a custom or modular build. A high-quality material is seen with the platforms made in PVC, which is known to resist splintering, rotting, warping, and chipping.


A solid and permanent stationary dock is installed with durable legs or supports driven into the river bed to give long-term placement and stability. A stationary dock is perfect for shallow waters or rivers likely to remain at a more stable depth. They are installed using metal, wood, or piping to support the dock structure. In many situations the material of choice is likely to be aluminum pipe or galvanized water pipe. A boat lift might be incorporated on the more heavy-duty platforms.


A straightforward dock design is to be had with the modular dock structures, which are easily and quickly installed. Modular docks are manufactured in high-strength PVC, which is low-maintenance, highly durable, and easily handled. A modular platform is likely to incorporate a non-slip surface, while some might include UV protection to avoid discoloration, chalking, and fading. They are aesthetically pleasing, cool to the touch, and resistant to heat. If required a modular dock can be extended or reconfigured to adapt to the changing conditions or circumstances.

Build with what Material

When it concerns the construction material of the boat dock, consider the location and environment. Polyethylene or aluminum docks are a hard-wearing choice. They are built to be sturdy and withstand major impact. Plus, these docks are low-maintenance and less likely to experience issues with rust or rot. Alternatively, a wooden dock is the preferred choice to add rustic and natural beauty to the shoreline. But, a wood-based dock is more reliant on regular maintenance. A combination dock in aluminum and wood is able to give the stability afforded by metal docks while also providing the attractive aesthetics of the wooden structure.