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PStew67

Very shallow water boat lifts

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PStew67

I'm looking for a boat lift that will work in very shallow water. At the end of my dock, the water fluctuates between 22-28" and my VLX drafts 18". If the water gets too low, then I will need to move the lift away from the dock (about 300') into deeper water, but I'd like to have dock access as long as I can. I've looked into the following shallow water lifts; Harbor-Master Elite, Feighner, and a Sunstream floatlift (too expensive). I'm buying used to save money. Anybody have similiar water depth? What lift did you go with? Thanks

Edited by PStew67

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Bill_AirJunky

AirDock?

WB-_Mastercraft_and_docks_102KadpGIF.jpg

Edited by Bill_AirJunky

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tuslake

ditto!!! I had a shallow water nyman hoist, that was water hydro, was sweet.would go very shallow.

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Bill_AirJunky

Nyman was bought out & is called Basta now. http://www.bastaboatlifts.com/boata/boata.htm

Looks like their minimum is 26".

I have a buddy who has old Hewitt cable lift. It needs at least that too. And it's heavy so it's not easy to move.

Moving the AirDock involved rolling it up & throwing it in the garage till you need it again.

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PStew67

I've did try an Airdock about 8 years ago. I must say the owner did everything he could to help me out but the lift simply did not work for my location. They sent me an extra center mat which weighs down the middle so you can drive on. For some reason, I could never get my Sunsetter to float over the lift without catching a fin on the airdock. I had to walk the boat over the airdock while stepping on the airdock to keep it down. Once it was on and inflated it worked nicely. However, I left the airdock deflated in the water for a week while the boat was in the shop and a muskrat chewed some holes in each bladder. I spent two days trying to get a partially submerged air mattress out of the water. I eventually used a neighbors lift to get it out and drain it. The owner again stepped up and sent me a patch kit at no charge. I was able to patch the holes I found but one of the bladders would not hold air overnight and I never used it again.

Edited by PStew67

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Bill_AirJunky

Well that blows. I've considered an AirDock for a few years. My own situation is a slip in an HOA floating dock. So the ability to move it easily, pack it up in the winter or whenever, seemed pretty promising.

Seems like a really hoaky setup. But every other review I've ever seen was pretty positive.

Sounds like there needs to be more than 18" of water to get the middle to sink low enough to clear it. I'm in like 3' or 4' so maybe it would work better....... as long as the muskrats stay off it.

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PStew67

I was told that other airdock owners had experienced muskrat holes also. I think if I had left the airdock in the water, but inflated, it would have been fine. Yes, I think my location was just too shallow to allow the airdock to sink...

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Sixball

I don't have any experience with air docks or anything like it. I think you will find a vertical lift to be the one that will handle the shallowest water in cable lifts.

I will try to get a depth at my front feet later today.

If you look at them the lift cradle should drop down inside of the outer or structure of the lift.

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PStew67

I had heard that some vertical lifts had this feature. I've also heard that people trench down into the lake bed to get a lift to sit lower.

What do you guys do about canopy lifts and wakeboard towers; no canopy, fold tower down, sunchaser canopy, something else? I think I need to invent a canopy with a retractable moonroof for the tower to fit through.

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Sixball

I am at 30" at the front legs. Its a bit deeper than I thought but I can get my bunks under water. I also could drill another hole in my legs and get them down a bit more but not a lot. Putting the lift kit on the bunk to clear the boat tracking fins make a significant difference.

You may be able to trench and lower the lift but I would bet it will be a job to get it back out of the water.

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dochockey

I've did try an Airdock about 8 years ago. I must say the owner did everything he could to help me out but the lift simply did not work for my location. They sent me an extra center mat which weighs down the middle so you can drive on. For some reason, I could never get my Sunsetter to float over the lift without catching a fin on the airdock. I had to walk the boat over the airdock while stepping on the airdock to keep it down. Once it was on and inflated it worked nicely. However, I left the airdock deflated in the water for a week while the boat was in the shop and a muskrat chewed some holes in each bladder. I spent two days trying to get a partially submerged air mattress out of the water. I eventually used a neighbors lift to get it out and drain it. The owner again stepped up and sent me a patch kit at no charge. I was able to patch the holes I found but one of the bladders would not hold air overnight and I never used it again.

Do you still have your air-dock?

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Bill_AirJunky

I've also heard that people trench down into the lake bed to get a lift to sit lower.

A friend of mine in Florida did this & the EPA came down on him pretty hard. So if you do it, don't be obvious about it, and never talk or write about it anywhere. :unsure:

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Theliftguy

Raptor Lifts!  

 

They just hit the market summer of 2019 and are a awesome product.

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Eagleboy99

Hey, those look pretty cool.  oOuld be nice to have some sort of bow stop though.  Any idea on cost?

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Slayer
12 minutes ago, Theliftguy said:

Raptor Lifts!  

 

They just hit the market summer of 2019 and are a awesome product.

That looks pretty awesome!  I would have very seriously considered this had I known it existed when I purchased my lift in April.  

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Theliftguy

Cost dependent on size, accessories, and canopy length is between 15-20K.

 

They produce a 6,000 and 7,500  Pound model.

 

They do offer a bow stop and guide on's to help with tow boats.

 

 

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Eagleboy99

Darn nice lift.  If I had a place for one that is what I'd get.  Like Dad used to say "To heck with the expense - feed the cat another canary".

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