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Easiest way to relocate a boat lift?


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I'm shopping for a boat lift and would like to get a used one as brand new they are well over $6K. There is another Malibu owner on my lake, maybe a mile or so away with a motorized lift for sale.

I have a couple of questions

1. What is the easiest way to get the lift out of it's current location? Lot's of muscle power?

2. Would it be best to rent a flatbed to move it, or could it pulled across the lake without removing it from the water?

Thanks!

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I helped a buddy relocate one on our lake. Exactly how you do it would depend on the lift but what we did was put long 4X4's (12 footers, I believe) across the lift underneath the cross-members that run front to back. Then we put a couple of sheets of plywood under the 4X4's, and a deflated inflatable boat (think "white water rafting" type boat) underneath the plywood. Then we inflated the boat with an air compressor and floated the lift. Towed it very slowly from it's old home to it's new home. :)

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I've seen 2 moved by "semi to non professionals".

Both are on the bottom of the lake.

Most marinas have a crane on a pontoon barge that does this much better. May be best to spend the 200 or so and let it be someone elses headache

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I've seen 2 moved by "semi to non professionals".

Both are on the bottom of the lake.

Most marinas have a crane on a pontoon barge that does this much better. May be best to spend the 200 or so and let it be someone elses headache

Good point, maybe it would be best to pull it out of the water and trailer it.

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When you say you placed 4x4's under the cross members, do you mean under the bunks? Is that enough elevation to get it out of the water?

No. The lift that we moved had cross-members that ran front to back between the front and rear legs, just above the water line. Depending on the lift, you might be able to use the bunks. What you want to avoid is the thing becoming top heavy. We removed the canopy for transportation. Can't stress this enough...make sure it is not top heavy. Moving it with the canopy on is asking for trouble.

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One way that I have seen it done that seemed to work well is using a boat trailer. You can raise the legs on the lift up, drive the boat trailer under it and then lower the legs so the cross members rest on the trailer, strap it on and drive away. I wouldn't do it for a really long distance but my neighbor made it about 5 miles with no issues that way.

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I've seen 2 moved by "semi to non professionals".

Both are on the bottom of the lake.

Most marinas have a crane on a pontoon barge that does this much better. May be best to spend the 200 or so and let it be someone elses headache

No Doubt that paying for a professional would be well worth the $$ spent considering the cost of replacing, or, like Brad B said.. Scuba from the bottom of the lake. Cry.gif

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I transported a jetski lift (much smaller than the boat lift you are looking at) and must agree wit the recommendation to hire a lift company or marina to move it for you.

The way I did mine was I bought it from a lift mfg, but wanted to save the $150 they were charging to deliver and install it. (how hard could it be?) So, I loaded the thing on the front of my pontoon boat and decided I would go slow for the 3-4 miles back to our lake house. Well, the trip from the lift mfg was anything but a piece of cake. The pontoon handles waves very well, and even though the lift was cranked all the way down, I thought it was going to end up on the bottom 5 or 6 times. (Note: this was where the water is 70 feet deep, and it was standing up on two legs ready to topple in) Shocking.gif

I ultimately made the trip intact, and got it installed, but learned a valuable lesson.... Sometimes, saving the $150 isn't worth the risk and effort. Transporting that lift was one of them. :unsure:

Please, hire someone as the trailer method doesn't sound much safer.

Mook

Edited by mook222
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Muscle power, and put it on a snowmobile trailer for the short ride...assuming the shorline allows you to carry it up easily. Muscle power, and put it on top of a flat-bottom boat and tow/drive to its new location. Find someone to borrow a transport bar from, assuming it is a vertical lift (probably the easiest solution) as they work great. Or get a few old tractor tire tubes, deflate them and put them under cross members, and then inflate them and tow to its new location. I have done all of these with success. As others have mentioned, be sure to remove the canopy.

Seth

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Can't you partially disassemble it and move smaller pieces overland?

Or best option, just drag it across the ice, provided you are lucky enough to have a northern lake where this works wonderfully.

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I had to move mine across the state.

Over the land, three of us put it on a snowmobile trailer. This worked great. The trailer was nice and low and the lift fit well. I bout trail would also work. Once we got it to the lake, we brought it to the boat ramp. Here we tied three 45 gallon barrels and a couple of larger fenders to it with tie down straps. The barrels were over kill. It floated so high in the water. We tied 1 on each front corner and 1 in the back rail that was centered. We then slid it off the trailer into the water and towed it across the lake with a boat. Positioned it and let it down to the bottom with the straps. It was so slick. This was a good thing to because a crowd gathered on the shore as we passed.

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If you get the lift from the same lake it is easy just get two tractor tire inner tubes one each end then one tube on each side and she will float were ever you want her. We did about five years ago. The hardest part is getting the lift down without dropping it on someones toes.

Good Luck

ITCH

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I have fooled with a few of these. The best way is to use that device that hangs on the wall in the kitchen. The telephone. I have moved them myself and hired it done. I always get a kick out of how hard the hired guys work for not much money.

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I've done it two different ways.

1. Used 4x4 foot float pads-four inches thick (picked them up at our local watersports supply store). They are very dense foam-I think used in the furniture industry. The kids love them to float on in the summer. It takes three people to break the lift free and then we pick one end up and slide the foam pad under the cross member. Repeat the process on the other end. The pads flex and the lift floats. We use them every year to pull all of our friends lifts around the lake. Just float it over to the shore and pull it up on the shore. We floated our new shore station about 200 yards because we couldn't get it around the side of the house. I just walked in waist deep water and pulled it down to our place.

2. A pontoon trailer works great for over the road moves. I have moved several lifts with a raft trailer borrowed from our local marina.

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We've moved a couple of them. One on a flatbed trailer & 2 others by floating them. Loading it on a trailer was a PIA only because of the distance from the shore to the trailer. Floating it was a piece of cake. We tied 4 big orange bouys to it, then pumped them up. Then just pushed the lift back & forth & it lifted the lift right up out of the muck. Took maybe 30 minutes & a few beers. Just be 1/2 sure your knots are 1/2 descent.

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We moved 20 houses down the lake last Jan. With 4 guys we slid ours down to the new place on the ice. The ice was so slippery a couple people could have moved it.

We have moved two others with floats. Just make sure you have the floats secured well to the lift. We use ratcheting tie down straps.

YMMV,

JT

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At my marina the lifts are fully "aired-up" and towed to the new location. They are, afterall, pontoons that are filled with air, but I suppose every lift is different. For my old lift, I was going to either air it up and pull it out or pay the marina service guy...but I found someone to sell the lift too...and he's leasing the slip...so no hassle!

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