Swim Ladder Removal, Issues and Alternatives [Retitled]

Filkee

Member III
- seen these options?
- I use the latter option
I added an Extend Your Step last season and it was a game changer.
 

Kenneth K

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
This is a high ratio lever pressing on the glass and a horrible design from the perspective of loads...

I board almost exclusively from the ladder since I'm on a buoy rather than a dock. Fortunately, when I put the ladder into the dinghy, the dinghy carries some of the weight.

I could see early on that the two rubber pads on the ladder's feet didn't contact the transom at the same time as the ladder is lowered. By the time the second foot is just touching the hull, the other one is already compressing it and causing it to flex.

The quick fix was to 'shim' the 'short' foot with coins/washers which the rubber pad holds in place. But even with equal contact on the transom, it's still a ridiculously small contact area to bear the levered force of the ladder. I like the idea of a third, added foot to bear weight where the transom meets the hull.
 

1911tex

Sustaining Member
If you mostly use the ladder at your slip, build a ladder onto your pier...lots of folks did that here, some so it would fold up onto the pier itself to stow..of course with permission and approval of the marina. I will try to take a photo this weekend of our portable extension as mentioned before.
 

JSM

Member III
I can no longer find it, but somewhere on this site are plans for a swim ladder extension made out of PVC tubing that hangs from the rungs on the swim ladder. I built one a few years ago for our 34-2 and it works like a champ. Total cost was around $25.
 

1911tex

Sustaining Member
You would want the ladder extension to not swing under the boat ladder...makes it very difficult to climb.
 

JSM

Member III
You would want the ladder extension to not swing under the boat ladder...makes it very difficult to climb.
This ladder hooks on to the second or third rung up from the bottom and lays on top of the swim ladder, doesn't move. Gives you a few extra steps below the water line.
If you blow up my avatar pic you can see it hanging from the bimini framework on the starboard side.
 

nquigley

Member III
Anyone who's tried, knows it's quite an athletic feat to get unto the 32-3's swim ladder from the water without some sort of (temporary?) additional lower rung.
I've pretty much given up on it - I think I'll get a traditional boarding ladder and deploy it from the area of the gate in the lifelines. Besides, that's a much better place to get on/off a tender.
Maybe a collapsable one this simple:
Or a simpler version of this?:
 

1911tex

Sustaining Member
Anyone who's tried, knows it's quite an athletic feat to get unto the 32-3's swim ladder from the water without some sort of (temporary?) additional lower rung.
I've pretty much given up on it - I think I'll get a traditional boarding ladder and deploy it from the area of the gate in the lifelines. Besides, that's a much better place to get on/off a tender.
Maybe a collapsable one this simple:
Or a simpler version of this?:
nquigley...now that is a unique and interesting man overboard ladder stow system...but they do not ship overseas according to their price page. Maybe someone in the USA can manufacture something similar?
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Moderator
Blogs Author
A rope ladder needs a ship's slab hull to work well. It gets athletic on a sailboat.

My issue is tootsie pain from stainless tubing. My E381 came with small, unobtrusive steps, perhaps aftermarket. They work well. (The E38 ladder is long enough to easily board from the water.)

ladder steps 381.JPG

For the E32-3 I made steps of Trex decking.

Trex steps E32-3.jpg

I board dinghies from the side deck, which was easy on the 32 but somewhat a longer drop on this boat. The previous owner built a boarding platform of a 4' x 2' board rigged by lines to the gunnel track. It worked, but was hard to store and I found it unnecessary for my use.
 

GrandpaSteve

Sustaining Member
Anyone who's tried, knows it's quite an athletic feat to get unto the 32-3's swim ladder from the water without some sort of (temporary?) additional lower rung.
I've pretty much given up on it - I think I'll get a traditional boarding ladder and deploy it from the area of the gate in the lifelines. Besides, that's a much better place to get on/off a tender.
Maybe a collapsable one this simple:
Or a simpler version of this?:
Eight years ago I did it regularly, but I'm not sure I could now without straining or breaking something (on me, not the boat). I need an underwater ladder extension too.
 

Tom Metzger

Sustaining Partner
I designed a PVC ladder extension 15 - 20 years ago that worked very well for me and I think I posted the design on this site. As I remember I spent less than $10 on it and suspect it can still be built for that. Mine is cheaper than JSM's because I avoided having it seen in my avatar. :cool: The drawing I made is probably still on the boat which is gone. My post on this site may still be available, but all I found was a reference to it from 2007.

I put a line on it that loops over the rail so it can't get away. The bottom is open and there are holes in the end caps above so there is no tendency to float. When not in use it hangs on the rail.
 

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JSM

Member III
I designed a PVC ladder extension 15 - 20 years ago that worked very well for me and I think I posted the design on this site.
Yes Sir, that's your ladder hanging on my boat ! I remember those pics from your original post here. I believe you may have posted the plans on another site (Cruisersforum.com?) I've searched and can't find them . It's a great design and has served us well for the last five summers.
Looking back ,the reason that mine cost more may be due to the learning curve on quick set PVC glue.:oops:
 

Tom Metzger

Sustaining Partner
I lied. The ladder was in the avatar, but got lost in the circular cropping. ;)

BTW, PVC pipe also makes a great flag staff at 10% of the WM price. You might have to sand/grind .025" off to fit a standard bracket. My sons think I'm cheap, but I'm just thinking of their inheritance.
 

Tom Metzger

Sustaining Partner
I used 1" PVC, skd 40. 1.315 OD. Larger rungs might be more comfortable, but I'm not sure it would make much difference because these rungs are in the water while one's full weight is on the 1" dia SS rungs.
 

1911tex

Sustaining Member

Thalassa:​

Here is our old home modified marine store bought ladder extension...hook it on the 2nd step from bottom and it stays rigid standing on it..
 

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clayton

Member III
A PO had this done to extend the ladder. Don't have any documentation on it so not sure if it was when it was on Lake Champlain or Ontario.
A large friend definitely appreciated the extension to get back in the boat...
IMG_1739.JPGIMG_1740.JPGIMG_1742.JPG
 
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