The Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast are blessed with an array of beautiful waterways that sport thousands of lavish homes. The Gold Coast is home to the likes of Currumbin Creek, Swan Lake, Lake Hugh Muntz, Biggera Creek, Coral Sea, Lake Orr, Robina Waters, Paradise Lake, Pine Lake, Lake Heron, Clear Island Lake, Coomera River, Burleigh Lake, West Lake, and the Nerang River, while the Sunshine Coast offers Maroochy River, Lake MacDonald, Currimundi lake, South Maroochy River, Mooloolaba River, Lake Magellan, Lake Weyba, Lake Kawana, Coochin Creek, Weyba Creek, and the Tokara Canal.
Whether you live on a lake, river, canal, creek, or along the coastline, you want to get the most of your waterfront location. Thus, many homeowners turn to the internet to explore their options regarding the marine dock system. If you’re not familiar with what a marine dock system is or the types of marine dock systems available, don’t worry. You will be at the end of this article.
Continue reading to discover what marine dock systems are and the most popular types of marine dock systems on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast.
What is a marine dock system?
A marine dock system is merely a docking solution for a boat, jet ski or personal watercraft; a fixed or floating structure where vessels dock and can be moored.
There are many marine dock systems available, but only a few are suitable for residential applications. Others are for commercial or industrial applications. Nevertheless, today we will take a look at all the marine dock systems available.
Pontoons are the most common form of marine dock system on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. They are defined by two main components – a floating dock and a gangway. The gangway is moored from the shore to the quayline, where the pontoon lies, bridging a connection between land and floating dock.
Pontoons are seen as the modern, upgraded version of a jetty. They’re made from aluminium which offers longevity against the sea and underwater environmental conditions. They don’t rot, are resistant to corrosion, and they require minimal maintenance. Moreover, their most significant advantage is their ability to move vertically with the tide, but not horizontally. Thus, unlike jetties, they are always above water. They will not succumb to the degree of damage a jetty may otherwise suffer during torrential weather conditions. More importantly, neither will your boat.
There are various types of pontoons, but the most common – the ones we manufacture and install here at Micks Marine Maintenance – are piled pontoons, strut pontoons, and cable pontoons. Each comprises the two main components, that being the floating dock and gangway. However, their differences lie in how they are held in position in the water. This, in turn, impacts their suitability.
A brief explanation of each type of pontoon is listed below. However, for more information, I urge you to visit our Pontoon Sales page where a detailed description of each can be found.
Piled pontoons are pontoons that are held in position by marine piles. The piles vertically thread through the floating dock into the seabed, allowing the floating dock to move only vertically up and down the piles. Such pontoons are the most robust of all. However, they are not suitable in areas with rocky seabed terrain.
Strut pontoons are pontoons that are held in position by marine piles. Cable pontoons are ideal for waters with rocky seabeds but may not be the best option for areas that experience strong winds and rough waters.
Strut pontoons are pontoons that are held in position by stainless steel cables. The cables connect from the shore to the ends of the floating dock, crossing over one another in an “X” like fashion, providing stability and preventing the pontoon from moving horizontally. Strut pontoons are also ideal for waters with rocky seabeds, but like strut pontoon, they may not be the best pontoon for areas that experience strong winds and rough waters.
Jetties are another suitable marine dock system for Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast homes and are seen as the original docking solution.
Jetties have been around since the 1800s. The Busselton Jetty, which is the longest timber piled jetty in the southern hemisphere, was built in 1865. Like the Busselton Jetty, Jetties are generally made from timber, which unfortunately comes with some disadvantages. They’re sturdy, but they’re also susceptible to rot and high maintenance. They’re also fixed in place, both vertically and horizontally. Thus, during rising tides and torrential weather conditions, they are inclined to be submerged in water. The real damage here is to the boat that is moored to it – it continues to rise with the tide, which can lead to server damage.
Due to the issues and high maintenance of jetties, pontoons have long surpassed jetties as the better marine docking system and the preferred option on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast.
Discover the differences between pontoons and jetties
Marinas fall under the categorisation of marine docking systems, but they are a commercial solution for what else, but marinas. Marinas are essentially a pontoon or a jetty on a mass scale to support the mooring of countless vessels.
They can be made from timber, but more commonly, they’re closer to piled pontoons, having a floating system that moves vertically with the tides but is held in place horizontally with marine piles.
Floats are another marine docking systems, which are best described as being a pontoon without a gangway. They’re a floating dock, which can be made from the same materials as a pontoon’s floating dock or from HWMHDPE (High-Density Polyethylene) or thermoplastic polyethylene modules, which joint together to form a float.
Floats are not as common on the Gold Coast or Sunshine Coast because they provide no means of access. If used, they are usually an addition to a pontoon to expand the surface area of the dock.
The definition of a boardwalk is a wooden walkway across sand or marshy ground. Thus, you could say boardwalks are more commonly used over land than water and are not a suitable marine dock system for residential waterfront homes on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. Nevertheless, some boardwalks are over water or at least swamps, so they’re also considered a marine docking system.
Lastly, we come to barges. If you’re not familiar with what a barge is, it’s probably because they’re not used for residential application, nor are they a fixed feature. They float, and you can dock things to them, so, like boardwalks, they are considered a marine dock system.
A barge is defined as being a flat-bottomed boat specially built for river and canal transport of heavy goods. We here at Micks Marine Maintenance have our own badge, which we use to transport and install marine piles on our pontoons.
If you live on the waterfront in one of the glorious Gold Coast or Sunshine Coast rivers, creeks, canals, lakes, or coastline, then there’s a good chance that you’re looking to maximise your location by investing in a marine dock system.
There are various marine dock systems, namely pontoons, jetties, marinas, floats, boardwalks, and barges, but only two are suited for residential applications; pontoons and jetties. Pontoons are available in various forms, but the most common on the Gold Coast and Sunshine coast are those that we manufacture and install here at Micks Marine Maintenance; piled pontoons, strut pontoons, and cable pontoons.
While pontoons and jetties are both viable options, one clearly outshines the other; pontoons. Pontoons are the modern preferred dock system, providing a robust, durable, long-lasting, and low maintenance docking option.
If you’re interested in having a pontoon installed on the Gold Coast or Sunshine Coast, get in touch with the Micks Marine Maintenance team today. We service the entire Gold Coast, including the waterfront suburbs of Runaway Bay, Coombabah, Jacobs Well, Biggera Waters, Benowa, Broadbeach Waters, Palm Beach, Hollywell, Sovereign Islands, Helensvale, Paradise Waters, Ashmore, Varsity Lakes, Currumbin Waters, Paradise Point, Hope Island, Coomera Waters, Surfers Paradise, Mermaid Waters, Clear Island Waters, Ephraim Island, Sanctuary Cove, Carrara, Bundall, Burleigh Waters, Robina. We also service the entire Sunshine Coast, including the waterfront suburbs of Maro, Yaroomba, Diddillibah, Mooloolaba, Mountain Creek, Birtinya, Noosa Heads, Coochin Creek, Nochydore, Mudjimba, Rosemount, Buddina, Pelican Waters, Bokarina, Noosaville, Marcoola, Twin Waters, Nambour, Minyama, Caloundra, Weyba Downs, Tewantin, Coolum, Pacific Paradise, Kunda Park, Parrearra, Golden Beach, Coolum Beach, Nambour.