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Old 01-20-2006, 11:52 PM
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Default Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

Hi all. Longtime lurker here now a CC member with a question. I searched the forum with no luck.

I hope to build a new dock off our sea wall that is rather exposed to Northwesters in Pamlico Sound, NC. So heavy duty materials and techniques are a priority. I just received a quote that blew me away and I'd like to know if I'm just naive.

The proposed design was 100'L by 6'W with 25' pilings (10") sunk at least 12 feet. Straight out, no T, no gazebo, just a dock.

The first quote was $40 per square foot, which works out to $24,000 for a 100' dock.

Is this a typical rate for your neck of the woods? Trying to recalibrate my expectations here.

Thanks in advance,

Joe
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Old 01-21-2006, 12:29 AM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

depends on the site - where are you?
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Old 01-21-2006, 12:33 AM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

That sounds high I had a pilling driven dock built last year 100' x 6' with 20x20 L head. $9800 in new bern
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Old 01-21-2006, 12:33 AM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

Outer Banks, NC in the Pamlico Sound. Facing open water SW to NW. Water is 2' deep at wall, down to 4' at end of proposed dock. Neighboring docks have held up well, even in storms.

Thanks,

Joe
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Old 01-21-2006, 08:04 AM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

Do what my parents taught me: get three estimates before buying! You may be surprised at the price differential. In your situation, you want to make sure you have a reputable builder by virtue of where you live. Ask your neighbors or any one else you know of with a dock who their builder was: there are good ones and bad ones.
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Old 01-21-2006, 09:02 AM
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Default RE: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

The overall quote sounds a little overkill from the specs. First of all, are the 10" pilings a 10" butt or tip. Even if a 10" butt, this sounds like overkill for typical dock construction here on the northern Gulf Coast. Second, a 25' piling, jetted or driven in 12 feet, will leave 13' out. You said the deepest water is 4', this will leave you with 9' above the water, you'll need an awful tall ladder to get down to your Yellowfin, not to mention lifting coolers all the way up. I obviously am not familiar with your tide ranges, etc. but the overall design sounds over designed. We have learned some lessons around here lately. One is that the docks failed in hurricanes from the most part due to lack of resistance to uplift from the water pressure under the decking. The smooth pilings going into the bottom, do not have enough inherent friction to resist the lifting from the storm surge and wave action. Since my boat partner and I had just repaired our docks from Ivan, just before Dennis hit, we bought a number of what amount to mobile home tie downs, which we augered in to the bottom directly under the cross beams, then took rope and secured the cross members to the eye in the top of the tie downs. Even with a surge 3 feet over the top of the docks, neither of our docks moved at all. This obviously is not an ideal solution, especially since the tie downs aren't even galvanized, but what it reflects is that an ideal design needs to work against the uplift. Jetting the pilings 12 feet down is definitely a step in the right direction, but I think overall you could do better than just upsizing the specs so much. We also found that the black vinyl piling wrap, used to keep the worms from eating the pilings, if used too far down the piling(where it is not needed anyway), serves to actually lubricate the piling, making it more easily pulled up. Another recent development as an outcome of literally thousands of docks being turned to splinters around here has been the "boxed framing" or sectional building of the decking, where the decking is almost free floating on the stringers, built in fully framed sections. This way the sections can actually be lifted and dragged off the top of the dock, or if left, toe nails will be pulled loose by the storm, sacrificing the decking, but not contributing to the uplift, which destroys the stringers and cross members, as well as potentially pulling up pilings.
Just my $.02
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Old 01-21-2006, 10:05 AM
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Default RE: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

My dock it 240 ft long with a small pierhead and two floaters, paid 24k. The rule of thumb around here is 100 bucks a foot...I am in Charleston SC.
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Old 01-21-2006, 12:44 PM
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Default RE: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

First of all, I think you will find they will drive the pilings in further than you mention. Also, be sure they are driven, not jetted in (which I'm sure is the case.

I am currently building a 300ft dock on the south side of the Pamlico river near the mouth (a lot of marsh to pass over.) Quotes I received were around $20/sq ft. My dock is 300ft x 5 ft with a 10x10 pierhead and is about $25k total not including services (water and elect)
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Old 01-21-2006, 12:48 PM
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Default RE: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

PS. The builder I am using for my Dock is in Bath and they may build in your area depending on where you actually are.

Call Boyd Sprouse 252x945xx1978

Be sure to tell him I referred you.
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Old 01-21-2006, 02:13 PM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

It depends on many items, piling type, hardware used, wood used. I built a new 185 by 6 dock a few months ago. I provided all the labor. Piling installed were 12 inch concrete 22 @ 400 each. About 1000 in stainless hardware. 2000 in pressure treated for framing. 5000 in ipe wood. So for a top quality dock it cost me about 16 s/foot in materials alone. As a general contractor I would charge about 30 s/f for similar quality
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Old 01-21-2006, 02:55 PM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

Has anyone used the Pilock anchoring system. It's supposed to make pilings virtually impossible to pull out during storms.

http://www.pilockcorp.com/index.html
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Old 01-22-2006, 04:02 PM
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Default RE: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

Thanks for the information, everyone. That was only my first bid and I thought it was a little high also. I'm trying to educate myself as much as possible, so thanks very much.

I have posted a question in the Carolinas forum asking for recommended builders. I will give Boyce a call also.

Catchemup,

Joe
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Old 01-22-2006, 05:05 PM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

Joe - Sounds like you're going with a stationary dock vs. floating. Either way, make sure you have plenty of piling height above normal high tides to allow for hurricane surges. In our case, we went with floating, 30' pilings (12" dia), with about 15' above mean high tide. When we had shorter pilings, the dock floated off the pilings when Fran came thru.
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Old 01-23-2006, 01:28 AM
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Default RE: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

Thanks, Libra,

The floating dock won't work because the waterfront is completely exposed to the Northwest Pamlico Sound. Any west in the wind will kick up the chop and a blow will bring small swells crashing into the sea wall. Tropical storms routinely go over the seawall.

The existing docks on other lots have fared well. Deep set pilings, spaced planking and other engineering secrets that I don't yet know, but hope to soon discover.

Thanks,

J.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:26 PM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

We build docks on Lake Wylie, SC.

Pressure treated, fixed height piers are approx. $18 per square foot. Pilings are spaced 8' apart and are driven until they won't go no more. We hit with a pile driver that has a 1500 lb. hammer, we shoot for a 6' drive on pilings that are used for supporting the weight of a boat, but most times we'll use a longer piling just in case it goes further, this prevents settling.

With all the new building materials it's hard to quote square foot prices, look into Evergrain and IPE composite decking options, this will definately increase $$$ but reduce maintenance if you plan on retiring there. We do have many wood docks (fresh water lake) that have been pressure washed and stained yearly that our company built in the early 80's and they still look fine.
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Old 01-24-2006, 12:45 AM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

As abacodan, I also live on the Northern Gulf Coast--and we have seen what hurricanes can do--just because so far docks have held, there is no guarantee that you won't get the next Katrina (we certainly hope that no-one goes thru that). I suspect that the pilings will be jetted as far as possiable and then driven the last bit. Be sure that the butt (or thicker end is driven down--it is easier to put the thicker end up) There is no question in my mind that sand screws will hold a dock down. The telephone company uses galvanized ones--and I had collected a few along the way. These are much larger than the trailer hold downs and will give 3 to 4 the holding power. The float off the deck (mark it well, so you can find it later ) is a very good idea--remember we had had several freeways float away--and these were huge sections of concrete!

There is a different technique being used in S. America and Central america. I know of several people using it in the US--and I think it is far superior to what we are doing currently with wooden pilings. Get 8" PVC pipe, put 1 1/2 PVC pipe inside, put the inner pipe about 6" below the outer pipe, make a galvanized steel collar which fits closely around the 1 1/2" pipe, epoxy it in place, snug it up to the outer pipe, and epoxy it there. This is now like an arrow head. Put a few feet of concrete and put rebar in the outer tubing. Jet in the piling, using the center 1 1/2" pipe!--as you come to the top of the first section, add 8' more by gluing--and pour concrete in, with more Re bar into the next piece of pipe., then When at the appropiate depth (may not need to be as deep as the driven pilings, because of the arrowhead effect) But I would go in at least 10 feet. When you get the piling to the depth and height you want--use a lasser site to put the cross beam holes at the same level. Drill the holes in the PVC pipe, put in threaded SS Rod, cut to the lenght for cross beams on each side of the pipe. Then fill the pipe to the top with concrete. My friend who did this, had the concrete pumped over 200 feet to fill the pilings. Then put the deck on in a conventional method. I highly recommend Trex or one of the other synthetic plankings. The stringers have to be on 16" centers rather than 24" centers for wood. The synthetics don't have splinters, wear and weather better--plus made from recycled materials. The costs of the PVC pipe method is less than half than pilings--the deck will cost the same. Labor should be less for the PVC. you don't have to handle the 500 + lbs pilings--and don't need the cane barge.
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Old 01-24-2006, 08:44 AM
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Default Re: Cost to build a new dock? Is this a good price?

Hooligan- around Harker's Island/ Atlantic Beach, we got quotes late last year at $17 to $20 per sq.ft., or $85 to $100 per linear ft. for a 5 ft. wide dock. Biggest differences were quality/grade of materials and hardware, depth of embedment, and some construction details. You really need to go look at some examples of the dock builders work. Another big difference: the builder we went with was adamant that vibratory pile driving was far superior to sinking pilings with a water jet. We bought his reasoning; we'll see if vibratory driving is better when the next big one hits.
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