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Go Back   WakeWorld > >> Wakeboarding Discussion Archives > Archive through January 05, 2009

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Old     (westsidarider)      Join Date: Feb 2003       11-20-2008, 12:26 PM Reply   
im building a rail and this is the first floating one i have built. what is the cheapest way to float one that you have found. foam, barrels, whatever. and where did you get the floats.
Old     (balr54)      Join Date: May 2004       11-20-2008, 12:46 PM Reply   
We have a 35-40 foot slider that we float with 4 barrels. I will see if i can dig up a picture. It definitely isn't light either!
Old     (sidekicknicholas)      Join Date: Mar 2007       11-20-2008, 12:55 PM Reply   
look for old swimrafts on craigslist...the floats on there are usually pretty massive so you can pull it off with only 2.... I got one and only had to pay 50 bucks for the whole thing

the floats were like 2.5 ft diameter and like 7 ft long
Old     (mammoth)      Join Date: Apr 2005       11-20-2008, 12:56 PM Reply   
Plastic barrels work great as long as you make sure the caps are tight and sealed.

I know of a good source of cheap barrels in the Lathrop area. PM me if you're interested.
Old     (hawkeye7708)      Join Date: Feb 2007       11-20-2008, 2:42 PM Reply   
Tight sealed barrels work really well and can be pretty cheap and durable. Only thing i can say from when we made our floating rail, make sure it's anchored down really well or has some weight to it... or that sucker will bounce ALL OVER when you hit it
Old     (stephan)      Join Date: Nov 2002       11-20-2008, 3:53 PM Reply   
To eliminate the bounce use more barrels and put a fair amount of water in each one. It will make the rail sit lower in the water yet will also make it a ton more stable. Fat sac pumps with an extension work great for getting the water in/out.
Old     (mammoth)      Join Date: Apr 2005       11-20-2008, 4:21 PM Reply   
We took a different anchoring approach than Ben, and it works like a charm.

First, you're never going to anchor a floating rail so firmly that it sits still when the wake hits it. If you do manage, you'll be putting a lot of stress on the frame of the slider.

The bouncing that you get when you get on the slider is a function of rider weight. A floater will never be as solid as a slider on piers, but barrels are cheap and you can get close by over-engineering the floatation. Think reserve buoyancy.

After the rider crosses, you have the boat wake to deal with. The wake will want to lift the slider and foul/drag anchors. The remedy for this is to have elasticity in the anchor line. You don't want the bouncing slider to fight your anchors. A bungee anchor line lets it ride up and down with wakes and rollers without disturbing the anchors themselves. Use a setup similar to the Anchor Buddy. We used a segment of rubber bungees on each anchor and it worked perfectly. Our slider would stay put in the delta through tides, our boats wake, and the wakes of huge cruisers going by.

Make sure you also have a separate, longer tag line for each anchor. You don't want to be pulling your anchors up via bungee.
Old     (xbones)      Join Date: Mar 2007       11-20-2008, 6:09 PM Reply   
free stuff :-) I used a set of pontoons from an old school pedal boat.
Old     (deltawake)      Join Date: Sep 2004       11-20-2008, 7:36 PM Reply   
Jason- use foam. If you keep an eye out as you travel around the Delta this time of year, you will find many very usable pieces of foam floating around. I'm assuming that most of these have come loose from people's docks. All of the sliders at Villa Lagos are floating on styrofoam. It surprises me how little foam it actually takes to float a slider.
Old     (mammoth)      Join Date: Apr 2005       11-20-2008, 9:13 PM Reply   
+1 for random Delta foam too. We use it for transitions and places where we need floatation but can't fit a barrel.
Old     (westsidarider)      Join Date: Feb 2003       11-20-2008, 11:43 PM Reply   
we are floating the slider in the bay in disco so we wont need to worry about boat wakes. we re-enforced my buddies dock and mounted a trailer hitch reciever into the dock to hook a whinch up to. we have ridden a few times and it works great but i have just been skating and varials get old....im not a skater..

so were looking for the quickest?cheapest way to get some floatation. peters idea sounds great but as much as i have been getting out on the boat lately it would take forever to find random foam.

how much have you guys found those barrels for?
Old     (mammoth)      Join Date: Apr 2005       11-21-2008, 5:58 AM Reply   
$8 each.
Old     (hawkeye7708)      Join Date: Feb 2007       11-21-2008, 6:26 AM Reply   
Nate, those are definitely some good points. We just kinda made ours, and we noticed the problems right away. We only used 2 anchors, which led to some really bouncy hits, and the barrels were full of air, which didn't help much either. It's a pretty sweet rail in itself, but we've just got to get the anchoring process down pat.

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Old     (westsidarider)      Join Date: Feb 2003       11-21-2008, 9:41 AM Reply   
where would i find those barrels at. home depot/lowes?
Old     (dhr)      Join Date: Feb 2006       11-21-2008, 9:55 AM Reply   
CALLEN hit me up i got a line on them in livermore
Old     (hawkeye7708)      Join Date: Feb 2007       11-21-2008, 10:40 AM Reply   
They may have them there. Give em' a call. I don't know about where your at but if there are any local Dairy farms around, give them a call too. All the barrels for this rail were 2 bucks a crack from a farm outside town. Pretty cheap.

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