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Publication numberUS3580202 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 25, 1971
Filing dateMar 11, 1969
Priority dateMar 11, 1969
Publication numberUS 3580202 A, US 3580202A, US-A-3580202, US3580202 A, US3580202A
InventorsThompson Kenneth L
Original AssigneeYe Dock Master Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Floating wharf structure
US 3580202 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [72] Inventor Kenneth L. Thompson Huntington Beach, Calif. [21 Appl. No. 806,249 [22] .Filed Mar. 11, 1969 [45] Patented May 25, 1971 [73] Assignee Ye Dock Master, Inc.

[54] FLOATING WHARF STRUCTURE 9 Claims, 9 Drawing Figs.

[52] US. CL... l14/0.5 [51] lnt.Cl B63b35/00 [50] Field of Search ..1l4/0.5, 0.5 (F); 61/48 56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,857,872 10/1958 Usab ll4/0.5(F)

3,022,759 2/1962 McCall 114/0.5(F) 3,249,079 5/1966 Moore et al. l 14/0.5(F) 3,448,709 6/1969 l-lardwick l l4/05( F) Pn'mary Examiner-Trygve M. Blix Attorney-Nilsson, Robbins, Wills and Berliner ABSTRACT: A floating wharf structure wherein interconnected walkways are provided spaced from the top surfaces of supporting pontoons. Each of the walkways comprises a flat sheet of wire mesh screen and spacing means are defined by reinforcing bars disposed downwardly from the sheet. The screen and bars are encased in concrete shaped to define the walkway and integral spacing means. The walkways are interconnected by flanges extending downwardly from the walkways to contralaterally flank underlyingpontoons. Each pontoon comprises walls of concrete defining a chamber and polymer foam filling the chamber.

Patented May 25, 1971 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR.

FLOATING WHARF STRUCTURE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The field of art to which the invention pertains includes the field of ships, particularly floating docks therefor.

2. Description of the Prior Art In constructing marina or small boat harbors it is desirable to utilize a floating wharf structure which is accessible to land and has one or more fingers extending out into the body of water. In the past, various types of pontoons and floats have been utilized and proposed for this purpose. For example, in US. Pat. No. 2,857,872 a floating wharf structure is disclosed made up of concrete float units and in which the walkway is provided by the surfaces of the float units themselves. Although most of these structures operates satisfactorily for the purpose intended, they are often unwieldy and expensive to construct. It can also be noted that prior art floating wharfs tend to buck against tides and currents when they are constructed so that the space between the floating units is insufficient to accommodate the passage of such water.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention provides a floating wharf structure which can utilize any form of pontoon for floating thereof and which allows the placement of pontoons relatively spaced apart. The structure comprises interconnectable units which can be arranged in any of a variety of patterns and permanently fastened together in desired configuration. Walkways are provided which are separate from the underlying pontoons and which are spaced from the top surfaces ofv the pontoons to further reduce resistance to the passage of breaking waves. Specifically, each of the walkways is spaced from and supported by the top surfaces of the underlying pontoons by means of paired support members disposed lengthwise of each walkway under each side thereof. The wider walkways include an additional support member disposed lengthwise and substantially centrally thereof to extend downwardly from the walkway in the manner of the side support members. Flanges on the sides of the walkways serve to interconnect the walkways and extend downwardly therefrom to contralaterally flank underlying pontoons to limit lateral movement of the pontoons relative to the walkways.

With respect to specific structural details, each of the walkways comprises a flat sheet of wire mesh screen and the spacing members comprise reinforcing bars disposed downwardly from the sheet. The screen and bars are encased in concrete which is shaped to define the walkway and the integral spacing members. The pontoons can each comprise walls of concrete defining a chamber and polymer foam filling the chamber.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of part of a floating wharf structure constructed in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a plan view of part of another floating wharf structure in accordance with this invention;

FIG. 3 is a vertical section view taken on the line 3-3 of FIG. 2, in the direction of the arrows;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a pontoon constructed in accordance with this invention;

FIG. 5 is a vertical section view taken on the line 5-5 of FIG. 2, in the direction of the arrows;

FIG. 6 is a broken, enlarged vertical section view of a walkway structure of this invention;

FIG. 7 is a partial vertical section view taken on the line 7-7 of FIG. 2, in the direction of the arrows; and

FIGS. 8 and 9 are plans on vertical section views, respectively, of a knee bracket utilized herein.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to FIG. I, there is illustrated a floating wharf structure, including a headwalk l and a finger section 12,

each including sectionalized walkways 14 supported on pontoons 16. The pontoons 16 are spaced 3-4 feet apart to allow the water of breaking waves, currents and tides to pass through to thereby stabilize the wharf. Tie rails or facers 18 interconnect the walkway units 14 and also serve as flanges to buffer impacts from boats, as 20, docked thereat. Comer sections of knees 22 and 24 are shown connecting the finger section 12 to the headwalk 10. A wooden piling 24 extends through one of the comer sections 22 between rollers 26 thereon to anchor the floating wharf, but the piling can be located in other positions, e.g., on a finger section or on the headwalk. Knee brackets, 27, which may have a cleat, 29 thereon, secure the finger sections 22 to the headwalk 10 as hereinafter described.

Referring to FIG. 2, a floating wharf structure similar to that of FIG. 1 is shown in plan view, wherein finger sections 28, 30 and 32 project from a single headwalk 34. Each finger section consists of one or more walkways 36, 38 40, although only one walkway is shown in FIG. 2 for each finger section. One or more pontoons, shown'in shadow 42, underlie and support each finger section. Facers 46 and 48 are applied along each side of the finger sections and connecting corner sections 44, respectively.

The headwalk includes a plurality of walkways 50, 52 54 which are interconnected by double-run tie rails 56 as will hereinafter be detailed. The walkways are supported on pontoons, shown in shadow at'58 and 60 and in partial section at 62, and are spaced from the pontoons by supporting side beams 64 and 66 and centrally disposed beam 68, each running lengthwise beneath the walkway and, as will be seen hereinafter, each is formed integrally with the walkway. Similar side support members are provided for the walkways 36, 38, 40 constituting the finger sections 28, 30, 32.

Referring to FIG. 3, a vertical section view of the headwalk of FIG. 2 is shown. The walkway 50 is constructed of reinforced concrete and is provided with side support members 70 and 72 which are similar to the side support members 64 and 66 referred to in FIG. 2. The side support members 70 and 72 run the length of the walkway 50 and serve to space the walkway 50 from the top surface of the pontoon 58 thereunder. An additional support member 74 is formed extending downwardly from the walkway 50 and runs lengthwise and substantially centrally beneath the walkway 50. It is particularly desirable to utilize a central support member 74 to additionally support the relatively wide walkways constituting the headwalk 34 (in comparison to the width of the walkways constituting the finger sections 28, 30, 32). As shown in FIG. 3, the support members 70, 72 and 74 have little horizontal extent relative to the horizontal extent of the walkway 50 whereby to define open spaces between support members.

Tie rails 56 are provided and connected to the walkway 50 as will hereinafter be detailed. In this particular structure, double-run tie rails are supported on each side of the walkways constituting the headwalk 34. By utilizing double-run tie rails 56, extra buffering strength is provided to the headwalk 34 to protect the walkways 50, 52, 54 from direct impacts from boats being docked. It will be seen that it is generally only necessary to provide a single tie rail on each side of the walkways constituting the finger sections 28, 30, 32 since the finger sections generally receive only glancing impacts from boats being docked. An additional reason for providing a double-run tie rail 56, in effect an extended facer, is to protect the pontoons underlying the headwalk from being damaged by any protruding object such as, for example, the propeller of a boat. Thus, a pair of inner tie rails 56a and 56b are secured to the sides of the walkways 50 and are flanked by outer tie rails or facers 56c and 56d.

Although, as indicated, any appropriately sized and shaped pontoon can be utilized to support the walkways described herein, particularly advantageous pontoon is shown in cross section in FIG. 3 and in perspective in FIG. 4. The particular pontoon 58 shown in FIGS. 3 and 4 comprises a generally boxshaped structure having front and rear walls 74 and 76,

sidewalls 78 and 80 and a bottom wall 82 of lightweight concrete as hereinafter described. The walls are each 1 inch thick, but shown disproportionately in the drawing, and the chamber defined thereby is entirely filled with a solid polymer foam 84, such as polystyrene or the like as hereinafter described. A pair of notches 85 and 87 are cut through the upper surface of the portion 58 to support utility lines 89 and 91, shown in cross secton, under the walkway 50. By utilizing the foam-cored pontoon, structural strength is obtained although the concrete walls utilized can be relatively thin compared to prior structures. Although the pontoons illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 4 are shown with the foam-core exposed and defining the top surface of the pontoon, the foam may be completely encased in the concrete. A significant advantage of the foam-cored pontoons herein is the fact that the pontoons are not hollow and therefore do not fill with water by seepage or otherwise. Accordingly, there is no need for periodic inspection of seepage water.

Referring to FIG. 5, there is shown a vertical section view of a walkway 36 and underlying pontoon 42 constituting a finger section 28 of HQ 2. The walkway 36 has two integral beams or support members 86 and 88 extending downwardly from the sides thereof to support the walkway 36 spaced from the top surface of the pontoon 42. The pontoon 42 is constructed in a manner similar to the pontoon 58 illustrated in FIG. 4 and the sidewalls 9t) and 92 and bottom wall 94 are also shown disproportionately thick for clarity of illustration.

The walkways constituting the finger sections are sufficiently narrow so as to be adequately supported by only two support beams, such as 86 and 88. Furthermore, it is adequate to provide only single thicknesses of tie rails or facers 96 and 98. The tie rails 96 and 98 extend downwardly from the walkway 36 to contralaterally flank the underlying pontoon 42 to thereby limit its lateral movement relative to the walkway 36.

Referring to FIG. 6, there is illustrated in broken vertical section a walkway 100 such as may be utilized in constructing a headwalk, but wherein it is desired to have a double-run facer on only one side thereof. The walkway 100 is initially defined by a pair of flat sheets of galvanized wire mesh screen extending two-ply the length of the walkway and deformed downwardly at the sides 106 and 108 thereof to initially define the side support members. Steel reinforcement bars 110, 112, 114 and 116 are inserted within the screening defining the side support members and extend the length of the walkway 100. Additional steel reinforcement bars are disposed along the length of the walkway centrally of the sheeting and downwardly therefrom, respectively, and are held in place by loops of wire,'such as 122, to initially define the central support member. A plurality of inserts 124 enclosing threaded nuts are inmeshed in the wire legs 106 and 108 that define the support members to provide rows of threaded nuts along the sides of the walkways to enable fastening thereat of the tie rails. The subassembly is cast in concrete so as to form the walkway 100, integral side support beams 126 and 128 and central support beam 130. The walkway is formed about 2 /2 inches thick.

Referring to the right-hand side of the drawing in FIG. 6, the single wooden facer 132 thereat is secured to the right-side supporting beam 126 by means of bolts 134 that are threaded into the encased inserts 124. Referring to the left-hand side of the drawing in FIG. 6, an outer wooden facer or tie rail 136 and left-side support beam 128 sandwich an inner wooden tie rail 138 therebetween and the tie rails are connected to the side support beam by means of galvanized bolts 140 that are threaded into the inserts 124 thereat.

FIG. 7 shows a detail of construction of a corner section 44 of FIG. 2. The top surface 142 of the corner section is defined by 1 inch plywood which is secured at its outer edge by onequarter inch bolts 144 and nuts 146 to one leg of a galvanized steel U-beam 148. A wooden facer 150 is secured centrally to the U-beam 148 by means of one-half inch galvanized bolt 152 and nut 154 therefor so that the top surface of the facer 150 is flush with the top surface of the plywood 142.

FIGS. 8 and 9 show details of construction of a knee bracket 27, and cleat 29 thereon, which is utilized to secure the knee facers, such as 150 of FIG. '7, to the facets along the sides of the headwalk and finger sections to thereby join the finger sections to the headwalk. Each bracket 27 consists of a .onequarter inch plate stock runner portion 31, which in this case is about 2 /2 inches wide, and an extending portion 33, extending at an appropriate angle, and also about 2% inches wide. It is convenient to utilize 45 as an extension angle so that any bracket 29 can be utilized on either side thereof to secure the fingerwalks to the headwalk and define unilateral corner sections. Other extension angles are similarly convenient, e.g., 30 and 60 which can be inverted for use in different positions; however, any angle can be utilized. The bracket 27 is secured along the runner portion 31 of the edge of a walkway faceboard 35 on the side of a walkway 37 by means of a pair of bolts 39 and 41 through the runner portion 31 land width of the faceboard 35 and secured by nuts 43 and 45, respectively. The angled extension portion 33 is similarly secured to the edge of a faceboard 47 on the side of a corner section 49 by a pair of bolts 51 and 53 and nuts (not shown). A cleat 29 can be conveniently secured to an edge of the walkway or corner section by means of bolts 55 and 57 through the bracket 27 and secured by nuts 59 and 61 to the faceboard thereat. By utilization of knee bracket 27 as described, the cost of construction of the floating wharf is drastically reduced, yet the structure is strong and rigid.

With respect to materials of construction, the concrete utilized should be lightweight and is advantageously waterproof. Waterproof concrete having a cast weight of poundsper cubic foot can be utilized. As the foamed-core, a material which forms a closed cell foam should be utilized. Other materials that can be utilized include closed cell urethene foams, foamed polyethylene, foamed vinyl plastics, and foamed phenolics, epoxy foams, and the like.

With respect to the design parameters for the headwalks and finger sections, headwalks 8 feet wide and finger sections 4 feet wide can be provided. With respect to the headwalk, walkways of about 15-20 feet in length, 8 feet wide and constructed as described of lightweight concrete, weigh about 200 pounds per linear foot. In order to obtain an 18 inch freeboard, and utilizing a pontoon about 24 inches in height and 8 feet in width, one need utilize 1 linear foot of such pontoon for every 1.6 linear feet of walkway. With respect to the finger sections, a 4 feet wide finger section weights about 1 10 pounds per linear foot. ln order to obtain an l8 inch freeboard, and utilizing a pontoon of about 25 inches in height and 4 feet in width, one should utilize about 1 linear foot of pontoon for every 1.3 linear feet of walkway.

lclaim:

1. A floating wharf structure, comprising:

a plurality of pontoons; and

a plurality of interconnected walkways overlying said pontoons, each walkway integrally formed with concrete support members lengthwise under each side of said walkway and extending downwardly therefrom to about the top surface of an underlying pontoon whereby to support said walkway spaced from said pontoon top surface.

2. The structure of claim 1 including an additional support member of concrete formed integrally with said walkway lengthwise and substantially centrally thereof to abut the top surface of said underlying pontoon whereby to support said walkway spaced from said pontoon top surface.

3. The structure of claim 1 wherein said interconnecting means comprises flanges extending downwardly from said walkway to contralaterally flank an underlying pontoon for limiting lateral movement of said flanked pontoon relative to said walkway.

4. The structure of claim 1 wherein each of said walkways comprises a flat sheet of wire mesh screen and said support members are formed about reinforcement bars disposed downwardly from said shee:, said screen and bars being encased in concrete shaped to define said walkway and said integral support members. i

5. The structure of claim 1 wherein each of said pontoons comprises walls of concrete defining a chamber and rigid foam filling said chamber.

6. A walkway unit, comprising:

a sheet of wire mesh screen;

reinforcement bars spaced downwardly from the longitudinal sides of said sheet and extending lengthwise therewith; and

concrete encasing said screen and bars and shaped to define a walkway and integral elongate side members, respectively, said side members each extending substantially a predetermined distance downwardly from said walkway and having little horizontal extent relative to the horizontal extent of said walkway whereby to define open spaces between support members.

7. The unit of claim 6 including at least one reinforcement bar disposed lengthwise and substantially centrally of said sheet and spaced downwardly therefrom, said concrete encasing said bar and shaped thereat to define an integral elongate central member extending substantially said predetermined a comer section between an edge of said first walkway and an edge of said second walkway, said corner section having an outer edge defining with said first walkway an acute angle facing said second walkway, said comer section outer edge defining with said second walkway an acute angle facing said first walkway; and

a one-piece bracket connecting in a single plane the top surface of said comer section outer edge to the top surface of at least one of said first and second walkways.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2857872 *Jul 29, 1957Oct 28, 1958Usab Ernest MFloating wharf structure made of concrete float units
US3022759 *Aug 19, 1959Feb 27, 1962Basalt Rock Company IncConcrete floating wharf
US3249079 *Jul 26, 1963May 3, 1966Moore George RLaminated decking
US3448709 *Jun 12, 1967Jun 10, 1969Hardwick Thomas C JrMarine float construction
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3869532 *Jan 11, 1974Mar 4, 1975Rosecon IncMethod of manufacturing floating boat dock modules
US4043287 *Jan 29, 1976Aug 23, 1977Shorter Jr Myron LApparatus for connecting floating docks
US4070980 *Jun 21, 1976Jan 31, 1978Shorter Jr Myron LChannel connector for floating docks
US4318361 *Aug 6, 1979Mar 9, 1982Builders Concrete, Inc.Lightweight concrete marine float and method of constructing same
US4353320 *Apr 7, 1980Oct 12, 1982Builders Concrete, Inc.Utility distribution system for marine floats
US4559891 *Jul 9, 1984Dec 24, 1985Shorter Jr Myron LPontoon
US4709647 *Jan 6, 1986Dec 1, 1987Rytand David HFloating dock
US4860690 *Aug 31, 1987Aug 29, 1989Santo Robert S DeMarina dock and aquatic life habitat
US4887654 *Oct 8, 1987Dec 19, 1989Rytand David HFloating dock
US4940021 *May 30, 1989Jul 10, 1990Rytand David HFloating dock
US5347948 *Aug 13, 1993Sep 20, 1994Rytand David HPanelized float system
US5529012 *Jan 12, 1994Jun 25, 1996Rytand; David H.Semi-flexible hinges for a floating dock
US6786165Aug 30, 2002Sep 7, 2004Paul TrepanierPontoon and method of making the same
US6871607Oct 21, 2003Mar 29, 2005Paul TrepanierPontoon with shell therefor
US7845300Sep 5, 2008Dec 7, 2010Marine Floats CorporationModular floating marine dock
US8091500Dec 6, 2010Jan 10, 2012Marine Floats CorporationOver-the-water dock
US20040079270 *Oct 21, 2003Apr 29, 2004Paul TrepanierPontoon with shell therefor
US20050103250 *Oct 31, 2003May 19, 2005Thomson Howard M.Corrosion resistant prestressed concrete float system
US20110073030 *Dec 6, 2010Mar 31, 2011Stroud Wendell HOver-The-Water Dock
USRE32229 *May 23, 1983Aug 26, 1986Builders Concrete, Inc.Utility distribution system for marine floats
Classifications
U.S. Classification114/266
International ClassificationE02B3/06
Cooperative ClassificationE02B3/064
European ClassificationE02B3/06B2